Monday, May 3, 2021

Miranda in the Wild - Water Treatment Options

Miranda in the Wild is at it again with one of her REI videos. These are great instructional videos for entry level backcountry users, but we do have to ask: what's up with that gear storage/work space. There are random ice axes everywhere, Christmas lights, strategically placed handkerchiefs and hats, it feels like a very "dressed" set, and not a gear room...

But that doesn't mean Miranda's videos aren't awesome. They are...

In this one, she goes over several ways to purify water. It is well-worth your time.

From a mountaineering/climbing perspective, obviously chemical treatment is the easiest and lightest way to treat water. But it doesn't taste great.

Some ask whether they can just drink snowmelt directly from the snow. The answer is, sometimes. The higher you are on the mountain, the less likely it is that there will be human or animal waste in the water coming from the snow. However, if you are at a popular camp on a popular mountain, there's likely a lot more human waste around than you think. We recommend purification or boiling in this kind of setting.

While I tend to use tablets or boiling on mountaineering trips, I lean toward gravity purifiers for backpacking trips. In this video, she actually didn't set up the filter right. It needed to be flushed at the beginning of the process (hold the receptacle bag above the feeding back and allow it to backwash into itself for a moment). If you flush it, the system is really fast.

Drink up!

--Jason D. Martin

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