Disclaimer: I received an Orange Mud Hydraquiver Single Barrel to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
Once again, BibRave teamed up with our friends at OrangeMud, and this time we had the opportunity to test the Hydraquiver Single Barrel. I was excited to try this pack because it doesn’t have the chest strap like the VestPack1. I’m a busty lady, and having something right across my boobs wasn’t always the most comfortable situation.
I ended up getting the bright pink color, which I LOVE. The Hydraquiver Single Barrel has two very stretchy pockets on the shoulders, and a zipper pocket in back. The zipper pocket also has a headphone port so that if you use wired earbuds, you can stash your phone safely in the cushioned, zippered pocket and still get your tunes. I was able to fit up to four gels in one shoulder pocket, plus my keys and chapstick in the other, and my phone in the back pocket, which completely took care of my storage needs during long runs. I was also able to squeeze my iPhone 6s with its bulky case into one of the shoulder pockets if I really wanted it close at hand–they’re VERY stretchy!
The pack itself is much more streamlined than the VestPack 1 that I tried last year. It also has a lot more cushion/padding in the back. I had the opportunity to test this pack on LOTS of long runs, and on the whole I was really happy with it. The thing I liked most is that the holster for the water bottle is sort of funnel shaped, versus being a straight tube on the VP1, so getting the bottle in and out was a bit easier. I used to use a hydration belt, and I will honestly never go back. The Single Barrel is much more comfortable and less irritating than having a belt bouncing around my hips, and carries so much more stuff! It may seem weird at first to reach up over your head to grab the bottle, but after the first run, it became a totally natural motion.
The thing that bothered me most about the Single Barrel is that the straps don’t have any padding on them. They’re just webbing, so they’re not super comfortable. There are padded sleeves that you can purchase on the OrangeMud site which may help with that, but I didn’t have a chance to try those. I was actually afraid to try wearing it without sleeves because I was worried about chafing, although many of my fellow Pros did so without any issues. The straps are also really long and ended up bouncing around, but after watching this excellent video from OrangeMud, I found that they had already provided a way to secure them!
The other problem that I had with the Single Barrel is that because it doesn’t have the chest strap to sort of anchor it, it didn’t stay in place as well when I was taking the bottle out of the holster. I had the shoulder straps tightened pretty well, so I don’t think tightening them anymore would have made a difference, and likely would have ended up being more uncomfortable. It’s just funny that the main reason I wanted to try this pack is because it didn’t have the chest strap, and that was the main thing I missed!
Aside from those issues, I really do love the OrangeMud Hydraquiver Single Barrel, and would hands down use it over any other belt or handheld that I’ve tried (which is quite a few!).
If you’re interested in reading more about the OrangeMud Hydraquiver Single Barrel, check out these reviews by my fellow BibRave Pros:
Also, don’t miss our Twitter #BibChat on May 3rd at 9 pm ET. OrangeMud will be our sponsor, and they usually do a sweet giveaway!
What is your preferred method of carrying hydration on long runs? Pack? Handheld? Belt?