Product Review: Waves Gear Forever Cold Water Bottle


Sam Wilkinson

According to a faithful reader, I'm Ordinary Times's "least thoughtful writer." So I've got that going for me, which is nice.

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35 Responses

  1. Avatar greginak says:

    Shackleton would have sailed across half the south atlantic with a crew in that thing.

    But really can i keep cold and hot liquids in it at the same time? Like what if my drink temperature desire changes during the activity, can i drink from the cold stuff and not the hot stuff or vice versa? And can it take selfies while i’m drinking and then upload them to all my various social media connections so people can see what i’m drinking during my adventures? Because if it can’t do all those things then what is the point of life anyway?Report

  2. Avatar Chris says:

    I’m just trying to imagine what I would look like after 34 oz of coffee.Report

  3. Avatar Kazzy says:

    I actually don’t think it is unreasonable for them to assume the bottle remains closed. I could imagine loading it up with coffee that I wanted to drink after a hike or something. I guess. I don’t hike. Do people drink coffee after hikes? Oh. I don’t drink coffee either.

    For just regular ol’ water drinking, does your collecting/hoarding give you any insight into what is best? I’ve been using those Camelback bottles with the flip top for a while now and they’re pretty good but they aren’t entirely leak proof, which bothers me. I like being able to drink out of a straw without having to unscrew anything because I drink it in the car a lot. A Nalgene or something like this would not suffice. But I’m hoping for something like that Camelback BUT BETTER and LESS LEAKY. Any tips, oh Bottle Master?Report

    • Avatar zic in reply to Kazzy says:

      My issue with camelbacks is the potential for them to get moldy. Yuck.

      Me, I’m a big fan of certain Poland Spring water bottles. You can buy them cheaply; most convenience stores sell them. They’re filled with beautiful water from a place that has plenty of water (Maine, Poland Springs is about 45 min. down Rt. 26 from me,) and not with filtered water from a place that has water shortages (California, for instance). The bottles can be refilled at your convenience; we tend to fill ours at the many road-side springs around the state, where the water literally gushes out of the ground, the state installs taps, and locals care for them and keep them clean. (One of my projects for the next few years is to write a book about Maine’s roadside springs). Or you can refill them from any tap. When they get gnarly, recycle the bottle, and purchase a new, pre-filled one.

      Yeah water.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        And I forgot; we do go hiking. A lot. Going up a steep mountain, I can easily down five or six liters of water in just a few hours; and that’s heavy to carry. So an added bonus of my Poland Spring water bottle for carrying water is that they are very, very light.

        They do not keep your water cold, and I’ve never bothered to take coffee in one, though my son occasionally fills one with coffee to drink on his way to work.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to zic says:

        I don’t really care about water temp, to be honest. I fill my water bottle from the tap and just keep it with me. I only really want it ice cold if I’m hung over (which is exceedingly rare these days). So temperature doesn’t matter to me. And, to be clear, I’m referring to the Camelback water bottles… not the backpacks. I have a backpack but am weary of it because I do worry about mold.

        Tell me more about these road side springs. The Appalachian Trail cuts through my neighborhood. Along one of the local highways that bisects it, I always see people pulled over, often at a pipe sticking out of the ground with water flowing out of it. It confuses this city mouse’s little brain…Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to zic says:


      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        Yup, you described a roadside spring.

        Ground — particularly the deep, glaciated soils we have here in the Northeast, make the very best water filter ever. Fill your bottle up there.

        Maine has a law on the books that springs that empty onto roads cannot be buried (this is what they used to do); they need to be tapped. Generally, if a spring has good water, people tend it, someone takes responsibility for the occasional test, etc., and you’ll see people pulled over to the side of the road, filling up their water bottles. If people are regularly drinking it, you can presume it’s safe to drink. Safer then much of what lines the shelves in convenience stores; that doesn’t even have to meet tap-water standards.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to zic says:

        White people be tripping… drinking water straight outa the ground like that.

        I still look a little side-eyed at my well system. And it has filters and softeners and treatment thingies out the wazoo on it.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to zic says:

        Try it. There’s a good chance it will be the best water you’ve tasted in your entire life.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to zic says:


        How many bugs will I be picking out of my teeth?

