Hydro Flask Review of their 32oz Kiwi Stainless steel bottle.
Flasks in todays day and age are something of a tester-year invention. With the invention and affordability of super heat-exchanging stoves, like the Jetboil, people seem to rely less on flasks. I have a couple of thoughts, both for and against flasks.
A good flask is heavy, and a good thermally efficient flask has a glass inner. And yes, when in your backpack, you throw it down, you hear the dreaded crack. They were amazing, but they were not all that tough. Stanley’s flasks are pretty tough, but they weigh the same as a small elephant. Years ago I bought a little vacuum flask. It kept my drink warm for 2 hours, thats it. I remember breaking down on a freezing morning on a motorway intersection, at 4am. It was freezing. I had been travelling for 90 minutes. I thought ideal, COFFEE. It was ice cold. Needless to say that flask promptly went in the bin, and I lost faith. I then switched(years later) to a Jetboil. It alleviated the need for a flask, it was quick, it was light weight, it was, and still is FANTASTIC.
Years on I find myself in need of a flask. As part of Cornwall Search and Rescue I am out at all hours of the day and night, in wet, dry, fog, snow etc. A Jetboild would be ok, but literally when you need a swig of something I don’t want to get all of the gear out to boil a little bit for a cuppa. And also as we are in Cornwall we are never going to be too far away from a place to get boiled water. If we were in Scotland, the Peaks, or Wales then yes-jetfoil. But here, a flask is ideal.
I needed something reliable, and tough.
I happened across a new flask. Made by Hydro Flask, an American company that started out in 2009, and hit Europe in 2015. The flasks come in various sizes, and colours, and lid options etc. I opted for BIG, I went for the 32oz, in real terms thats not quite a litre-about 900ml. I was on the thinking, Ive got Hot water, and even if it gets cold, I have water (Survivalist thinking etc). So It arrived. It was bright, it was green, and it looked good. The detailing was nice. A lot of effort has gone in to the lid. Its functional and useable (durability will be prooven in the testing).
Inside the flask is a sleek 18/8 high grade stainless steel. The water beads off it, as it has been treated- similar to some kind of hydrophobic coating? This would be great as if you put soup in here, it won’t stain! The flask is BPA free- so all is good. Coffee one day, soup the next…… perhaps hot porridge…. hmmm I’ll give it a go!
Really nice attention to detail. A tactile flask with a grippy coating. It feels good in your hand, and gives you confidence when opening it.
I had a several days of lumberjacking approaching, and so thought this would be an ideal test. In the woods from 8-5, for a week and a bit. I will want my tea. I boiled a kettle, and prewarmed the flask (everybody should know to do this), then after ten minutes or so, I emptied the warmer and filled it up with freshly boiled water. Lid on tight, and off I went. Flask filled at about 720 am. First drink was at about 10:30. Piping hot still, fantastic. Lid on tight. at just gone 13:30 I had a cuppa with my lunch. Water still steaming hot. Really impressed. Obviously there wasn’t a great deal of water left in the flask now, maybe enough for one cup. SO final cup at 16:20, I poured, there was steam still, and it was nice and hot. Not boiling hot, but hot enough to brew a cuppa. That was enough for me. The flask, during the periods in which I was trying not to cut my legs off, was kept in the bottle much of my back pack, and that was kept on the floor of the woods (see pics). I did not insulate it in anyway. SO I was suitably impressed. Day after day it continued to perform.
On one of my days, my backpack let me down… My flask, totally full, jumped from the pocket of my pack on to a concrete road. It made an absolutely horrendous sound. Remember there is about 1kg of water in the flask, so it is a lot of weight. I looked down expecting to see water oozing out, and yet no. There was a dent, and it scratched, but it was intact. It still worked beautifully. 2 days later, and I did exactly the same, a bigger dent, but it still performed. I was upset at denting my nice new flask, but I had tested its toughness. It didn’t crack, or puncture.
The test of the week was. Its tough. It keeps things boiling hot for more than long enough. Its bright, its fun, it’s functional. It is easy to use, easy to clean because of the large opening, and the lid is a well engineered thing. It fits beautifully, and has a large handle to assist.
If you are out for a walk for the day, and don’t want to take your stove, and you’re in the market for a flask. These are amazing. (don’t drop it)