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Water Bladder Size?

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
21 posts
15 reviews
11 helpful votes
Water Bladder Size?
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Hi all,

I was wondering what size you recommend of water bladder to bring? I'm debating between 2L and 3L. I will also be bringing a stainless steel regular size water bottle with me.

I figure with the water bottle, and some fluids at breakfast and dinner, 2L might be enough? Or is 3L better? I dont want it to be big and awkward... but I dont want to be dehydrated either.

Thanks!

Lawrenceburg...
Level Contributor
324 posts
90 reviews
36 helpful votes
1. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Get a 3L and they make ones that are insulated. Also get the insulated tube accessory that goes over the tube of the bladder. Don't want your water to freeze. I've had a 3L for years and never found it bulky even with a fully loaded backpack . While hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro, you won't have a full pack, porters will carry the bulk of your gear. Weight shouldn't be an issue but if you think it may, train with a weighted pack. On long hikes of over 8 miles, I'll usually carry 5 liters. I sweat buckets so I need to and I also add like Gatorade powder to my hydration pack. Backpacked the Lost Coast Trail in Northern California years ago. My pack was about 55lbs, it was over 90 degrees and I ran out of water quickly while still 4 miles from the nearest water source. It almost got very serious so I vowed then to never ever let that happen again. Water is to backpacking like gas is to an automobile. To travel many miles you need plenty of it.

Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
18 posts
2. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Consider the 3L bladder. Considering the altitude as well, you want to avg 3-4 L/day. I agree with the insulation, the water will freeze on summit night.

i learned from previous posters also to put electrolytes into the water which helped reduce the freezing point a little. I used Nalgene and Camelbak bottles and carried them close to me and upside down.

Realize, also, that's 3-4 kg more you'll be carrying in the daypack so if you're not used to it, train with added weights in your daypack.

Good luck!

Kent, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
80 posts
44 reviews
50 helpful votes
3. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Please can you give me a link to what you use as I am getting all confused about water bottles and insulation and back packs agh........

Lawrenceburg...
Level Contributor
324 posts
90 reviews
36 helpful votes
4. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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3L (100 oz) is what you'll need. Here's a link to what they look like and cost.

camelbak.com/Sports-Recreation/Packs/2011-Un…

Send me a private message mandbtl if you wish and I can answer your equipment questions.

Fairfax, California
Level Contributor
553 posts
12 reviews
7 helpful votes
5. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Yaschan,

I have always heard to put a heated Nalgene bottle of water in the bottom of your sleeping bag for both warmth and for not allowing your water to freeze over night. I am curious, why do you turn your bottles upside down when you hike? I would also go the nalgene bottle route, carrying them inside my coat to prevent freezing but why upside down? Curious minds wanna know. I have also heard that even the insulated Camel backs freeze. Is this true?

Thanks

Susie

Lawrenceburg...
Level Contributor
324 posts
90 reviews
36 helpful votes
6. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Yes even the insulated camelbaks will freeze. In the evening, empty the water out of the camelbak before you go to bed this way it won't freeze overnight. Keep one water bottle to drink from during the night. Just place it somewhere so that it won't freeze but easy to get when thirsty.

During the day when you take a sip from your bladder, blow back in the water so it won't freeze in the tube before your next drink.

Manchester, United...
Level Contributor
119 posts
126 reviews
58 helpful votes
7. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Hi PuffyChild

I agree with the recommendations above - rather take too much than too little, so go for the 3L option (with insulation). You NEED to drink a lot in order to assist with acclimatization - so drink water, even when you don't really feel like it - rather that than AMS !!

Enjoy your climb.

Edited: 3:30 am, January 03, 2012
Liverpool, United...
1 post
8. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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I am climbing kilimanjaro in two weeks and am really confused! Ive already got my day pack so do I buy a water bladder and put it in a waterproof bag in my daypack???? The hydration packs ive seen are either just the water bladder or an intergrated waterbladder within the bag which you purchase together. Help please! x

Lawrenceburg...
Level Contributor
324 posts
90 reviews
36 helpful votes
9. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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Get a 3L (insulated if ya can) bladder. Inside your daypack on the back side there will be a small sleeve that your bladder (of any size) slides into. There also will be a small hole at the inside top of your pack where the bladder tube can exit. No need to put the bladder in a waterproof bag. Just make sure each time you have securely closed the bladder top!

As I stated in an earlier post, make sure that bladder is empty at night. Even the insulated ones will freeze! All that was made a successful summit will tell you, drink, drink and drink!

Sunnyvale...
Level Contributor
6,000 posts
142 reviews
177 helpful votes
10. Re: Water Bladder Size?
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My water bladder had an insulated tube, but that tube and bite valve all froze anyway on summit night, about half way to the rim.

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