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  1. #1
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    hydration fastest strategy

    What do you guys do ? Camelbak (1.5L) + water bottle (500 to 1 litre bottle) ? Or one big bottle (750-1000ml) that gets filled up at the feed zones. I guess it's about the added weight (slower) VS stopping (slower).

  2. #2
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    I like this because it can be run super light or heavy. You can set it up with just a couple .5L bottles or all the way up to a 3.5L package. Plus Osprey stuff is super comfortable. https://www.osprey.com/ar/en/product...RO15I_103.html. I would run as light a pack as you can and bottles where you can easily reach them. The biggest thing determining how much you carry is how frequently you will come across support.

    https://runnerclick.com/osprey-duro-15-review/

  3. #3
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    It really depends on the distance of the laps (or distance between aid zones) and the temp/humidity. I prefer to have nothing on my back, or at most a spare water bottle in my jersey pocket if the aid zone is beyond the distance I can reasonably cover with 1 bottle. I'll wear the hydration pack on an all-day ride or unsupported race (basically, if I need the hydration pack, I also need my MSR Trailshot).

  4. #4
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    For hydration pack I was looking at the Camelbak Chase Vest. I thought it was the most simple/light option.

    As for feed zone I haven't found that answer (on where) but usually those race you have enough stop options (let's say every 15-20k for an 80k race). The race should last between 4h to 4h30.

    I initially thought about carrying my 1 L bottle... but I'm realizing I might have to stop twice or maybe 3 times (1+ minute ?!).

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheelzqc View Post
    What do you guys do ? Camelbak (1.5L) + water bottle (500 to 1 litre bottle) ? Or one big bottle (750-1000ml) that gets filled up at the feed zones. I guess it's about the added weight (slower) VS stopping (slower).
    I stick my own bottle tree in feed zones
    but it depends on distance and laps or not what I actually end up doing

    I've done one 3 liter camelbak with three more 24oz bottles additionally
    toe-strapped to the pack for a one-way 70 miler
    "Put your seatbelt back on or get out and sit in the middle of that circle of death." - Johnny Scoot

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheelzqc View Post
    For hydration pack I was looking at the Camelbak Chase Vest. I thought it was the most simple/light option.

    As for feed zone I haven't found that answer (on where) but usually those race you have enough stop options (let's say every 15-20k for an 80k race). The race should last between 4h to 4h30.

    I initially thought about carrying my 1 L bottle... but I'm realizing I might have to stop twice or maybe 3 times (1+ minute ?!).

    I've only done a couple endurance/marathon races, but they both had feed zones and you could send full bottles to those zones ahead of time. I think that's the fastest option, where you just swap your empty bottle(s) for full at the feed zone.


    Heat is a big factor for me. I've experimented and found that I use about 2x the water in the summer as I do in the fall or spring. I also like to keep things off my back and use 2 bottles on the bike.

  7. #7
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    The one point not mentioned so far is what will you actually drink out of consistently. As many, I prefer bottles to have my back free but also realize that I drink more when I’m wearing a camelbak. Suffering during a regular or training ride due to lack of water is one thing, but being behind the ball during a race because you didn’t drink enough during the first 3hrs is quite another. I’m sure we all have stories of what can happen (or has).

    I wear a vest type pack from Inov-8 from my ultra running days similar to the camelbak you mention. Fits like a glove, some mesh pockets in front... blah blah.. I carry about 1L and at the Lumberjack (3 loops) on the 2nd loop put a bottle of Roctane on the bike, but I’m also not a sub9hr rider so I carried plenty of liquid for a loop and didn’t refill at the 17mile aid station.

    I suggest it comes down to being honest without yourself, what will you drink from more consistently.

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  8. #8
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    Bottles on bike and sent to aid stations if the course includes enough gravel/smooth portions to drink reliably.

    Small pack and bottle if that isn't the case.

    Getting behind your hydration needs in a race is worse than a hot, sweaty backside.
    Whining is not a strategy.

  9. #9
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    Above spot on:

    Smooth course with lots of sections where you can drink - Bottles, now adays that means one in bike one in jersey pocket

    Longer, Hotter, rougher days: Bottle on bike with calories and electrolytes in it. Water in Camelbak. I know some guys who do opposite water bottle on bike, calories on the back. Whatever floats your boat really key is to spend sometime training that way, don't switch it up race day.
    Last edited by HEMIjer; 07-02-2018 at 08:32 AM. Reason: typos
    XC, Road, XXC, Endurance, Mtn, All-Mtn, Cross, Gravel, just go have fun on 2 wheels!

  10. #10
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    I used the Camelbak Chase at the Lumberjack 100 (100 Mile MTB) this year and thought it was great. Minimalist pack that sits high and allows access to jersey pouches. Had hydration in the pack with electrolytes (was able to fit a 2 liter reservoir) and liquid nutrition in a bottle on the bike. I only had to make 2 stops to refill, one at 33 miles and 66 miles for a 9 hour ride.

