Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping trips

Discussion in 'Gear Talk' started by wannabeaduck, Mar 30, 2010.

  1. Desertboater

    Desertboater Paddler

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    I'm not sure if the "Pristine" that y'all are talking about is the same stuff but i've been using AquaMira for a couple years now. It sounds like the same thing...two chemicals that get mixed together, wait five minutes, dump into water and wait 20 mins. Having used iodine for a while then switching to this stuff, I can definitely say that AquaMira is lightyears ahead of iodine...no after-taste...at all!! and you can buy larger bottles of "refill" chemical stuff to re-use the small eye-dropper bottles when they run out.
    I've been hankering to try one of the gravity feed filter systems, but haven't gotten around to it. Anybody have experience with them?

    Cheers,
    West
     
  2. Stumpy

    Stumpy Paddler

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    Another good source of free water bags is the liners from the coffee boxes sold at donut shops... thermal mylar helps keep the contents cool as well as hot, though they are usually only 2.5 liters.
     
  3. Mariner Chuck

    Mariner Chuck Paddler

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    Last year I switched back to iodine tablets (Potable Aqua), with ascorbic acid to mitigate the taste. I'd been frustrated with filter systems and had some luck with a handheld UV purifier before it stopped working. :( I'm going to try out the chlorine dioxide, which I see is available in tablet form from the Potable Aqua folks and perhaps others.
    Any reason that Pristine users prefer the carrying-and-mixing-two-liquids system over tablets?
     
  4. VanIslePaddler

    VanIslePaddler Paddler

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    Well, its pretty simple... 5 drops of vial A, 5 drops of vial B... wait 5 minutes, add to 1 litre of water, and let it do its work.

    You can do it in larger quantities too.... just multiply by number of litres.

    Last year, I took my set of Pristine, they fit in the palm of your hand, and it purified my water for a 23 day Kayak trip... for 2 people. A couple hundred litres of water.

    I would suggest that the vials are smaller than most filter systems... and perhaps will purify more water, since filters can plug/break.

    And, I dont think it leaves any taste...

    And dont think its any worse for you than drinking treated city tap water.
     
  5. wannabeaduck

    wannabeaduck Paddler

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    Just bought a Dragonfly stove for being out there as my little one was just too small to do much last time. I will be able to boil water, (with proper instruction on how to do that), but also plan to bring the Pristine along now that I know what it is. Now I just need to pick up something to hold the water, and I am good.

    Would have used the Dragonfly today, but the wind was sideways 70-80 in places, and well, even I did not want to be out it that. Power failure or no power failure. I would have been ok, but my bed was comfy and warm.
     
  6. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    That last statement is borne out by extensive testing (US EPA) of tap water treated by chlorine, still the dominant disinfectant of water systems worldwide. The details are obscure and a bit boring ... the nut being that ClO2 (what is in Pristine) produces fewer long-lived chlorinated byproducts than chlorine does. My town, to meet US EPA requirements, has to publish the analysis of their water, annually, and chlorinated materials are always found (in tiny concentrations; ppb and ppt levels). ClO2 treated systems have much lower levels. Ozone-treated systems have none (basically).

    Ironic factoid: The impetus for developing the ClO2 and ozone treatments, oddly enough, was reduction of dioxins in effluent from paper mills. When bleaching paper pulp in digestion, ClO2 and ozone produce very much lower levels of dioxins, allowing pulp mills to reduce their "dioxin budget" on the Columbia by a factor of ten to one hundred, over the last 20 years.
     
  7. wannabeaduck

    wannabeaduck Paddler

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    Ok, so If I am reading this thread right, I can...

    1. Get the girlfriend frisky and get her pantyhose off so I can use them to filter out the big chunkies for me to pour the water into the kettle for boiling.

    2. Get the girlfriend frisky and get her pantyhose off so I can use them to filter out the big chunkies for me to pour the 1 liter of water into the mixed solution of 5 drops Pristine A and Pristine B that has been sitting for 5 minutes and let sit for roughly an hour then use the water.

