Sunday, March 18, 2012

Review: Nathan Quickdraw Elite

I've been trail running for about 5 or 6 years now. It began with resistance to leaving the asphalt for a muddy trail but turned into an obsession of immersing myself in nature and what waits out there for all of us. With that came goals to push past the limits of the ever-popular 26.2 mile marathon distance and go 50 kilometers (31.2 miles) on the trails followed by the 100-mile ultra marathon distance...3 times done in 2009. Along the entire way, from the very beginning, I've been carrying a handheld water bottle. What I have found is that Nathan Sports makes the best when it comes to carrying your desired hydration product, whatever that may be. For me, I fill mine up with Hammer Nutrition but that's just my preference. Not only have their products carried me through hundreds of miles, but they've even saved me as I have fallen on the trail. Many, many times as I was on my way down, I reached out my right hand to brace myself and that cushioned BPA-free bottle cushioned my fall. I bet the designers at Nathan Sports weren't thinking of this when they made their bottles. :-)

Anyway, a few days back while I was out on a run, I said to my wife something like this: "Nathan really needs to make a handheld that'll fit my iPhone. With so many iPhones/Droids on the market and the heavy usage of apps like "MapMyRun," it only makes sense to make such a product." Not only have I had a few Nathan handhelds, but I have one waist-mounted one with the bottle carrier in the back along with a zippered pocket and net pocket. During the 2009 Oil Creek 100 Miler, I carried my Heed Perpetuem in that bottle, my BodyGlide in the net pocket, and a few necessities in the zippered pocket. In my right hand, I carried my handheld and Hammer's Heed, always keeping my left hand free for balancing and just plain safety on the trail. So back to what I, the customer, desired: I was at my local specialty running store yesterday, Vertical Runner in Hudson, OH, where I used to work part-time and support unapologetically. There is no better place to support in the area when it comes to running. Not just a business, but one that gives back without end. As I was leaving the store after picking up a pair of Brooks' for my 11 year old, I noticed something hanging on the back if my vision had become reality before my very eyes: the updated Nathan Quickdraw Elite. While not branded for Apple's iPhone, you cannot deny the absolutely perfect fit it is. No doubt...Nathan is tuned in to what the customer wants. You can see how well it fits below and notice the rubber seal that surrounds the zipper. That's an upgrade over the other version I have. Clearly, they are doing their best to keep the elements out of there.
Zipped up, it's a perfect fit. Also, you'll see the little "ID" tab sticking up. That's a slip that pulls out where you can write in your emergency contact information should something happen out there on the trail or wherever your feet take you. Made to withstand the weather, it slides right down in its compartment, out of sight. In the photo below, my iPhone is in that pocket and it has its protector on, too. Nice!

"Thanks, Nathan, for making excellent products. From my back-mounted hydration pack, to my waist-pack, to multiple handhelds, keep up the great work and thanks for listening to us, your customers, as you constantly re-invent your own products for the better. Thanks, too, for sponsoring the Oil Creek Trail Runs! Happy Trails!"

1 comment:

Bill said...

The ID pull up tab would work great if it were interchangeable with splits cards also. Nice write up admiral.