Source Widepac Hydration System
Revolutionary design for a water bladder and it's…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $30 USD on sale
Revolutionary design for a water bladder and it's just as tough as they say it is. Love the slide closure! Great for backpacking (3L) or hiking (1.5 or 2L). Keeps water fresh for days.
- really does keep water fresh for a long time
- super tough
- low profile in a pack
- easy to clean and fill thanks to the slide closure
- wider than most day pack sleeves will accomodate
- donut shape can make drying it out a challenge
Okay, I don't know where I read the first review for this bladder, but when I watched a car drive over a full one without it bursting, I thought "what the hell do I have to lose?" I'd never heard of SourceOutdoor and although I was tempted to go with a Platypus for about the same price, I decided to try the Widepac more for kicks than anything else.
I'm surprised and impressed! The Widepac lives up to the hype — it's incredibly tough, clean, easy to fill, and definitely increases space in your pack.
A couple of things to be aware of... First, although the profile is slimmer, the bladder is wider than most traditionally shaped bladders so you might have trouble fitting in the pocket of your pack, if it has one. Second, even with the slide closure, drying it can be difficult due to the donut shape. I've found that an empty paper towel tube on each side does the trick.
Cleaning is easy if it ever needs to be cleaned (the manufacturer claims it doesn't). To test that claim, I left water in mine for 6 weeks. Guess what — there was not the slightest hint of swamp and absolutely no sliminess on the inside.
As for its toughness, it can tumble down a 20 foot escarpment and get scraped all to hell but survive without a puncture or breaks in the slide or quick connect valve.
Most other hikers will never see this bladder so the coolness factor doesn't count for much. That's okay since it's really more about quality than anything else, and this bladder is definitely a quality product!
Oh by the way, I've only found it online and it's made in and shipped from Israel so there is a shipping cost. It appears there is very little distribution of this product in the US and I couldn't find a single retailer.