Monday, August 5, 2013

Trendsetting! My Hiking Water Bottle

My wife and I have a joke together that goes back quite a few years. When I was in college, I purchased a flowered, Hawaiian type shirt before they were popular (at the time). Soon, the shirts became a short lived trend and I became a self-proclaimed “trendsetter”. Through the years, there have been other products and moments that bring me back to that situation and I joke around and tell my wife I’m still a trendsetter. Most recently, this surfaced in the Kittery Trading Post when I was checking out water bottles…

I carry a pretty unconventional water bottle as far as hiking goes. Many carry Nalgene bottles or some other flashy bottle of choice. Most, nowadays, carry bladders on their back such as Camelbaks, so the water is easy to access. I on the other hand, carry a thirty year old US Army canteen that my father took on all of his military trips into the field. It’s familiar to me from childhood as I remember playing with it when I was a kid. It clips onto my backpack’s waste strap for easy access and is shaped for easy handling. The case is fur lined to keep it insulated and in the bottom of the case, there’s an aluminum pan which could be used for boiling water in a survival situation. It is by far my first choice for an H2O dispenser and may just be my “favorite” piece of hiking equipment because of the history and sentimental value that comes with it.

Now, back to the inside joke of me being a trendsetter! We were looking at a large rack of water bottles, as we always do when we’re in Kittery Trading Post and noticed Nalgene’s latest water bottle design. It’s a canteen!!! It’s shaped just like the one I carry that’s 30 years old and looked like it would fit right in the carrying case that I currently have. I could not resist and said to my wife, “see…setting the trend again!!!”



  1. Very Kool, Karl! :-)
    Back in the day, I had a similar canteen, made of metal. It looked like the one shown in the link below:

    1. Hi John,

      That one you point to looks like a WWII era canteen. The cases were similar, made of canvas with spring clip buttons and through holes. Also, I think they had the pan in them too, but the handle flipped out from the bottom. Did you use the case as well? Do you still have the old canteen?


    2. Hi Karl,

      My canteen was indeed from the WWII era! It was purchased it at an Army surplus store. I no longer have the canteen. It was given to someone in my family several years ago.