Light-weight women’s race vest from the Vapor Series. 50% lighter then the VaporShadow vest. Features a 2L bladder, water resistant pill pocket, over the shoulder load lifters, two front bottle pockets, front mesh gel pockets, side stretch mesh pockets, a used gel pocket and a rear external shock cord for extra layers.
Pockets, pockets and more pockets. There is a space for everything. While keeping it light they’ve included as much storage options as they could. If you have a certain type of pocket you prefer, chances are this vest has them. There are two large pockets in the front for water bottles, hats, mitts or a buff. My beloved water resistant pill pocket and 3 different style gel pockets all on the front and then there’s also the two side zippered pockets. I like to separate my fuel. Sugar on the right, caffeine on the left, salt safe and dry, used wrappers in their own sticky place. Another feature that works well is the front secure straps. They’re on solid ribbing in which you can slide both sets of clasps into a position that works best for your body type. Also the straps themselves are sturdy in that they don’t loosen over time on the run.
The over the shoulder load lifters are a feature I’ve seen in a couple of the Nathan vests, and it’s a handy and unique feature. As you drink down your volume in the vest, the fit can change. These pulls on the shoulder are an easy fast way to tighten the vest as needed on the run and release quickly once you reload your water. I’ve become addicted to this option on a hydration vest, in combination with a dry pill pocket.
The sizing is a bit off. XS 28 – 33 inch, S/M 31 to 36 inch and the L/XL 34 to 40 inch. I would suggest going down a size, it fits on the larger side, especially around the torso. I was able to compensate this with a more snug fit using the over the shoulder load lifters and pulling it as tight as it could go with the front secure straps. The best way to describe this vest in shape would be similar to a bell. The ratio from neck and shoulders to the bottom end of the vest seems almost a little too different, even with the vest fully loaded.
Our Take: A hydration vest with a lot of storage options, truly light-weight, beautiful design and colour combinations. Some issues in the fit, however as I noted, I think just being aware of having to go down a size when thinking about this vest, it works quite well.
~Kelly Anne Wald is an ultra runner in Barrie, Ontario. Photo credit Nathan.