Rab Veil 2L Review
When the wonderful people at RunUltra sent me a Veil to test I thought they had lost their minds. It appears they haven’t, neither had the clever people at Rab.
Who are Rab?
“Our story began in 1981 in the attic of a small, terraced house in Sheffield where Rab Carrington made the first sleeping bag to bear his name. Hand-stitched and devised with his own ingenious eye, Rab’s experience from years spent in the mountains was apparent in his designs, and soon there was popular demand both from friends and the growing local climbing community.
Things didn’t stop there. Word soon spread, and the Sheffield attic became a factory floor, creating sleeping bags and jackets for customers far and wide. Now, decades later, those honest, hard-wearing designs can be found all over the world; wherever adventurous individuals face up to the elements. From Himalayan peaks to cold, crisp evenings around a campfire.”
For Rab, the Veil 6L and 2L and the 1L belt are a new venture into the running pack/vest world.
The Veil is built around what Rab calls a Multi-Directional Mono Mesh chassis. It’s a translucent mesh that’s both super strong and breathable. Rab claims the Mono Mesh absorbs 70% less water and weighs 50% less than a typical air mesh that many other running vests are made from, it’s hydrophobic!! The Mesh is also responsible for the Veil’s bounce less ride, lots of nerds have done lots of work with the designers and created some specialised cuts and angles around specific friction and bounce points to make this vest a less bouncing rubbing thing.
I, like many others, have a love hate relationship with running vests, an absolute necessity but goodness me can they suck the fun out of long-distance running, chaffing, rubbing, pockets in all the wrong places.
The Mono mesh system
Ventilation is the name of the game, and it works. Ventilation to a sweaty back is improved and moisture is wicked away better than any pack I’ve previously worn.
Pockets, lots of pockets
The most used (for me anyway) were the pockets at the front of the bottles, sorry, “hydro pack soft flask” holders. These pockets are big enough to store gels etc. Speaking of the hydro pack soft flask pockets, finally a brand that puts them in the right place without the need to remove the flask to drink it, bend your head at some weird angle or use a long straw that has your eye out at every opportunity. Oh, and these pockets have little bungy cords to tighten so the bottles don’t bounce around.
At the rear, the Veil has the usual 2 big storage areas, one for a bladder, but I’ve never used a bladder as I would prefer to drink puddle water than warm sweaty back water. And the other, the largest compartment, where you put all that stuff on mandatory kit lists that you’ll never need. The final pocket on the back is the lumbar pocket, A thin pocket that stretches across the low part of the vest. Where you store your larger items that you may need quick access to, like a waterproof.
Just when you thought we were all out of trail running marketing speak, straight in at the top of the charts is the adjustable and customisable “sternum fit system”, beautiful. All joking aside it’s pretty darn effective. It’s easy to use and allows for micro adjustments.
There is an enclosed key clip and emergency whistle in an upper front stretch pocket, like every other integrated whistle it’s of very little use, but you’ll pass kit check with it.
I’ve never used poles but there are bungee holders on each side, for quick access. Other reviews have mentioned that when stored the poles can block a couple of pockets.
No need to worry if the driving population have eaten their quota of carrots, the clever people at Rab have put reflective panels on the front and rear of the pack.
Sizing and Weight
Small 34-37″, medium 37-40″, or large 40-44″, there’s a sizing system on the Rab website. The Veil is also adjustable from each side and has grippy little dots which stop it from riding up, nice touch!!!
The Veil 2 weighs 0.27kg with flasks included or 0.19kg without the flasks (for size medium)
All the fabric elements of the Veil 2 are fluorocarbon free. Have a look here for more info.
I’ve really enjoyed using the Veil, it’s an excellent bit of kit and the designers have done a really good job of improving on the standard vest that so many brands flood the market with, the attention to detail really shone through. It’s a minutia that matters when things get tough, chaffing, awkward pockets, frustrating bottle position, these things can add up and send really affect your mental state when tired. Rab have done a great job.
About the author
Stuart Leaney is the current course record holder at Centurion Wendover Woods 50 and 100 mile races and a regular winner at Centurion Running events.
Have you tried the Rab Veil 2? Don’t agree with this review? What’s your opinion? Add your own comment to this review and share your experience and passion for running with others.
Not a member yet? Sign up here to be part of the RunUltra community and share tips and stories with thousands of fellow runners around the world.
We are a professional review site and our reviewers receive free products for testing from the companies whose products we review. We test each product thoroughly and give high marks to only the very best. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are by the reviewer’s name shown
Other vests you might be interested in: