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Are Ultralight Titanium Insulated Cups Worth The Premium Price?

Snow Peak 600 Titanium Double Walled Insulated Mug
Snow Peak 600 Titanium Double Walled Insulated Mug

Winter’s coming and it’s time to start thinking about gearing up your cooking system for winter backpacking and camping. One option is to go the Titanium route, and pick up a ultralight double wall insulated mug, like the Snow Peak Titanium Double Walled 600 Insulated Mug, which costs $59.95.

That’s kind of pricey. Is it really worth it?

Please leave a comment.

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  1. $60 for an insulated mug is not worth my money. Even if I had unlimited resources, I would have to better look into the specs and usage of this $60 mug to see if I preferred it for my cook kit.

    Currently, I use 3 different mugs, for different purposes, all made of plastic:

    * uninsulated GSI mug (no lid), holds 12 oz, weighs 1.5oz
    * insulated Thermos brand mug (no lid), weighs 2oz
    * insulated REI brand mug with lid, not sure on the weight, my guess is 4-5oz

    On winter trips, I sometimes also take a vacuum-sealed stainless steel insulated thermos, holds about 18oz, my guess is the weight is about 8oz.

    Sometimes I also use an empty plastic salsa tub as a mug. For insulation, I’ve made a cozy from aluminized bubble-wrap (Reflectix).

  2. My mug I will buy will be MLD Ti 475mL or one of those Foster’s beer-pot, and that’s only because I want to see how far I can push ultralight winter hiking and ultralight hunting before yoyoing back to the standard Evernew .9L and Open Country 4qt.

  3. I use a plastic cup. I never could justify the cost of Titanium.

  4. I own a blue Snow Peak double-walled 450 ml cup–and I luv it. It’s my one piece of luxury in my otherwise stringent gear list. When I hit camp and all is set up and I’m well fed, I make coffee, add some whiskey to it and sit and look up at the stars and sip away. The mug keeps my cozy ritual going for a good 20 minutes before ‘hot-sippin’ goes luke-warm. (Usually my brew is gone before then). I do most of my backcountry outings in the temperature range of +10 C – -10 C so rhe insulating properties of the cup make a decent enough diff for me. But I mus admit, each time I pack it into my pack it is the last piece of gear I pack–and I always feel guilty about bringing such non-essential luxury with me. But hey, i weigh 90 kg and have enough muscle to hump those extra grams of luxury. It’s really the extra volume of bringing along this non-essential item that threatens its place in my tightly packed backpacks. I bring it to work at times as a reminder of various backcountry outings the two of ‘us’ have been on together.

  5. I LOVE my titanium insulated cup. I have a 450ml, slightly smaller (and thus even lighter!) and it’s been absolutely perfect for tea and cocoa for one person. There are cheaper things out there, obviously, but my mug makes me very, very happy in a slightly absurd way.

  6. I’ve been using my 22 ounce Snowpeak for 6 seasons now and love it. Large enough to rehydrate a meal AND keep it hot. Or (lately) makes a nice cereal bowl for bran flakes and cold milk (from powder). Plus it takes a beating and keeps on performing.

  7. No. I considered a single-wall ti cup as it can be used for cooking, or for warming up cold coffee. Ti beats most other materials in toughness. A quality that is perhaps more important to long-distance hikers than to those who go on shorter trips.

    I was packed and ready to go on my first long section of the AT in 2012 when a birthday present from my son arrived. I had a single-wall ti cup in my pack, along with a 700ml ti cook pot. But when I opened the box, there was a Kupilka Cup! It was heavier, better insulated, and much groovier than the single wall ti cup. But while everything else in the pack was replaced, tweaked or thrown out over the next few years, that cup ended up accompanying me on every mile of the AT.

  8. I have a GSI plastic cup that weighs 2.5 oz. and cost me $3.00 I also have a single-wall titanium cup from Snow Peak (2.8 oz. at a cost of $35). Filled with hot coffee, the Snow Peak will burn my lips, the GSI won’t. Kind of clear which one I prefer, huh?

  9. Heeeeeeck no. I use a Nalgene flask with a DIY cozy. Tight lid, fits inside my pocket instead of sitting on the cold ground, can come with if I’m not finished drinking by the time I’m finished packing up. Also good for daytime tea, I can brew and go instead of sitting. Unless I want to sit. It works fine then, too. ;)

  10. In my opinion, this is completely unnecessary.

  11. No, not worth the premium price, but I don;t begrudge folks splurging on hiking gear as I am guilty of that also. There are other options that are cheaper and work just as well. For example the GSI Outdoors Infinity Backpacker Mug. http://www.rei.com/product/884337/gsi-outdoors-infinity-backpacker-mug It costs $10 American, weighs 3.5 oz, as opposed to the Snow Peak 450 double walled mug which weighs 4.2 oz and costs $50. The GSI mug holds17 fluid oz and is constructed of #5 polypropylene which is the most benign plastic and is not known to leach harmful chemicals in any significant amount.The Snow Peak 600 double walled mug shown in the picture would weigh and cost even more than the Snow Peak 450. With either Snow peak mug in my opinion it would be necessary to buy a plastic lid to prevent burning the lips, thus adding to expense and weight. I have the GSI mug and have been very happy with it although I recently bought a Sea to Summit Collapsible X-Mug (2.4 oz, capacity 16 oz) to save space, but haven’t taken it out hiking yet, so the jury is still out on that one.

  12. I have the smaller one with the lid, and while it’s functional the gsi does just as good a job for a little less weight – it was a Christmas gift some years back. The angst have at what other people spend money on is entertaining though.

    Best thing I’ve found recently is he recyclable Starbucks cups. 1.something oz with decent lid, good volume and a cardboard holder to keep it cool or you can make a reflectix cosy.