        Actually, I’m game. I’ll stop by next time I’m on that road. Question: Will I have to wait until the thaw?

        I’m a bit surprised to hear that. My well water needs a ton of treatment, primarily for hardness because of the prevalence of lyme in the area. But on at least one occasion (just before we moved in) it needed to be ‘shocked’ on account of a bacteria issue. I believe the technical term was “a dog pooped in your water”.

        Is it far to assume that my well is not only pulling from a different water source (we live about 2 miles as the crow flies from the roadside stream; so I recognize it wouldn’t be the exact same body of water but I mean the same general aquifer I guess is the term?) but, on account of it being manmade, it is tapping into water that isn’t moving and benefiting from other things that the roadside stream is?

        Seriously, this city boy just doesn’t get how water pulled directly out of the ground doesn’t have… ground stuff in it?

        Also, NYC tap water is known to be the best on earth (its part of why our pizza and bagels are so great) so there will be some stiff competition in the water drinking content.
        When it comes to bottled water (which I don’t generally drink), I take Poland Spring over Dasani any other. There is a discernible difference in taste between the two. I’m not a water snob, mind you. Most of what I drink is either my filtered well water or comes right out of the tap (in one building we lived in I insisted on a Brita but that is because the plumbing made the water taste funky). But if you put Dasani next to Poland Spring, I’m choosing the latter every time.Report

      • Avatar zic in reply to zic says:

        @kazzy first, all water is ‘out of the ground.’ All of it. Water is a limited resource, it recycles, and it’s all been in the ground. Aversion to water out of the ground is kinda like aversion to dirt that your vegetables grow in.

        With your well, there might be lots of things going on that it needed to be shocked; but my first guess is that it’s tapped into a still pocket that collects, but doesn’t overflow and ‘run.’ In general, moving water is clean, still water get’s dirty, and water in the ground can be either, depending on the geology.

        That’s why spring water is generally safe; presuming there’s no point-source pollutant; that the spring is running means it’s flowing through the ground, and all the bits of dirt, etc. actually collect and hold the microbes one might find troublesome in swamp water, etc. Plus, because it’s in the ground, instead of surface water, it won’t generally be contaminated with the things that make surface water dangerous.

        If you’re concerned at all, I’d suggest stopping at the spring; are there any signs there? Is there a posting about the water being tested? If not, you can get a water-test kit and have it tested yourself before drinking it. When I talked about doing my book project, that was part o the effort — testing the water in each spring I visited, combined with some photos, interviews of people who regularly drink the water, and to the extent possible, history of the spring. Some have major myths built up. The one I visit most often is purported to be magical, and people who only drink that water are purported to live to 100 or older. I’ve been told that at the spring dozens of times.

        But in general, it’s the flow that matters. I’d be hesitant to drink from a spring that only trickled a dribble of water in the late summer; one that gushed consistently and had some obvious woodland about it from the direction of waterflow (meaning there’s no septic system or other obvious source of contamination within 200 feet upstream of the flow) would top my list of good water. It tastes good, has a lot of oxygen in it (oxygen in water makes it taste better,) probably has some dissolved minerals that are good for you, and while there will be some microbes, they’re generally of the sort that won’t harm you and will help in that they stimulate your immune system with regular exercise. BTW, most well water has a similar microbe load.

        Water flowing through the ground is a precious thing; that’s why there’s so much concern about fracking — muck that water up, and you’ve destroyed the essence of life as we know it.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to zic says:


        True, NY is known for its water, although SF claims it’s water is the envy of the nation (Sierra snowpack, so it is good).

        But no bugs. The pipe will be tapping below ground level. Whether you’re in the same aquifer or not would require a geologist to tell us–there are large aquifers and micro aquifers. And some aquifers produce great water and others not so good, all depending on the rock it’s coming through. Granite tends to produce great water, limestone produces muddy water, sulfurous ground produces skunky water.

        Keep in mind, water softeners are to protect your plumbing from calcium/lime and other mineral deposits. But it usually tastes better than soft water because of the mineral content (again, depending on the mix of minerals).

