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Spring 2021 Triathlete Buyer’s Guide: Cycling Hydration Systems

Our 2021 guide to cycling hydration has expert reviews on all of the latest gear triathletes need to fuel while out on the bike.

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Profile Design HSF/Aero HC 800+ bike-mounted hydration system

Profile Design HSF/Aero HC 800+ | $115

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ | Weight: 387g

Basics

A between-the-arms hydration system that incorporates the ability to refill on the fly, an integrated computer mount, flexible drink hose with integrated magnet, and an adjustable design with an 800mL capacity.

Pros

  • Integrated Garmin mount
  • Can be mounted above or below bars
  • Powerful magnet secures straw while riding
  • The cage also fits a standard water bottle—perfect for training

Cons

  • Zip-tie mounting makes for more difficult installation/removal
  • Fill port can splash when refilling on the fly
  • Bottle can rattle in cage when riding on rough surfaces

Read the extended review here

Vision Metron Front Hydration System bike-mounted hydration system

Vision Metron Front Hydration System | $83

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ | Weight: 335g

Basics

A computational fluid dynamic-designed, between-the-arms bottle system with a 700mL capacity, this has an adjustable moveable straw that can be raised to access fluids while maintaining the aero position, and a tray that attaches to the aerobars secured with hook-and-loop fasteners.

Pros

  • Detachable bento box allows nutrition storage
  • “Labyrinth” water fill spout reduces splash-back when refilling on the fly
  • Easy to install with bracket that snaps onto bars and secures with velcro

Cons

  • Refill port lid is difficult to replace when refilling while riding
  • Included computer mount is somewhat bulky
Xlab Mini Wing 105 bottle cages mounted behind the seat

Xlab Mini Wing 105 | $60

Rating: ★ ★ | Weight: 186g

Basics

A saddle-mounted hydration system designed to carry two standard water bottles with mounting hardware that attaches the setup to a standard saddle—secured by a single screw on each rail.

Pros

  • Easy installation with only a single bolt per cage
  • Easy to access while riding but still sits low enough not to hinder your T1 mount
  • Included cages are sleek and hold bottles firmly in place

Cons

  • Not compatible with all saddle rails
  • Mounting hardware can potentially loosen over time
Torhans Aero30 bike-mounted hydration system

Torhans Aero30 | $70

Rating: ★ ★ ★ | Weight: 155g

Basics

A between-the-arms hydration system with a 30oz. capacity (also available in 20oz.) that attaches to the bike using the AeroMount bracket (sold separately). The latest model does feature a new spill- and splash-proof cap with a magnetic closure. An AeroTray accessory is also available, allowing athletes to attach a computer head unit.

Pros

  • Easy to refill on the fly with magnetic latch cover
  • Large capacity at 30oz.
  • Low-profile, aerodynamic design

Cons

  • Bottle can rattle on rough roads
  • Aero Mount is not included, but is necessary for installation
  • Narrow design makes it difficult to clean
  • Drinking tube is not very snug and can come loose
Speedfil Aero Bundle handlebar-mounted water bottle

Speedfil Aero Bundle | $100

Rating: ★ ★ ★ | Weight: 234g (A2 & Z4 combined)

Basics

The Aero Bundle combines Speedfil’s A2 and Z4+ products into a complete between-the-arms hydration solution that can connect to any standard Specialized thread-compatible water bottle—giving the Aero Bundle a capacity of up to 24oz. The system also includes an integrated Garmin-compatible computer mount.

Pros

  • Easily refillable while riding
  • Compatible with standard water bottles
  • Simple to clean

Cons

  • Garmin mount not included
  • Lid requires a good deal of force to open
  • Tedious assembly
  • Mounting could be more robust