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What's wrong with a camelback

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What's wrong with a camelback

Old 08-29-08, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Triiop
sounds like theres no real argument against camelbaks other than that some people find them uncomfortable to wear.

I love mine.
Uncomfortable and unnecessary. Personally speaking. Again although I've never needed or wanted one, I think that most people don't have a problem with those that do. I think the real reason they are seen as "fred" by some is that they appear to be a sign of weakness, that you can't deal with the standard two bottles and/or you can't handle the bike to take a drink without resorting to a feeding hose. On a mountain bike its different, it's bouncing you around all over the place and it can be difficult to find a moment when you can take a drink from a bottle. On the road that is not the case so that argument basically boils down to "I'm not comfortable or competent handling my bike". The capacity issue is a fair one as some people do ride in remote areas and can't or don't want to stop for water and if someone would prefer to wear the water on their back and shoulders instead of on their bike and/or in their pockets, that just comes down to personal preference.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by liverust55
I just got a 100oz to replace my 50oz the other day. Of course I live in FL and sweat like a pig, I hate to stop, and I have 25-30 mile stretches where there's nothing around but road and trees... no gas stations or anything. That camelback is almost a necessity sometimes.
OMG with 100 oz of fluids I could ride at least 8 hours even at a moderate pace (16mph x 8= 128 miles).
not counting 48 more ounces on the bike.

In the Jan with temps in the 60's (so not cold and DEFINITELY NOT HOT) I do a 200k (125 miles) Brevet with about 7,500 (concentrated in a 40 mile section) feet of climbing. I do it every year with just two water bottles and usually have some left over at the finish. At a 7 hour pace.

25-30 mile stretches (THIS IS NOT FAR AT ALL.)

sounds just like Southern California. That is a normal training ride around here once you leave the Metropolis it is very remote and desert-like.


Last edited by Vireo; 08-29-08 at 10:11 AM.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:09 AM
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Who makes the best insulated water bottle? It was a lovely 95 degrees yesterday afternoon while I was struggling to climb up a local horror, Quimby Road. Went through 2 1/2 bottles and anything to help keep them cool would have been a plus. Camelbak Podiums, no spill valve but awful to keep drinks cold.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by umd
Uncomfortable and unnecessary. Personally speaking. Again although I've never needed or wanted one, I think that most people don't have a problem with those that do. I think the real reason they are seen as "fred" by some is that they appear to be a sign of weakness, that you can't deal with the standard two bottles and/or you can't handle the bike to take a drink without resorting to a feeding hose. On a mountain bike its different, it's bouncing you around all over the place and it can be difficult to find a moment when you can take a drink from a bottle. On the road that is not the case so that argument basically boils down to "I'm not comfortable or competent handling my bike". The capacity issue is a fair one as some people do ride in remote areas and can't or don't want to stop for water and if someone would prefer to wear the water on their back and shoulders instead of on their bike and/or in their pockets, that just comes down to personal preference.
what about the fact that my bottle cage doesnt hold a map, wallet, phone, pump, tools, spare tube, lights, music, knife, sunglasses etc...? Its not just an easier way to get a drink, its also a backpack. Thats the other reason I use a camelbak, but then again I like exploring, Im sure many riders have predefined rides where they dont need all this gear.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:20 AM
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Yeah they do look uncool for roadies especially if you are in a fashion conscious area. I use mine for practical reasons that is switching from bike to bike. However here in new Mexico where the summers are even drier than most winters in the high sierras or Colorado and you need to drink more than usual. How many new comers come here with only 2 small water bottles and need an EMT or rescue as they have dehydrated in the mountains. So even the elite racers if riding without a support car tend to use a camelback if riding alone. These are not Freds. 7 to 15% humidity will suck the mositure out of you the moment you get on that bike. The biggest city Albuquerque is like a small California town so you will be out of nowhere with no cell reception in no time. If you ride here bring a lot of water even if you have to put it inside your bicycle tubes.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Triiop
what about the fact that my bottle cage doesnt hold a map, wallet, phone, pump, tools, spare tube, lights, music, knife, sunglasses etc...? Its not just an easier way to get a drink, its also a backpack. Thats the other reason I use a camelbak, but then again I like exploring, Im sure many riders have predefined rides where they dont need all this gear.
map- pre plan your route- your loved ones would appreciate a flight plan before you go out "exploring"

