Gear

First Look: Raidlight Responsiv 10L Race Vest

Our Trail Tested review of the Responsiv 10L by Raidlight. A well-balanced new running vest, complete with integrated 20-ounce soft bottles.

 

Raidlight Responsiv 10L Race Vest + Two 600 ml Eazyflasks
Weight: 7.4 oz
Available in XS, S/M, L/XL

Price: $169.95

 

The Raidlight Responsiv 10L Race Vest, though it shares many features with other modern hydration packs, stands out from competing brands’ models for a couple reasons: 1) it sits high on the back, which distributes weight more evenly than other models, and 2) the hydration system—comprised of two soft bottles—is more seamlessly integrated into the design.

The Raidlight Responsiv 10L is striking because of its ability to distribute weight evenly between the chest, shoulders and back. Other packs can leave the runner with the slight sensation of being pulled from behind by the weight. The result with the Responsiv is a natural running feel with super minimal bounce.

The two generous 20-ounce soft bottles included with the pack reduce the need to repeatedly refill on longer runs and are accommodated by supportive chest pockets comprised of stretching fabric. The small hose and bite valve often eliminate the need to actually remove the bottles from the pockets to drink—a marked advantage to other vests that come with soft bottles.

Storage and straps are plentiful (large pockets that span from the bottom front along the side, pockets for the flasks and two large stuff pockets in the back), allowing for ample opportunity to stash things like extra layers on the fly. The “Freelock system” is a proprietary tightening system placed along the posterior band on both sides. There is a wheel attached to tightening wires that cranks one direction for tightening and one direction to allow loosening. While the locking system is handy and tightens uniformly, it poses slight concern—if it were to break or get stuck, the runner would be left without a simple way to tighten and loosen the vest. 

The two pockets on the underside of either chest strap lack a zipper closure and as a result, I found items tried to slip out.

This vest is suitable for long, high-country missions and this reviewer is looking forward to regularly using it in the coming months.

 

Buy Now

 

—Casey Weaver began running cross country and track in high school, continuing into college at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. As an adult, Casey took to longer distances as a way to explore remote areas. He fell in love with the aesthetic and the cathartic self-awareness drawn from the process and typically runs 80-to-100-mile weeks.

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