I wouldn’t say I am one of those guys that always tries to find the flaw in new products, but I certainly look for them. Usually, they are pretty quick to spot after spending decades handling new goods. Few products come across my desk that carry little to no flaws. So few that when something really, really good comes along, I throw everything I can at it to prove its not perfect. Now, I am sure you are thinking, “Why don’t you look for the good stuff!?” The pluses are easy to spot, its the tiny flaws a company misses that make or break a review in my opinion.
The reason I started this review in such a manner is because over the past 3 months, I’ve found a near perfect product. Honestly, I never thought I would say those words. The ACRE Hauser 10L Weatherproof Hydration Pack has been extremely good to me. It has become my day trip pack for cycling, hiking and commuting. I’ve tumbled off the bike, thrown it across the room and even fell back into a stream and it keeps on ticking.
Allow me to go over the finer points of The Hauser pack.
1. Both shoulder straps come with hydration tube clips. This is perfect as not all of us are left handed.
2. Having mostly run CamelBak bladders in the past, the Hydrapak bite valve is making me a believer.
3. The only non-exciting part of the pack is the removable waist belt. It’s an ordinary, simple belt that keeps the pack hugging you tight. It does it’s job well, but it would be nice to see an optional storage belt offered in the next edition of The Hauser. A couple of pockets along the side for quick access would be a nice touch.
4. Hydration tube control guide sleeves are also found on both shoulders.
1. Two anchor points allow the shoulder straps to be adjusted for different size bodies. The triple velcro closure is strong and quick. No clips to fumble with.
2. The waist belt also has the same anchor points, which should cover the majority of riders torso length.
3. Around the bottom of the back are three attachment loops should you want to clip extra items to the base of your Hauser.
I’m not a flashy guy. I don’t need loud clothing littered with logos and flames. Simple is typically best in my world. The aesthetics of the Hauser is spot on. The pack comes in four colors; grey, blue, black and camouflage. Even though there are pockets and attachment points surrounding the pack, it doesn’t scream at me. The form-fitting sleek and slim design keeps it hugging my back even when fully loaded.
“A place for everything and everything in it’s place”. There is a symmetry following every strap, zipper and panel unlike any other pack I’ve used.
Swinging the pack under your right arm gets you quick access to the side pocket. Behind the YKK urethane coated waterproof zipper is a small pocket large enough for your phone, wallet, gels, bars or anything you want access to often. The same zippers are used throughout the bag in conjuction with 70d nylon ripstop waterproof TPU laminate liner fabric and Dimension-Polyant 210d nylon VX ripstop outer fabric with waterproof laminate. All those big fancy words mean the pack is nearly waterproof. It will keep all of your goods safe and dry during any rainstorm.
A shallow zipper pouch along the bottom of the pack deploys dual locking straps to hold your pads, jacket or camping gear.
The main cargo pocket is large enough to store everything from jackets to books and even an iPad. I usually stuff my first aid kit, extra food, arm warmers and mini tripod in it with room to spare. The pocket measures 19″ x 7.25″ x 2.5″.
If you’re getting into a particularly wet area, it would be a good idea to roll the top compartment closed. Rolling the top will keep any moisture or debris from sneaking up and under the lid.
1. The zippered pocket under the lid is my go to spot for my iPhone, wallet and keys. Even though vertical zippers are perfectly safe, I’ve always favored storing essential items where a horizontal zipper is located. I get a little more peace of mind knowing regardless of how much up and down I may encounter on my ride, the zipper will never fall. (I’ve had zero zippers open or fail during my time with the Hauser)
I tend to give things I love nicknames. The Hauser has been officially dubbed, The Hammerhead. What does the backside of the pack resemble to you? For not having any air channels or pockets like other packs, the Hammerhead breathes very well due to the perforated back panel and shoulder straps. The back is soft and feels good against my back.
1. Matching up with the dual hydration clips I mentioned earlier are dual access ports for the hydration tube. The pack is compatible with nearly all hydration bladders on the market.
2. The closure system and easy disconnect of the hydration tube has converted me to a Hydrapak user. It just works better.
Having a separate pocket for every single tool is great, if you can remember where everything is. ACRE includes their tool roll with the purchase of any Hauser pack. Two large pouches and two smaller pouches organize your tube, mini pump, tire lever, mini tool, air cartridges and more. Having this tool roll has been a time saver. I’m no longer digging through my pack for my tool or pump. It fits nicely into the front compartment.
Paired up along side the front compartment are dual helmet straps. I’ve tried them with Bell, Specialized and Lazer helmets with success. This is a nice touch for city commuters that need to keep things organized off the bike at the office.
The durability and simplicity of the ACRE Hauser 10L pack makes it a must have in my book. At $195 without the hydration bladder, it’s going to make a few people cringe. What you get for that price is a quality pack that uses the best possible materials, carries a Lifetime Warranty and is Made in USA. Not to mention Mission Workshop/ACRE Supply is extremely easy to work with should you ever have an issue.
What I like:
- Sleek, form-fitting design is aesthetically pleasing
- Lightweight construction – no bulk materials
- Velcro attachment points are easy to use
- Weatherproof – no need to carry a rain cover
- It can be named after a Shark
- The tool roll is a timesaving keeper
What I don’t like / Suggestions:
- I’d love to see an optional waist belt with storage pockets, possibly removable pockets
- The value/cost ratio is high (positive) – but it will still be too much for some
- Picturing the pack in a burnt orange color seems fitting, maybe a future color option?
It’s easy to see where the Hauser gets its design queues. You could easily call the Mission Workshop Arkiv Field Pack its big brother. If you have any doubts about whether or not the ACRE guys are out testing their products, head on over to the ACRE Journal for a few of their recent adventures. I think I’ve said enough about my opinion of the Hauser. I suggest you find a local shop that has them in stock and take a look for yourself. To grab a pack right now, head on over the ACRE Supply.
This is a great looking pack that does everything well, stays out of your way while looking great on and off the trail.