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Reviews > Hydration Systems > Packs > Crumpler Bumper Issue Hydration Pack > Test Report by Andrew Preece

Crumpler Bumper Issue Hydration Pack
by
Andrew Preece

Initial Report October 21st 2009
Field Report due January 18th 2010
Long Term Report due March 12th 2010
 
Contents
Initial Report
Description
First Impressions
My Details
Contents
Field Report
Long Term Report

 

Photo courtesy of Crumpler.


The pack.
 

Personal Details
Name: Andrew Preece
Age: 46
Gender: Male
Height: 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight: 165 lb (75 kg)
Waist: 39 in (100 cm)
Sleeve Length: 20 in (53 cm)
Chest: 42.5 in (108 cm)
Neck:  16 in (40 cm)
Email: andrew@teamgunnparker.com
Website: www.teamgunnparker.com
City: Perth.
Western Australia.
Australia.
Backpacking Background
I have done a lot of hiking over the years but now carry a hammock and gear for over night stays of one to two nights. I normally carry approximately 35 lb (16 kg) which includes food and water. My trips are usually between one to two days duration mainly over weekends. I hike all seasons with winter temperatures ranging from 39 F (4 C) to 64 F (18 C) including periods of heavy rain at times to summer conditions with the temperature ranging from 68 F (20 C) to 95 F (35 C) and very dry.
Testing Locations
Bibbulmun Track: Sea level to 1,920 ft (585 m). Within this region I backpack along old forestry roads, sandy tracks, and purpose built walking tracks. The south-west of Western Australia allows for hiking and backpacking from coastal plains to forested ranges. I hike in varying conditions from forestry tracks, to sandy tracks to single purpose walking trails, from rock hopping, to beach walking to completely off-track through open and dense bush country.
Testing Conditions
It is now toward the end of our winter. Though we are still experiencing some unseasonably cold days with some mornings with lows of 50 F (10 C) and highs of 68 F (20 C). In another few months it will be middle of summer and the heat will set in. Daytime temperatures will range during the testing period, from a minimum of 57 F (14 C) to 100 F (38 C). The average rainfall for the next few months is, 1 3/8 in (35 mm).

Initial Report
October 21st 2009

 

Manufacturer: Crumpler
Year of Manufacture: 2009
Place of Manufacture: Unknown
Manufacturer's Website: https://www.crumplerbags.com
MSRP: US $95.00
 
  Manufacturer's Measurements. My Measurements.
Height 20.5 in (52 cm) 18.5 in (47 cm)
Width 14.2 in (36 cm) 12 in (30 cm)
Depth 6.7 in (17 cm) 11 in (28 cm)
Volume 7.2 L  
Weight   27.5 oz (781 gm)

 

 
Description

The Crumpler hydration pack is more than just a hydration pack. The pack sports three quite large pockets inside the main opening. One is for the hydration bladder and the other two can be used for carrying other gear. These other pockets are separated by a section of elastic material. This allows the pack to expand and contract some what.

The bladder slips into the front of the inside pocket nearest my back and just sits into it. There is no loop to hold it in place. There are two exit ports on the left and right shoulders for the hydration hose to pass out of the pack.
The bladder is a 2 litre Source bladder and is very nice. I have one already that I have been using for years and I am very happy with it.

The lid has a buckle on it to keep the pack closed and is adjustable. On the pack side of this buckle are three loops that are a part of the buckle webbing and could be used to attach items on the outside of the pack. On each side of the pack are two buckles that will compress the pack. These buckles can be released to allow the side of the pack to open right out. The front of the pack has some reflective sections to allow the user to be seen at night if riding a bike for example.

On the back, that is the part nearest my back are two padded shoulder straps as expected, they are lightly padded and adjustable. The shoulder straps have a chest strap attached, this strap is adjustable up and down as well as tighter and looser. The buckle at the chest has a built in whistle, which is quite loud. This strap also has an elastic piece stitched onto the webbing which holds the mouth piece of the tube in place. The hydration hose passes out of the inside of the pack via a small opening and then travels down the inside of the shoulder strap exiting about half way down the strap.
 

The front of the pack, notice the two reflective areas.
The front of the pack. 
The rear view of the pack.