    3. Get the girlfriend frisky and get her pantyhose off so I can use them to filter out the big chunkies for me to pour the water into the water filter which REALLY doesn't like the big chunkies or the small chunkies, and hope it dinna get plugged up.

    Hmmm....

    4. This really should be #1 but "Get a girlfriend!" One who wears pantyhose and preferably won't flip out when I use them to filter the water! (grin)

    Any thoughts on where to get #4? Any particular brand or model worth picking up? Good locations for finding these "girlfriends"? I did mention I am a noob when it comes to this water thing... (cheeky grin)
     
  8. ken_vandeburgt

    ken_vandeburgt Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    One thing to remember about water filters; filtered horse piss is still horse piss.
     
  9. Dan_Millsip

    Dan_Millsip Paddler & Admin

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    Yeah, I'll try to keep that in mind. :roll:

    *****
     
  10. ken_vandeburgt

    ken_vandeburgt Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    There is a large contingent of people for whom my previous comment was directed, who draw their water without considering what lies upstream.

    Too, there is, unfortunately, an even larger contingent of people who use surface water without any consideration for those who may draw water from downstream. In my unhappy experience, owners of dogs and horses have even less consideration than most.

    The time I got ill, I found out later that people were bathing upstream (with their mutt) from where I drew water.

    So please do keep that in mind.
     
  11. pryaker

    pryaker Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    Ever since I met my wife (who is French) I've been using some tiny little tablets she says are all that's used back home. Just dug out the bottle and they're "hydroclonazone" I think they're not deemed safe here in the states, but so far i haven't keeled over!

    Anybody have experience or heard anything about how good this stuff is?

    Just decided to google em and found this page:

    http://www.arthurdovermd.com/water.html

    which on first reading seems to show that filters work better for bacteria than some chemicals including my wife's pills, guess I'll have to reconsider using those! But it also had this little gem I'd never considered:

    As expected, the chemical agents performed very poorly with raw river water because the active agent was consumed by the organic and inorganic matter and by the suspended particles. It should be possible to increase the efficacy of the chemical agents by using a larger dose and/or a longer contact time, because the efficacy of the chemical agents depends on the product Con­centration x Time. In practice, the concentration is limited by the toxicity and the bad taste of the chemi­cal and its by-products, and the contact time is limited by the impatience of the traveler. The ability of chem­icals to inactivate bacteria varies inversely as the water turbidity. The best solution in this case is to remove particles and organic matter by filtration (e.g., coffee fil­ters) before disinfection.

    So that appears to state that with all chemicals, the particulate matter can inactivate the chemicals.

    Something to consider.
     
  12. KathyD

    KathyD Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    I've used pump-style filters for years when camping and haven't had any problems. I also picked up a SteriPEN last year for a trip to Ethiopia in case we came across places without bottled water. The SteriPEN uses UV light to kill pathogen (protozoa, bacteria, viruses). The down side is that the water needs to be clear, so you have to pre-filter, but you should do that with dirty water for the pump-style systems anyway. I tend to take the SteriPEN along as backup for camping now. I've heard they are rather finicky (I haven't had any problems with mine), so I wouldn't trust it as my only water purification method, but it's so small that it's easy to throw in just in case. It doesn't leave any bad taste in the water which is a plus. I also have a bottle of iodine tablets in my first aid kit as my third backup since they are so small, but have never used them yet.

    Kathy
     
  13. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    Particulates are anathema for either filtering or the various chemical treatments. pretreatment with alum is SOP for areas with very silty water. I would not trust any chemical method (by itself) in heavily silted water, and would pre-treat with alum heavily silted water, lest the first quart destroy (clog) the filter.

    From this site: http://www.tagalong.com/index.php?page=CR1BP

    Drinking Water: We recommend a gallon of water per person per day. If your original supply of drinking water runs out, you may collect water from the center of the main channel of the river and allow it to settle overnight. Two teaspoons of Aluminum Sulfate Powder or "alum" in five gallons of water, may expedite settling river water. You should find it at a pharmacy or spice rack. Treatment for killing or removing disease-causing organisms: boil river water for ten minutes, plus one minute for every 1,000 ft elevation (Green River is at 4300' or so) or utilize mechanical filtration plus chemical disinfection. You might want to use settled river water for cooking, coffee or other hot beverages.

