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Thursday, February 04, 2016

Review: Nalgene ATB Bottle

The last couple of months of mountain biking has been great. I've gone from being terrified to being able to do 2-3 foot drops and jumps. My gear, however, has gotten dirtier and dirtier: despite the "drought", it's been a relatively wet California winter, and I've done enough stream crossings and puddle crossings to soak my shoes right through multiple times.

As previously mentioned, the usual mountain biking solution of using a hydration pack just doesn't work for me at all. I hate having anything on my back for a bike ride, and philosophically, I've always thought that it's crazy to carry something on your body when it can be carried on the bike.

The Nalgene ATB bottle comes with a cap that closes over the drinking nozzle. You'll probably be surprised to find out that I've done extensive searches but this is the only water bottle that seems designed to keep your drinking nozzle free from dirt, mud, and horse poop. None of the other bottles that are similarly protected will fit into a standard water bottle cage.

What's more important, the cap is easily flipped open and drunk from while riding, and then closed back up. I was using that feature one day when I pushed the cap in the wrong direction, and pop, off went the cap and it disappeared from the trail without a trace!

I can't complain about Nalgene's customer support though! I sent them an e-mail, and a new cap is now on its way. While I think that some sort of retaining cord should be designed into this bottle, the fact that it's the only one available that fits my need means pretty much that I'll keep using it, and be more careful about the cap next time.


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