Camelbak takes a cue from runners with new Chase bike vest

Storage on the front and the back

Could cyclists learn a thing or two from runners? Camelbak's new Chase bike vest thinks so. For years the standard hydration pack design followed the age-old standard of having all the weight and storage on the back with nothing on the front. As endurance running grew, those tackling huge distances on foot needed more gear, but also needed the weight to be centralized and stable to combat the up and down motion of running. 

The Chase bike vest rides a bit higher on the back than a regular pack
The Chase bike vest rides a bit higher on the back than a regular pack

Camelbak Chase bike vest features

  • 1.5L / 50oz Crux reservoir
  • Two sternum straps
  • 3-D vent shoulder straps
  • Total capacity: 4L / 240 cubic inches
  • Cargo capacity: 2.5L / 150 cubic inches
  • Claimed pack weight: 330g / 11oz
  • Chest fit range: 71-116cm / 26-46in
  • Colors: Black or Burnt Olive/Lime Punch
  • Pricing set at $100 (UK and Australian pricing TBC)
  • Available now

Similar, but different

The basic premise of the Chase bike vest comes from Camelbak's Ultra 10 running vest. The idea is that an endurance rider's gear weight can be distributed more evenly with storage on the front and rear, as opposed to only on the rear like most backpacks. This is said to also provide easier access to commonly used items or food.

In usual Camelbak style, the pockets and interior detailing is well thought out
In usual Camelbak style, the pockets and interior detailing is well thought out

Where it differs is in the pockets and organization. In typical Camelbak form, there are smartly laid out storage solutions for practically everything a rider needs all surrounded by a visibility enhancing yellow interior. In my opinion, Camelbak has the best storage and pocket designs, and the Chase bike vest keeps that tradition.

The design is said to distribute weight more evenly front and rear
The design is said to distribute weight more evenly front and rear

As for hydration, the Chase bike vest hauls a bit less fluid at 1.5L, compared to 2L for the Ultra 10. It does use Camelbak's Crux reservoir with Quicklink hose detachment for super simple filling while leaving the hose routed through the bag and shoulder straps.

Camelbak Chase price and availability

The Chase will be available in January and retails for $100 (UK and Australian pricing TBC.)

Russell Eich

Tech Writer, US
Russell fell head over heels in love with bikes in the '90s, and has been involved in the bike industry ever since. Between wrenching in bike shops, guiding professionally, and writing about bikes, Russell has honed an appreciation for what works, gained knowledge of what doesn't, and can barely contain his enthusiasm for what comes next. His two-wheeled passion continues in the Rocky Mountains high above Boulder, Colorado.
  • Discipline: Mountain, road, cyclocross
  • Preferred Terrain: High altitudes, forgotten singletracks, bike parks, roads without cars
  • Current Bikes: Custom Meriwether steel hardtail, Specialized S-Works Enduro 29, Kona Jake the Snake, Trek 69er, and a bunch more
  • Dream Bike: Yeti SB5c, Intense Tracer 275C, Black Cat custom road
  • Beer of Choice: Gin + Tonic
  • Location: Rollinsville, CO, USA

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