My first ever hydration vest was a Nathan Intensity, a low-priced, simple model. When I started running longer distances, I bought a Nathan Vapor Airess. I wore that thing in training and races, close to a thousand miles per year. It really is a great pack, but when the main zipper of the largest storage pocket broke, and the zipper on the side pocket got stuck, I knew it was time for a new one.
I wanted another Nathan product. Two weeks ago we received an unexpected check in the mail and I decided to use some for a pack. I have been shopping for them for a long time, looked at other brands, but I really like and trust Nathan’s quality, so I bought the new version of the Vapor Airess. This is my review after wearing it on two runs.
- The price is comparable to other packs of this quality and with similar features. Varies, but retail is $149. I didn’t pay that much.
- The weight of the empty pack is very light.
- Comes with the excellent 2 liter Nathan bladder and tube with a magnetic clip.
- Pockets galore! This pack has bigger and more pockets than the first version.
- Front pockets can hold bottles.
- Adjustable fit.
- Female specific fit.
- Quality construction and comfortable materials.
- Not as adjustable as I expected. Unfortunately, even cinched as tight as possible, it’s still a little loose on me. But I can still use it.
- No upper adjustments, such as on the first version. So no way to tighten it up on the shoulders.
- The fit makes it feel like the bladder is hanging lower on my back and, indeed, I got a new chafing scar from it. I can adjust to that, I hope.
- I miss the tiny little pockets on the upper chest that the first version had. I used them for salt tabs and Tylenol.
Overall, I am happy with it. I think I just need to get used to the few differences. There are only two sizes and I got the bigger one. Should’ve got the smaller one. I’m 5’3″, have short legs, with a normal size torso, and a slightly wide back. So I can wear petite pants, but petite shirts feel short. I got the L-2XL because the Small size version one was starting to feel tight on my new menopausal body. It’s really too big for me. I DO recommend this product. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask in the comments. Thanks for reading and happy trails!
Update: after using this for two months I have found I really do not like it and regret the purchase. I wore it on a hike one day and when the weather warmed up I took off my light windbreaker and went to stash it in the back of the vest , only to realize that 1) the back pocket is much smaller than on the first version of this vest and 2) there are no longer any cross bungee cords . To me these are two essential features for a long run or hike on trails . But the main issue is it was just too big for me so I sold it.
I STILL LOVE NATHAN PRODUCTS AND RECOMMEND THEM! Just be sure to get the right one for you. I was able to sell this one and got a different Nathan model that fits. The photos below are for the Vapor Air model, first edition . Size is S/M. I love it ! Has all the pockets and pouches and adjustable features that I like . You might be able to find one online .
Women’s Nathan VaporAiress 7L 2.0 Sizing Sternum Bust XXS-M 26 – 33″ 30 – 36″ L-2XL 33 – 41″ 37 – 44″