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Reviews > Food > Energy Bars and Drinks > R W Knudsen Recharge Sports Drink > Test Report by Nancy Griffith

R.W. KNUDSEN RECHARGE DRINK MIX
TEST SERIES BY NANCY GRIFFITH
LONG-TERM REPORT
November 15, 2011

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT
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TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Nancy Griffith
EMAIL: bkpkrgirlATyahooDOTcom
AGE: 45
LOCATION: Northern California, USA
GENDER: F
HEIGHT: 5' 6" (1.68 m)
WEIGHT: 130 lb (59.00 kg)

My outdoor experience began in high school with involvement in a local canoeing/camping group called Canoe Trails. The culmination was a 10-day canoe voyage through the Quebec wilds. I've been backpacking since my college days in Pennsylvania. I have completed all of the Appalachian Trail in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina. My typical trip now is in the Sierra Nevada in California and is from a few days to a week long. I carry a light to mid-weight load, use a tent, stove and hiking poles.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Recharge
Photo courtesy of R.W. Knudsen
Manufacturer: R. W. Knudsen
Year of Manufacture: 2011
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.rwknudsenfamily.com
MSRP: Not listed
Listed Weight: 0.14 oz (4 g)
Measured Weight: 0.2 oz (5 g)
Available Flavors: Lemon, Orange, Tropical and Grape
Flavors Tested: All Four
Gluten Free





Nutrition facts are the same for all flavors.
Serving Size: 8 FL. OZ. (240 mL)
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 10
Total Fat 0g
Sodium 30mg
Potassium 50mg
Total Carbohydrate1g
Sugars
Protein 0g

Ingredients:
Lemon:
LEMON JUICE CONCENTRATE, MALTODEXTRIN, NATURAL FLAVORS, GUM ACACIA, CITRIC ACID, MALIC ACID, TRIPOTASSIUM CITRATE MONOHYDRATE, SEA SALT, TRICALCIUM PHOSPHATE, REBIANA, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), ZINC PICOLINATE, NIACINAMIDE (NIACIN), D-CALCIUM PANTOTHENATE (PANTOTHENIC ACID), PYRIDOXINE HYDROCHLORIDE (VITAMIN B6), CYANOCOBALAMIN (VITAMIN B12), CHROMIUM POLYNICOTINATE.

Ingredients are the same for the other flavors with the exception of the fruit juice concentrate. Orange has orange juice concentrate. Tropical has pineapple juice concentrate. Grape has grape juice concentrate.

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

Tear-off tabThe R.W. Knudsen Recharge Flavored Sports Beverage mixes are packets of powder that when added to 16 oz (0.5 L) of water create a fruit-flavored sports beverage. This beverage is low-calorie and contains electrolytes and vitamins with no added sugar, artificial colors or preservatives.

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS & TRYING IT OUT

My initial impression was that I was surprised to see that this drink mix contains Rebiana instead of stevia. The website does list the sweetener in the ingredient list but with all of the other ingredients; I hadn't noticed the Rebiana listing until I looked closely. It states 'Sweetener extracted from the stevia plant.' While this is technically true, it isn't the same product as pure stevia. I try to include in my diet things that are not processed, so I was expecting a product with pure stevia based on the 'natural' promise and based on my past experience many years ago with Knudsen's high quality (unprocessed) juices.

I decided to mix up a tall glass of lemon Recharge to enjoy on the deck on a warm summer evening. The packet has an easy-open tear strip which tears off the top about halfway across. The tab tore off easily and completely and made enough of an opening to pour out the powder. The only downside for me is that the top completely detaches making a small piece of trash. This is fine at home, but I find that on the trail very small pieces of trash get inadvertently dropped causing me to litter at times despite my best intentions.

I then filled a Nalgene with 16 oz (0.47 L) of water and added the powder. I screwed on the lid and shook vigorously. The powder clumped up a little and took some serious shaking to dissolve completely. Then for the best part...the first sip. It tasted like nicely tart lemonade which appealed to my taste perfectly. It was sweet but I got more of a nice tang from the flavor than an overpowering sweetness.

The next day I mixed up some tropical-flavored Recharge in the same manner as noted above. I was particularly interested in this flavor although I'm not a fan of punch-flavored drinks. However, this one has pineapple juice as the main ingredient (which I love) so I thought that I'd like it. Again it clumped up quite a bit at first. I went to get the camera to show how clumpy it was. By the time I found the camera and got back to the drink, it was almost completely dissolved. So, it seems that it just needs to sit for a few minutes to dissolve. As for the taste, it reminded me of Hawaiian Punch which I am not fond of, but that is just my taste preference.