The rear of the pack.

The pack also has a waist belt which is not padded and is adjustable on both the right and left sides. The good thing about the waist belt is that it is removable. By undoing a couple of hook and loop tabs the strap can be removed. On the sides of the pack are two zippered pockets, one each side. These pockets are separate from each other and one cannot be accessed through the other.

Running down each side of the back of the pack and to the left and right of my spine are quite thick padded strips. These strips are breathable and should help to keep me cooler when hiking. Inside the back of the pack sandwiched between two layers of material is what feels to be a small sheet of plastic running the length of the pack. This will help the pack retain its shape when in use.

Construction

The pack is made of a water resistant 60 denier outer shell with a 150 denier ripstop nylon liner. (denier is a term used to indicate the size or number of filament or yarn. The higher the number the heavier the yarn or fibre).

 

First impressions

I am very happy with this pack, it looks better in the flesh than it does on the website. The materials feel tough and hard wearing. The buckles snap shut with a solid sound. The Source bladder is great. All in all I think this will be a good little pack for day hikes. I plan to use it while maintaining my section of the Bibbulmun track where I'll be staying at the campsite over night and hiking the track to check and correct its condition.
A view of the side of the pack.
The side view of the pack.

 

Thanks Crumpler for a nice looking item to test. Please come back in about two months when I report on my field trips with this pack.
Back to top  

Field Report
January 12th 2010

I have now had this pack for two months and used the pack three times. Twice on afternoons geocaching around the hills of Perth and once on a day out maintaining my section of the Bibbulmun track and shelter.
Mark and I who maintain the shelter took another friend of mine along with our three kids for a short walk and lunch on Saturday.

We parked a little way from the shelter and hiked in about 3 miles (five km) one way. On the way in it was a little warm but it soon warmed up to about 88 F (31 C), the kids started to moan a little about the heat.
At the campsite we took care of the maintenance that we had planned to do and had lunch in the shade.

 

During this time the pack has worked without a hitch. It is comfortable to wear and will hold quite a lot of gear.
On the geocaching trips I have just carried a few items. Water, first aid, a survival kit and some food. On the trip out to the shelter I packed a little more. I carried the following items.
  • A full bladder of water.
  • A first aid kit.
  • A survival kit.
  • My lunch.
  • A pocket rocket stove.
  • An MSR cooking pot.
  • A map.
  • My Nano-7 hammock.
  • Compass.
  • Cell phone.
  • Car keys.

The pack was not full and I could have fitted a little more in it. I am hoping to be able to fit enough gear in it to be able to camp out for the night. I will have to cut my gear list right down and see what will fit soon before the weather gets cold again.
 

Rhiannon and I walking along.
Rhiannon and I
The pack on me and the flies on the pack.


After using this pack for half a day hiking into and out of the camp site I have decided that I like it. It was not until I had returned to the car and took the pack off that I found my back was not sweaty at all. I normally perspire freely on my back when wearing a pack but this time I found I did not.

On the back of the pack there are two padded sections that run down the length of the pack. These sections sit directly on my back when I wear the pack. They seem to be some form of foam encased in a breathable outer skin.
These padded sections kept the sweat away from my back and make the pack very comfortable. In the photo to the left there I can see the pack was not adjusted correctly and I need to pull the shoulder straps a little tighter to get it higher up my back. The shoulder straps have a good range of adjustment and fit my daughter and me equally.
The pack is adjustable at the shoulder straps, the sternum strap and the waist belt.

 


I took a fair bit of gear along with me to test just how much would fit into the pack and there was plenty of space for a day's outing. Maybe even enough for an overnight trip.
 In the photo to the right I have shown the gear I carried that day. Not a huge amount of space left but maybe enough.
 Just behind the green front section are two zippered pockets, in these pockets I carried the map, my car keys and cell phone. The pockets are not huge but are large enough for flat items. The zipper pulls have a little rubber knob at the end of each pull and this makes using the pulls a breeze. They do not slip through my fingers at all. The side straps open out quite a bit and allow for larger or smaller items.

