The CamelBak Highwire 25 comes fitted with a 3 litre hydration system worth £30, so when this is taken into account you’re effectively getting a rucksack for £80. The rucksack has a stiffened panel that allows the sack to sit close to the body and flex, but is stiff enough to resist items of gear bulging into your back. There’s a thin layer of mesh over this panel that provides comfort and allows airflow, and the combination works well. The hydration bladder is fitted into a dedicated zipped pocket behind this back panel, which can be accessed without having to enter the main compartment of the sack. The main compartment has a zipped top opening. There’s also an additional zipped pocket that is ideal for snacks, guidebooks or maps, although it is a notch smaller than some. Stretch material is used for the front stash pocket and the two side wand pockets. Compression straps are also provided so trekking poles can be easily attached to the sides, and there are bungee cords for ice axes or trekking poles. There are a lot of great sacks around £80 and if you use a hydration system the CamelBak Highwire 25 is an excellent option for all-round outdoor use.
Capacity 25 litres (includes hydration system)
Weight 1011g (includes hydration system)
Internal compartments 1
External zipped pockets 1
Wand pockets yes
Rain cover no
Back lengths one size
Women’s back lengths none
The CamelBak Highwire 25 is ideal for those who prefer hydration systems to water bottles, and at 1004g it’s light enough for biking and fast hiking, but can also be used for general hillwalking.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine March 2013