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Hoosier
04-26-2010, 06:19 PM
Just curious if you all typically just filter your water while in the backcountry while in the park, or do you filter and then and then use purifier tabs? Got a Katadyn hiker, but just trying to figure if I should be purifying as well.

Thanks in advance for advise.

SWAMPUS
04-26-2010, 06:43 PM
Can't help you there.I've been fishing in the smokies for 28 yrs.All I carry is a collapsable cup.Been drinking stream water for a long time with no ill effects.Just check for nymphs!

GrouseMan77
04-26-2010, 06:49 PM
Katadyn Vario then consume.

Speckleman5
04-26-2010, 07:30 PM
I'm with you SWAMPUS, I dip and drink.

Oldman
04-26-2010, 07:33 PM
Depends on how thirsty you are. Me if I am camping in the backcountry and have fuel I will boil cus of my higher education. But if I am up on a small stream I will drink untill my thirst is quiched. Been doing that since 72 and never got sink yet. Although my 22 year younger fishing buddy thinks I will die every time.

Owl
04-26-2010, 07:44 PM
Sooner or later....


I've been there. For me, it's not worth the risk of going there ever again.

I have a Purifier. If my buddy is along with his high-tech magic light thing we zap it with that too, just to be sure.

You can always over do it and nothing bad happens. "Under-do-it' and you might be in alot of agony.

Then again, you may never get sick. Luck of the draw with crypto and giardia.

flyman
04-26-2010, 09:11 PM
I don't think you need to do both. E coli and Giardia are my two main concerns. I would make sure the filter can eliminate these. I use a MSR with a ceramic filter that was kind of pricy, but I don't won't to mess with treating or boiling water. I'll never forget one time years ago we camped a MT Wiliamson in the Sierras hiking, climbing, and taking photos of the Bighorn sheep. One afternoon after we had been drinking straight out of the creek for 2 or 3 days I walked upstream only to find a dead bloated Bighorn sheep right in the middle of the little stream we had been drinking out of:eek:. Got the water from above it the next couple days and bought a filter when I got home:biggrin:

Mundele
04-26-2010, 10:36 PM
I just treat with Aquamira. It's great stuff. I cant' really taste it but a friend says it tastes "sulfury". I have a filter but never carry it. I suppose if you're ridge hiking and have to pump out of small puddles, it's nice to have a filter so you're not drinking cloudy water, but if you treat it, you should be safe.

--Matt

cubefisher
04-26-2010, 10:38 PM
I've used a katadyn for years. I wouldn't go into the backcountry without it. I typically fill all my bottles at each stop then drink directly from the purifier until I'm full. The katadyn's a good one; I'm very comfortable with filtering only. Whatever you use, make sure it covers giardia. Not sure about the E. Coli thing in the park...

flyman
04-26-2010, 11:47 PM
If you have animals or humans using the bath room in the vicinity of a spring or water source you can have a problem with it. I remember a couple years ago Ice Water Springs shelter had to be closed down because of unsanitary bath room habits in the area of the source of drinking water. Thats why a small spade or garden tool should be carried to bury all fecal matter and never use the bathroom within a couple hundred feet of a stream.

buzzmcmanus
04-27-2010, 07:32 AM
Got a Katadyn hiker.

Same here. Filter. Drink

millerdvr
04-27-2010, 12:45 PM
I just carry a small bottle(old eye drops style) of bleach. one cap full of bleach will treat 5 gallons of water. I have the tablets and a crude filter but never use them, I usually just drink out tof the stream if fishing, morning and night I boil for my coffee, If I am carrying water for a hike I will just add a smidge of bleach to my bottles.

gmreeves
04-27-2010, 01:23 PM
If you've never had the bug, you don't know what your missing and ever since, I have chose to purify whether that be the tablets or a water purifier solution. I typically scoope the water out and drop in the tablets and call it good.