Wallet- Picture ID, Credit Card, $20 bill, Medical Insurance card less than 1cm thick

phone- are you still carrying a 90's cell phone less than 5mm thick

Pump- bolt/velcro stap on your bike

Tools- mini tool is all you need anymore than that you are in real deep do-do anyway

Lights- strap on your bike that's where they will end up anyway

Music- get a nano $49.95-- about 14 hours of music and about the size of your last knuckle on your thumb clip to your jersey for easy access

Knife- Unless you are carrying a Crocodile Dundee knife you should fit that in your SADDLEBAG.

Sunglasses -- on your face.

Still don't see the need for a camelback.
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Old 08-29-08, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Vireo
In the Jan with temps in the 60's (so not cold and DEFINITELY NOT HOT) I do a 200k (125 miles) Brevet with about 7,500 (concentrated in a 40 mile section) feet of climbing. I do it every year with just two water bottles and usually have some left over at the finish. At a 7 hour pace.
So less than 2 water bottles for 7 hours is all you drink. Even when just hanging out in your house you need to drink/are drinking more than that. So this brevet at the controls you do not take other kind of liquids? I know we have pissing contest about speed and altitude now we have who can drink less. If what you say is true I think it is very unhealthy.

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Old 08-29-08, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Triiop
what about the fact that my bottle cage doesnt hold a map, wallet, phone, pump, tools, spare tube, lights, music, knife, sunglasses etc...? Its not just an easier way to get a drink, its also a backpack. Thats the other reason I use a camelbak, but then again I like exploring, Im sure many riders have predefined rides where they dont need all this gear.
Map. You got me there. I don't carry a map. Oh, actually I do, I have one in my Garmin. But I've been known to fold up such pieces of paper and put them in my.... pocket! Wallet... pocket. Phone... pocket. Pump... pocket. Tools, tube, co2... saddlebag. knife... on my keychain in my pocket. sunglasses... on my fricken' head!

I like to explore. I think I've ridden on damn near every paved road within 100 miles of my house. Again, I don't have any problem with those that need a camelbak, but I've still never seen a good reason for one, personally.

Edit: I would like to add that my team is primarily a mountain bike team (us road-only guys are the minority) and they almost always use camelbaks when mountain biking. A few of them also wear them on the road. I've never given it a second thought.

Last edited by umd; 08-29-08 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by logdrum
So less than 2 water bottles for 7 hours is all you drink. Even when just hanging out in your house you need to drink/are drinking more than that. So this brevet at the controls you do not take other kind of liquids? I know we have pissing contest about speed and altitude now we have who can drink less. If what you say is true I think it is very unhealthy.
YES.

That is just for that brevet. I have done if about 4 years now (plus training runs) and I know that I can complete the course without needing to refuel.

In an earlier post I said I was part camel. I meant it in jest but honestly I can ride long distances without much of anything. I've trained my body over time. I test my personal limits all the time. I don't like to take anything from controls as a rule. This 200km Brevet is not that difficult.

It is true and I have plenty of power on the last climb. The locals know it as Torrey Pines 1.5 miles about 5.8%.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:39 AM
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Originally Posted by logdrum
So less than 2 water bottles for 7 hours is all you drink. Even when just hanging out in your house you need to drink/are drinking more than that. So this brevet at the controls you do not take other kind of liquids? I know we have pissing contest about speed and altitude now we have who can drink less. If what you say is true I think it is very unhealthy.
Everyone is not exactly the same. Like George I am part camel and don't tend to drink a lot when I ride or just sitting around the house. I drink as much as I can comfortably, and I am not generally dehydrated. Riding in moderate temperatures, or at an easy pace I can ride all day on a water bottle or two. If you increase the temperature and intensity then I will need more water. A few weekend ago I spent 8 hours climbing in the mountains in 90-100 degree temps and drank 210oz of liquid, 106oz of which was water. I stopped a few times to refill, but there is no way I would have wanted to carry all 13 pounds of liquid with me. As I said earlier, I drank 2 bottles during my 70 mile race last saturday in cool to warm temperatures.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:47 AM
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The Camelback I liked the best - I've had a few - was my aero Cb. It was supposed to be slim enough to fit under a jersey, although I never used it that way. I don't think it's made anymore.

