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Running Accessories • April 5, 2024

Nathan TrailMix 2.0 and Pinnacle FeatherLite Review: Oh, We’re Packin’

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What You Need To Know


Pinnacle FeatherLite: 1.5L

TrailMix 2.0: 12L


Pinnacle FeatherLite: 5.5 oz. with flask

TrailMix 2.0: 14 oz. with bladder


Pinnacle FeatherLite: $110

TrailMix 2.0: $150

Introduction to the Nathan TrailMix and Pinnacle FeatherLite Vests

MICHAEL: Summer is around the corner, folks, and that means it’s time to hydrate! Or maybe at least it’s the time of year when we all start consciously thinking about it rather than it being an afterthought. To kickstart these warm summer months arriving all too soon, I gave the Nathan Pinnacle FeatherLite Vest a spin or two around the block and have some thoughts on the latest ultralight, minimalist vest from the run hydration juggernaut.

Sam also put in some miles in the bigger, beefier TrailMix 2.0, so get ready for those coming up after my own impressions.

Our thoughts on the Nathan Pinnacle FeatherLite Vest

MICHAEL: The Pinnacle FeatherLite Vest is, well, light. Like, really light. To use Nathan’s words, this vest truly does feel like a second skin. So, rather than slinging the pack over your shoulder, this feels more like a specialized utility sleeve for your torso, making it an excellent, pared-down choice for lightweight summer runs and especially races. Most of the pack is constructed with new material for Nathan: a Power Stretch Mesh’ that I found to be uniquely form-fitting yet comfortable.

This is no sleeveless cutoff gym tee — it fits more like a compression top but does so without impeding breathing or feeling claustrophobic. This took some adjustment and getting used to, but over the course of a few runs, I really came to enjoy the vest’s custom feel. One of my great pet peeves is a vest that bounces (even slightly), but after loading down the vest with a 500mL flask and an iPhone, the Pinnacle FeatherLite had no issues.

Of course, any vest this minimal almost always suffers a decrease in storage capacity compared to more robust models, and the Pinnacle Featherlite is no exception. Over the course of my test period, however, I found the relatively small storage capacity to be in no way limiting — this vest is perfectly capable of carrying everything I need for 95% of my summer adventures. It has two double-layered stretch pockets on the vest straps for snacks, flasks (20oz max capacity), and a phone, in addition to its generous 1.5L back pocket, which is perfect for stashing a wind shell. Other little features include loops on the shoulder straps to stow a soft flask straw if you’re into that sort of thing and side compression straps that really help dial in the fit of the pack. Every stitch of the Pinnacle FeatherLite seems to be there for a reason, and to that, I say cheers to minimalism.

Naturally, there are a few other things to be wary of with any ultralight vest… most of which are personal preferences. First, the back pocket is really only accessible via a right-handed zipper, and since this is the type of pack you want to put on at the beginning of your run or race and not have to take it off for the rest of the day due to it’s tight, form-fitting construction, I would only recommend the Pinnacle FeatherLite for our right-handed friends.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that the back pocket is not bladder-compatible. I personally would rather be dehydrated than run with a sloshing bladder, so I wasn’t really bothered by that, but some may be. Lastly, I would appreciate two very small yet significant additions, namely some cinchable bungees on the large pockets for additional pocket security and a slightly more secure height adjustment for the chest straps than the buckle slides. I found that they have a tendency to move around a little over the course of a run.

All in all, I found the Pinnacle FeatherLite to be a wonderfully light, speedy, and pared-down pick for long runs and races. I fully expect to continue using this vest for many miles and enjoy its simple construction throughout the summer months. The Pinnacle FeatherLite thoughtfully features everything I could want in a lightweight vest and nothing I don’t.

Shop Nathan Pinnacle FeatherLite Vest

Our thoughts on the Nathan TrailMix 2.0

SAM: The TrailMix 2.0 is light and comfortable, with no rub points around the neck or underarms. This is a traditional shoulder-strap style pack, and it breathes better than some others of the style I’ve worn. On a warm day, I worked up the usual sweat under the pack but never felt like it added extra heat. The side straps and chest closure are all non-elastic webbing, which holds securely once you get it to the right place, but getting it all worked out takes a few adjustments, and the elastic wraps for excess strap storage aren’t enough to take in all the tails, so I had to make sure this thing was good to go with some clever tail storage before I took off.

Count me as a huge fan of the roll-top storage. There is plenty of room for jackets and snacks, and with 12 liters at your disposal, you could probably pack in a six-pack and a burger with fries and still have space to spare. The clips on either side of the roll top secure your load well, and any extra around the sides can be cinched in with the crossed bungees that run the back of the pack.

Those bungees also provide a little extra structure to the mesh quick-storage pocket. Next to your back is a dedicated internal pocket for the included 1.5L bladder, but if you remove the bladder, it works just fine as an extra compartment. The pack carries the bladder well, but there’s the same slosh you’ll get with most bladder carry.

The soft flask pockets on the front have really nice cinched bungees to keep my 500mL bottles secure, and there are two smaller gear and snack pockets in front of those (without bungees). These are slightly elastic and can carry plenty — I’d guess 4-5 full-size Snickers bars each — but there are no structural or lockdown options, so if you slide a phone in there, you’ll get plenty of bounce. In fact, outside some minimal security provided by the surface bungees, there isn’t any pocket on this vest that will carry a small, heavy object like a phone securely without bouncing.

This is a great pack if you’re a trail runner who needs a little extra space on long days or if you just need a jacket, gloves, and a big lunch topped with two full-size Pringles cans — what we’d call Blastoise-style. It would also work well if you are a day hiker who likes to carry light but still needs some storage.

Shop Nathan TrailMix 2.0 Pack

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michael bio photo
Michael Loutzenheiser
Southern Trail Reviewer

An engineer living with his wife and cat in Birmingham, Ala., Michael loves chill morning runs in the neighborhood, but especially enjoys soaking up long miles of technical southeast singletrack. Occasionally, he’ll get a racing itch and actually string together some “organized” training for a trail race or FKT. In his free time, Michael enjoys books, backpacking, and hanging out with friends.

More from Michael
Shoe Size


Fav. Distance

13.1 (Trail)

  • 4:48

  • 1:16

    Half Marathon
  • 16:45

Sam Edgin
Mid-Atlantic Trail Reviewer
  • Instagram
  • Strava

Sam lives in Baltimore with his wife and two kids and spends his days fixing espresso machines for Ceremony Coffee Roasters. He runs with the Faster Bastards when he can, races ultras, and has been working on completing the AT section by section. He thinks the best days are made of long miles on nasty trails, but that a good surf session, a really stunning book, or a day of board games are pretty all right too.

All-time favorite shoes: Saucony Xodus Ultra, Topo Athletic Ultraventure 3, Altra Lone Peak

More from Sam
Shoe Size


Fav. Distance


  • 6:15

  • 1:40:39

    Half Marathon
  • 21:30

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