Backpacking Water Filters

Learn the how -to's of backpacking water filters. Having Clean Healthy Water in plentiful ammounts for your backpacking and hiking trip into the wilderness is a necessity.

About eighty percent of your body is made up of water, and your vital life processes center around your intake and output of water.

Every bit of your body water is needed for normal functioning and when you lose more water than you take in dehydration takes place. Dehydration will kill unless water is made available and plenty of it.

One of the first plans you need to make for your backpacking, camping, or hiking trip is

" How,much water will I need? " The first choice you will make is to either bring ample amounts of water or use the alternative and bring a water filtration system.

On longer trips into the backcountry the only logical choice is the latter, since it is next to impossible to pack enough water for over a day hike.

Never depend on only one means of water. Always have a back up plan in case of emergencies. On trips shorter than four to five days the water ration for two people would be ten gallons.

Those ten gallons weigh over eighty pounds and you may want to ask yourself if you and your partner could carry that much water up a mountain. That answer is probably an emphatic "NO."

Unclean water can be deadly if consumed and if you are in the wilderness the last thing you need is an illness from unclean water. Your first method of getting good clean drinking water is " The Boiling Method."

At every campsite make sure to boil all water used for drinking and cooking.



Bring your water to a boil and let it boil for five to seven minutes. Let it cool before transferring it to your nalgene containers. Always make sure that your nalgene containers are clean and well sterilized. Even though they are not supposed to grow bacteria, they can, so be sure to have clean containers for your clean water.

Another option for clean drinking water is chemical treatments. Chemical treatments such as tablets that make the water safe for consumption often deter people from drinking the water. Yes these tablets will do in a pinch but often the taste from the iodine and chlorine just turn people off. I would advise always having tablets as an alternative use, but only use them as a last resort.

Water Filtration Units are a must on any Backpacking or Hiking trip. Before investing in a unit make sure to look at several in different price ranges. One tip also is to remember if you are hiking or backpacking in an area where you will likely use river water for filtration, look at a higher priced heavier model because of the sediment and silt in river water can make a smaller, hand held model completely freeze up and break.

My advice is to look for a top of the line filtration unit and ask the salesman to check concerning the filtration of river water and if the model can accept it without breakage.

Look for a unit that filters down to one micron and eliminates microorganisms such as giardia. My suggestion for a good filtration system in the higher price range is KATADYN. This system has proven itself time and time again as being reliable in any water condition.

Some other filtration systems that are also good are PUR, BASIC DESIGN, and MSR. These systems are good quality and a little less expensive. All of these systems are lightweight and very portable.

You can also supplement your daily water needs with juice and gatoraide type drinks. Avoid sodas because of the salt content. Alcoholic beverages are a big no-no since they can actually deplete water from your system and cause dehydration to occur more rapidly.

One key rule is to " Ration your sweat, not your water." Be sure to keep cool, drink plenty of fresh fluids and have a safe and great trip up the trail.

© High Speed Ventures 2011