Mar 11, 2013 at 6:32 pm #1300349
Hello. I plan to purchase a Steripen or Sawyer Squeeze (maybe both) in the next few weeks. After searching through the forum here, seems like larger bladders are not that popular. I currently use a Source Hydration WXP 3L. I like having 3L capacity even if I don't fill it up.
It seems like the Steripen requires a large open mouth container. The Sawyer system uses collapsable bottles. Does anyone still use a bladder with either the Steripen or Sawyer?
Thank you.Mar 11, 2013 at 6:41 pm #1964469
@lunchandynnerLocale: Pacific Northwest
I moddd my Sawyer squeeze to be inline with my hydration bladder. I used the included adapters and just added tubing to the output end and added a high flow mouthpiece. Connected input end to tube of my hydration bladder. I can use the filter alone or attached to the bladder. Just fill the bladder, easy to do with wide opening. Just fill with dirty water and drink.Mar 11, 2013 at 6:56 pm #1964479
Not meaning this to be the last word or anything, but…
I just dislike the idea of placing a bulging 3L bladder into my pack. What a chore it is to refill — when things have shifted and you need to 'almost' repack. No fun in the rain. And even with Sawyer's supposedly "radical" connectors — I doubt the mere force of gravity can push away all other pack contents to bulge a bladder back up.
I place either liter-size or two-liter size soft Platypus bottles in my pack's side pockets — depending on need. I then hook one up with Platypus drinking tube — splicing an inline filter in between. Much easier to me then fumbling with pack contents.
Potential downside of water bottles in the side pockets?
1. Imbalance — Frankly, I've never felt it — not even a little bit.
2. Bottle falling off — this can happen with smooth water bottles — but much less likely with soft Platypus.Mar 11, 2013 at 7:03 pm #1964480
@dipinkLocale: Western Washington
I used to carry a larger capacity bladder, but have given it up. I hike where there's plenty of water all around, so I don't need to carry as much. Less water=less weight. I carry a 1 L bladder with drinking tube, then 2-3 empty 1 L Platypus bladders so I can stop just before camp and tank up enough for my dinner/breakfast needs. I carry the 1 L full bladder on the outside of my pack, where I can monitor how much I have, and don't worry about any water getting to my gear.Mar 11, 2013 at 7:07 pm #1964483
One big bladder with a leak= one big problem. Multiple comtainer user here also.Mar 11, 2013 at 8:16 pm #1964513
There's just nothing like having a 3L bladder start leaking in 40* weather!
That's when I gave up on bladders!Mar 11, 2013 at 8:22 pm #1964515
@geokiteLocale: Southern California
I use a steripen with a cut down 1L platy as the zapping vessel. I can roll it up and store in a side pocket of the pack, and don't have to get inside my pack. I then pour this water into a 1L and/or 2L platy that feeds a hose. They go in the side pockets of my pack.
2 platys allows the pack to be balanced when that much water needs to be carried (not very often). And redundancy is nice.
I used to use the older "version" of the Sawyer Squeeze, the old Safe Water Anywhere inline filters (early 2000s). Still have a bunch. Both are great if you either want to suck water through a filter, or have time to let gravity do the work. At least with the SWA filter, squeezing was not the best way.
SteveMar 11, 2013 at 8:30 pm #1964521
I really like the bladders that are in my Salomon running packs. The older one is a Source bladder I think. Both have a unique opening method in that the entire top opens up and folds over itself to close. They work great as scoops for shallow water and the huge opening makes it easy to use my steripen. Much better than Camelbak or Platypus bags in my pinion.Mar 11, 2013 at 8:35 pm #1964524
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
BUT… I only use a 3 L. bladder in summer desert conditions here in the Mojave.
I never use my Steripen in my bladders, only in my bike bottle where I mix electrolyte powder. I use Katadyn chlorine dioxide tabs in my bladder and then usually at night when I fill up for the coming day.
P.S. For backpacking I still use ancient Gregory bladders with CamelBak valves because the Gregory bladders are 1/2 the weight of CamelBak bladders. CamelBak needs to offer a smaller lid on a bladder to save weight. Maybe a light weight blader protected by a laminated nylon cover would help as well.
For day hiking wear-and-tear I use the regular CamelBak bladders.Mar 11, 2013 at 8:59 pm #1964538
1. Whenever I'm hiking, and my water is in my bottle and I can't reach it, I think I drink less. Good or bad depending on conditions. When my friends have a bladder with a hose nearby, I'm jealous and I wish I had the same access.
2. The lids on a lot of packs seem like ideal places to store bladders, if the pack weight is distributed right for it.Mar 11, 2013 at 9:02 pm #1964542
"The lids on a lot of packs seem like ideal places to store bladders, if the pack weight is distributed right for it."
You don't really want the heavy stuff high up. A small (1L) bottle, no big deal. But probably not 2L and defintely not 3L and up.
If you like hydration system, why not try out the 1L size Platypus and connect it to a tube with a bite valve at the end? Just make sure to screw tight (test for leaks) — then insert upside down into your pack's side pocket. Voila. Hydration system.Mar 11, 2013 at 9:11 pm #1964548
>You don't really want the heavy stuff high up.
