Founded by the Geiger family in Ogdon Utah, Geigerrig manufactures a hydration system that is unlike any other on the market. Instead of sucking from the bladder, Geigerrig uses pressure to spray water wherever you need it — for drinking, cooling off, etc. Interesting innovation.
To put Geigerrig to the test, I received a Rig 1600 daypack from my friends at AllTrails.com where GearGuide reviews appear in the Advice section. The Rig 1600 is Geigerrig’s largest pack/hydration system combo.
Out of the box, the Rig 1600 looks rugged and built to last. It’s constructed of ballistic nylon and has two main pockets. The rear-most of these includes mesh organizers, a separate fold-down nylon flap that holds smaller items and a key hook. Two smaller pockets sit on either side of the pack large enough for snacks or compact camera. There’s an obligatory iPod pocket with headphone port on the very rear and two hip pockets included on the removable belt.
The Geigerrig hydration system consists of three primary parts. The bladder, pressurizing hose and Ogwa bulb (which connects at the top of the bladder) and the drinking hose and nozzle (which connects at the bottom). Fill the bladder, connect the hoses, pump the Ogwa bulb to prime the system and you’re ready to drink.
Weight: 3.5 lbs
Construction: Ballistic nylon
Reservoir capacity: 100 oz
Carrying capacity: 1600 cu in
On a recent seven mile roundtripper to Benham Falls outside Sunriver Oregon the pack swallowed everything we needed. Although I noticed some small leaks around the hose connection points, the hydration system worked very well, keeping me and a number of our crew well watered. We used the pressurized system to refill water bottles and cool us off on the dusty, 90-degree-plus hike.
Once we returned home, cleanup of the Rig 1600 was a breeze. The bladder turns inside out and is dishwasher safe. I’ve struggled for years with more traditional hydration systems where washing and drying is a major hassle. The Geigerrig system is a huge improvement.
The fit of the Rig 1600 can be customized using standard strap adjustments, a chest strap and waist belt. No load lifters are available. Channeled mesh padding on pack’s back provide comfort and ventilation.
One of my concerns about the Geigerrig system was how the pressurized bladder would affect the pack’s fit. Would it feel like I was wearing my own traveling lumbar support? Luckily that was not the case. The pack was comfortable and cool over long periods.
It’s never easy to take on the guy that literally invented the category. You need to innovate and deliver a superior product. I think Geigerrig has done just that. The company created a dynamite hydration system that dramatically improves on the original concept. The packs are built to last. And it’s fun to use to boot. If you’re shopping for a new hydration system, definitely give Geigerrig a look. Recommended.