Chronicles of a Water Bottle Obsession

I have a slight obsession with water bottles, to the point that at one time I seriously contemplated starting a water bottle company. What’s not to like about water bottles?

  • They’re useful, so you never have to go thirsty, even when you’re driving or in the bathroom
  • They’re eco-friendly, except when you start to amass a large number of them (err, I may be guilty of that)
  • They’re a fashion statement, so you can say “Look at me, I’m eco-friendly, sporty, and I like [insert name of athletic company logo sticker you put on your bottle]

I think the water bottle craze started about the time I was in undergrad. I noticed all of my fellow classmates were carrying around “Nalgenes” wherever they went. A few of my friend were determined to break their Nalgene, because the company claimed they were indestructable. I joined the trend and started enjoying having a re-useable bottle. And this was way before I even knew what hiking was all about.

Since then, I’ve accumulated metal water bottles, flexible water bladders or “hydration packs, flip cap bottles, bottles with straws, and more. So when the company Zojirushi sent me a water bottle to review, I was thrilled! I already love Zojirushi because they make top quality hot water dispensers for making tea.

Here’s the bottle they sent me:

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Testing it out at the rock crags – Forgotten Wall in Cheakamus Canyon

Their Stainless Steel 16oz. water bottle is like the Cadillac of water bottles. It has more bells and whistles than most bottles, and the  giant instruction manual that came with the bottle was a little intimidating at first. But after a few minutes I got to know the basic features: In addition to a push-button flip cap, a locking lid, and a controlled pour so water doesn’t spill all over your face if you tip it too fast, this bottle is double-walled, so water stays cold for hours. Plus, the lid locks in the open position, so it doesn’t bonk against  your nose when you drink! Seems like the designers thought of everything.

I took this bottle on some hot summer day hikes, and my favorite feature on the bottle is the double walled insulation. It really works, and the water tasted so much better than the lukewarm water in the other bottle I was carrying. The locking lid is also handy, but it’d be nice if there was a color indicator so I could easily tell whether it was locked or unlocked. I could also use a bottle with a tad larger capacity, but perhaps it was designed with the Japanese audience in mind, since Zojirushi is based in Japan. 🙂

The Verdict: This is my new go-to bottle for shorter hikes and gym trips! Since it weighs a little more than bare bones bottles and has a smaller capacity, I probably won’t take it on heavy duty hikes, but I really love the extra fancy features for everyday use. It’s not often I get excited by new water bottle features, but this time I definitely swooned a bit!

Enjoying nice cold water at Lighthouse Park in North Vancouver, BC

Enjoying nice cold water at Lighthouse Park in North Vancouver, BC

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Check out my e-book Easy Hiking Recipes: Simple Meal Ideas for Day Hikes and Other Outdoor Adventures!

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Fruit-Infused Water

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While I’m on the subject of water, this is another simple way to add a little flavor to your water bottle. Simply chop up some fruit, add it to a pitcher with some water, and refrigerate it overnight! In the morning, strain out the fruit and pour the water into your bottle.

The resulting infusion will have a pleasant sweetness and fruity flavor, which will encourage you to drink more water and stay hydrated – particularly important during these hot summer months. It’ll also be more hydrating than pure juice, since juice is essentially a food suspended in water.

Chop the fruits well to allow a lot of surface area for the juice to infuse the water. If you’re making a fruit salad for your day hike the next day, it’ll be super easy, since you’re already chopping up fruit 🙂 In the photo above, I also added a teabag of DoMatcha’s Organic Tencha Green to the pitcher, and cold-brewed the tea along with the fruit overnight.

Fruits that infuse well include:

  • Apricots
  • Berries – Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries
  • Kiwis
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Lychee
  • Mangoes
  • Melon – watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, etc.
  • Oranges
  • Peaches
  • Pineapple

You can also add fresh mint or other herbs. Bruise them first by rolling them in your hands or smooshing them on a plate with the back of a spoon, to break up the leaf cells and release their fragrant oils.

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Check out more easy recipes in my Kindle ebook Easy Hiking Recipes.