Grannyknot
04-27-2010, 01:25 PM
Has anyone seen or used this new filter system from Platypus?
I still like my Katadyn, but I can think of a few different times that this would be handy.

http://www.tahoemountainsports.com/images/popup/platypus-cleanstream-filter.jpg

Also, I've always used camelback bladders by default, but I'm starting to like the features and ease of use that the platypus ones offer.

silvercreek
04-27-2010, 01:57 PM
I met a fellow who had most of his large intestine removed after a run in with giardia from swimming in a pond. Rare, but why take an needless risk.

spotlight
04-27-2010, 05:32 PM
Here is a good rule to follow, start by always picking a clean water source side streams and springs are the best creeks and rivers allow more time for contamination either filter or use Aqua-Mira drops and you'll never have any problems.

Crockett
04-27-2010, 08:27 PM
I have drank straight from small streams in the smokies and luckily didn't get sick. Did that more in days past but then I started thinking about hogs upstream that might be doing their business in the stream or worse layin dead in there and I figured it made more sense to use some aqua mira since its quick and cheap and I stopped gambling.

Honestly though there have been some recent studies that suggest most people camping that get gardia are actually getting it from their or others they are withs poor hygeine after taking a dump. People tend to get some on their hands and spread it that way. For years people camping have been getting sick with gardia and folks always assumed it was from the water but now they are thinking that may not be the major source after all but it still can't hurt to treat the water just more common sense.

ifish4wildtrout
04-27-2010, 11:07 PM
I have drank straight from small streams in the smokies and luckily didn't get sick. Did that more in days past but then I started thinking about hogs upstream that might be doing their business in the stream or worse layin dead in there and I figured it made more sense to use some aqua mira since its quick and cheap and I stopped gambling.

Honestly though there have been some recent studies that suggest most people camping that get gardia are actually getting it from their or others they are withs poor hygeine after taking a dump. People tend to get some on their hands and spread it that way. For years people camping have been getting sick with gardia and folks always assumed it was from the water but now they are thinking that may not be the major source after all but it still can't hurt to treat the water just more common sense.

Poor hygiene is always a bad thing, at home or in the backcountry. I always carry those little hand sanitizer packs and try to keep my hands as clean as possible.

mora521
04-27-2010, 11:59 PM
Crockett,I may have read the same study you read,the one I read was done by the Sierra Club and they found that a majority of people who got giardisis got it from either their poor hygeine or the folks they were camping with.

Rog 1
04-28-2010, 10:46 AM
I have been more careful in recent years about drinking mountain water...but still have vivid memoried of my grandfather standing midstream sipping river water from his collapsible cup...hard to believe that water that looks so good could be so bad for you..

PeteCz
04-28-2010, 11:35 AM
I think the point is that the water in the Park is very clean as a general rule, but you should realize that by not filtering/purifying you are opening yourself up to the possibility of ingesting some toxins that result from unusual circumstances. Here in the Park its really the possibility of untidy humans and animals, as well as dead/decaying animals in the streams. More than likely you would be ok without filtering/purifying, but I think your risk actually goes up the smaller the stream gets. Its really a PPM statement...and as long as you know the risk...its your call.

Now out West, all bets are off. Based on the Land Use policies of the NFS, even in Wilderness areas, you can never be sure that you are not drinking from a stream laced with cattle feces and urine, or even carcasses. I've been in two different Wilderness areas in Colorado and have run across HERDS of cattle and sheep above 10,000'. Its an unbelievable degradation of that pristine environment, but for some reason they (NFS) allow it...NEVER drink without filtering/purifying out there. Its just way too big a risk...

Kytroutbum
04-28-2010, 12:15 PM
In Wyoming ,once I came around a bend upstream of my camp and an outfitter had his pack string in the stream. I taught with a guy, an experienced backpacker and Biologist, who got extremely sick with Hepatitis. He was hospitalized for weeks and out of work for several months. I've got a katadin filter and always use it, whereever I am!.

Randall Sale
the Kytroutbum

Speck Lover
04-28-2010, 04:42 PM
I use a Sweetwater Guardian Purifier approximately 50% of the time and a MSR Miox Purifier about 50% of the time. For me, water purification is kind of like insurance....... I would rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.

Jim Casada
04-28-2010, 07:05 PM
Owl--I'm in your camp. I drank untreated, unfiltered water for decades, but anyone who ever has the misfortune of getting giardia will realize that the moderate amount of extra trouble is justified a hundred times over. The risk isn't worth it.
Jim Casada

spotlight
04-29-2010, 08:47 PM
I have drank straight from small streams in the smokies and luckily didn't get sick. Did that more in days past but then I started thinking about hogs upstream that might be doing their business in the stream or worse layin dead in there and I figured it made more sense to use some aqua mira since its quick and cheap and I stopped gambling.

