Well Barnyard you have more experience than us Newbies and its good to hear your tips, info and stories, whether your an A, B or C rider.
Tip for keeping your Camelback bladder from getting funky, I throw mine in the freezer when I'm not using it.
Gatorade is my friend, I sweat a lot, and after an hour plus run on a warm day will have salt deposits on my face, so I need more than water to replace the nutrients lost. You can drink too much water and dilute yourself, overhydration, it has happened at marathons, and now they space out the water stops from every mile to every 1.5 miles. Hydration and keeping your caloric intake up is a fine balance.
Practice what you can tolerate drinking and eating during your trail rides and training, so there are no surprises come race day, I know this, not from racing a bike, because I haven't raced yet, but from numerous running races and triathlons, and even an Ironman, where I learned the importance of what happens when you don't eat enough after 10 hours of competition, and your forced to walk/shuffle/death march the last 13 miles.
Enough of this, I'm going riding.