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  1. #1

    Question Filtering water is medically unnecessary: Slate Magazine Article

    Wow, pretty bold title... I have filtered / treated water since I was a kid (well maybe not as much when I was a kid)....

    What do you think of this?

    https://slate.com/technology/2018/02...necessary.html
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  2. #2

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    For what its worth---Warren Doyle says he doesnt filter water on the AT as its not needed!!
    OK let the fire storm begin----

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by tawa View Post
    For what its worth---Warren Doyle says he doesnt filter water on the AT as its not needed!!
    OK let the fire storm begin----
    i don't either. i've known warren 29 years.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lone Wolf View Post
    i don't either. i've known warren 29 years.
    All the water you drink is filtered before they can it at the brewery.
    And has roughly 4% ABV to keep it clean.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Bill View Post
    All the water you drink is filtered before they can it at the brewery.
    And has roughly 4% ABV to keep it clean.
    Add a Zero after the 4 and that’s how my water typically comes.


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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sailing_Faith View Post
    Wow, pretty bold title... I have filtered / treated water since I was a kid (well maybe not as much when I was a kid)....

    What do you think of this?

    https://slate.com/technology/2018/02...necessary.html
    Even if that article is remotely correct, I'm filtering at a minimum around any questionable water source. I'm filtering and boiling 99% of the time...

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  7. #7

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    Easy enough to say in the mountains, harder to say in the meadows, pretty dangerous to do in the flatlands.

    If you're a 'full time' hiker building up immunity over a decade or so in primarily remote places... I can buy the argument.
    But for most of us folks trotting out to the woods for a week or less once or twice a year probably not any chance of building up enough immunity for most places.

    What's a sitting? In summer it is not difficult to consume 7 liters of water a day for me when hiking long hours.
    Maybe no biggie (on paper) to hit that source once, but day after day for weeks?


    " The data on Giardia and Cryptosporidium are similar: A study in the popular magazine Backpackeragain only found pathogens in a minority of sampled sites, with the highest recorded concentration still so dilute that obtaining an infective dose would require consuming 7 liters of water in one sitting."

    Either way;
    This seems like the most accurate takeaway from the article overall:

    "If the real danger comes from eating after a trip to the cathole, then that’s the point thatshould be emphasized—not an unsubstantiated view of all water in the mountains as suspect. In all likelihood, it’s not the water that’s gross. It’s you. "

  8. #8

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    I don't know guys and gals...we know the science of bacteria and pathogens pretty well. I'd say that unless you have a super unique gut tract, consuming surface water anywhere is a big risk.

    If you've got access to a spring like many of us in this room are likely able to identify and use correctly that's one thing.

    I think that article sends the wrong message to the wrong group of people.

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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by MA_Woodaman View Post
    I don't know guys and gals...we know the science of bacteria and pathogens pretty well. I'd say that unless you have a super unique gut tract, consuming surface water anywhere is a big risk.

    If you've got access to a spring like many of us in this room are likely able to identify and use correctly that's one thing.

    I think that article sends the wrong message to the wrong group of people.

    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
    And I'm very much in favor of bills post. Beer-thirty is my favorite hydration break...;p

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  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by MA_Woodaman View Post
    I don't know guys and gals...we know the science of bacteria and pathogens pretty well. I'd say that unless you have a super unique gut tract, consuming surface water anywhere is a big risk.

    If you've got access to a spring like many of us in this room are likely able to identify and use correctly that's one thing.

    I think that article sends the wrong message to the wrong group of people.

    Sent from my Pixel 2 XL using Tapatalk
    I thought the article was interesting. I use Aqua Mira mostly and sometimes have a squeeze filter or SteriPen for quick water treatment on trail. On AT I generally did not treat spring water, but did treat stream water. Maybe overkill per the article, but it was easy to do, and I plan to continue. Have never had giardia (as far as I know) or other waterborne infections, FWIW. I do know someone who got giardia from a spring in the Quehanna region of PA (not on AT), the one source she did not treat on a weekend trip prior to developing symptoms of her infection.
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  11. #11

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    I think the article should come with a litany of qualifiers. What if you're on immunosuppressants? What if your health is compromised in some other form or fashion?

    I don't "need" to wear a seatbelt when I drive, I only "need" one in case of an accident. The rest of the time I wear one for insurance.

