Backcountry Forum
Backpacking & Hiking Gear

Backcountry Forum
Our long-time Sponsor - the leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear
 
 
 

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#135318 - 06/20/10 03:38 AM Questions about water filter pumps.
nursebackpacker Offline
newbie

Registered: 06/20/10
Posts: 1
I have been looking at a water filters but there are ALOT out there. I backpack near a lake with little/no clear water from streams and creeks, I looked at the msr pump yesterday and a few others but people said that they clog up easy when using water that isn't crystal clear. Plus would like a unit that would get rid of virus, bacteria, protazoa, chemicals and toxins out if possible. I backpack around farmland and don't want to be drinking cow manure or their excess fertilize. Do the tablets work and how do you use them? I am prepared to buy an ultraviolet unit and a filter pump and to pay $200-$300 on the combo so please any and all feedback is gladly accepted. I don't want to ruin a nice trip in the mountains because I had to quit because my pump broke/clogged/ stopped working. Also does the water taste good from one of these things?? So please list any input and whatever setup you are using.

Top
#135319 - 06/20/10 07:00 AM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
My favorite general purpose filter is the MSR Miniworks. However, it doesn't filter out viruses; I'd have to check the specs for chemicals and toxins.

For the criteria you list, you're probably going to want to look at the First Need or Katadyn Pocket filters.

Top
#135325 - 06/20/10 12:04 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
ChrisFol Offline
member

Registered: 07/23/09
Posts: 387
Loc: Denver, Colordo
NBP, there are really two options that I would recommend:

1) Use chlorine tablets with something like the MSR Sweetwater or Pur Hiker Pro.

2) Suck it up and purchase a "do-it-all" First Need Purifier.

I personally do not like the UV purifiers, simply because they are unreliable. Firstly they do not remove things like pinecones, fish scales and slimy flora etc. Secondly the UV technology only works in reasonably clear water. So after a night of heavy rainfall and the waters have muddied the UV purifier becomes useless. Combine this with the poor battery life-span and you have a recipe for disaster IMHO.

Personally, I use Chlorine tablets in conjunction with the Frontier Pro filter-- but not everybody likes this filter, but it works flawlessly for my wife and I.

Top
#135326 - 06/20/10 12:53 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
oldranger Offline
member

Registered: 02/23/07
Posts: 1735
Loc: California (southern)
If you really want good water, be prepared to boil. I either do that or use a Pur Hiker, which will take care of just about everything except viruses, which we are told are not to be found in waters in the United States. Boiling has worked for me with water coming from streams running through active cow pastures and other noxious sources.

In one extreme situation, I just let the muddy water settle for a day after boiling and then decanted the clear liquid at the top of the container. We were camped for an extended period at one locality (archaeological site), but the water was contaminated with sheep and human waste. We had no problems whatever after a three week stay.

Top
#135327 - 06/20/10 01:43 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: oldranger]
ChrisFol Offline
member

Registered: 07/23/09
Posts: 387
Loc: Denver, Colordo
Originally Posted By oldranger
If you really want good water, be prepared to boil.


The problem I find with boiling water for everything is fuel consumption. For longer trips, the cost and weight of the fuel needed to boil such a large amount of water makes this method impractical for most applications.

Top
#135330 - 06/20/10 04:35 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
Kent W Offline
member

Registered: 10/15/09
Posts: 607
Loc: IL.
I use a Katdyne Hiker filter. In murkey water i tie a bandanna over pu filter. I used it for the first time for 4 nights in GSMNP. some wernt filtering at alll the water was so clear. when I got home and rinsed the filter I was Glad I filtered.

Top
#135335 - 06/20/10 06:22 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: Kent W]
Kieran Offline
member

Registered: 06/24/09
Posts: 46
Loc: Seattle, WA
someone posted about the UV filters being unreliable - that may deserve a second look as the steripens have undergone some serious upgrades in the last year and are more reliable in battery life and purification performance. that being said, i don't use them either. I use the aquamira frontier pro in a gravity configuration with chlorine treatment, as outlined by Jason Klass on his site - that method of double treatment comes in at about 5oz when you consider the filter, hose, and tablets or chlorine drops, and covers everything for about $40

Top
#135349 - 06/21/10 09:18 AM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
I would use a First Need in your case - it is a purifier, meaning it can filter out viruses, protozoa, bacteria all in one.

You will not be able to filter all chemicals with any portable backpacking filter, and the UV treatment removes nothing. An active charcoal add-on filter (some models include charcoal in the filter element itself) helps clarify water, make it taste better, but won't remove pesticides.

Go here to read about water treatment methods and what they do. (This is the HOUSEHOLD page, not the backcountry page, but it includes info on chemical removal and what does/doesn't work.) Note that filters you find for backpacking fall into the first category, and First Need and Sawyer brand purifiers into the second; reverse osmosis and distillation units are atrociously expensive and not portable at all.

