A while ago I wrote about a hydration solution that I found to be excellent for trips out into the field. You can read more about the Geigerrig here. I’ve also started using the Hydrapak 500ml Soft Flask and 750ml Stash collapsible water bottle recently and have enjoyed those as well, implementing them nicely into my hydration solutions. These are water bottle replacements but the company also has bladders and reservoirs as well. I used both the Soft Flask and Stash for a while but as time went on I found myself reaching more for the Soft Flask. They both collapse or contract as you drink which helps eliminate water sloshing around as you move as well as wasted space.
The soft flask has a bite valve straw which makes drinking on the move a breeze, which is one of the main reasons I find myself grabbing that over the collapsable water bottle, which has a screw top to remove effectively meaning you really need two hands to drink from it. The bite valve has a twist lock so if you want to make sure that nothing is coming out you can twist it shut or twist open as desired. I don’t often lock it personally because it does a great job and not leaking even with the valve unlocked. It also has a bite valve cap that can be used as well. As you drink it collapses to about the size of tennis ball.
The Stash has a 42mm screw cap which gives it a nice opening that makes filling and drinking pretty easy, but as mentioned before realistically requires two hands to drink from. The bottle collapses as you drink and then locks when empty at about the size of a hockey puck.
Both solutions are light weight and durable making them for great options for adventurers and people who like to spend time outdoors. They both feature a finger loop that can be used to carry or attach to gear. On several hikes over the last year I’ve filled the soft flask with a sport drink and attached it to the outside of my pack so when I needed a drink (other than water) I had that easily accessible and didn’t have to take my pack off or have someone else fish through my pack to grab a water bottle.
Both water solutions can be used with hot water or can be frozen making them extremely versatile. You can fill it with a drink and freeze it the night before and have a cold drink several hours later when you need it most. They have also both been very durable getting thrown around and beat up constantly. The only thing over the past year of use has been the bite valve on the soft flask had a small leak after almost a year of pretty hard use. I still used it regularly and while the leak started out as a small leak that was only noticeable when the flask is squeezed, it got worse as I continued to use it. I eventually contacted Hydrapak Warranty and filled out their warranty claim form, which took just a couple of minutes and they quickly sent a new bite valve and made the soft flask as good as new. They asked for contact information, the problem, and a picture (because it was an issue with a leak) and they took care of it faster than I expected. I was very pleased with the response from their warranty team.
Overall, I’ve loved both of them, especially the soft flask. I’ve used it almost daily for over a year now and still get comments about it from others. Being light weight, compact, durable, and functional make it a great choice for most applications for me.