I'm looking forward to trying the other two flavors!

Overall, the product I received was as advertised on the website.

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

The directions are to take a sip from a 16.9 fl oz (0.5 L) bottle of water, add contents of packet into bottle, cover and shake.

I find the instruction to take a sip first to be funny as if adding it to the entire bottle would make it too weak. I suppose that it is simply attempting to make room in the bottle for the powder.

SUMMARY

The R.W. Knudsen Recharge Sports Beverage Mix is an easy way to transport a sports drink since it dissolves in water to create an electrolyte beverage.

Things I love:
Easily transported
Good taste (haven't tried all flavors yet)
Juice concentrate is main ingredient
Electrolytes included
Low calorie

Things I don't love as much:
Contains rebiana instead of pure stevia
Tear-off tab leaves a small piece of trash
Didn't dissolve completely without vigorous shaking or waiting
Punch-flavored drinks



LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Tropical PunchDuring the Long-Term Testing period I used the drink mix for backpacking, mountain biking, hiking, snowshoeing and cutting/hauling firewood. I typically made 32 oz (1 L) at a time which requires 2 packets. Temperatures weren't at their hottest since this test started in September, but there was plenty of opportunity to sweat profusely and lose a lot of water and electrolytes.

Backpacking:
Bucktail Path, Elk State Forest, Pennsylvania: 2 days, 15 mi (24 km); 55 to 70 F (13 to 21 C); 2,100 to 2,700 ft (640 to 820 m) elevation

Loon Lake, Sierra Nevada, California: 2 days, 10 mi (16 km); 40 to 65 F (4 to 18 C); 6,327 to 6,500 ft (1,928 to 1,981 m) elevation

Hiking:
Mid-State Trail near Poe Paddy State Park, Pennsylvania: 6 mi (10 km); 60 to 75 F (16 to 24 C)

Mountain Biking/Camping:
Glory Hole Trails, New Melones Reservoir, Sierra Nevada foothills, California: 3 days; 60 to 75 F (16 to 24 C)

Snowshoeing:
Loon Lake, Sierra Nevada, California: 5.8 mi (9.3 km); 30 F (-1 C); 6,327 to 6,700 ft (1,928 to 2,040 m) elevation

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

LemonThe Recharge drink mix was a nice change of pace for me. I find many occasions where I like to replenish with electrolytes. I'm not a fan of sugary drinks so the standard sports drinks haven't appealed to me. I typically use the packets which are simply electrolytes with very little added flavor. These mix well with my water but don't provide the satisfaction of a beverage. The Recharge drink mix provides both. The resulting beverage is an enjoyable drink without being too sweet and sugar-filled.

I enjoyed all four flavors quite a bit. Grape reigned as the all-time best flavor. Lemon is very good like tart lemonade. Orange is pretty good but reminds me a little too much of Tang which I hated as a child. Tropical came out as the surprise winner. I mentioned in my Initial Report that I'm not a fan of punch flavors which was initially true of this mix also. However, by the time I finished the last packets it was rivaling grape as my favorite. I even tried some combinations: Lemon-Orange and Grape-Tropical but they were not as good as the pure flavors.

I found the electrolyte replenishment to be very welcome and effective. It can be difficult for me to drink enough plain water or simple-electrolyte enhanced water to replenish completely. But with the Recharge flavors and enjoyable taste, I was always willing to down 16 to 32 oz (0.5 to 1 L) after a hike, ride or long day of firewood cutting. I'm prone to headaches from overexertion particularly on hot days and find that electrolytes are one of my weapons against a post-workout crash. This type of drink really helps me to get back to normal after a huge day.

As mentioned previously the powder doesn't dissolve completely right away, but I got in the habit of pre-mixing it or allowing it to sit for a few minutes before drinking.

The size of the packets makes it easy to carry them for backpacking. I was willing to throw in quite a few since they take up so little space. I always seemed to have a couple in my day pack as well.

SUMMARY

The R.W. Knudsen Recharge Sports Beverage Mix is great way to replenish electrolytes in an enjoyable beverage without sugar.

Things I love:
Easily transported
Good taste
Juice concentrate is main ingredient
Electrolytes included
Sugar-free

Things I don't love as much:
Contains rebiana instead of pure stevia
Tear-off tab leaves a small piece of trash
Didn't dissolve completely without vigorous shaking or waiting

This concludes my Long-Term Report and this test series. Thanks to R.W. Knudsen and BackpackGearTest.org for allowing me to participate in this test.

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2011. All rights reserved.

Read more reviews of R W Knudsen gear
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