Camelbak in winter- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

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    Camelbak in winter

    Hey,

    I'm thinking of using a camelbak during the Lil Su in February, has anyone got any advice about how to stop it icing up? Is it best to get an insulated one or an uninsulated one and put it under my coat?

    Is a camelbak the right way to go or is there a better hydration method? Any info welcome.

    Cheers, Nicky

  2. #2
    Wood chips are stupid
    Reputation: akdeluxe's Avatar
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    If you want to use a bladder system,use a NEW(they close tighter) bite valve only(not the right angle thingy). Insulate the blader. Insulate the tube. Stash the tube in your jacket when not drinking. Start with warm water. When not drinking,empty the tube by blowing the water back into the bladder. Carry a full nalgene anyway. Thats what I do.


    akdeluxe
    "Trust me,you don't want a big baby."

    JT

  3. #3
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    In a race as short as the 50K, "bladder management" shouldn't be too complicated. For shorter rides, I use a platypus bladder (super lightweight) with an insulated hose and carry it in a simple, no-frills "bladder-pack" (I read in "Bicycling Magazine" that there are now jerseys with rear pockets for bladders-- it's about time!). Make sure to duct-tape the nipple onto the hose for extra security. The pack/bladder/hose is placed on top of my polypro top and underneath my outer shell (a 2 oz windjacket- another weight-weenie selection). When I take a drink, I pull the hose out through my neck, take a long slurp, take a deep "purging" breath and then blow back through the nipple to clear the hose of all fluid. Put the hose back against your warm chest. Repeat every 10-15 minutes.

    The current trend with veteran races is to use (BHP-free) water bottles in insulated jackets hung from the handlebars (inside, toward the rider). This gets some weight off our backs and avoids the frozen-hose problem.

    However, for shorter races (like the 50K) in the milder temperatures around Knik, a bladder probably works better.

  4. #4

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    I'm not restricting myself to a bladder system, i am open to ideas as I dont have much experience in winter riding so i wanted some opinions about this system! Thanks for the info about the new style camelbaks and to carry the bottles! Depending on the budget I am hoping to get both the bottle (as these seem to have a better review) and the camelbak.

    Thanks Jacques for the how to use the camelbak info that would have been my next question! I think if i go for the camelbak option i shall get that early and practice how to drink out of it and act as if it would freeze up so i can get used to that system.

  5. #5
    is buachail foighneach me
    Reputation: sean salach's Avatar
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    jacques mentions safety taping the valve into the hose, i've found that cinching a small zip tie pretty tightly around the hose at each end(around the hose where the plug is inserted, below any lip on the plug) keeps the hose super securely attatched. i've had a water bladder empty down my back in the middle of the desert(on a paved road) before, and i would never want that to happen in the middle of a frozen wilderness.

  6. #6
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    Nalgenes

    Is it easy to refill your Nalgenes during the 100? Or do you get by with just two liters of fluids? I think I would need at least double that.

  7. #7
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    Su 100 aid stations

    The Su 100 has aid stations aplenty. Each of the 5 checkpoints (reference the course map/description at www.susitna100.com) has a large jug of water (typically from melted snow) available for a quick refill. You should be able to get in and out of an aid station in one minute or less (assuming you can resist all the seductive temptations at these checkpoints)....Note that Flathorn and Luce's are slightly off-piste, so you'll have some additional time getting to the actual check-point.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by NickyB
    I'm not restricting myself to a bladder system, i am open to ideas as I dont have much experience in winter riding so i wanted some opinions about this system! Thanks for the info about the new style camelbaks and to carry the bottles! Depending on the budget I am hoping to get both the bottle (as these seem to have a better review) and the camelbak.

    Thanks Jacques for the how to use the camelbak info that would have been my next question! I think if i go for the camelbak option i shall get that early and practice how to drink out of it and act as if it would freeze up so i can get used to that system.
    The key is to find a "system" that keeps you drinking. IMHO, bladders are the best choice for a short (less than 12 hour) event, where you want to drink "on the fly" and not have to bobble an open container while you're trying ride a narrow track with soft snow and/or a minefield of moose tracks. That said, you'll have a better race if you stop and drink every 15 minutes than if you try to ride between checkpoints with a frozen bladder hose.

    As you develop your Race Plan, be realistic about your goals and your abilities and let these factors drive your equipment choices. Sometimes by slowing down, you go faster.

    At the same time, if you're willing to take the time to train and prepare, there's nothing wrong with an "every second counts" approach....these events are, after all, races! And don't forget that the most intense athlete to ever participate in the Iditasport/Su 100 was a scrawny kid from Cincinnati (by the name of John Stamstad) who didn't let the lack of snow in his life slow him down one bit.

  9. #9

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    Jacques, I have done alot of intensity training (sets of short bursts of intense cardio followed by short rest) so the drink stop every 15mins for a drink appeals due to my quick recovery time. Im now mixing this type of training up with endurance biking in conditions that come close to snow (boggy tracks, beaches, then hoping to go to Scotland to get some snow training & test the gear in January). So i will probably end up taking a camelbak and one nalgene for the stops (have longer gaps between the drink stops). When I started training last February I was looking to just complete it, now I feel stronger I am beginning to look at it from a racing point of view.

    Sean, thats a great idea! Sounds like it would make a more secure than duct tape, then I can always cover the zip tie with duct tape aswell.

    Thanks for the replies guys, its really helping!

  10. #10

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    Good job! Lots of good suggestions:

    I've always been the traditionalist...opting for the waterbottle in a blanket set up.

    Been using this line of products with great success, to -20dF, for the last year:

    http://www.nathansports.com/our_prod...snow_line.html

    I think I'm a pack convert at this point.

    Quyana Alaskans for all the great suggestions.

    ML

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