Built upon a heritage of packs designed primarily with bikers in mind, the design team at Hydrapak has done a quality job ensuring that the latest version of their Morro Hydration pack is versatile enough to meet the needs of any outdoor enthusiast as well as any daily use purpose.

Every pack whether hydration or otherwise has a different fit and personality.  More often than not, that personality begins with the fit and feel of the straps.  If the straps aren’t comfortable then little else matters.  Towards those ends the ventilated and corrugated foam shoulder harness system of the Morro may prove to be the most comfortable straps you slip onto your shoulders.  Light, breathable, and wide enough to disperse pressure the design team hits this feature out of the park.

The Upside…

  • The 800 cubic inches (13.1 L) for gear storage ensures that this is a solid pack for the day hiker/rider who has to carry a little bit of everything from  first aid, tools, spares, emergency gear, spare tops and of course food and drink! Whether packed light or full, the Morro feels surprisingly light thanks to the soft moisture wicking back panel and secure cinching straps.
  • The breathable suspension system wears well and doesn’t buckle under the pack’s weight as you speed down the mountain on your two-wheeled mega machine.  And whether you’re blasting downhill on two wheels or two legs, the reflective fabric will ensure that you’ll be kept in sight by the colleagues you just left in the dust.
  • Even if you do find yourself riding solo, you’ll have the tunes from your music player of choice to keep you company courtesy of the vertical storage pocket with dedicated audio port.
  • For the long days of pounding out miles on fire trails, the Morro’s streamlined construction helps avoid Mother Nature’s long reach in the form of protruding branches and scraggly man-eating bushes that feast upon the excessive straps and bungee systems of similar packs.
  • During the moments when the Morro is poked and prodded, 210D Baby Rip nylon and 100D Trilobal nylon construction provided plenty of protection ensuring the Morro’s longevity for many moons of trekking.
  • An isolated reservoir storage compartment not only ensures gear stays dry, but ensures that a fully loaded reservoir doesn’t sneak up like a thief in the night stealing gear capacity from the rest of the pack.  When the reservoir is topped off, the pack feels centered and balanced and keeps weight evenly distributed.
  • The Morro hits its stride when it comes to the hydration system.  Simply put, Hydrapapak makes the best hydration system on the market.  The leak proof antimicrobial reservoir keeps water fresh and taste free and opens as easy as a bag of chips for stress-free filling and cleaning.  The entire drink system is PVC Free from the reservoir, connectors, and drink tube giving you a healthier product.  The Plug-N-Play Reservoir valve is so convenient and useful it’s simply amazing that the feature hasn’t become an industry standard.  From the lockable surge bite valve, the “quantum clip” to the flip and seal closure system and everything in between, the hydration system is clearly Hydrapak’s strong suit and one that anyone will enjoy.

The Downside…
For all of the great features included on the Morro there are some issues worthy of note:

  • If you’re an outdoor enthusiast breaking through the six foot mark, there’s little doubt that the Morro will leave you longing for a longer back panel.  For the taller rider/hiker the pack, especially when filled to capacity, can feel too localized in the middle of your back creating a pressure spot not ideally suited for the moments your attacking the trail.
  • When the hydration reservoir is filled to capacity there is a noticeable bulge despite the corrugated foam pods designed to help lift the pack off your back for better ventilation.  For taller riders/hikers the bulge accentuates the feeling that you might be wearing a pack designed for a smaller frame.
  • The streamlined design of the pack is nice, however the downside is that the Morro has diminutive zipper pulls and small triangular clips on the compression straps.  These features can be difficult to locate and grasp, not a good thing when you’re looking for quick access to the gear inside your pack.  Although this issue could be nullified in future versions of the bag by providing rubberized pulls and moving from the triangular styled clips to the standard square design.

The Bottom Line…
The Morro Hydration pack from Hydrapak is fully stocked with features for quick hit mountain adventures as well as trail and freeride mountain biking.   Whether you’re out raging through the mountains or the urban jungle, you can press own knowing that the top of the line three-liter bladder will keep you quenched during all-day adventures and the durability of the pack will keep up with your adventures for years to come.

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