Ryan Conklin

Ryan Conklin

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Ryan Conklin

Ryan Conklinwrote a review of on July 25, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I followed Salomon's sizing chart and ordered an M/L, and before running with it I thought it would be too small. This morning I took it on its maiden voyage though, a 7 miler with 1600ft gain, and I can comfortably say that the sizing is correct.

The fit of this pack is really nice: It moves with you. If you order it and you think it's too small, I recommend taking it out for a spin before deciding to exchange for a larger size. Trust Salomon's engineering, or, at least give it a shot.

The back pockets are nice and big, but I had a hard time reaching a loose gel and bar I had stuck in them. I'll probably plan to not keep any back there and only stick things in the back that are bulkier to make reaching them easier: a hat, jacket, gloves, headlamp, or maybe a ziplock bag full of snacks.

The zipper pockets are great, three in total. I put my keys in the zippered pocket on one side and my wallet on the other and I could not feel them as I ran. The small pouches in the front above the water bottles are great for small bars, GUs, and salt capsules.

Soft water bottles are a great addition in this model over hard bottles with over vests, which tend to bruise your chest after long runs. I found that the water bottles begin to flop around a little once you've sipped from them--fun fact, you can sip from them without removing them from their pockets! One recommendation is that once the bottle is empty, take a second and blow it full of air to inflate it and then stick it back in its pocket; this will prevent it from flopping around or falling out of the pocket if you bend over to tie your shoe or pick up an arrowhead.

Since I was out solo in the backcountry, I appreciated the pack's integrated whistle, should I have needed to yell for help, the whistle would've made it much easier to guide people to my location. --On this note, there's also the safety blanket included, which is another reassurance to tuck into the back of your mind as you go out seeking adventure.

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Ryan Conklin

Ryan Conklinwrote a review of on July 23, 2016

5 5

I love that these are not only really friggin tasty, but also very thin. I take 1-2 with me on bike rides and they fit in my jersey pocket without taking up hardly any space! If I had to, I could probably fit 20 of them in one pocket, which is 3,200 calories; there's no way I could fit even half that many clif bars in one pocket. You can't beat the size/shape of these and the caramel flavor is awesome!

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Ryan Conklin

Ryan Conklinwrote a review of on June 22, 2016

2 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

The following review is based on my personal experience with two of the 10oz bottles. I've used these bottles for lots of training runs and a few trail races, and they serve the purpose, but I don't recommend them and am looking for an alternative bottle of similar size/shape.

The problem with this bottle is that the cap doesn't seal well, so if you squeeze the bottle at all to drink, the liquid will come out the opening as well as around the sides of the cap. And, because the opening is so small, it's difficult to patiently drink from a small stream when you're running, particularly in a race. Most times nowadays, I take the cap completely off and sip from the bottle, then replace the cap and put the bottle back on my waist pack--this way seems to be easier as it allows me to drink the desired amount more easily/quickly and (when I'm drinking a powdered drink mix) it keeps my hands from becoming sticky from liquid leaking out around cap.

For me, the leaking problem has persisted even when the cap is closed. If I hold the bottle upside down and apply any pressure, liquid will escape from around the seal of the closed cap and leak out.

As an aside, the company Ultimate Direction is great and I love their other products, just not these 10oz'ers.

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