Camelbak Podium Ice Insulated Bottle - Review

Oct 2, 2014
by Richard Cunningham  
Pinkbike Product Picks

Camelbak Podium Ice Insulated Water Bottle 2014

Autumn is upon us and winter's chill will soon be enveloping the Northern Hemisphere (except for Phoenix, Arizona). Mountain bikers who are fortunate to have bottle mounts on their frames and who want to bring a hot beverage along, will be pleased to know that Camelbak has re-released its Podium Ice - what it claims to be the best insulated water bottle made. The Podium Ice is insulated with a thin membrane of "Aero Gel" - a lightweight thermal barrier which, reportedly, is four times more efficient than CamelBak's previous winner, the Podium Chill. Podium Ice bottles are made with taste free polypropylene that is also BPA free. The threaded cap and wide mouth allow for easy washing and provide access for large ice cubes during warmer months. Podium Ice bottles hold 21 ounces of fluid and are dishwasher safe (albeit, on the upper shelves). Highlighting the design is Camelbak's Jet Valve, which automatically opens when the bottle is squeezed and then reseals, so there is no need for a pull-open cap. The Jet Valve can be locked closed with a simple twist of the spout. Silver, red and blue colors are available and the bottle is covered by Camelbak's lifetime warranty. MSRP is $25 USD.
Camelbak

Camelbak Podium Ice Insulated Water Bottle 2014

The Podium Ice's large, threaded on cap makes for easier cleaning. Sadly, the opening is only a few millimeters shy of a 12-ounce beer can. Imagine a mini cooler - right on your bike. Camelbak's self-sealing Jet Valve is the bottle's real gem.



Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesCamelbak's best insulated water bottle is not going to score points with survivalists or marathon cyclists, because its special insulating powers wear off after two hours. Hot liquids stored inside the Podium Ice bottle lose half their temperature somewhere between 60 and 120 minutes. Half-temperature is good. Warm tea on a snowy ride is way better than cold. Cold drinks without Ice hit ambient temperature in the same interval, but adding ice will buy you an extra hour to gulp a cool drink on a sweltering Georgia summer day. I did not, however, throw a full bottle in the freezer and then time how long a solid, 21 ounces would remain chilled, mainly because one can't immediatly drink from a chunk of ice - so draw your own conclusions for that experiment.

Camelbak scores highest on its claims of taste-free plastic and its user-friendly Jet Valve cap. The valve delivers a lot of fluid exactly when you want it and, because the valve is always at the ready, the Podium Ice is fast on the draw when a stream of fluid is required to ward off a charging pug or Lhasa apso. The twist on/off sealing function is also handy because you can lock the bottle closed and toss in your gear bag or in your vehicle without a second thought. Bottom line? Camelbak's Podium Ice is more of a convenience than an essential. If you plan on being out digging or riding for most of the day, pack a metal vacuum bottle for your hot or cold drinks. For short adventures, however, the Podium Ice bottle can make bucking bad weather a more pleasant experience. - RC

