What is the worst thing that can happen on a brisk and frigid morning? Other than waking up, emerging from your somewhat warm tent into the face attacking cold; coffee that is not hot. Whether you drink hot chocolate, coffee, or a mixture of hot chocolate instant coffee and hazelnut creamer (a.k.a. camp drink) a nice hot cup of anything helps make waking up just a little bit more bearable.
Now the problem is, when you wake up and you're cold, chances are everything else you own is cold. A metal cup, or even a plastic one will dissipate heat faster than you can say "holy frozen socks batman!" Andy picked up this little gem from GSI down in Tennessee, and it took me about 400 miles before I finally gave up looking for one and ordered it via backcountry.com.
At the modest price of $5.90, the GSI Gourmet Nesting Mug and Bowl is a steal. It is marketed as a two in one piece, but we used it for a keep-your-drink-hot-forever mug. Other than having a sippy cup style top so you're able to drink your piping hot goodness with a lid on, it has an neoprene cozy hugging the mug. If that's not enough, it has a removable exoskeleton that can be used for an additional bowl, measuring, or (in our case) an added layer of insulation.
Easily one of the most important pieces in my pack, theres no way I will go on any camping trip without one. Even if its not cold outside, the insulation will keep cold water colder much longer than your grand-pop's tin cup.-Ian