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1000-Mile Hydration Pack Test

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Kelly Agnew is one prolific ultra runner. In the past year, he has run 21 ultras, including the Leadville 100 in which we tagged along to cover the action. He just won the 2013 Cajun Coyote 100 Mile this past weekend. Agnew has his race plan down to a science. He wore the to-be-released Osprey Rev 1.5 in 12 of those races and has carried it for more than 1,000 miles in the last year. —Sean McCoy

Agnew at an aid station wearing the Rev 1.5

By Kelly Agnew

I’m always hunting for gear that will help me perform better during competition. A critical key to performance is proper hydration and nutrition and for me, that means the right hydration pack.

The Osprey Rev 1.5, which will be released in the spring of 2014, has proven to be that critical gear.

Osprey Rev 1.5

The Rev 1.5 is the smallest in a new line of Rev packs Osprey designed for runners that the company says “are designed to move with the wearer, providing a fit that is more like a shirt than a traditional backpack.”

The Rev 1.5 ($70) comes with a 1.5-liter Hydraulics LT Reservoir with built in baffles to reduce barreling and sloshing. It is also equipped with a quick connect for easy removal from the pack for filling or cleaning. The bladder is so easy to access while in the pack I only use this feature for cleaning the bladder after use.

It weighs in at a scant 10 to 11 ounces empty.

Expandable harness pockets offer easy access to fuel or other gear with additional storage in the body of the pack.

The Osprey Rev 1.5

My personal favorite feature, the DigiFlip media pocket, keeps your phone or iPod out of the weather but drops down and provides access to the touchscreen while still moving. I use this extensively for my iPhone and iPod while running and it keeps my expensive electronics safe but still usable without removing them from the pocket.

The DigiFlip pocket holds a phone, visible in the lower right corner of the photo

While the Rev 1.5 is a small, lightweight pack, I am still able to carry plenty of gels, a headlamp, spare batteries, energy bars, a small camera, phone and a light jacket. With that amount of available storage, I rarely need a larger pack.

The Osprey Rev 1.5 feels and fits wonderfully during my run. The design and construction allow for a “barely there” feel during use with no bouncing or discomfort. Even after 100 miles of continuous running, the pack did not chafe and still felt great.

Kelly giving the Rev 1.5 a serious test

The fit can be adjusted on the go as the load changes by adjusting the harness straps in the rear or the two chest straps up front. All are easy to access and simple to use. The pack breathes well, preventing hot spots and helping to keep the body cool.

Simply put, it’s more like wearing a favorite shirt than a pack.

Kelly races in the Rev 1.5

After nearly 1000 miles of running with my Osprey Rev 1.5, I am convinced it’s the best pack I’ve ever had on my back. To make an even more compelling argument, the Rev 1.5 will have a retail price of $70, which is a fraction of the price of competing packs. It’s definitely worth checking out.

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