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Sigg Traveler 600ml/20oz review: an iconic and resilient water bottle

The seemingly indestructible bottle for backpacking expeditions

Sigg Traveler water bottle 600ml / 20oz
(Image: © Sigg)

Our Verdict

An iconic, functional and almost indestructible piece of outdoor kit, the classic Sigg water bottle is the perfect partner to take on any hiking adventure.

For

  • Virtually indestructible bottle
  • BPA Free
  • Easy to drink from narrow mouth

Against

  • Narrow mouth is harder to fill and clean
  • Lid can be lost
  • Two hands required to use

First impressions

Drop it, bash it, drive over it… every scratch, dent and ding only seems to enhance the everlasting appeal of the classic Sigg water bottle. There’s even one on display in New York’s Museum of Modern Art. The aluminum bottle is light and utterly secure – you can even fill it with fizzy drinks and they won’t bubble out.

The interior lining in no way taints the taste of water, and the finger-space lid makes it easy to carry or hang off a pack. It is, however, a two-handed business to unscrew the cap, and experience suggests that cap and bottle are easily separated in busy kitchens. An alternative ‘Active Spout’ (£5) is available for walkers who want to drink on the go. The only issue is cleaning the bottle, especially if you fill it with a sugary drink, although Sigg does sell Bottle Clean tablets.

Specifications

RRP: $23 (US) / £16 (UK)
Volume: 600ml/20oz
Other available sizes: 1-litre/32oz, 1.5-litre/40oz
Weight: 108g/3.8oz
Colors: Smoked pearl, Deep magenta, Dark Blue, Black, Red, White, Alu, Mustard

In the field

This is perhaps my sixth Sigg bottle of this type, yet none have failed. Over the years I’ve left bottles in campsites and on trains and buses, my frustration compounded by the fact that each one was in perfect working order.

In over 20 years I’ve only ever ruined one bottle, not by dropping, denting or driving over it, but by filling it with cold ginger tea (an absurd alternative to ice tea), which left an odor and aftertaste that I could never expunge. The narrow mouth does make these bottles harder to clean, but something in the ginger must have penetrated the bottle lining. The otherwise seemingly indestructible aluminum bottle has an array of advantages – fill it then freeze it for icy drinks through the morning. Or fill it with boiling water, wrap in a fleece and hey presto – it’s a hot water bottle for chilly sleeping bags.

In two decades of use I can only think of two downsides of this design classic. Firstly, carrying one in hand luggage onto a flight – even when empty – is a guarantee that your bag will be searched. And secondly, the reliably tight fitting top means you need two hands free to undo the lid and take a swig – it doesn’t sound much, but it’s a nuisance if you walk with a map, GPS or poles in your hands. There is an alternative ‘Active Spout’ for walkers who want to drink on the go, but somehow that undermines the iconic outline of a bottle that’s on display in New York’s Museum of Modern Art.