The problem with the others I've owned is size - their dark empty spaces yearn, like the open mouths of baby birds, to be filled with all manner of things related - or not - to any upcoming bike ride. So I gave a couple away, and the one I've kept I use for hiking.

Jersey pockets do hold a lot, but I don't enjoy the feel of them sagging onto my lower back when they're fully loaded. When that happens, I'll use a little fanny pack, although I think it looks a little Fredish.

When it's cool - is it ever cool enough in S. CA for a jacket or arm and leg warmers? - I like to use a (Kucharik) windbreaker; it has a rear pocket with a zipper that reverses into a fanny pack.
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Old 08-29-08, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by icyclist
Jersey pockets do hold a lot, but I don't enjoy the feel of them sagging onto my lower back when they're fully loaded. When that happens, I'll use a little fanny pack, although I think it looks a little Fredish.
Ah, I think we are getting somewhere. I often see people wearing jerseys that are too big, causing this uncomfortable sag. A nice tight jersey can be loaded to the brim and not sag. I wear a small race cut jersey generally, but due to a team ordering fluke ended up with a few club cuts. I don't like to wear those because they are both longer and loser, which means that stuff in the pockets sags low. I could see how someone wearing an ill-fitting jersey would prefer not to load their pockets. I'll also add that a jersey can hold a lot more than just what you can fit in the pockets, especially if you are also wearing bibs... you can stuff things between the jersey and your back and use the bib straps to hold them.

Originally Posted by icyclist
When it's cool - is it ever cool enough in S. CA for a jacket or arm and leg warmers? - I like to use a (Kucharik) windbreaker; it has a rear pocket with a zipper that reverses into a fanny pack.
Of course
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Old 08-29-08, 01:26 PM
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Originally Posted by umd
...they appear to be a sign of weakness, that you can't deal with the standard two bottles and/or you can't handle the bike to take a drink without resorting to a feeding hose.
In the summer I'll drink a bottle about every 10 miles or so... like I said I sweat like a pig over a fire. I know I look fred but at least I'm on a bike and moving forward.
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Old 08-29-08, 01:37 PM
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I loved my camel back for riding but the extra weight led to back pain so I stopped using it. Now I strap all my crap and water to the bike or in a pocket and it is just fine. Camel kept the water cool and the bite valve was easy to get to so I drank more often. Both ways are good. I never thought mine interfered with cooling that much but on hot days I'd rather not have it there.
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Old 08-29-08, 02:00 PM
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umd wrote:

>I often see people wearing jerseys that are too big [snip] I wear a small race cut jersey generally, but due to a team ordering fluke ended up with a few club cuts.<

That's weird - I often see people wearing jerseys that are too small.

Not having the body of a bike racer, I'd look, uh, wrong in a race cut jersey. I do look good in my club cut jerseys, which aren't "too big" on me (5'11, 172 lbs.), even if the pockets were to sag if I cramed them full of stuff.
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Old 08-29-08, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by icyclist
umd wrote:

>I often see people wearing jerseys that are too big [snip] I wear a small race cut jersey generally, but due to a team ordering fluke ended up with a few club cuts.<

That's weird - I often see people wearing jerseys that are too small.

Not having the body of a bike racer, I'd look, uh, wrong in a race cut jersey. I do look good in my club cut jerseys, which aren't "too big" on me (5'11, 172 lbs.), even if the pockets were to sag if I cramed them full of stuff.
Hmm... I don't think anyone would accuse me of my jersey being too small. Just saying that the oversized jersey with sagging pockets must be a contributing factor to the "need" to carry lots of stuff in camelbaks instead of pockets.
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Old 08-29-08, 02:35 PM
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umd wrote:

>Hmm... I don't think anyone would accuse me of my jersey being too small.<

I certainly wouldn't. Not as long as you don't accuse me of wearing a jersey that's too large.
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Old 08-29-08, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by umd
Map. You got me there. I don't carry a map. Oh, actually I do, I have one in my Garmin. But I've been known to fold up such pieces of paper and put them in my.... pocket! Wallet... pocket. Phone... pocket. Pump... pocket. Tools, tube, co2... saddlebag. knife... on my keychain in my pocket. sunglasses... on my fricken' head!

