Thursday, March 11, 2010

Product Review - Nathan Elite 2V Waist Pack

They say the first step in overcoming a problem is admitting you have one. I admit I have a problem with hydration systems. My problem is I have too many of them. I own a hand-held water bottle by Go-Lite, a hand-held bottle by Ultimate Direction, two thermal hand-held bottles by Nathan, a single bottle waist pack by Fuel Belt, a double bottle waist pack by Go-Lite, one 70oz Camelbak, and two 100 oz Camelbaks. I promised myself I would seek professional help for this addiction but not before I made one more purchase. This time it’s the Nathan Elite 2V waist pack.

From their website:

The Elite 2V adds extra carrying capacity to get you through those long stretches between aid stations.

• Dual XTS Cradles
• Twin angled, insulated holsters for quick access
• Two 22 oz. BPA free Hydration Bottles
• Twin removable zippered front pockets for small essentials
• Shock Cord with one-pull tension lock for jacket or gloves
• Airmesh moisture-wicking backing
• Fits 26” to 42” waists

Here’s my take on it:

I’ve become a huge fan of Nathan products for their practical, efficient designs and quality craftsmanship. The Elite 2V is a well made waist pack. The holsters are angled to allow easy access to the bottles and return to the holster after taking a drink. The caps have a carbineer so you could attach them to a backpack or belt if you weren’t using the waist pack itself. I don’t think they are necessary so I replaced mine with standard caps to reduce weight. Not that the Nathan is heavy. It only weighs 7.7 oz empty. Of course I never run empty-handed so I also like the storage capacity of the Elite 2V.

There are two zippered pockets on the belt that can hold a fair amount of ‘stuff’.’ I’ve carried a cell phone, camera, three gels, a Cliff bar, S-caps, Chap Stick and a few paper towels at one time. If you don’t need to carry a lot of extras on your run, the pockets are attached with Velcro and can be removed quickly and easily. There’s also a shock cord you could use for securing a jacket or extra top to the pack if weather conditions look iffy. I haven’t used it yet but it’s a good thing to have just in case.

Since this pack fits 26” to 42” waists there’s bound to be some excess belt flopping around. This may be a minor thing to most people but I find it annoying. Nathan must have been thinking of me when they designed the Elite 2V. The excess belt straps can be put through a belt loop and tucked behind the pockets so they’re not dangling in the wind. That’s a nice feature not found on other waist packs. Even when weighted down with two full bottles of fluid and all my extra junk the pack sit securely and does not bounce, not even on down hills. The mesh backing is well padded and very comfortable.

I highly recommend the Nathan Elite 2V. I got a deal on mine at REI for the ridiculously low price of $21.93. The best current price is $37.71 with free shipping on If you decide to purchase from Amazon please use my link to the side. I get a cut of the action!


  1. This is my new favorite hydration system for 10 miles or less. I added two belt pouches from my fuelbelt so I can carry extra stuff. It is much easier than when I have to take off my camelbak to get my salt tabs and food. However, for anything over 10 miles I will need to camelbak so I can bring my full 3 liters of drink. I am sorry you did not get a cut on my purchase. You really should have.

  2. Steve, I like a Camelbak for long training runs but the 2V would work well in a race situation with aid stations. Don't worry about it. Your keen wit is payment enough.

  3. Dan, Perhaps as a second step toward your hydration addiction recovery you should show up to your next 5k wearing ALL your hydration product.

  4. Charlie, that would be very funny if I did that. Can you imagine the looks I would get?


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