A hydration pack with enough room to carry extra layers that stays put and doesn’t chafe on long runs
Comfortable and breathable
No-bounce with adjustable chest and hip belt
2 Liter hydration pack included
Reflective details for safety
Roomy with two storage compartments plus two additional zipped pockets in hip belt
Only one size available
Not the lightest running backpack
Hip belt may not be small enough for petite runners
Rubs a little around the neck on long runs
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Vango Swift 10 hydration pack: first impressions
Just as the name suggests, the Swift 10 is a hydration pack that lets you move fast while carrying all the essentials plus enough water for a long run. Two roomy storage compartments let you carry dry clothing along with two liters of water, while mesh internal pockets prevent your keys from jangling around and keep your kit organized. An adjustable chest and waist belt secure this running backpack snug to your body, while the Airmesh back keeps you cool and dry. Best of all, this pack doesn’t bounce around when you’re moving fast.
• List price: £36
• Unisex: Yes
• Weight: 1lb 4oz / 0.5kg (empty)
• Sizes available: One size
• Storage capacity: 10L
• Hydration bladder capacity: 2L
• Materials: Excel 420D honeycomb Polyester
• Colors: Black
• Best use: Trail running, fastpacking, hiking
Two additional zipped pockets in the hip belt keep essential gear easy to reach and are just big enough to squeeze your smart phone in, if it’s not too giant. Reflective details help to keep you safe if you’re out on the roads after dark. At just one size, this may not fit all bodies and the hip belt might not tighten enough for petite runners, but for an easy-to-use storage and hydration solution, you’ll struggle to find anything at a better price.
Vango Swift 10 hydration pack: in the field
I don’t often run with a backpack, and that’s partly because my typical run is 10km, but it’s also because I’ve yet to find a decent running backpack. The Swift 10 may have solved that problem for me. This lightweight, breathable running backpack has enough storage space to fit a change of clothes and carry plenty of water and doesn’t bounce around or chafe.
Here’s how it performed:
Storage and weight
I loaded this pack up to run the Kelly Cut recently with water, a pair of leggings, a T-shirt and my down jacket, plus essentials like my wallet and keys. I was running with music, so I put my iPhone in one of the hip belt pockets where I was pleased to see it fits, but if you have a giant phone it definitely won’t. Anyway, with this load it easily fit everything I wanted plus it was fairly full, which meant my gear wasn’t bouncing around once I got going.
I know there are lighter running backpacks out there, and if you’re on a serious fastpacking adventure those couple of extra ounces might be a dealbreaker to you, but for my purposes I don’t notice the weight at all.
Comfort and fit
This fits nice and snug to my back once the hip and chest straps are fastened, and very secure. I don’t even notice it on my back, which is surely a good sign, though on a long run it does rub a little on either side of my neck.
This pack only comes in one size and I felt like for my proportions, the hip belt on its tightest setting was on the very edge of not quite being tight enough. I’m on the smaller side, but if you’re petite I don’t think this will be small enough to fit snugly.
Waterproofing and breathability
This backpack isn’t waterproof, but I’ve had it out in light rain and mistakenly thrown it down on sodden ground while I was changing, and all of my gear has come out bone dry. Further, it benefits from a mesh back panel and shoulder straps, so it’s nice and breathable on warmer runs.
I have to say, for the low price this is an absolute steal. It seems to boast a good strength-to-weight ratio so it should hold up to carrying your gear. I’m sure that some of the much higher priced running backpacks out there are better quality, but if you, like me, just occasionally want to be able to carry some gear and water comfortably on a run, this packs everything you need without breaking the bank.
Pockets and storage
This jacket could perhaps benefit from an easy-to-reach chest pocket, but the two hand pockets are big enough to hold anything I’d want to put in them (including my iPhone and gloves).
Julia Clarke is a staff writer for Advnture.com and the author of the book Restorative Yoga for Beginners. She loves to explore mountains on foot, bike, skis and belay and then recover on the the yoga mat. Julia graduated with a degree in journalism in 2004 and spent eight years working as a radio presenter in Kansas City, Vermont, Boston and New York City before discovering the joys of the Rocky Mountains. She then detoured west to Colorado and enjoyed 11 years teaching yoga in Vail before returning to her hometown of Glasgow, Scotland in 2020 to focus on family and writing.