Why I Ditched Nalgene for Steel Water BottlesAugust 23, 2014 by Melanie Swick | 2 Comments
I used to be a die-hard fan of Nalgene bottles. As a Marine, I started using them in place of my canteens while deployed in extreme cold weather because they were just as tough, but the wide mouth made it easy to break ice that formed at the top and get to the water below.
They had other advantages over our standard issue canteens, too: they contain fewer harmful chemicals compared to other plastic containers, the wide mouth made them easy to clean, they didn’t absorb odors or flavors, and since they’re clear, you can tell exactly how full they are.
Then I came across an article about veterans suffering from health problems linked to the use of CamelBak hydration systems and decided to get away from plastic water bottles entirely.
Steel is the only real choice for the outdoors, especially for those of us with an active lifestyle. I was able to find steel water bottles with the same capacity as my old Nalgene bottles (32oz) that were well-constructed, but I had a hard time finding any with the wide mouth that I was so fond of. Eventually, I stumbled across wide mouth steel bottles made by Klean Kanteen over at Backcountry.
There are a few reasons I ditched Nalgene for steel water bottles:
- The don’t contain harmful chemicals.
- They’re damn-near impossible to break.
- You can boil water directly in them.
- You can use them as a signaling device.
Aside from a wide mouth, the only other important criteria is to avoid bottles with paint or coatings because they will come off if you heat the bottle.