A water bag is the key to free
camping and goes nicely with your water pump
Water is something you need every day. If you are
hiking, backpacking, and camping in remote wilderness areas it is impossible
to carry enough water to meet your needs. A light and compact water
purification system is necessary to reduce weight.
While traveling internationally in developing third world
countries you can not fill your water bottles from the tap. Most long
distance backpacker travelers and international cyclists in these countries
buy their water every day. Bottled water in developing countries usually
costs more than it does in the USA. Locals in rural farming areas do
not have the money to buy water. They find the whole idea of buying water
strange. Bottled water is mainly for the tourist or the very rich and
therefore, somewhat expensive; especially when you consider it as a daily
I filter or boil all of my drinking water in
underdeveloped countries. With very contaminated surface water I do
both. I seldom trust third world water systems. It is up to me
to clean my own drinking water. I use a water filter instead of
buying water. It pays for itself every couple months.
Many have suggested using chemical tablets to treat
water. The argument is that pills are much smaller than a bulky filter.
I do not want to drink chemically treated water for months at a time. It cannot be good for
my health and does nothing about the strange things swirling around
the glass of a poor country's tap water. I always have a small bottle of
iodine tablets for emergencies. You never know when a kindly old lady is going to
invite you in for a glass of ice tea.
A water filter is nice for wilderness camping as
In the pristine streams of remote areas and National Parks I use a ceramic
filter for the surface water. A lightweight camping water filter makes any
trekking or backpack adventure more flexible and healthy. In the
developing countries river and lake water is usually so contaminated I
avoid it. In these places it is best to filter tap water.
There are several types of water filters but I
have only owned the ceramic type. I like a ceramic filter because it can
filter enough water to remain functional for over a year without the necessity
of replacing expensive and hard to find parts. Our current water filter can clean
literally thousands of liters of water with only minor field servicing and
to look for when buying a Water Filter
- Long lasting.
Make sure the pump and filter treats a lot of water before the filter
needs to be replaced. Replacement parts are most likely not
available in developing countries. Because I am a long term
travelers I look for the top number of liters / gallons than can be
filtered. My ceramic filter claims to clean 2000 gallons / 8000
liters before a new ceramic cartridge needs to be purchased.
- Pumps quickly - Two
people need a lot of water on a daily basis. A water filter is
no good if it can not keep up with demand. Most water
filters sold will state how much water per minute they can filter.
These numbers tend to be optimistic but do hint at some useful information.
- Field serviceable.
I must always be prepared for things to break during my travels.
A water filter has many moving parts which
create numerous opportunities for failure and breakdowns. No
matter what goes wrong with the pump and filter, it must be able to be repaired
while camping or traveling in remote areas.
- Field Repair Kit. If the
water filter does not already come with a repair kit I strongly recommend buying
one. The repair kit must include tools and parts for cleaning the
filter, replacing seals, repairing the hose, lubricating the pump mechanism and anything else that can
- Detailed instructions. Closely examine the instruction book before deciding
to buy a water purifier.
Some are written in poorly translated English. I check to see if the information is
clear, easy to read, and covers all aspects of the pump and filter.
- Comes with nice case. The
place where you carry and store your water purifier is just as important as the
machine itself. If it does not come with a sturdy usable case even the
best designed product will fail or break.
with Output Hose for international travel and more than two
for small groups of two or more people. I have used this water filter
year after year on my world bike tour. I have never gotten sick and
save money by not buying bottled water. Pumps do not require batteries or
electricity to function, making them well-suited for camping situations.
This robust water filter made of heavy-duty materials is ideal
for long-lasting continuous use--even under extreme circumstances. Re-designed
with a comfortable pump handle grip and outlet tube for increased ease of use.
Durably constructed for a lifetime of use. Removes particles, bacteria, cysts
and parasites larger than 0.2 microns, including protozoa such as giardia and
cryptosporidia. Comes with a brush to clean the pores of field-cleanable ceramic
filter. Ceramic filter is silver-impregnated to inhibit bacterial growth inside
its pores. Quick-connect adapter sends the filtered water directly into your REI
hydration pack or Nalgene® reservoir (both sold separately). Case and cleaning
for solo, ultra light, and light weight traveling
Tim) A best buy for solo and ultra light travel and
camping in remote places. I used this water filter in my early days of
solo traveling. It was easy to use as it fit in the
palm of my hand.
