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Source Summit 15L hydration pack review

One of the best packs around for big days out

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
GBP £110.00 RRP | EUR €140.00
inc reservoir
Source Summit 15L hydration pack for mountain bikers

Our review

A bigger than average day pack that’s got all the features you’ll ever need for an epic ride, but can get a bit warm
Pros: Plenty of well-organised storage; carries 3 litres of water; compression straps stop pack moving around; lots of extra features you won’t find on other packs
Cons: Insulated reservoir pocket and rain cover add bulk and weight; large surface area on back panel isn’t great for airflow
Skip to view product specifications

Although a bit overkill for shorter rides, on big wilderness missions the Source Summit is ideal with its 15-litre capacity.

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That generous capacity, the largest size offered by Source, is divided up with well-sized mesh organisers and a removable tool-roll.

On the outside, in addition to a helmet carrier that can be cinched down and a hidden fluro orange rain cover in the base of the bag, are two more easy-access pockets: one big side-accessed pocket and a smaller one that’s fleece-lined for eyewear/valuables. There are also mesh pouches on the pack and waistband for stuffing more kit in.

Source includes its 3l WidePac reservoir, contained in its own insulated compartment to keep water at an even temperature. The hose is insulated too – a nice touch for hot days – and unclips from the bladder for easy filling. The reservoir itself is closed with a sliding clip, so it’s easy to empty and clean.

There’s routing for the drinking hose on both shoulder straps and a magnetic tab to keep the drinking tube out of the way. Handily, the bite valve is covered by a mud cap.

The pack’s broad back coverage is both good and bad – good because it distributes its 15-litre capacity weight well and helps it stay put (especially when you pull in the wide waistband and compression straps) but bad because it means it can get quite warm to wear, despite aerated cut-outs and perforations in the dense EVA foam padding.

In contrast, the shoulder straps are thin and well vented. They are comfortable too, and the rotating buckles attaching them to the pack at the top should help with adjustments depending on how broad your shoulders are.

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For such a feature-laden pack, the Summit 15L isn’t bad value at all, and so far I’ve been impressed with the build quality. This does come at a weight penalty and before you even start loading it up it tips the scales at over 1kg, but as the weight is spread out and carried evenly, I didn’t find this to be much of an issue.

How we tested

If you’re headed out on a long ride away from civilisation you’ll need a good hydration pack that will allow you to carry more, drink more and be better prepared.

We tested a selection of packs ranging from 7.5 litres to 15 litres, which we reckon is the ideal size range for a one-day ride, and priced from £35 to £173.99.

As well as store all of your stuff, a hydration pack also needs to be comfortable and secure, and we put them to the test on multiple rides, ranging from quick blasts in local woods to big all-day outings.

Also on test

  • Camelbak Skyline Low Rider 10 hydration pack
  • Decathlon Rockrider 12L hydration pack
  • Osprey Raptor 10 hydration pack
  • POC Spine VPD Air 8 hydration pack
  • Source Summit 15L hydration pack
  • Thule Vital 8 hydration pack

Product Specifications

Product

Price EUR €140.00GBP £110.00
Weight 1,148g
Brand Source

Features

Bag capacity 15l
Bladder capacity 3l