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Thread: water filter?

  1. #1
    Senior Member olzeke's Avatar
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    water filter?

    I am now reporting that on those 6 days I was hiking on the JMT and the extra couple I was hiking around Glen Aulin and May Lake, I did not use any filter or chemical treatment for any water I drank. I drank from many streams and rivulets, but not any muddy trickles across the trail

    I drank directly from the Tuolumne River near Glen Aulin, from the lake outlet at May Lake, from many creeks and rivers during my trek from TM to Duck Lake, including the outlet of Duck.

    I have been back in civilization now for 11 days and have shown no signs of any ill effects. I could have been just lucky, or the high water due to deep snow could have diluted the bugs enough that they could not infect me sufficiently for me to become ill.

    I have been ignoring common knowledge and drinking water without treating it for several years now, and still believe we are being hoodwinked by the filter industry. I do not think that my own experienced eye is adequate to tell when treatment is wise or when it is not needed, but I do try to be a bit cautious. Water taken closer to the source has to be better than water closer to the ocean, right?

    In June, I did just that. At the Oregon Hang, I drank from an Oregon river within 30 miles of the ocean, and no doubt a long way from its source. I did notice it was running high and clear, telling me that there was a good chance the dilution would protect me. I have no idea what crop or farm animals where upstream from that camp, but I am fairly certain there was no industry such as a paper mill or a sawmill.

    This is just an anecdote saying we may not need to be so cautious out there.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Gary_R's Avatar
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    There are some trails I drink from the streams.. More so in the mountains though.
    But now that I have a filter I generally use it just so I didn't waste money on it:P

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    Fronkey's Avatar
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    To each his own, but, my toosh can't handle giardia.

    Fronkey

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    Acer's Avatar
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    I will go to extremes to carry my water filter and use it,,only exception is when I am finding or know of springs that are coming out of the hillsides and are clear and running good.

  5. #5
    Senior Member G.L.P.'s Avatar
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    there has been times when i didn't use a filter... but it's only with springs i know are clean... even then you still can get sick
    this falls under HYOH for sure.... i rather have a filter or drops then get sick on the trail and crap my brains out with stomach cramps (been there done that and don't care to go back)

    i know a few hikers that don't use one... after a while i would guess you build up an immunity to most of the bad stuff.... i rather not try LOL
    It puts the Underquilt on it's hammock ... It does this whenever it gets cold

  6. #6
    Senior Member JasonJones's Avatar
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    And just remember, its not just giardia you are protecting yourself from by filtering water. I have drank water from creeks and seeps in the past, all without issue as well.

    Take a read of some of these... Mmm...
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waterborne_diseases

    Just think "itching around the anus" next time you kneel down to take a sip...

    Me, I'll be pumping nice clean water though my MSR.

  7. #7
    Senior Member EricFromPortland's Avatar
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    I used to work on Lake Tahoe as a water ski instructor and drank directly from the lake daily for 4 summers with no ill effect.
    - The other instructors did the same. We figured we all had a nice colony of giardia in our guts already. But, I think this is probably just folk knowledge.

    - I currently use a filter or boil.

    - Nice thread topic.

  8. #8
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    People drank for thousands of years without treating their water.

    They also didn't brush their teeth, use soap, or bathe in the winter.

    Average lifespan was somewhere closer to the 30 year mark too.

    I think I'll stick with my Sawyer, and boil/treat my water if I don't have the filter.

    If I can't do any of the above...I'll risk the water just like my ancestors....well, the ones who survived anyway.

  9. #9
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    15 days in going sobo on the AT this year, met a woman who already had giardia (also sobo).

    Had Giardia before, didnt like it..I'll treat it.

    There is plenty of gear that the backpacking and outdoor gear manufacturers have convinced consumers into buying VIA safety concern marketing..not sure I'd put water filtration at the top of the list....also not implying that the OP is either.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Randy's Avatar
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    I am putting together my water filtering process and filter gadgets.
    For me if I have to:
    Strain the water into a bladder
    gravity fed through a Sawyer filter into another bladder
    treat with chlorine tabs
    and filter one more time through a diy carbon filter.


    I know..I know.........alot of steps........thats jus me.....
    "Proud Pound Hawg"
    Republic of Texas H.O.G. (Hennessy Owners Group)

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