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Old 08-29-08, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by icyclist
umd wrote:

>Hmm... I don't think anyone would accuse me of my jersey being too small.<

I certainly wouldn't. Not as long as you don't accuse me of wearing a jersey that's too large.
Nobody will ever accuse me of a too large jersey, most XL jersey are too small and some XXL are too small. Back to the water, I am a water hog and need lots of it, up to 200 ozs on an 8 or 9 hour ride. I don't like wearing the Camelbak, but it sure beats running out in the mountains. I'm not a RAAM guy like Vireo or a 20K per year guy like umd, I need to drink lots.
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Old 08-29-08, 05:11 PM
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I have two camelbaks (bought for MTB), I use the 3 liter LOBO sometimes on long road rides so I can set off with 4+ liters of water. I prefer not to wear it only because its a bit annoying and I have to clean it after the ride. A ride 3 hrs or less I will never wear it unless its real cold and I want to stash some spare cloths. As far as looking like a Fred, I couldn't care less, my kit isn't really nice enough to be a Fred anyway. Its just a fashion thing to some people, I don't care about fashion, as I am a dork.

I must add I love the looks I get when I pass people on climbs who have perfect roadie kits, looking at me like, wtf is that? and how the f are u faster than me? A combination of disappointment and self-questioning confusion.
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Old 08-29-08, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Vireo
map- pre plan your route- your loved ones would appreciate a flight plan before you go out "exploring"

Wallet- Picture ID, Credit Card, $20 bill, Medical Insurance card less than 1cm thick

phone- are you still carrying a 90's cell phone less than 5mm thick

Pump- bolt/velcro stap on your bike

Tools- mini tool is all you need anymore than that you are in real deep do-do anyway

Lights- strap on your bike that's where they will end up anyway

Music- get a nano $49.95-- about 14 hours of music and about the size of your last knuckle on your thumb clip to your jersey for easy access

Knife- Unless you are carrying a Crocodile Dundee knife you should fit that in your SADDLEBAG.

Sunglasses -- on your face.

Still don't see the need for a camelback.
Map, Phone, Music can be had in an iPhone.

Wallet, tools, knife in the saddle bag.

Pump bolted by your bottlecage or strapped to a tube.

For the most part I agree with Vireo
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Old 08-29-08, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Iamkar33m
Map, Phone, Music can be had in an iPhone.

Wallet, tools, knife in the saddle bag.

Pump bolted by your bottlecage or strapped to a tube.

For the most part I agree with Vireo
I could barely afford my bike, you think I can afford an iPhone?

Plus, some of us have decent carriers (Verizon) and don't want to pay the ridiculous price for a non-warranty unlocked.
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Old 08-29-08, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Flatballer
I could barely afford my bike, you think I can afford an iPhone?

Plus, some of us have decent carriers (Verizon) and don't want to pay the ridiculous price for a non-warranty unlocked.
iPhone 3G is subsidized by AT&T now, so the cheapest one is $199 which gets you an 8gb music player, GPS navigation, and a decent phone.

AT&T is not too bad here, it all depends on the area you live in.
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Old 08-29-08, 06:43 PM
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I used to use mine detasseling, and riding my Mt bike. Never would have thought of it though on road. Not really going to consider it either. It was nice in detasseling, my buddies and I would stick the pack in the freezer everynight so it even kept our backs cool the WHOOOLE day.
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Old 08-29-08, 07:13 PM
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I'm going to keep count of how many Camelbacks I see tomm. on my ride. Just looking for a sample of roadies - no MTB'ers, Freds etc.

I would imagine that in OC, in group rides, there will be about one per 30 riders. Lots of riders out Saturdays around here and, I only remember seeing one gal (who rides with OCW) who wears a pack every week. She's a pretty fast rider too, if that even matters.

I don't like the look of the rig itself. Too nerdy. Practical but, not stylin' at all.

Photos to follow, if I find some choice samples....like a Cervelo w. C'Backed rider. Yikes.
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