Shrinking The Planet – One Ride At A Time

Archive for April 10, 2012

GeigerRig Hydration Systems

You’re hot, sweaty, tired, thirsty and in the middle of no-where.  You need a drink.  So does your riding buddy or buddies.  Now what?  You’ve made an unfortunate mistake and fallen off your machine, are a bit bloody and need to wash some grit out of that abrasion.   Eww…  what to do?  You need to carry some gear for the day trip or a bit longer trip but you don’t want to weigh down the bike with tied on or fully mounted gear.  So how can you solve all of the above equations?  Is there a simple, single solution?  Well kemosabe’, to this writer, there is.

Enter the Geigerrig.  A backpack with a built in hydration system.  You may be thinking, so what there are a bunch of hydration systems out there, what’s makes this one different?  Well among other things, this one is different in that it is pressurized; pressurized by you by means of a small, attached bulb on the outside of different sized backpacks.  So in the scenarios discussed above, your pressurized Geigerrig works like this…

  • You’re hot and sweaty, cool off by squeezing the end of the drink tube and squirting the liquid all over your body.  Ahhhhh….  so nice.
  • Share a drink with your buddies…  your buddies squeeze the end of the included drink tube and squirt the liquid into their mouths.  No nasty exchange on a single mouthpiece.
  • Dirt, sand, mud in your abrasion…  squeeze the end of the included drink tube and squirt the liquid onto the wound and wash as necessary
  • Need to carry gear…  put it in the backpack of the hydration system.

Now if all this seems like an advertisement for Geigerrig, it’s not.  All we can say is that we used this hydration system on our Trans American Trail ride this summer with temperatures often over 100 degrees every day.  The value in having cold water during the day (we filled the hydration pack with ice cubes and water in the morning) for drinking and for cooling off was immeasurable.  For example…

Pretty chilly water still squirting late in the afternoon on a 100+ degree day.

We can’t tell you how important the Geigerrig was to staying hydrated and cool enough to finish the trip.

As for the details of the rig, the one you see in the picture is the 1600.  It accommodated plenty of gear, it was large enough to handle a rolled up jacket, maps, some tools and other goodies needed.  It attached easily and securely with no flopping around noted.  There are many pockets to segregate your gear so if you pack your gear systematically, you can do so and know exactly where to find your items.

Filling the “hydration engine couldn’t be simpler.  Unhook it from the interior hook, slide off the clip from the hydration engine container, unfold the bag and open.  Fill the engine and reverse the process.  Easy.  Even with the engine filled with liquid, there was still plenty of room in the 1600 backpack.

However, all was not sunshine and roses.  One distinct shortcoming was the length of the hydration tube.  It was too short to drink from while riding and wearing a helmet.  This is a major oversight in my book and Geigerrig may have addressed this by now, but it is a very unfortunate and important shortcoming.  Drinking on the roll can be very important for those who ride long distances or who are in environments where stopping constantly is not an option.

Still all in all, I would give the Geigerrig an A-.  Frankly its a piece of gear that no-one should be without.  For more details on the Geigerrig, visit their website here.