3 Effective Ways Of Camping Water Purification
When you go car camping there is not usually a need to purify your water, as the campground normally provides potable water on tap. Also, if you are only going for short hikes of less than a day in the length you can take enough water with you for the trip. When you go for longer hikes or where you are camping is when you will need to purify the water. Streams and springs can look like they have pure water that is good to drink but looks can be deceiving and the water can be full of bugs and viruses that can cause nasty reactions and make you very sick or worse.
There are 3 common ways of camping water purification:
Boiling – This is one of the oldest camping water purifiers (if not the oldest)and it has stood the test of time. It can take a bit of time and take a fair bit of fuel to get it done.
To fully treat the water it needs to boil for at least a minute and longer if at high altitudes to kill most of the nasty bugs.
If you do this at night you can put the hot water in a watertight container and use it to warm your sleeping bag before you get in it. Lovely on a cold night. But do make sure the lid is on properly and no water escapes or you’ll be having a damp night instead.
Tablets – These are typically made from iodine. They normally take about 30 minutes to work but they do leave an aftertaste. To mask this taste some hikers bring along some a flavor improver. They do make a great backup because they are so easy to transport for either of the other methods.
The temperature of the water affects the time it takes to work – the colder the water the longer it takes.
Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. They don’t take much room in your pack and are light to transport. The iodine tablets can double up as a disinfectant if required. Filters –
Filtration – This is a very popular camping water purification system and the water is ready once it has gone through the filtration process. It doesn’t leave any aftertaste but you can’t use it to warm your sleeping bag. The smaller the filter or micron size the more of the bugs and other stuff is removed but it does take longer to go through the filtration process. There are two basic types of filter that either push or pull the water through the filter. They both work well and it is a matter of preference as to which one you use. Before buying one do check them out fully online.
Whether you are going on a long day hike or backpacking for many days or at a campground where there isn’t any drinking water (check to make sure before you leave for the site) you’ll need to choose one of these methods to get water you can drink. You don’t want to take a risk and catch something from the water, as it can be particularly nasty, especially if you have children.