Hydrate or die. It’s a phrase that is ingrained in the military. In fact it’s so ingrained it’s become a marketing slogan. Of course, pushing hydration isn’t just for the military. Anyone who lives a life of rare boredom and raw burden knows the importance water plays in day to day adventuring. Carrying some form of hydration is a must for any extensive outdoor activity. When playing sports it is pretty easy to leave a water bottle on the sidelines. However, when you’re patrolling Afghanland, searching for an armed suspect, climbing a mountain, or chasing a trophy buck, anything left on the sidelines is useless. Having an easy method to carry water is critical to overall mission success. The Blue Force Gear water bottle pouch hasn’t reinvented the wheel with this pouch. What they did was turn a tire into a run flat.
At first glance, there isn’t anything special about the Blue Force Gear water bottle pouch. Upon further inspection, you get an overall excellent product. The BFG water bottle pouch is designed to fit the modern Nalgene style bottle. If you served in the last decade or so you’ve probably seen the Nalgene bottle replace the canteen. While canteens are still issued, Nalgene bottles are the choice of troops willing to spend their own money.
The Modern Style
Having a modern pouch to fit a modern bottle is a blessing. This pouch is small, lightweight, and tough as nails. Of course like any modern tactical pouch, it is designed to work with MOLLE or PALS webbing. The MOLLE straps are unique. The system has a layer of hook and loop at the end of the strap. Once the pouch is weaved into place the strap’s buckle is attached to a layer of hook and loop present on the last MOLLE slot. This keeps the pouch secured. In the event, the hook and loop fails there is an additional layer of security.
The end of the straps have two catches. These catches are in place to catch the pouch should the hook and loop fail. This prevents the pouch from being lost in a rush. The straps and MOLLE webbing are quite strong. The material remains superbly thin as well. This thin material and lack of buttons make it extremely simple to web the pouch in and out of any standard MOLLE webbing.
Have to ever seen a strip of MOLLE webbing on a bag, or a plate carrier and noticed it was too small and out of spec? Typically you find this at the end of a bag or plate carrier. A lot of times this end piece is useless. However, the thin, and malleable strips on the water bottle pouch make it possible to actually use this webbing. All in all, installation is easy on bags, belts, and everything else.
On a Pack
I’ve carried this bottle most on a pack. This pack is work issued and comes back and forth with me daily. If it was personally owned and not issued I would probably treat it better. I actually routinely toss it around and treat the bag like crap. So the Blue Force Gear Water bottle pouch has been treated pretty badly. It’s been rained on, tossed onto the wet ground, sat on countless floors, bumped around in the back of a truck on a dirt road, and generally been dropped, kicked and bumped daily.
The pouch has not worn, ripped, or torn in any way. There isn’t even a loose string on the sewn in threads. Nothing is frayed, nothing is really affected by my mistreatment. The only effect I have seen is a few stains on the bottom of the pouch.
It’s also been mold free. Mold free is typically not something people add in reviews. But, when reviewing the Blue Force Gear Water Bottle Pouch could you believe it got wet a time or two? It actually got wet almost daily. Let’s face it, bottle sweat, and I live in Florida, so they sweat a lot. When I refilled my bottle it was often wet on the outside. The point I’m trying to make is that water was sealed into the pouch, in a humid environment. It was also rained on, and regularly exposed to the environments. I never attempted to dry it out, and it never molded. That’s Ultracomp for you.
In all, the Blue Force Gear water bottle pouch is well built and perfect for the modern adventurer. Blue Force Gear’s reputation for quality hasn’t faltered with this pouch. Its modern proportions allow it to fit a variety of modern bottles, which I personally love. It’s great that someone has finally answered the call for modernization.