I now realize I should have said, "former, with labels/glue scrubbed off and thoroughly washed, Gatorade bottles". Actually, they didn't even originally contain Gatorade - that's just shorthand for the generic 20oz bottles that Gatorade and some other flavored-water manufacturers use.

The reason these canteens are so popular is because they are strong, light, have a tight lid, disposable and/or easily replaced for pennies, and have a ridge near the top so that they can be fastened by bungee cord.

As for gear nomenclature, here's an excerpt from a popular PCT hiker's trail journal carrotquinn.com:

"I take my gatorade bottles down to the spigot ..."

Part of her gear list:

Titanium spoon .6
Knife (tiny swiss army classic w/scissors and single blade) 1
Platypus 2-liter bottles x 2 2
Gatorade bottles x 2 2.5
Stuff sack for food 1

I can assure you she is not purchasing Gatorade at her various stops. Sorry for any confusion. Perhaps my error is the continuing capitalization of the brand name, as opposed to affixing a general reference. The parent company better get cracking on take-down notices in order to help prevent those bottles from taking on a generic label like kleenex. (Interestingly, both lower case gatorade & kleenex show as spelling errors).

As for bears recognizing containers/packages that have provided rewards in the past, such as coolers, packs, canteens(?), etc, I haven't noticed that hanging backpacks is that popular, at least in the Sierra.

As myself, I use my pack* for a pillow (with my shoes wrapped inside), and keep both water bottles full & right next to me so that I can have a drink in the middle of the night. YMMV

* Edit: I now realize I have to be precisely clear so to avoid any possible confusion. Yes, my food and all items with any possible scent are stored in the bear container and placed 50+ yards away. My pack is empty except for some extra clothes. Hope that helps.

Edited by Hobbes (05/29/14 01:11 PM)