A Review of The Scott Jurek Collection from Ultimate Direction

This spring(2013) the Scott Jurek Signature Series from Ultimate Direction will expand its offerings beyond the wildly popular SJ Ultra Vest. Reviewed here are 3 of those items:
The SJ Grip
The SJ Essential Waist Pack
The SJ Endure Waist Pack

It’s difficult to wax too eloquently about a simple handheld water bottle but this SJ Series bottle comes with a strap that I think will eliminate the issue of strap loosening as you run, forcing you to either grip the bottle tightly or constantly re-tighten the strap. It accomplishes this with an adjustable Velcro strap that pulls down over a plastic piece near the bottle’s neck. Once adjusted to your hand, the only way I can see it slipping is the Velcro wearing out, which shouldn’t happen for a long time. Plus, the strap has Jurek’s signature on it, which might make it worth some extra greenbacks down the road. The bottle has the standard UD pull-and-tilt bite valve on the cap. Some people love that, some people don’t. That’s your call!

The SJ Essential is a bare bones waist pack that rides well and is hardly noticeable even when loaded with a digital camera and a fistful of gels. The pack has 2 zippered pockets, one sweat-proof, just big enough to carry a smartphone or digital camera, and whatever other “essentials” you may be bringing along such as gels, bars, TP, etc. There are also 2 very small, Velcro-closure pockets, once again one being sweatproof, just big enough for keys or electrolyte caps or a couple of gels. With the Essential and a couple of hand-helds I’m good for 3 or 4 hours in cool conditions.

The SJ Endure is a slight step up from the Essential in terms of storage capacity. There is a single sweat-proof zippered pocket the same size as the pockets on the Essential, plus a Velcro-closure pocket in the back that sits nestled between dual 8 oz water bottle holders. A bungee pull-cord on the back provides a place to cinch down a light wind shell or shirt. This is a great waist pack for those who need a little extra water than what they can carry with 2 handhelds but who don’t necessarily like the feel of the weight of 40+ oz of water cinched down around their waist.

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