The North Face Junction 4
I bought this pack to make water available on longer…
Price Paid: $50
I bought this pack to make water available on longer runs. I had been using a CamelBak HydroPak, which is also a great pack, but had wanted a little more stability — less pack movement when I'm running. This pack fits the bill perfectly. It has a chest/sternum strap that doubles as an anchor for the hydration tube and a waist belt that's secure without being bothersome.
I like that all the expansion straps are anchored with either clips (on the shoulder straps) or collars (on the waist belt). If I could, I'd add a little more reflective flair on the pack, but there is some as is. The North Face (and many other pack makers, for that matter) seem to think we're all going to be taking ice axes with us wherever we go, and there's a gear strap for that. Whatever.
The interior of the pack has room for my phone and a few other items. If you're going to be jamming a jacket in there, it'll need to be pretty lightweight.
The hydration system is something I haven't seen before, and I like it - rather than a screw-on cap, it has a fold-over top opening that is secured with a slider. Sort of like I've seen in several waterproof gear bags. The hydration tube secures to the sternum strap with a magnet, just like on my North Face Chameleon pack (a bigger hydration pack I use for cycling).
I would definitely recommend this pack. I also considered the CamelBak Octane LR, but chose this pack on the basis of price.