On the trails with the USWE Patriot 9 Hydration Pack.
Words: Guy Streeter
There are plenty of hydration packs on the market these days and there isn’t a whole lot that separates them from each other – different colourways or something that matches with your riding gear and how many pockets they have. USWE, on the other hand, is reasonably new to the market locally and has a few small changes that set them apart.
The main point of different between the USWE Patriot 9 Hydration Pack is the four-point harness set-up, which is the concept from USWE of a ‘No More Dancing Monkey’ design. I was not sold entirely on the shoulder straps that joined at the center of your chest, with no waist strap.
It seemed that the natural thing for the bag to do while going over jumps, logs or rougher terrain would be for the pack to rise up and maybe hit you in the back of the helmet or move around. However, after a few jumps and some other tech terrain, I was surprised that there was none of the aforementioned concerns with the pack being uneasy or not really sitting snug on your back.
The straps are really easy to adjust and can be modified depending on how much you are carrying. Another neat feature is the ability to hold your helmet, so if you need to get off and cut some branches or work on a bike, you can easily attach your helmet to the pack.
The Patriot 9 uses a Shape-Shift 2.5L hydration system (3.0L unzipped baffle), secured into the pack with a compression pocket, which helps when getting to the end of your fluid. There are no problems with the hose getting pinched off and cutting flow from the bladder. There is a port on either shoulder for the hydration tubes and a clip on the chest to stop the tube bouncing around during your ride.
There is plenty of storage in the pack with organisation pockets everywhere, including a water-resistant pocket for your phone and a headphones port on your left shoulder, plus plenty of room for your keys, tools and spare tube.
What I did notice was the bag is really light and comfy to wear, with the anti-sweat function of the foam strips along your back keeping your back and shoulders reasonably sweat-free, which is always a plus after riding for an hour or more.
In addition, there are also four silicone strips to help keep the back pack in the one spot on your back, and last but not least, the Patriot 9 is also compatible with neck brace. There’s really no stone left unturned when it comes to the USWE Patriot 9 Hydration Pack.
The USWE is distributed by Steve Cramer Products and available through motorcycle stores with a RRP of $199.95 in Australia. For more information and for the full range of USWE Hydration Packs, make sure you get on www.stevecramerproducts.com.