Summer 2010 Gear Review
Salomon XT Wings S-Lab Set Hydration Pack
This fully-loaded, but extremely lightweight setup from Salomon will turn bottle holders into hydration pack believers. With a 2-liter bladder and more add-ons than you can count (there’s no bell, but this thing literally has a whistle) the XT Wings is well-constructed and ergonomically designed to be easy to run with.
Just about everything about this pack is well-designed. Five stretch loops incorporated into the right side of the belt hold gel flasks or electrolytes. A zippered waistbelt pocket is removable, and has an external stretch mesh pocket.
Other features include a 4D pole holder and several customization points on the shoulder straps to allow for add-ons like front pocket or flask holders (sold separately). A 1.5 inch wide waistbelt keeps the pack secure, and is removable for going super light. There’s also a sternum strap and the “yoke-style” S-shaped shoulder straps have Airvent mesh for ventilation and comfort. Two stretch mesh pockets and a safety whistle are incorporated into the shoulder straps.
There’s additional cooling and comfort with the Airvent Agility backpanel pads and a long zipper on the side of the pack provides quick and easy access to the reservoir. The reservoir itself features a Taste-Free lining to retain pure liquid taste, with no plastic flavor. A slide-on clip allows for quick filling and dumping of liquid and provides for easy ice cube adding. Grunge-Guard anti-microbial technology claims to permanently block bacteria growth in the tube and reservoir.
The XT Wings’ Z-valve bite valve offers a high-flow rate and leakproof design that Salomon says won’t lose its seal after a few months of use. A dirt shield keeps the bite valve free of dirt and protected. A zippered pocket in the center of the pack allows for a small amount of additional gear storage. Reflective coloring on the front and back of the pack increase visibility and water resistant zippers help to keep gear dry.
Overall, this is a great pack that we can highly recommend.
Available: REI, Berg’s, Burch’s, McKenzie Outfitters