Field maintainable, the Hiker PRO includes extra features
for higher performance and improved versatility. Includes field maintenance
kit with cleanable filter protector to extend cartridge life in challenging
conditions. To clean filter protector, simply swish it in the water.
Quick-connect fittings permit easy installation and removal of input and
output hoses. Lightweight and easy-to-use design makes this filter a great
choice for all-around use. Filter physically removes particles, protozoa and
bacteria down to 0.3 microns in size, including Giardia, salmonella,
cryptosporidium and others. Glass-fiber element is pleated for increased
surface area to handle silt and muddy water. Activated-carbon core adsorbs
chemicals and pesticides to improve taste of water. Pre-filter at hose inlet
filters to 150 microns, removing larger contaminants before they reach the
main filter to increase its life span. Quick-connect fittings allow direct
attachment to drinking tube (1/4'') of your hydration pack. Ergonomic pump
handle is comfortable and easy to pump. Includes a carry sack and bottle
adapter that fits most water bottles.
(from Tim) UV water filters are the new option for
making water safe to drink. I have not bought one yet but I plan to.
I like the ones that use regular AA rechargeable batteries (like in my
bike/head lights) so I can charge them most of the time but also keep a
pack of alkaline batteries around as a backup or for long off grid
wilderness sections of my bike tour or backpacking in a national park.
The SteriPEN Adventurer provides the same great water
treatment as the original SteriPEN, but with a smaller size and even lower
* SteriPEN Adventurer also features a soft-touch coating,
offering a comfortable texture in your hand and scratch resistance in harsh
* Requires no pumping, chemicals, test strips, extended time-keeping or
filters; leaves no aftertaste, will not clog and does not require
* Innovative SteriPEN system uses UV light rays instead of chemicals to
purify water for drinking
* Ultraviolet (UV-C) light rays safely sterilize clear water by destroying
99.99% of protozoa (including Giardia and Cryptosporidium), bacteria and
* SteriPEN protects you from risks that cause botulism, cholera, dysentery
and typhoid, just to name a few
* SteriPEN Adventurer is simple to use: Just press a button and gently
agitate the water with a quick stir
* Purifies 16 fl. oz. of water (cold or warm) in less than a minute, or 32
fl. oz. in a minute and a half
* Small size fits most containers—use it in cups, mugs, water bottles and
canteens; carries easily in a shirt pocket
* SteriPEN Adventurer turns itself off once ultraviolet treatment is
complete; light source can be used up to 8,000 times!
* Watertight seals keep water away from the electronics; rubberized coating
ensures secure handling in wet conditions
* Low-power indicator lets you know when batteries need replacing; twist-off
cap permits easy battery access
* Long used by municipal water districts and bottling companies, low-level
UV-C light treats water safely, and unit's light will not damage eyes or
* Use only on clear water, as cloudy, sediment-laden water hinders
* SteriPEN Adventurer includes 2 nonrechargeable lithium CR123A batteries;
SteriPEN does not recommend the use of alkaline batteries, as they provide
very few treatments
* SteriPEN recommends the use of name-brand CR123A lithium batteries with a
capacity of 800 milliamp hours (mAh) or greater, such as Duracell, Energizer
* SteriPEN Adventurer features convenient battery access, water bottle and
military canteen compatibility and an embroidered nylon canvas carrying case
(from Tim) I always have a bottle of water
purification tablets in my panniers for emergencies. It's not healthy
to drink iodine week after week but there are times the people I stay with
offer me a drink with ice I am not sure about and I sneak it in or I do not
have the time to pump. Also, every couple months I like to put a
strong dose in my bike water bottles to sterilize them.
Potable Aqua iodine tablets are a lightweight and economical
way to make water suitable for drinking.
* Iodine tablets kill bacteria, viruses and giardia without
the weight, bulk and cost of a water filter
* Includes 50 tablets; 2 tablets treat 1 quart of water
* Each tablet contains 20mg of tetraglycine hydroperiodide, which releases 8
ppm of titratable iodine
* Potable Aqua tablets require that you wait at least 30 min. before
drinking the treated water
* Unopened bottles of Potable Aqua tablets should remain effective up to 4
years when maintained under controlled temperatures between 60 and 86°F
* An opened bottle of Potable Aqua should not be kept for more than 1 year
* Caution: Iodine tablets are not effective against Cryptosporidium