    Same thing goes for filtering water. With most filters rated for thousands upon thousands of gallons one unit is, essentially, a "lifetime use" item if properly cared for. If it keeps me from getting sick just once, it's well worth it. If it keeps that one illness from ruining a trip, then it's worth even more.

  12. #12
    ME => GA 19AT3 rickb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KCNC View Post
    I don't "need" to wear a seatbelt when I drive, I only "need" one in case of an accident.
    “A seatbelt” is to “texting while driving”

    as a

    “Water filter” is to “not washing your hands with soap and water”.

  13. #13
    Wanna-be hiker trash Sarcasm the elf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    “A seatbelt” is to “texting while driving”

    as a

    “Water filter” is to “not washing your hands with soap and water”.
    That's perfect.

    In all seriousness, do you mind if copy this word for word and use it in future discussions,?
    "This sucks and I love it."

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    Wanna-be hiker trash Sarcasm the elf's Avatar
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    My two cents:


    1) The odds of getting a waterbourne illness from any one source is overwhelmingly low.
    2) The majority of illness that are blamed on "bad water" are actually transmitted by contact with infected people or contaminated surfaces. Proper hand washing with honest to goodness soap is far more effective at reducing the spread of pathogens than water treatment.
    3) Most commercial filters do not protect against viruses like Noro virus that is ever present on major trails.
    4) It you are unable to treat your water, just drink it. Dehydration is generally more dangerous to the average hiker than waterbourne contaminants.
    5) All that said I still treat my water, because I think it's easy and a smart thing to do.
    "This sucks and I love it."

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarcasm the elf View Post
    My two cents:


    1) The odds of getting a waterbourne illness from any one source is overwhelmingly low.
    2) The majority of illness that are blamed on "bad water" are actually transmitted by contact with infected people or contaminated surfaces. Proper hand washing with honest to goodness soap is far more effective at reducing the spread of pathogens than water treatment.
    3) Most commercial filters do not protect against viruses like Noro virus that is ever present on major trails.
    4) It you are unable to treat your water, just drink it. Dehydration is generally more dangerous to the average hiker than waterbourne contaminants.
    5) All that said I still treat my water, because I think it's easy and a smart thing to do.
    Yes indeed.
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    #4 is very wrong sorry puking and the squirts will dehydrate you way faster.

  17. #17
    Wanna-be hiker trash Sarcasm the elf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BionicAnkle View Post
    #4 is very wrong sorry puking and the squirts will dehydrate you way faster.
    That's a valid point, so please let me clarify my reasoning: If someone is badly dehydrated while hiking, that is an immediate risk to life and health and getting rehydrated is the immediate priority. In the context of hiking the A.T. or other US trails, odds (on average) are that a hiker that immediately needs water will not get sick from drinking at any one water source, which makes treating their dehydration the more prudent option rather than trying to continue on dangerously dehydrated. In addition most common waterborne illnesses in the US have a lenghty incubation period, so even in the event that it is necessary to drink from a questionable water source, there will still likely be time to head back to civilization and get medical treatment prior to the onset of symptoms.
    Last edited by Sarcasm the elf; 02-05-2018 at 10:47.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarcasm the elf View Post
    My two cents:


    1) The odds of getting a waterbourne illness from any one source is overwhelmingly low.
    2) The majority of illness that are blamed on "bad water" are actually transmitted by contact with infected people or contaminated surfaces. Proper hand washing with honest to goodness soap is far more effective at reducing the spread of pathogens than water treatment.
    3) Most commercial filters do not protect against viruses like Noro virus that is ever present on major trails.
    4) It you are unable to treat your water, just drink it. Dehydration is generally more dangerous to the average hiker than waterbourne contaminants.
    5) All that said I still treat my water, because I think it's easy and a smart thing to do.
    Well written. I agree totally.
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  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by rickb View Post
    “A seatbelt” is to “texting while driving”

    as a

    “Water filter” is to “not washing your hands with soap and water”.
    Well, I wear seatbelts, I don't text and drive, I filter water, and I'm pretty adamant about hand cleansing, so I've pretty much got it all covered.


  20. #20
    Registered User swjohnsey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sailing_Faith View Post
    Wow, pretty bold title... I have filtered / treated water since I was a kid (well maybe not as much when I was a kid)....

    What do you think of this?

    https://slate.com/technology/2018/02...necessary.html
    I agree complete. I think I treated (bleach) water twice, one was from a beaver pond and the other a river in populated area.

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