Osprey Hydraulics (2013)

The Osprey Hydraulics has a stiffened back panel and a solid plastic handle, to make the bladder easier to get into a stuffed rucksack and sit more comfortably once it’s there. But these additions make this bladder too rigid to get a hand in through the screw-lid opening. They also make the Osprey Hydraulics the heaviest in our test – more than twice the weight of the lightest. The tube is fixed in place and can’t be easily removed – another feature that makes cleaning awkward. The bite valve is good, the locking mechanism is sturdy and water is completely devoid of taste, which is excellent. The mouthpiece has a magnet on it and the bladder is supplied with a magnet buckle. With this buckle attached to your rucksack’s chest strap, the end of the hose can easily be held in place by fixing the mouthpiece to the buckle. A clever idea, but one that comes with a warning to keep it away from compasses or GPS devices, making the Osprey Hydraulics far from ideal for walkers.

Capacity 2 litres
Dry weight 282g
Material metallocene polyethylene
Other sizes 3 litres

A clean taste plus ease of filling and loading are the Osprey Hydraulics’ positives, but it does feel a little over-engineered for a hydration bladder, and rather heavy.

Review by Ben Weeks
First published in Trail magazine September 2013