CamelBak and I go back a very long ways. When I was 18 someone from CIF handed me one and sent me on my way. From there one we traveled to close to a dozen different countries. On every patrol and in every firefight I was in, it literally had my back. The convenience of carrying a butt load of water on your back with the ability to drink it hands-free was an amazing revolution for troops. After the CamelBak was introduced it was to hell with canteens. CamelBak expanded well beyond the tactical realm and introduced several hydration packs designed for PT. The CamelBak Aurora is purely for PT.

PT Good for you, Good For Me

There are a few things that catch the eye when you look at the CamelBak Aurora. Obviously, when you first pulled it out of the Crate it was the bright Blaze Orange color. The second you probably noticed was it’s not the same size as your standard CamelBak. Both of these features have a reason behind them.

The CamelBak Aurora: The Minimalist Choice for Hydration

The bright orange color is there for safety reasons  It makes you easily visible when running or biking. It’s perfect for those crazy people who like to run for fun. I personally refuse to purchase a glow belt ever again, so the Aurora is my safety net when running anywhere near morning drivers.

The smaller size of the CamelBak Aurora means less weight and a lower profile. This is only 85 ounces, but this isn’t a hindrance. This hydration pack isn’t designed for a ten hour patrol in 125 degree heat while wearing 100 pounds of gear. It’s designed for PT sessions, so you don’t need a ton of extra water. If you happen to run out of all 85 ounces of water it’s not like it’s hard to refill.

The CamelBak Aurora: The Minimalist Choice for Hydration

Another feature I really want to point out is the addition of two pockets. You have a large pouch on the top that’s perfect for sliding your phone into. It’s close enough to your head that you can run a pair of headphones to it easily. It’s convenient if you hate stuff in your hands when you run. The bottom pocket perfectly accommodates my wallet, pocket knife, and house keys.

Working the CamelBak Aurora Out

How does it handle working out? Pretty damn well. The sternum strap is really nice because it keeps the pack in place when you are doing movements more dynamic than running or biking. I’m talking cardio calisthenics like burpees, box jumps, tire flips, and even working the heavy bag. It stays out of the way and doesn’t try to shake itself off.

The CamelBak Aurora: The Minimalist Choice for Hydration

CamelBak was smart with the overall design of the pack. The mesh padded back pads are a good idea because it prevents chafing and discomfort as the pack moves up and down. It’s easy to tighten the pack down and adjust it for a wide variety of body sizes. From my petite (and gorgeous) wife to my 6’4 frame it fits and fits well.

The Crux reservoir delivers 20% more water per sip, which means less time to suck on a tube. This isn’t a major issue in most exercises but when I’m huffing and puffing through a run the less time I’m drinking the more I’m breathing. The reservoir has a massive lid and a nice handle that makes filling it up easy too.

The CamelBak Aurora: The Minimalist Choice for Hydration

The CamelBak Aurora is the high-quality piece of kit, and we wouldn’t expect anything different from CamelBak. They’ve served our warfighters for years, and if they weren’t top-notch they wouldn’t be in Crate club.


*Originally published on the Crate Club Knowledgebase