Review: Evoc Hip Pack Capture
A hip pack that doesn't make you choose between camera gear and carrying ride essentialsPhoto by: Photo: Stuart Kernaghan.
by Stuart Kernaghan
A lot of people like to shoot photos or videos of their mountain bike experiences. Stashing a phone in your pocket or hydration pack works well, but what do you do when you want to bring a dedicated camera on the ride? Well, there are a number of good photo packs available – but not everyone wants to ride with a backpack.
Hip packs are THE cool way to carry your gear these days. While they may be trendy, they do have some real benefits. Weight sits closer to your centre of gravity, they reduce the sweaty back experience, and they’re smaller and lighter than a backpack. Unfortunately, they’re not designed to carry a camera.
Evoc Hip Pack Capture
Evoc Sports, Europe’s largest hydration pack and bike gear company, brought the two options together into one solution with its new Hip Pack Capture, a 7L waist pack specifically designed for camera gear.
The new Hip Pack Capture from Evoc has all the features you need to head out for a day ride with your camera, water bottle and some snacks. Photo: Stuart Kernaghan
The Capture includes three slots for memory cards and a waterproof pocket for cables or other accessories. I would have rather seen a mesh pouch for a multi-tool and clip for keys. Photo: Stuart Kernaghan
Removeable dividers mean that you can configure the Capture to your heart’s desire. For size reference, the camera is a Canon M100 but a 7D body and zoom lens will also fit. Photo: Stuart Kernaghan
Hidden straps on the bottom of the pack can be used to secure a jacket, a tripod, or pads to the outside of the bag. Photo: Stuart Kernaghan
The water bottle pouch is on the left side of the pack, and includes an elastic bungy cord to keep it from falling out. Adjustable straps on each side of the pack allow you to snug it up to your back. Photo: Stuart Kernaghan
The Capture boasts a long list of features: a padded and mesh back piece; a padded main compartment with three removable dividers; an adjustable waist strap with zippered side pouches; a water bottle pouch; dual adjustment straps; an integrated rain cover; hidden straps for securing a tripod / pads / a jacket; and a separate waterproof internal pocket for memory cards or accessories. Weight for an empty pack is 1.32 lbs / 600 g.
It didn’t take long to realize that the Evoc Hip Pack Capture is top shelf, and that construction is excellent. It was easy to get all of my photo and riding essentials in there. The pack comfortably fit a Canon M100 mirrorless camera with a 15-45mm lens, a mini tool, tire levers, two energy bars, my phone, my earbud case, and a full-sized water bottle. Throwing a second lens in there wouldn’t have been a problem.
Shoot from the hip: Riding with the Evoc Hip Pack Capture
Riding with the Capture was a little different at first, as I’m used to carrying camera gear in a backpack. Once I dialed in the fit, with the waist and adjustment straps snugged up and the pack sitting closer to my back, everything was good. Having the weight on my hips didn’t throw off my balance or flow on the trail, as can sometimes be the case with a large camera backpack. It effectively became invisible during the ride, which is what you want from your gear.
This bag is definitely larger than some hip packs (Evoc’s own Hip Pack Pro is 3L), but I didn’t notice the added size while I was riding – even on technical descents. Although it isn’t designed for a DSLR camera, I was able to fit a Canon 7D with a 24-105 mm lens in the pack once I separated the two components.
The Capture does its job very well. There are a few minor tweaks that would make this already-good pack even better. The waist strap is far too long, and the adjustable buckle could do with a larger release tab. I would have also preferred the bottle pouch on the right side of the bag. A dedicated external tool and key pouch would be more useful, instead of the memory card pouch.
Evoc’s Hip Pack Capture is a well-designed and highly functional hip pack. It’s ideal for riders who want to head out for a few hours and take a camera and some essentials with them. It comes in heather carbon grey and heather light olive colours.