Honestly though there have been some recent studies that suggest most people camping that get gardia are actually getting it from their or others they are withs poor hygeine after taking a dump. People tend to get some on their hands and spread it that way. For years people camping have been getting sick with gardia and folks always assumed it was from the water but now they are thinking that may not be the major source after all but it still can't hurt to treat the water just more common sense.

They mention this in Appalachian Trail hiking hand books most hikers get sick from others,poor hygeine a small 1 ounce bottle of hand sanatizer is always with my water treatment stuff I use it after toilet use before getting water and before eating I have never had any probs Doctor Bronners soap is a good thing to have as well you only need a drop and you can wash your hands with soap. just please don't do it in the stream....I have seen people do it I have before I knew the harmful effects to the watershed.

Hoosier
05-01-2010, 03:23 PM
Thanks for the replies guys. It has been years since I had gone backpacking and quite frankly then it was iodine tablets or boil, at least that is what I knew of back then. I did buy a Katydyn filter and was definitely planning on using that. But after some of the things I saw this weekend I think I will use some purifying tabs as well. I ended up having two late additions to my camp later in the day. One I was absolutely dumbfounded by. That evening he literally stripped down to his underwear and cleaned himself up in the same creek hole he just took his water out of minutes earlier. If that weren't enough the next morning as I was leaving I'll be danged if the same guy wasn't taking a leak no more than 5/10 feet from that same watering hole on the bank. I thought about saying something but I am the type if I get going I don't know when to stop sometimes. So I usually don't even start. Just amazing. So guess maybe that was my sign.

Younger Tom
05-03-2010, 09:24 AM
A couple of years back I was walking by Forney creek and came around a bend to see a doe standing in the middle of the stream taking a dump. That and the size of that beaver dam in bone valley is enough for me to avoid drinking out of the stream. ;) It also seems like I see a lot more beaver sign than I did 10 or 15 years ago.

I got this a couple years ago for setting up base camp:
http://shop.katadyn.com/media/dimg/ac91efbd62cf3261a1b2b79d3f260694.jpg?l=1
It uses the same filter as the hiker, so you get a spare filter along the trip as well.

mattblick
04-01-2011, 04:20 PM
Posting a reply to this old thread because I used a new water treatment method on my last trip. Perhaps this might sway some of you "dip and sip" people. I got giardia on a trip 10 years ago, and have been very vigilant in hand cleaning and water purification since..

I had previously used a MSR Miniworks EX filter, not the easiest device to bring along as it won't fit in a fishing vest and weighs a full pound. I now use a Steripen Traveler Mini. It weighs 3.6 ounces with batteries (set of batteries last for 50 treatments) and is 6x1x1 inches in size; will fit your pocket. It treats water in a few seconds; bright UV light kills giardia, cryptosporidium, and viruses.. I got mine for under $40 from an online retailer..

Dancing Bear
04-01-2011, 07:14 PM
I too did the giardia scramble several years ago. Now I always filter and after owning several I have to say the Katadyn Hiker is my favorite. Clear doesn't equal clean.

Mike

Mac
04-04-2011, 09:23 AM
Last year for the first time we used the Katadyn Chlorine Dioxide tablets. 30 tablets treats 30 litters of water and weights only .4 oz when weight is a consideration. Made the water look like a Chlorine swimming pool but tasted fine.

When space and weight are not as much a concern we use the MSR Hyperflow.

Either way we always purify our water.

Hoosier
04-04-2011, 12:14 PM
Matt

I was looking at it this morning on the web. Looks like just a uv probe that is placed in the water bottle, is that right?

mattblick
04-04-2011, 01:52 PM
Matt

I was looking at it this morning on the web. Looks like just a uv probe that is placed in the water bottle, is that right?

Exactly.. Just a bright UVC light that rips apart the DNA of micro-organisms and viruses - everything dies! It does nothing for other "bits" in the water though, so if I am traveling to a place that has silty or dirty water, my MSR Miniworks filter is still in order.