    More detail and a more thorough explanation, a couple screens down, here: http://www.rrfw.org/RaftingGrandCanyon/ ... Management
     
  14. lynn

    lynn Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    I have a steri-pen, which is excellent for up to a litre at a time. It's really small and no fuss for straight drinking water.
     
  15. ken_vandeburgt

    ken_vandeburgt Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    I used to carry iodine in solution. The idea was to put a capful into a liter of water and let the water sit for a few hours; the time being dependant on water temperature. The solution was replenshed by refilling the bottle where the iodine laying in the bottom would saturate the solution again.

    It didn´t work very well.

    Usually when I was drawing water I was already thirsty and so wasn´t willing to wait the perscribed time. The effectiveness of the treatement was limited as chemicals work better with water at 20C than at the normal water temperature of 4C or so that I encountered. Turbidity was also a problem, particularly when the creeks I was drawing from were often either cedar tea or glacier milk. Then there was the issue of taste. I usually wound up taking my chances and drank untreated water.

    On the plus side, having an iodine solution was a good idea for the first aid kit to sterilize small cuts.

    These are problems generic to all chemical solutions. Plus there are generic health issues related to chemicals such as iodine or chlorine though probably not in the small dosages needed to treat the water. Filtering or boiling work much better.
     
  16. lomcevak

    lomcevak Paddler

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    Great idea about the Vitamin C! I LOVE these bags. They are STRONG, not very costly, and they form to the shape of your hull if not over-filled. Wine stores offer 4L and a larger size (can't remember what it was), but I was quoted anywhere from 2.79 to 3.75 from my local wine stores. I toss them after a couple seasons as they seem to age. You can stand on one of these bags of water. But after a couple years, I've had them split at the seams.
     
  17. Dan_Millsip

    Dan_Millsip Paddler & Admin

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    lomcevak, you make it sound like those silver bags are the bomb -- they're not. I used them for a couple of years and had more than one break in my hatch -- not nice having 4 litres of water sloshing around with the rest of your gear. After a couple of episodes of having to dry out gear, I got some nylon covers for the silver bags which definitely helped to give the bags additional protection and strength. While the silver liner bags are pretty durable, they're not as strong as you make them out to be. Stand on one? I don't think so.

    *****
     
  18. lomcevak

    lomcevak Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    Nylon covers? Where do you get those? When you said you used them for a couple of years were the ones that broke a couple years old? I would highly recommend not using them for a second season. Yes, I've stood on them, and I'm 210 lbs. If you drop them they can burst, but I never got so much as a leak in one in two years of use (But like I said, only trust them for one season). I was actually surprised that I hadn't inadvertently poked a hole in one from other gear in my kayak. And I'm pretty hard on gear.
     
  19. Dan_Millsip

    Dan_Millsip Paddler & Admin

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    I got the covers at Western Canoeing and Kayaking. The ones that broke on me were not old -- they were almost brand new. You can use whatever you want, but I'll use something a bit more reliable than the silver bags -- something that I don't need to be unnecessarily cautious with.

    *****
     
  20. Moose

    Moose Paddler

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    Re: Water Hauling/Purification while on kayaking/camping tri

    I started off by using a MSR pump. It screws directly onto the Naglene wide-mouth bottles. Works good. Clean taste. However, the big downside is I am constantly having to disassemble, clean, reassemble, and start pumping again. It seems even a little bit of unseen algie or floaties will clog it up. If I got though 1l before cleaning it was a miracle.

    I now use the MSR Miox system. Essentially a big fat Jiffy Marker. It creates a sort of concentrated chemical brew out of water and salt in the cap. Pouring that brew into your water bag, and letting it sit for 1/2 hour makes it pure. The water ends up tasting a little like a swimming pool, but I have never had any "issues" with the resultant water.