For really filthy water containing large amounts of silt and particulate matter, it's possible to add a flocculant in a large container to settle out the particulates before filtering for micro-organisms. I use a foldup bucket for this - generally my water sources in the mountains are not so muddy, and just settling for a while before filtering does the trick. We are able to be selective in water sources and avoid getting water near mines and industrial areas, most of the time; otherwise we are forced to bring in a lot of fresh water, making a very heavy pack, and ration it out very carefully. People who hike in the desert are often carrying their entire water supply. Something you might have to consider.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#135399 - 06/22/10 06:10 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: lori]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
We have just recently purchased a water filter, the name escapes me right now though.
It has an Iodine filter, and then a carbon filter after that. The purpose is that the iodine will filtre out bacteria, viruses, protoza etc, and the carbon will filter out the iodine and the silt. (I think, or very close to this, the sales guy told me ALL about it, and it sounded very safe.)

We paid $99.99 for it. I have not had to carry water to a camp site, or on a hike for a month, and its a huge huge huge difference. We each bring 1 empty 1.5L bottle, usually drink them in the car on the way there, then use the empties. We fill our bottles whenever we need to, and we needn't carry tonnes of extra water weight. smile

Top
#135421 - 06/23/10 01:05 AM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: CrowKel]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
I'm sure the sales guy told you the iodine kills the micro-organisms, and the charcoal removes the iodine.

The trouble I have with that proposition is wait times - the mechanism draws water through faster than the normal wait times one would have when simply treating the water with the chemicals.

I hope for your sake that the filter works differently than that...
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#135428 - 06/23/10 11:14 AM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: lori]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
My group has been using the water pump since the start of the season. Which started May Long weekend for us! We have been out every weekend, to a different place all mostly in the Alberta Rockies though. We have pumped all of our water, even in flood run-off season where we know there have been cows.

I wouldnt want to jinx myself, but we haven't been sick at all. I think the most sick we were was from the hang-over from the scotch... wink

Top
#135455 - 06/24/10 01:27 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
I don't use a filter. Aquamira or Pristing Chlorine dioxide treatment for me, lightweight and reliable.

Personally my odds with that from *experience* over 5 years or so is that

1) I've never been sick
2) The chlorine dioixide doesn't give the water an off flavour
3) when hiking with more than two people who have water filters the chance is almost 100% that before the end of the trip one of them is mooching treated water from me because their filter has broken.

I find filters unreliable, slow, and heavy.
_________________________
Any fool can be uncomfortable...
My 3 season gear list
Winter list.
Browse my pictures


Top
#135466 - 06/24/10 04:09 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: phat]
ringtail Offline
member

Registered: 08/22/02
Posts: 2296
Loc: Colorado Rockies
Originally Posted By phat
I don't use a filter. Aquamira or Pristing Chlorine dioxide treatment for me, lightweight and reliable.

Personally my odds with that from *experience* over 5 years or so is that

1) I've never been sick
2) The chlorine dioixide doesn't give the water an off flavour
3) when hiking with more than two people who have water filters the chance is almost 100% that before the end of the trip one of them is mooching treated water from me because their filter has broken.

I find filters unreliable, slow, and heavy.


phat,

Say goodbye to your Katadyn endorsement deal. lol
_________________________
"In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they are not."
Yogi Berra

Top
#135475 - 06/24/10 08:10 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: CrowKel]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
the odds are pretty slim that anyone will get sick, really.

But I don't play odds when it comes to horrible, awful no good illnesses like giardia infection.

I will keep taking anything but some treatment based on iodine, which has not been shown to be AS effective against giardia, and not at all effective against cyst borne parasites.

I hope that you and friends continue to NOT get sick. smile
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#135478 - 06/24/10 09:05 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: lori]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6765
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Iodine can also cause nasty reactions. I had one! Believe me, you don't want it to happen to you!
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#135507 - 06/25/10 01:01 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: phat]
CrowKel Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/10
Posts: 30
Loc: Alberta
Originally Posted By phat
I don't use a filter. Aquamira or Pristing Chlorine dioxide treatment for me, lightweight and reliable.

Personally my odds with that from *experience* over 5 years or so is that

1) I've never been sick
2) The chlorine dioixide doesn't give the water an off flavour
3) when hiking with more than two people who have water filters the chance is almost 100% that before the end of the trip one of them is mooching treated water from me because their filter has broken.

I find filters unreliable, slow, and heavy.