 
The pack showing the inside and my gear.
The contents
The rear of the pack showing the hose and the shoulder strap.
The hose and shoulder strap


In this photo on the left I show the hydration pipe running down from the inside of the pack to the outside by way of the shoulder strap. The hose feeds up from the inside, over the top of the shoulder and down in front. I really like this as I no longer have to fumble behind me to find the mouth piece.

The Source bladder supplied is great. It has no plastic taste what so ever. The mouth piece works very well although I would have rather had one with a ninety degree bend in it rather than the straight one supplied.
The mouth piece seals very well and does not allow any water to drain back into the bladder. So that when I go for another drink the water is right there and does not need to be sucked up from the bladder.

Also visible is the black ventilated back padded supports.



 

Please check back in about two months for my long term report. I have a ten day trip coming up in eight days time in Sydney and Canberra where I plan to use this pack most days.
 

Long Term Report
March 23rd 2010

I have been using this pack for another couple of months. During this time the pack was used for the ten day trip I made to New South Wales and Canberra. The weather there was very hot with day time temps in the 95 F to 108 F (35 C to 42 C) range, there was no rain at all.
We were in Sydney for a wedding but arrived a few days early to site see, there is a lot to see there and tried to cram lots in each day. We did a lot of walking around looking every where we could and spent one day walking around Luna park and walking over the harbour bridge. We looked at the opera house from the bridge and on another day we spent a few hours walking around the Taronga zoo.

During our stay here I used the pack to carry our water which was refilled often, the large opening of the bladder makes this a breeze. The pack would also contain on a typical day.

  • My camera
  • A first aid kit
  • My reading glasses
  • Maps of the area
  • GPS
  • Brochures of places to visit
  • Water
  • Public transport tickets
  • Anything bought during the day

The smaller pockets each side at the front are ideal for the smaller items, while there is room in the larger section for my SLR style camera and a few other items.

We left Sydney and went down to Canberra to my sister-in-law's house to spend time looking at the sights there. I used the pack every day to carry the same sort of gear list above. One day we left Canberra and went down the coast into New South Wales to their beach house to stay for a couple of nights, but on the way us guys headed up to their block of land they own that is right out in the middle of no where and just covered in uncleared bush.
The plan was to park the car and make a circuit around the block and see what we could find. It was a very hot day again and I was happy to have this pack and the water it carried.  I have found the pack to be quite cool to wear and I do not seem to get a large build up of perspiration on my back.
We dodged our way around the many wombat holes but we did not get to see any, I was told that they are more nocturnal and hide during the day. We did walk up to a very large brown snake and was told to keep very clear of it which I did. After a while we stopped in a dry creek bed and had a rest, there is no water around at this time of year. I pulled some snacks out of the pack and enjoyed the water from the bladder. The water seems to stay quite cool in the pack. The first mouthful or so is warm where the hose passes out of the pack and over my shoulder but it quickly becomes cool. A couple of times when feeding the hose through the sleeve on the shoulder strap I have had the mouth piece become caught on the inside helm of the strap. It just takes a bit of wiggling around to get it to pass through at times.

When I was in Sydney I took the waist belt off the pack and used it without it. It is just a simple thing to undo the hook and loop on the belt and remove it from the plastic clip. When out in the bush where I am climbing over things and up rocks and so on I use the pack with the belt on. It is easy to remove and replace and so I do it when ever I need.

Conclusion

This is a nice pack indeed. The construction is very good and is made of quality materials that no doubt will last me a long time. The clips and buckles all work well and I like how easy it is to remove the waist belt. The inside pocket has stretchy material either side of it and allows for some bulkier items to be carried. The pack is not large enough for me to carry everything I need for an over night trip and is better suited to day trips.
If I had to find something that I did not like it would be the hem on the inside of the shoulder where the hose catches on it. For me the sternum strap is a must, the shoulder straps kept slipping without it. I like the way the shoulder strap buckles are half hidden in the strap itself. I have found the pack to be very comfortable.

So would I recommend this pack to a friend? Yes I would, I'd tell them to go and get the pack with the strange name and strange logo and you will not be disappointed.

Thanks Crumpler for the opportunity to test this nice pack.



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Read more gear reviews by Andrew Preece

Reviews > Hydration Systems > Packs > Crumpler Bumper Issue Hydration Pack > Test Report by Andrew Preece



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