The Importance of a Hydration Pack on a Long Hike

Girl drinking water from her hydration pack in the mountain

When hiking, it’s extremely important to keep your body in good condition. This can mean a wide variety of things.

It can mean to keep eating well, keep sunscreen on and your eyes protected from the sun, but it can also mean to stay hydrated. Hydration packs are generally the best way to do this.

Sure a water bottle is a good thing for a hiker to have, but true hikers on long hikes will find that a hydration pack is far superior to a simple water bottle. Here are some reasons why.

You Have to Stay Hydrated

Hikers are susceptible to dehydration more so than many other people. It’s easy to become dehydrated while hiking because you don’t think about it. You’re taking in the beautiful scenery and enjoying yourself and it can be easy to forget to keep drinking.

Continually sipping on fluids is the best way to stay hydrated, and hydration packs make this easy. If you don’t do that, you can become severely dehydrated, which can lead to difficulty breathing, muscle cramps, and other serious health issues. A hydration pack will help you stay healthy and comfortable.

Types of Hydration Packs

There are a few different types of hydration packs you should know about. They all vary in design and capacity but knowing the types of hydration packs will help you pick the right one.

Backpack Hydration Packs

Backpack hydration packs are the ones that most people are familiar with. These are like a standard backpack with a soft pouch for fluids. There’s a tube that comes over your should that you can drink from. These come in a variety of sizes, designs, and capacities. They’re the most common and generally work the best for hikers.

Hydration Waistpacks

A hydration waist pack works kind of like a fanny pack but for your hydration needs. Some are little more than a pouch for your water bottle while others are a bit more advanced and feature a pouch just like backpack hydration packs do.

Winter Hydration Packs

Winter hydration packs are actually a sub-type of the two listed above, but they’re very important if you spend a lot of time outdoors when it’s cold. Basically, these types of hydration packs are designed to insulate the fluids you carry with you so they don’t freeze. They’re popular with winter hikers, snowshoers, snowboarders, and snow skiers.

Good Hydration Packs for Hikers

There are dozens of hydration packs to choose from on Gander RV & Outdoors’ website, but these are three that work well for hikers.

CamelBak Mule Hydration Pack


The CamelBak Mule Hydration Pack is a lightweight hydration pack that features a 100-ounce capacity. It has a magnetic tube trap that makes finding the tube quick and easy. The pack feature reflective piping to keep you visible when you need to be, and it comes with a lifetime guarantee.

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High Sierra Hydrahike 4L Hydration Pack

high Sierra

The High Sierra Hydrahike Hydration Pack is a good option if you’re looking for something with a little more capacity than the CamelBak above. Its four-liter capacity works out to be over 135 ounces. It also has a durable nylon construction and extra pockets for some snacks or additional gear.

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CamelBak Classic 85 oz. Hydration Backpack


Looking for a super-compact option with a little bit of extra storage? This CamelBak Classic is the one for you. It has an 85-ounce capacity and features a small pouch at the front for some snacks or whatever else you need to bring along.

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What hydration pack do you use? Leave a comment below!


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