Along with the launch of my blog, I can also submit my first review. I purchased a Coleman Revel 8L Hydration Backpack to use on my rides. I've been using a military type issued Camelback that has done me great service, however it has no pockets, so it is not working well in that capacity.
My initial bit of confusion lies in the name of the pack being a Coleman Revel "8L", yet only holds 2L of water. My guess is that perhaps it holds up to 8L of water and gear? That aside, the Coleman backpack is nice looking, sturdy, durable and of the quality you should expect for Coleman outdoor gear. It comes in Black as well as several other colors. It has deep pockets, gear separators and a nice phone/mp3 pocket that has a soft liner to keep your phone/player scratch free.
As for the Hydration bladder, this is where I found the quality heading immediate south. As I pulled it out to clean and fill for use this morning, I instantly noticed several warnings in a watermark style on the bladder plastic which I could not fully make out. Using a bright light to view, and to the best of my vision, I could barely make out the warnings which were: a temperature range warning of -20 to 50 degrees, no milk, and no fruit juices. Fair enough.
The hydration bladder is just not made of a quality plastic that I can see as a lasting piece of equipment. I'm not sure how well this will work with using ice, which is pretty important out here (unless you like hot water within 45 minutes of your start.) The hydration bag is very flimsy and "hangs" from the top of the inner pack by little Velcro straps. There is no reinforcement on the bag so my thought is that these will not hold out well in the long run and are probably not a good choice for cycling.
That aside, my biggest complaint and most obvious was that the moment I filled it and placed the bag back in the pack, the nozzle, where it attached to the bag started leaking. Had I not felt the bottom of the bag before venturing out, I'd be very disappointed to find my wallet, phone and other gear soaking wet. Yes, in less than 5 minutes the bottom of the pack had about 1 inch of water in it.
Like I said it’s a nice pack, but the bladder was a flop in my eyes. Needless to say, it is headed back to the store, and perhaps my next review will be on a new Camelback Hydration pack. Stay Tuned.