    Much easier to sip from a pack when you’re racing through the woods than fooling with bottles. Lumberjack 100 was 90% singletracks which would make it difficult to stay on top of hydration with bottles.
    2018 Scott Spark RC 900 World Cup | “If you’re not first you’re last”

  11. #11
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    I also have a Chase vest and like it quite a bit more than my older Osprey. That's not an apples to apples comparison as my Osprey has double the capacity so of course it feels bulkier.

    The Chase is light and cool enough that it would be my go-to for racing regardless due to the ease of drinking out of it on any terrain, but refilling bladders is so much slower than bottles at aid stations that I defer to the above guidance about using bottles for any race where there's enough smooth terrain for you to reliably drink out of them.

  12. #12
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    Good reviews on the Chase thanks ! and for the tips. I'll have to check on my next one how it will be feed zone wise but it looks like the Chase won't be a bad buy. Worst case for training. I think its fits 1.5L + 750ml on the bike. Should be almost good depending on how warm. I think the next endurance event will have long smooth gravel climbs, but the next after that is mostly flat and singletrack.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MI-XC View Post
    I used the Camelbak Chase at the Lumberjack 100 (100 Mile MTB) this year and thought it was great. Minimalist pack that sits high and allows access to jersey pouches. Had hydration in the pack with electrolytes (was able to fit a 2 liter reservoir) and liquid nutrition in a bottle on the bike. I only had to make 2 stops to refill, one at 33 miles and 66 miles for a 9 hour ride.

    Much easier to sip from a pack when you’re racing through the woods than fooling with bottles. Lumberjack 100 was 90% singletracks which would make it difficult to stay on top of hydration with bottles.
    For a balanced discussion, I'll offer the counterpoint. I was also at Lumberjack 100 and used bottles. I started each lap with 2 bottles of Tailwind. I stopped at the mid-way aid station where I slammed a cup of coke, ate some pbj's and refilled one of the bottles with straight water. This resulted in more frequent stops and all of the stops combined totaled 5 min*. That said, on that course with it's lack of elevation I think it was probably a little faster to carry a little more weight and cut out the mid-lap stop. Assuming each stop was ~60s long, that would save 3 minutes. It would require being able to swap out a Camelbak though, as refilling one would take longer than throwing some fresh bottles on the bike.

    * Based on cafe time. Honestly, I suspect it was less time than this. Each stop with new bottles at start/finish was literally a case of ripping the old bottles off, stuffing the new ones in jersey/cage, slamming some coke, grabbing a couple fig newtons and off. The mid lap stop was slamming some coke while my bottle was filled by an aid station worker (you guys & gals were AWESOME!!!!!). Snag some pbj as I rolled out. I probably can't get a camelbak off my back much quicker than these stops were, but I'm basing idle time off GPS speed which has questionable accuracy with wet tree cover like this course had.

  14. #14
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    Lumberjack 100 here as well. I used Camelbaks, and had 1 ready to go for each lap. Never needed to stop mid lap. Stopped at my pit to put on a new camelbak and grabbed some food in between each lap. My crew filmed me at 1 of the pits. It was 20 seconds from putting a foot down to pedaling off. So approximately 40 seconds of non-moving time the whole race. Not buying or selling, just wanted to give some time comparisons since you had some for bottles.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by KonaSS View Post
    Lumberjack 100 here as well. I used Camelbaks, and had 1 ready to go for each lap. Never needed to stop mid lap. Stopped at my pit to put on a new camelbak and grabbed some food in between each lap. My crew filmed me at 1 of the pits. It was 20 seconds from putting a foot down to pedaling off. So approximately 40 seconds of non-moving time the whole race. Not buying or selling, just wanted to give some time comparisons since you had some for bottles.
    Nice! That was in my notes for next time, “have spare Camelbak ready at my tent”. That would have been so much quicker. I had my wife refill my fuel bottle while I refilled my Camelbak. I wasted time adding ice, dropping in fizz tablets, and reloading gels. I estimate about 2-3 mins each for my two stops, so about 4-6 mins total time stopped out of 9 hours. With replacements ready to go I could’ve easily cut that down to about 1 min stops.

    Being my first endurance race it was more of a learning experience. The only change I made post Lumberjack was buying a more secure bottle cage, as I lost my fuel bottle 10 mins into the second lap. The course was littered with lost bottles.
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  16. #16
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    Completely course dependent, and weather/temperature dependent.

    One bottle if it's shorter laps (10-12 miles), two bottles if it's longer laps (15-25 miles), two bottles and 70ml (running) vest if it's longer but not too long. 100ml and two bottles if it's longer with few/no aid stations or drop bags.

    Try not to stop at aid stations, as I don't like the unpredictability.....and stopping at all is a huge time suck.

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