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  • Hip Pack/Bum Bag/Fanny Pack – brief overview of a couple I have been testing
  • jayx2a

    So have been trying a few bum bags from my LBS for myself and for them to get feedback.

    On test:
    Dakine Hot Laps 5L
    Dakine Hot Laps 2L (with bottle + bottle on bike)
    Bontrager Rapid Pack (with bottle + bottle on bike)
    Camelpak Flow (with bottle + bottle on bike)

    Hot Laps 5L
    Tested with full bladder and with 2 bottles worth of fluid.

    Overall when its on you can definatly feel the weight, but with the straps clinched tight and the air sucked out of the bladder its not to bad really. Definatly better than a pack IMO. I had to adjust it a few times on a 2 hour ride, but nothing major. Hose clip stayed put, and there was enough storage for the bits I usually take on rides (up to 3 hours).
    It has a side one clip adjuster – actually works really well and if anything more comfortable than the front clips on all the below.

    Hot Laps 2L
    I was lookig forward to this one due to the 5L being so good. Its not quite as padded and the back panel is not as vented.

    It was super comfy without the bottle, but as soon as the bottle was on I could definatly feel the pull one side. If anything I felt it more than the 5L which had far more fluid it. The upside being if you only need 1 bottle on the bike it can take all your small bits and bobs. This one was the first in the no bin for me.

    Camelbak Flow.
    Bottle sits at an angle on this one – padding is good at the back but gets quite minimul at the sides. The Dakine have more ‘bag’ coming around your waist before the strap starts and after wearing this for a while the sides did seem to dig in more than the others. It was quite stable, but the angled bottle kind of took away the overall fit. Also, not a keeper for me – but may work out for others.

    Bontrager Rapid Pack.
    This one is probably the best form fitting thanks to its design. The front clip does dig in slightly and probably could have been smaller, but its nor that noticible.
    When the bottle is in, it does feel a bit odd at first as it almost feels like the top of the bottle digs in to your back. However once on the bike, this goes dur to angles. Its probably the most comfortable of the lot. You certainly dont feel the weight of the bottle and being in the centre it feels very balanced.

    So what would I recommend? I recommend trying them in as our body shapes are all different. And there are also many other packs out there! But if I had to choose…

    Looking for a 1 pack solution and don’t have room for a bottle cage or dont fancy having one – can’t go wrong with the Hot Laps 5L. Its suprisingly comfortable and stable when carrying water. I would say filling the bladder to 1.5L is a happy medium. Even then thats more than the 2 small water bottles I was using.

    Just need the 2 bottles and happy to have one on the bike – Bontrager Rapid Pack gets my vote. Comfortable, stable, fits well and it doesn’t really need any adjusting on the fly. It fits enough for most of my rides (usually around 3 hours max).

    For the people doing longer rides and who take a lot more gear than me, then a proper pack is probably the only answer.

    As for me. I’m still deciding between the 2 options!

    Hope that helps – any questions on the above packs please ask.

    Premier Icon al2000

    Agree with your assesment of the Bontrager pack – really comfortable, and while it doesn’t carry a huge amount of stuff (no bad thing), it’s just right for 3ish hour rides.

    Premier Icon thenorthwind

    I have a Lowe Pro Lightflite (or however it’s spelt) Hydro… I’d seen a friend’s, and another friend’s Bontrager and they looked very similar but the Lowe Pro was much cheaper. Maybe the Bontrager is better quality, but I’m happy with the Lowe Pro. So consider that if you like the size/layout of the Bontrager.

    Premier Icon BillOddie

    I recently got the Hot Laps 5 and have now ridden with it a few times.

    I always have a bottle on the bike anyway and have used it with no bladder, half-ish full bladder and 1.5l-ish in it.

    It does not like being over stuffed, which means that you have to be disciplined in what you take with you which is probably no bad thing for most rides.


    I’ve got a Camelbak Palos and recently picked up a Hotlaps 2l. My rides are rarely that long and as such I can get away with a single bottle on the bike, i’ve not used the bladder in the Palos so got the Hotlaps as a smaller alternative (the Palos is pretty big in comparison and I had a lot of spare room in it. For 95% of the riding I do it’s perfect – fits phone, pump, multitool, cash and a thin layer (or tube, but this is currently strapped to the frame), it’s small and unobtrusive.

    For a longer day I’d try the bladder in the Palos, or use my old pack.

    Premier Icon Kamakazie

    Really pleased with the Bonty. Used it on holiday to carry food, money, camera, phone & waterproof (water & tools on the bike).
    With that and stops at lunch it was perfect all-day. Very comfy and nice and flexible with the internal pockets to keep things separated.

    Hadn’t seen the Lowe Alpine before but that also looks good.


    I tend to drink a fair bit of water. That might be a bit of a habit though and because the tube from the packs was just there I think I just got in to a habit of drinking it!

    Will be taking the Bonty and 2 bottle out for a much longer ride at the weekend and se how it pans out!

    I do like the way you tighten the bonty from the sides and not the front clasp though.


    Took the Dakine 5L out again, didn’t fill it up as much. For the most part of the ride kind of forgot it was there!

    Also took out the Bonty again. Not convinced on the bottle in the middle. Almost felt it digging in more than the weight of the Dakine!

    Squeezed 2 29er tubes (I had a double puncture once and running tubeless am paranoid!), multitool, pump, tyre levers and phone in a Dakine 2l pack today. Was good – but would be better with one tube only I think. Will look at a frame strap to complement it I think and see what it’s like with a 500ml bottle in.

    I like the whole fanny pack thing though – it’s good riding MTB and not being restricted to roadie tops to ride without a pack (I’ve never got on with saddlebags).

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