So now I feel Dooped by the sales dude. I dont want to be ill, or have the trots, or have my B/F or roommate sick... (Boys are BABIES when they are sick, no one has had it worse, or has ever felt worse yadda yadda, id rather be sick then them cuz I wouldnt have to deal with them)

But! Hey, Phat, how much do your fancy tablets cost? I live in Ye-old Cowtown, so your prices would be similar to mine, being both from Canada/ Alberta (i think?)

I would like to just have-on-hand some backup. We are bringing 3 new ppl out, that have only been "PAY camping in slots where your neighbour is 8' away!!!!" We are going just barely out of the city, to the Sheep River but still dont want to pack water, cuz its like 2K to the spot. Pretty Please and thank you!

Top
#135572 - 06/27/10 11:33 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: CrowKel]
Steadman Offline
member

Registered: 09/17/09
Posts: 514
Loc: Virginia
Careful with a sweetwater/MSR Guardian. The folks at Campmor convinced me that a Hiker Pro was the better answer (despite the Guardian's ease of use) b/c the pivot point where the handle attaches to the body can break easily. Not, in a word, "scoutproof", which was one of my criteria.

Hiker Pro fairly easy to use; I do not have a need to kill viruses, though you could accomplish that (same way as the sweetwater) by treating with chemicals after you filter. Chemicals (bleach/iodine) have a long wait time to crack the shell on giardia/other cysts - recommended wait time for bleach used to be 15 minutes, but now is 4 hours else I'd be using chemicals. But don't trust my old research, keep digging for yourself.


PS- Thinking about the chemistry, I'd be careful about trusting a filter to get rid of UNDESIRED chemicals in solution, but I bet you've had as much Chem as I did so you should be able to think about this for yourself.


Edited by Steadman (06/27/10 11:34 PM)

Top
#135772 - 07/02/10 12:37 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
ohiohiker Offline
member

Registered: 07/20/07
Posts: 127
Loc: Ohio
I have the First Need purifier. It gets rid of all biological contaminants (protozoa, bacteria, viruses), but doesn't remove chemicals. I've used Aquamira (chlorine dioxide drops), but the typical 2-4 hour wait time means I have to carry at least an extra quart of water. The quart of water (2.2 lbs) weighs 1 lb more than the purifier (1 lb). Also, I don't like making mountain stream water taste like city water by treating with chemicals. I can always boil or use my backup Micropur tablets if the purifier fails.

I wouldn't trust any portable system to be effective on chemical contaminants. Consider caching or carrying more water.


Edited by ohiohiker (07/02/10 12:38 PM)

Top
#136467 - 07/17/10 05:14 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: ohiohiker]
ouachiski Offline
newbie

Registered: 07/17/10
Posts: 2
Loc: South Louisiana
I live in south Louisiana wear all of the watter is pretty much stagnant, or very slow moving and filled with tanons from all of the vegetation. I own a katadyn vario witch makes the water clear and almost drinkable. I still leaves a bitter taste in the water and a very green smell. Any advice on how to make it more drinkable?

Top
#136473 - 07/17/10 06:07 PM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: nursebackpacker]
Zeno Offline
member

Registered: 07/16/10
Posts: 29
I've read this is the case, but I wanted to ask people who actually use the gear for a 2nd opinion. I have an old Pur Hiker, and I need a new filter. Does the Katadyn Hiker pro use the exact same sized filter cartridge as that old Pur Hiker, or do I need to buy a whole new filter system?

An old trick for filtering particularly dirty or stagnant water is rubberbanding a coffee filter around the pre-filter. Adds a little life to your filter, if nothing else.

Top
#136638 - 07/22/10 12:12 AM Re: Questions about water filter pumps. [Re: Zeno]
TopoPirate Offline
newbie

Registered: 06/23/09
Posts: 1
Loc: Orance county, CA
Yes your old Hiker will use the new hiker pro filter. Just be sure to clean the o-rings and re apply the silicone lube.

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Boil in a bottle?
by DustinV
07/23/21 06:29 PM
Can't find a tent for me and the Mrs.
by edfardos
04/26/16 05:19 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Grandma Gatewood Revisited
by Bill Kennedy
01:51 AM
Greetings from the (not so) prairie state
by UrbanYeti
09/24/21 12:29 PM
Join me on an Author's night!
by balzaccom
09/21/21 08:09 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Carrying My Dog LOL
by Hey
07/07/21 09:20 PM
Featured Photos
Spiderco Chaparral Pocketknife
David & Goliath
Also Testing
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
0 registered (), 34 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
UrbanYeti, Carute, Jacksmith220, snacksalot, Keirv87
13066 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
Backpacking.net
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 

Affiliate Disclaimer: This forum is an affiliate of BackcountryGear.com, Amazon.com, R.E.I. and others. The product links herein are linked to their sites. If you follow these links to make a purchase, we may get a small commission. This is our only source of support for these forums. Thanks.!
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum