The Best Backpacking Water Bottles

By Sigita B •  Updated: 03/05/21 •  5 min read

No matter where you go hiking and what kind of weather you encounter, there is one thing you absolutely cannot do without: a water bottle. This piece of hiking gear often gets overlooked and treated as a second thought even though it is very important.

You need to keep yourself hydrated at all times but especially when you are being active and spending a lot of time in the sun. Buying a reusable water bottle is a good idea because it creates less waste and is very easy to refill when you stumble upon a spring while hiking.

Insulated water bottles are top choice for many hikers because they keep water cool in the summer and prevent in from freezing in winter and because stainless steel does not absorb flavours. Even though they are bulkier than hydration sleeves – another popular choice – or disposable water bottles, the benefits outweigh the disadvantages for most hikers. Eco-friendly plastic bottles are also a good option although they are less sturdy.

Most water bottles might seem the same to you but they have some differences. To make it easier for you, we have rounded up the best hiking water bottles and weighted their pros and cons!

Why hydration is important

One of the most common mistake that hiking newbies make is not drinking enough water on the trail – either because they underestimate how much water they need or because they did not bring enough water with themselves. Remember: it is much better to bring too much water with you than take too little.

When you are properly hydrated, you will feel good and be at your best physical and mental capacity. But when you don’t get enough water this fact will manifest itself with a range different symptoms, some of them more dangerous than others.

As you sweat, your body loses more moisture so you need to drink more water to compensate. If you fail to do that, you will get dehydrated. One of the earliest signs is thirst but if you ignore it, you might experience more severe symptoms like headaches, nausea, tiredness and general decrease in your physical performance as well as your urine turning darker than usual.

When you are dehydrated and stay in sun for extended periods of time, the risk of getting a heat stroke greatly increases. Symptoms of a heat stroke include throbbing headaches, dizziness, disorientation, high body temperature and nausea or vomiting. Those are not things you’d want to encounter on a hike so it is very important to drink enough water.

How much water should you drink while hiking?

There is no universal answer to that. You have to account for factors like climate (the hotter it is, the more you’ll need to drink), difficulty of the trail and your individual needs. General rule of thumb is to drink half a liter of water every hour in moderate climate and with moderate level of activity. However, you will probably need more if you’re hiking in hot weather or have chosen a more difficult terrain like mountains.

Best hiking water bottles

Two hikers standing. One of them drinking water.

Nalgene Tritan 32oz Wide Mouth BPA-Free Water Bottle

This wide-mouth bottle is made from Eastman Tritan copolyester that is manufactured without Bisphenol A (BPA). Some research has shown that BPA can seep into food or beverages from containers that contain this material and it leads to possible health concerns. Although the possible effects of BPA are still being researched, it is better to use BPA-free alternatives.

This bottle is resistant to staining and retaining odor, and it also has printed graduations that let you keep track of your water consumption – a very useful feature on the trail! You can use it when exercising, working or at home so the use of this bottle is not limited to just hiking.

Nalgene Wide Mouth Bottle

This Nalgene water bottle is completely leak proof, made of virtually indestructible BPA-free Tritan, easy to clean and dishwasher safe on the top rack.

Suitable for both warm and cold beverages (-40 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit); wide mouth makes cleaning and adding ice cubes easy.

Free of BPA, BPS and phthalates, opening accommodates most water filters; marked with milliliters and ounces for easy measurement.

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Hydro Flask 32oz Double Wall Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle

This wide-mouth bottle comes is four different sizes so you can get the one most suitable for the length of your hike and the expected level of activity. It is made from insulated stainless steel ensuring that the water stays cool in hot weather and does not freeze in cold temperatures. This bottle is also BPA-free. Unlike some similar bottles, Hydro Flask has powder coating for solid grip and it also prevents condensation on the outside of the bottle. All these features ensure that your drink will retain the temperature you want. Water will stay cool for 24 hours and hot for up to 12 hours in this bottle. This is a popular choice among hikers, outdoors lovers and sports enthusiasts.

Hydro Flask Water Bottle - Stainless Steel & Vacuum Insulated

Keeps cold drinks icy cold and hot drinks piping hot for hydration any time, anywhere.

Slip-free powder coating doesn't sweat and is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning and convenience.

A sustainable metal water bottle with a clean design, for a better planet.

Hydro Flask water bottles come with a limited lifetime warranty against manufacturing defects.

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Embrava Best Sports 32oz BPA-Free Water Bottle

Made of BPA-free Tritan copolyester, this premium water bottle has ergonomic design with a dust-free and leak-proof lid making it a perfect choice for hiking. It combines modern, subtle design with durability and top-notch quality. It has a narrow mouthpiece that is convenient for drinking when you are being active and moving around. Undoubtedly, one of the best features of this bottle is its modern and elegant design but it does not compromise the superb quality of this product.

Embrava Best Sports Water Bottle - 32oz Large

From our ergonomic design to our dust-proof/leak-proof lid, every part of our water bottles is designed with you in mind! With a tough carry-strap and a special reflective frosted casing that reacts uniquely to your environment, it is both stylish and convenient to use, and each bottle comes in a Free Gift Box making for a fantastic gift option!

We offer the same pure taste that those glass water bottles do, but with the added benefit of shatter resistant durability. Our spill proof lid is a marvel of ingenuity and effectiveness. With one push of a button, you’re on your way to healthy hydration.

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Hydrology 40oz Double Wall Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle

This BPA-free, powder-coated bottle is made to be secure and leak-proof in all kinds of situations. It comes with four interchangeable lids: carabiner travel lid, sports lid with a straw, flip lid and stainless steel wide mouth lid. You can choose the one that best suit your needs while hiking, running, exercising or just using at home. It comes in two different sizes – 32oz or 40oz so choose the size that’s best for you. This bottle is durable, safe and environmentally-friendly, and you can save money if you get multiple Hydrology bottles at once.

Hydrology Insulated Water Bottle

Cold for up to 48 Hours. Hot for up to 12 Hours.

Three leak-proof lids: Includes Carabiner Straw Lid with 2 Straws, Flip Lid, and Stainless Steel Lid.

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Sigita B