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62 Comments

  • + 41
 Well I think we all know RC is getting pretty bored if he is writing water bottle reviews. Hey Transition get him a Giddy Up bike or one of those cool little horses for a review.
  • + 2
 he can review my bike Big Grin
  • + 3
 I bought the same type of insulated cup at TJ Maxx for $6.99. Just to let you guys know
  • - 5
flag wolf-amongst-lambs (Oct 2, 2014 at 15:39) (Below Threshold)
 Bubba hero sport 24 oz will keep ice for 8 hours. And has a valve sippy. And stainless steel. Lil heavy tho
  • + 2
 I thought CamelBak plans to preserve cold water so people can get cardiac arrest stoke in the trail.
  • + 1
 I freeze a nalgene solid the night before works great
  • + 1
 Until the bottle cracks, used to do the same thing.
  • + 3
 The whole 'cant drink a block of ice 'is easily solved. Fill it 3/4 full and freeze that, top the rest up with chilled water. You've got cold water that stays cold. A 1l uninsulated plastic bottle done like this lasts about 4hrs until it starts warming up, and during that timr you've got an ice cold/slushy drink.
  • + 3
 Been using this bottle for 5 or 6 months.. it is absolutely fanatastic. I have two and I use them for school, work, biking, hiking, and everything in between. Only thing that annoys me is how the water squirts out. Would prefer a jet stream as opposed to a tri-burst
  • + 0
 I've been using the Podium Chill bottles all season and would agree, the squirting action isn't a solid jet flow (so you'll get it all everywhere but your mouth if you and hold the bottle away from your face and squirt it in), but that's something you get used to.
  • - 2
 I use a coca-cola water bottle to school.
  • + 10
 chyu : Do you use sandpaper to wipe too ? Smile
  • + 5
 I've had these for a while now and they hold up incredibly well, clean up perfectly, and travel well too. Even have 2 more coming tomorrow.
  • + 1
 Just FYI, if you really need hydration, don't use cold water. Water is not absorbed by the body until it hits body temperature. A bunch of nerds who test nutrition absorption in Berkeley told me this when I fronted up with a CamelBak full of blocks of ice before we did an epic ride.
  • + 2
 Of course this study says it is better to drink cold water for performance www.coreperformance.com/daily/nutrition/why-you-should-drink-cold-water-during-exercise.html
  • + 1
 A benefit of cold water is keeping your core temperature down, plus who wants to drink water that is the temperature of tea on a 95 degree day?
  • + 1
 Interesting. So I'll go back to experimenting with ice water. The Aussie Summer is brutal.
  • + 1
 Cold water does turn off the thirst reflex, or at least slows it down..
  • + 1
 Living in the armpit of north FL, finding cold drinks in the summer is the difference between heat stroke, and simply melting. Highs in the upper 90s are bested by the deserts of AZ, but they lack our 70+% humidity. Anyway, I've tried most every insulated bottle on the market, and the ICE bottles do keep drinks colder, longer. Fill with cubed ice, then fill fully with your drink of choice. Old podium chill bottles would be near ambient temp in 1.5-5hrs. These are still cool, at 2hrs. Not cold, but not 80+ degrees, the way a plain bottle would be after 2 hrs in the heat.
  • + 2
 I have one and I hate it!! The "nipple" fills up with dirt and debris, also the on/off valve is a pain in the ass when you're riding.
It's an awesome bottle if you aren't going to use it for riding.
  • + 7
 The on/off valve is really just for transporting in case the bottle gets squeezed. You leave it in the on position when riding and the little backflow stopper prevents any spilling. As for dirt in the mouth piece I don't really have any probs but that may also come down to where the bottle is mounted and your riding conditions (muddy/sandy etc.)
  • + 4
 Just leave the nozzle in the open position. It seals itself until your squeeze it. The nozzle getting mud in it just depends where it's positioned, but if it's a constant problem, try and give it a quick squirt before drinking and it should clear it out.
  • + 4
 Are you sure you don't have the older model? We found the same thing (that dirt got in the nozzle and was hard to clean), but the new version is much wider and simpler - way easier to clean!
  • - 1
 Ditto on the dirt in the valve - especially with frames that have the cage on the bottom of the downtube.
  • + 1
 Cage on bottom of the downtube is simply stupid. ANY bottle is gonna have dirt. I have the simpler version of the Podium, and I absolutly love it, And you don't need to lock your bottle everytime you put it in the cage, just leave it open while riding.
  • + 1
 So my understanding is that you are supposed to freeze the bottle EMPTY in the freezer over night or as long as you can , and then put your fluids in it before you ride? .... Does anyone do it this way? I believe that is camelbak intended way of use
  • + 1
 Great bottle for road riding... Less time/effort to get hydrated, less risk of bailing. I still use a camelback (or preferred brand) for MTB. Too few opportunities to reach for a water bottle and they get muddy.
  • + 4
 What a nICE water bottle
  • + 7
 ice what you did there
  • + 2
 Exactly - ever ridden with these bottles near zero Celcius? The tip freezes. I prefer old school bottles: cheap and BPA-rich.
  • + 3
 HYDR-'H'ATE to see one of these malfunction out on the trail. WATER disaster. sorry but you started it
  • + 3
 This year's FMB trophy?
  • + 1
 been using that water bottle for several months now like it alot , keeps things cool
  • + 1
 That's a good way to go with the flow.
  • + 1
 Total copy of the AVEX insulated
  • - 3
 Water bottles - can't believe anyone but XC riders and roadies still use these things. If I wanted to suck on a grimey nipple, I'd go to a strip club. Hydration packs, folks - they've been around for a while now.
  • + 5
 Backsweat... That is all....
  • + 8
 It's not all. There's also the weight and the situation that goes like "hey, Kleinblake has a hydration pack, have him carry the tubes"
  • + 0
 Ohh i know full well the pro's i wore my pack with me riding dh last weekend, rental flatted for no good reason and i was able to swap it out for one of mine. But for shorter/close to home/milder rides for those who sweat and therefore drink a lot (yours truely) being able to leave the pack at home, and have a nice bottle is a huge plus
  • + 3
 i will always pick bottle over hydration pack any day..., i feel i can move more freely, no backsweat, a pain in the butt to wash and many other things, even for DH trips
  • + 7
 The strip clubs near me don't let you touch the performers...
  • + 1
 Washing and drying bladders is a real pain. Rinsing and drying bottles is easy. Give me two bottles for short and moderate length rides. Packs are only for all-day or multi-day adventures. (and my freezer is plenty full without 2 or 3 bladders taking up space)
  • + 0
 The Camelbak jet valve sucks. And a hydration pack is only good for a Chevy Chase style fall on your back (the hydration pack really helps with safety as it bursts and reduces the impact). But for drinking water. A regular plastic store bought water (refill or not) bottle is the best bet.
  • - 1
 The Specialized purist insulated is cheaper and keeps liquids cool as long as this one.
  • + 2
 enrico went to specialized so i did too ok thats enough commenting for today
  • + 1
 elite bottles are the best
  • - 1
 how does it know? it's called science.
  • + 1
 Yeah sounds a little dull.. only one feature: keeping the state
  • + 2
 im dumb
  • + 0
 So its a thermos?
  • - 3
 Also they need to offer more colors
  • - 1
 You gay bro?
  • + 1
 No sorry you'll have to look elsewhere - fruitcake
  • - 3
 This product looks "COOL" haha
  • - 2
 throw a beer in it and keep it cool for the trails
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