The Sierra Cup, Jack of all trades

The Sierra Cup, Jack of all trades

The Sierra Cup, Jack of all trades

The Sierra cup has a legendary status for outdoorsy people. Just like for the spork, the sight of the Sierra cup brings evokes dreams of mountains, adventures, and freedom. It is a utensil exclusively associated with the great outdoors. Let’s break down the reasons it is such an iconic design and let’s discuss if it should have a place in your outdoor gear.

-Its birthplace and origins: it is associated with the Sierras of California. The design’s origin goes back to the beginning of the 20th century, but is its association with the Sierra Club of California that makes it known as the “Sierra Club Cup.” If you are a history buff, this beginnings’ story is a good reason as any to own one. 

-An emblem of the wilderness: the cup was ideal for backpacking and climbing and was popularized in a time when people were encouraged to “enjoy the Great Outdoors.” A time when people started to realize the importance of protecting wilderness and its intrinsic value. The idea of protecting wilderness was coincident with the development of recreational outdoor activities. 

-An emblem of freedom and purity: imagine a sierra cup dipped in a clear-flowing stream to drink, in a time when people did not fear giardia. That’s how the cup was often used and that’s how it was pictured. By association with the mountains and clear mountain water, the Sierra cup gained a reputation of purity. There was simplicity in its design and the way it was used. 

-Its multipurposeness: the cup is a “Jack of all trades,” not only a drinking cup, but can be used as a personal bowl, a cooking vessel, a mini pot for boiling water, a serving utensil, a ladle, a multi-use container, a mini shovel for snow or dirt…. Its uses are limitless.

-“Master of none”: unfortunately the cup does not excel at anything. Sure, it is portable, but It is way too small as a cooking pot, it can scald the tongue when used as drinking cup when drinking hot liquids, it makes for a very poor ladle and a very weak and smallish shovel. 

-A recognizable shape: The Sierra cup is always wider at the top, and even if it is called a “cup,” it is really a small bowl. The advantage of its shape is that it is stackable. The cup comes with different features and materials. Some have fixed handles, but others, more compact, have foldable handles, some have a lid, and various materials are now used: stainless steel, aluminium, plastic, and now titanium. Check out Cook’n’Escape folding titanium sierra cup. We kept the original spirit of the cup by making it highly portable and lightweight, yet as durable as possible with titanium.

-Is the sierra cup an indispensable tool in your outdoor gear? “No,” if you carry other cups and utensils with you. “Yes,” if it is the only cup you carry or if you want a tool that is exceptionally multipurpose and therefore will save a lot of weight in your backpack.  

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