Smoky Mountain streams are almost always clear and have little particulate matter; I tried using steripen's pre-filter on my last trip but there was nothing caught in the filter when I checked. You may want to consider using one of these 17 micron screen pre-filters if you are worried about contaminating the threads of your water bottle when you fill it. I dry off the threads and drink through an opening in the bottle lid, so there is no chance of contamination. I will still keep bringing the pre-filter in case a storm muddies the water a bit.

In your original post you had talked about filtering to get rid of the Giardia and Crypto and then treating to kill viruses. I am paranoid about getting sick from the water, but was never worried when filtering alone. I do not think purification is necessary. If you still want to be sure viruses are killed, a steripen would take care of them with no chlorine after taste. Not to disparage the tablets, as I keep some in my emergency bag "just in case" since they weigh next to nothing, electronics sometimes fail, and filter pumps sometimes break. Dealing with the chlorine taste beats having to leave a trip early.

Hoosier
04-04-2011, 02:20 PM
Interesting. I have and use the Katadyn Hiker. It takes care of most of my concerns and for myself I am comfortable with that. But with the kids joining me over the past year I am a little more cautious using tablets. But maybe this is an option as well especially with immediate results, I assume anyways. Thanks for posting I'll have to do some window shopping.

buckeyetrouter
04-05-2011, 07:01 PM
looks like alot of knowledge here and I was hoping you could help me. Abby and I will be serviing a missions in Uganda Africa for the month of June. The fees we pay covers food and water, but I was thinking of taking a water treatment system for an emergency situation. Our missions are on the islands of Lake Victoria and probably would have no need to drink the lake water. Should we for some reason run out of bottled water, is there a system that would work to remove everything (or most everything). I am told that the water several miles off shore is really clean, but the water by shore could have most anything in it....even possibly some human waste. Any help would be appreciated. Hopes are that we won't need a system, but I would rather be prepared for the worst....

Bob

spotlight
04-05-2011, 11:06 PM
Try Aqua Mira tastes fine and I have never been sick very lightweight 2 small bottles of drops.

jross
04-06-2011, 01:32 PM
I bought a aqua mira filter bottle. My plan was to bring it with me and then I could always have a clean drink at hand. Well me and my boys had drank some river water and we all got kick out of the novelty of it.

Just a couple weeks ago my family took a small walk up to the Walker Sister's cabin, since we'd never seen it before. Some ______(use word of your choice) had placed a flat rock right in the middle of the spring house and left a little "joke" of you know what. Some people need beaten...repeatedly....

mora521
04-30-2011, 12:40 PM
Buckeye the Katadyn pocket filter is expensive but it is the best.The Red Cross issues it for its folks working in third world countries.

duckypaddler
05-01-2011, 09:40 PM
I had previously used a MSR Miniworks EX filter, not the easiest device to bring along as it won't fit in a fishing vest and weighs a full pound. I now use a Steripen Traveler Mini. It weighs 3.6 ounces with batteries (set of batteries last for 50 treatments) and is 6x1x1 inches in size; will fit your pocket. It treats water in a few seconds; bright UV light kills giardia, cryptosporidium, and viruses.. I got mine for under $40 from an online retailer..

I took your advice and bought one of these. It should be here mid week. I have a good MSR filter, but like you said, it's a full pound, and I never end up taking it. I always keep tablets as a back up, but for 4 ounces, I'm sold for camping, and will most likely take it on more remote treks fishing where problems could arise causing and extended unplanned stay.

$50 was the best price I could find, but it had free shipping & no tax, so that's not too far off.

mattblick
05-02-2011, 08:53 AM
I took your advice and bought one of these. It should be here mid week. I have a good MSR filter, but like you said, it's a full pound, and I never end up taking it. I always keep tablets as a back up, but for 4 ounces, I'm sold for camping, and will most likely take it on more remote treks fishing where problems could arise causing and extended unplanned stay.

$50 was the best price I could find, but it had free shipping & no tax, so that's not too far off.

I suspect you might have used the same retailer; if you subscribed to their DealFlyer when you ordered you will get 20% and 30% off coupons in emails..

Glad my advice was useful to you; I might hit you up for some creek location suggestions in the future. ;)