        There should be no bacteria problems if the aquifer is tapped properly because the water’s coming from an a anaerobic environment. If you’re concerned about that (and it’s not at all unreasonable to be), if you see someone getting water from it stop and ask if they’re local, and if they are, whether they drink water from it regularly without ill effect. If they’re just hiking through (probably not this time of year, obviously they probably don’t know).

        Trust me, that roadside stream is not benefitting from anything. It’s exposed to all kinds of things the aquifer’s not, like oil, grease, tire rubber, anti-freeze and animal poop that is overwhelmingly likely to carry giardia, which won’t kill you but will make you wish it would, and possibly E. coli. Ground water, assuming it’s not shallow, has none of that. Sufficient depths of sand and gravel filters out the nasty stuff when the aquifer is recharging (water draining through the ground down into it). Only shallow aquifers tend to get bacteria and other parasites. And effectively all surface water, everywhere, even in our “pristine” wilderness areas have bacteria and other parasites such as giardia. There’s an old belief that free flowing water purifies itself every so many yards–don’t believe it, it just ain’t true.

        As for waiting until thaw, I dunno. Is it free flowing from the pipe, with no spigot?If so, perhaps there’s enough pressure from above-freezing water to keep flowing. If there’s a spigot, then the water stuck in the pipe that’s exposed to the surrounding air is likely frozen, unless you have some warmer days. You’ll be able to tell us after you give it a try.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley in reply to zic says:

        Re: fracking.

        Most fracking occurs far below the level of aquifers and poses no direct threat to them. Aquifers tend to be near surface, no more than hundreds of feet down, while the gas deposits tend to be thousands of feet deeper. There are some places where the aquifers and deposits are only hundreds of feet apart, and those are being monitored closely–that may not be enough separation to prevent migration of the forced hydraulic fluids into the aquifer.

        The contamination a so far have come from surface spills, which happen with normal drilling operations, too.Report

      • Avatar Gabriel Conroy in reply to zic says:

        This discussion is fascinating because I don’t know anything about getting ground water, etc.

        Here’s an observation, this:

        Also, NYC tap water is known to be the best on earth

        along with James’s reference to SFers saying their water is supposedly the best reminds me of growing up in Denver and hearing that that water was the best (actually, the local news story said it was rated the second best, but it touted that rating–whencever it came from–as proof that Denver was such a great place to be). Maybe that kind of statement is one of those assertions that people in places with at least passable tap water just tend to say.

        But for the record, I don’t think I’ve heard the same said of Chicago. Not that the water here is bad, mind.Report

      • Avatar Kimmi in reply to zic says:

        Yeah, NYC and SF went to tons of trouble to get their water, it truly is fabulous. Rivertowns like Chicago and Pittsburgh don’t do the same, and it shows.Report

      • Avatar Michael Cain in reply to zic says:

        Most fracking occurs far below the level of aquifers and poses no direct threat to them. Aquifers tend to be near surface, no more than hundreds of feet down, while the gas deposits tend to be thousands of feet deeper.

        Almost all of the contamination episodes that I’m aware of — and there have been plenty over the decades that fracking has been in use — are due to flawed cementing jobs on the well(s). Cementing is expensive and time-consuming and there’s always pressure to rush through it (the main cause of the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico was a defective cement job). Vertical migration of hydrocarbons in excess of 10,000 feet has been documented when the cement job was particularly crappy.Report

    • Avatar Sam Wilkinson in reply to Kazzy says:

      If you want to keep hot beverages hot, the thing I can most enthusiastically recommend is a vintage King-Seeley “Icy Hot” thermos. I’ve never run into anything that does a better job of insulating its contents. And they’re usually cheap. But you can’t fix them if they break because parts are essentially non-existent. They also wouldn’t work for you because you want something you can drink from while moving.Report

  4. Avatar Kazzy says:


    You’ve got me sold. Will the tap run in the winter?

    I’m being a little deliberately silly here. It is true that I’d lick a dirty barroom floor without pausing but look side-eyed at well water (to say nothing if these streams), but that is a function of familiarity. I see enough people using it (filling up jugs!), I am pretty confident it’s safe.Report

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    Incidentally, I’m not a spokesman. The company just happened to email this out and I thought I’d share here.Report