  13. I think it’s funny that some people are getting so upset at the price. The way I see it, I paid $45 dollars for an indestructible coffee mug that will last forever. If you knew how many regular coffee mugs I used to go through at my office just in a year, then you would think it was a good investment, too.

  14. The question was, is it worth it? That is a personal choice. To me it’s just more gear that’s unnecessary and absurdly priced. So, no.

  15. After having read the 60 or so comments it seems to me many people are jealous of the ones who spend a few extra bucks to have a little luxury. Plastic does not do it for me. Had that crap too many years. Coffee and cocoa gets cold too fast. Stainless is a weight I would not have a slave carry. Having a bit of a luxury after too many years of humping with $5.00 backpacks and drinking from tin cans and the barrel sized sleeping bags strapped to my forehead with a tump line-sometimes really; I want to have a lightweight luxury. Seems like today’s generation is brainwashed to be anti anything that is nice or really makes life better. Such a sucky way to think and live. I know. I lived the cheap life for many years out of necessity and now I appreciate the finer things and also recognize the communistic liberal snobbery anti anything that smacks of luxury. Hope you all get over that brainwashing. The years I couldn’t afford nice leather boots, or lightweight tents or even dream of eating a freeze dried/dehydrated meal; I always wanted to have the better thing someday. Not to flaunt it under the noses of other which some of you cretins think but to ENJOY the feeling of having the option of not living like a hobo and retarded piss poor moron.

    • I also have issues with some of the minimalist crap going round these days. There’s a big difference between being homeless and eating out of dumpsters and backpacking the PCT with a cuben fiber tent and drinking micro-brewed beer.

  16. Makes me laugh, most backpackers I know who are overly obsessed with pack-weight are usually carrying 10 to 50 pounds extra weight in fat on their body!

    You can’t get them to see sense, they could hold back on the fried chicken, pizza, burgers etc for a few weeks, thus lose maybe 10 pounds, and be surprised to find that they can carry enough kit to furnish a field kitchen, and still not be out of breath walking up hills and mountains.

    All this nonsense over Titanium, it is just more sucker-money, invent a market and enough fools will buy into it. I’ve used Titanium pots, and will never buy one, the heat is very local, even with low power heat sources, like Sterno stoves, steel is kind of similar, but in between Titanium and Aluminum. Aluminum heats quick, distributes the heat more evenly, and if you know what you are doing, food doesn’t stick to it.

    As for the nonsense about Aluminum and Alzheimer’s etc, it is nonsense, no study proves a link, and even IF it did, Aluminum is the THIRD most common element on Earth, after Oxygen and Silicon; if you take two aspirin or antacids a day, you’ve consumed more Aluminum than you’d get from cooking in a day.

    The fact is, there are people who al the time want the latest piece of kit to be ahead of the pack, and no matter what is released to market someone, somewhere will buy it to get-one-over someone else. I look out at new stuff all the time, but still find that, mostly, the old ways are the best ways, a lot of the new stuff is about companies pushing technological advances in pursuit of profit, they don’t want you to be using the same bivi, tent, sleeping bag, cook set etc year in, year out, there is no profit in it. Some people swear by their ancient down sleeping back, Esbit stove, Beeswax waterproofed cotton jacket and whatnot…but they’ll always be someone wanting to buy the latest kit…we laugh at them at the gym, when they come out with the latest fitness gadget too…

    • Billy Bob Titanium Teeth

      Aluminum is one of the most reactive metals, I don’t want to eat it with my food, it makes it taste bad. Aluminum is very soft and has a low toughness. Aluminum age hardens and makes nasty oxide layers and becomes very brittle. Titanium is far superior and will last longer than any aluminum, it is used in medical implants because it WILL NOT REACT in the human body, the exact opposite of aluminum. I don’t think aluminum will do any harm to peoples brains but it will not last as long as titanium. Titanium is an expensive metal and is a investment for any backpacker, skinny or fat. I have my titanium cup that I bought from REI for $17.00 over 16 years ago and I will have it for at least another 30 years.

      • Huh? I thought one wanted as much oxide layer as possible on aluminum, because thats what keeps aluminum from entering the food?? Isnt that the point of anodizing aluminum? To make a thicker oxide layer?

        The durability is not an issue what so ever. Both aluminium and Ti will last a lifetime in this kind of use. I have an aluminum mess kit from the 70’s used 1000s of times by my parents and now me. It shows no sign of giving up at all.

        Unless the food is acidic i MUCH prefer aluminium cookware before titanium. For actual cooking that is. Titanium is great for boiling water, but thats about the only thing you can do with it in my experience. Anything else will burn and make both food and cleanup a not so nice experience.

        But this was about mugs, not cookware. And for a mug i wouldnt use metal at all personally. It burns my lips unless i use some rubber thingy which just is one more thing to wash and possibly loose.

  17. The question, “Is it worth it?” leaves the commenter to decide what meaning to read into the question.

    The price seems to be in line with other titanium bits, so it is not over-priced in that way.

    Presumably, the extra money over an equivalent stainless steel item buys lighter weight. The extra money may be $30 or $40, since the SS insulated cups are not very expensive. The weight savings may be an ounce or two, maybe three. In my estimation, if I used an insulated cup (I do not), that’s cheap. The spending extra occurs just once, and enables you to enjoy several ounces of pack weight reduction for hundreds of trail miles, and decades of use. The extra amount is equivalent to what one spends on transportation to regional trails for JUST ONE hike. That’s a good deal to me.

    If I wanted an insulated cup, I would naturally pick the lightest suitable choice. If I can afford to drive to the trail multiple times yearly, I can afford an extra few bucks for a lighter item just once.

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