If sitting very high, then yes. I find that on my Talon 44, when not stuffed to the gills, the lid is an ok place to put a water bladder. It sits just at my shoulders.Mar 11, 2013 at 9:45 pm #1964571
…Mar 11, 2013 at 10:28 pm #1964592
I'm a steripen user but will probably buy the Sawyer later this spring to see how I like it in comparison to the pen.
I have a platy bladder and I could take it or leave it. I like that it's convenient to drink out of. I can't walk and drink out a gatorade bottle without wearing half the bottle. There are the previously mentioned downsides to the bladder system so right now I'm migrating away from it to gatorade bottles or platy bottles.
I was going to sacrifice a platy bottle for my steripen but for the time being I'm using a 32 oz capacity yogurt container; it weighs one oz and my cook kit nest inside it. Seems like it will work well but we'll see.Mar 11, 2013 at 10:57 pm #1964599
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Let me know if you want a chopped Platy. I sold my Steripen and I have one or two floating around here somewhere.Mar 12, 2013 at 8:24 am #1964681
Thanks Dale for the kind offer. I'll send you a PM later today.Mar 12, 2013 at 9:29 am #1964699
I use drink mixes, gatorade, mio etc so i go with 2 powerade bottles that are easy to clean. they fit horizontally in my Osprey Exos for easy reaching. I have an extra 1.5L Evernew soft bottle for my Sawyer that can be used for extra storage. I never liked the idea of having to unpack my pack to refill water and on longer hikes inside storage is a premium so water goes outside.Mar 12, 2013 at 9:44 am #1964708
–Mar 12, 2013 at 10:33 am #1964738
I use a 4L Ortlieb bladder. I rarely fill it completely though. A big bladder like mine is also multi purpose. I also use my bladder as a very comfortable pillow. Sometimes I even carry it in my neck to keep me cool and stop me from getting (more badly) sunburned.
I don't use it with a Steripen though. I'm affraid the UV will damage the bladder.Mar 12, 2013 at 12:24 pm #1964785
Thanks everyone for the feedback.
My Source WXP bladder, like the Platty Big Zip, has a slide off top. Is it possible to use the Steripen in the bladder if you slide the top off? Mark mentioned that he is afraid the UV will damage the bladder. Is it possible to use the Steripen in a Platty bottle without chopping the top?
I'm intrigued at the thought of dumping the bladder in favor of bottles. I would love to hear thoughts on Platty vs. Evernew. I like that both companies produce a drinking tube connector to the bottles, but wish they had the same zip off top as the Big Zip. Is it crazy to have two 2L bottles and filling half way or should I stick with two 1L ones?
With the Sawyer system, does one bag remain "dirty"? Still figuring out how it all works…
Thanks for the help.Mar 12, 2013 at 12:57 pm #1964796
@acrosomeLocale: Back in the Front Range
My biggest issue with hydration systems is that it is hard to track your water consumption. Running out of water is then always a bit of a surprise- you suck on the mouthpiece and nothing comes out. (And, dammit, you just passed that spring a mile ago- now you have to backtrack.) I find that if I use bottles in my pack side-pockets I generally keep a much better mental inventory of my water supply. I've never had a problem reaching them without taking my pack off, so I don't find that I drink less, as others have complained.
That said, sometimes I use a Sawyer filter. I have a "dirty" bladder, and gravity filter into the other containers. Then, if I really need to camel up I can still store a few liters of unfiltered water in my pack in that bladder, and filter it into my bottles once they are empty.Mar 12, 2013 at 2:41 pm #1964838
I like bladders – it makes it easier for me to drink and so I drink. I've never mastered the bottles on the side of the pack thing.
I've never had problems with leaking or getting cut.
Cold can be a challenge – I'm hiking some Colorado 14ers now. A couple of suggestions
– insulated bladder compartment
– insulated tube
– blow back water into bladder
– hold tube over head and shake water out
– keep mouth piece in jacket
– start with warmish water
– include hand warmer with bladder
As to filtering water – I would take another bottle. Filter the water into the bottle and dump into the bladder. The bottle is better if you also need to filter out the silt.Mar 12, 2013 at 2:59 pm #1964845
@Paul, who wrote: "I've never mastered the bottles on the side of the pack thing."
Picture your current set up: bladder –> tube –> bite valve. Now picture the exact same set up but with a smaller ( 1L) bladder that can fit into your pack's side pockets. There.
Not saying this set up has to be to everyone's liking, of course, but there is nothing to "master".Mar 13, 2013 at 8:08 am #1965033
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
Out of fashion?
I never tried one. They weigh too much.Mar 13, 2013 at 8:38 am #1965042
@jraiderguyLocale: Puget Sound
I really wanted to use bottles, but on all the packs I tried in store, I couldn't easily reach the pocket to pull out a 1L smartwater bottle. I ended up with a zimmerbuilt pack, and I can barely reach the bottles, but it isn't comfortable/easy, and getting it back in is worse. So I'm glad I also got a bladder sleeve, and I'll probably be sticking to my 2L bladder. I don't enjoy the feel of a holsters on the shoulder straps, so that's out.
I guess this is just an unfortunate combo of physiology/flexibility for me.
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