Regardless of who your candidate may be, the other side of whatever side you may be on is saying the country is going to hell in a hand-basket post election. We're not into taking sides over here at Physi, so your side is fine with us. However, we've seen individuals threaten to move to another country or even head to the hills—as in not returning to society. For an expedition like that, you're going to need to stay safe and hydrated. Physi thought we'd lend a helping hand in that hydration effort and share some tips below for your journeys in the backcountry, regardless of the election outcome 😃.
Water: The Most Important Resource
There are rule of threes in the woods. You can live 3 minutes without air, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food. Now if you're out of air, we can't offer much help. However, we thought we'd share a few nuggets right here to make it easy to keep your water safe.
Iodine (chemical treatment)
Method: You add drops of iodine to water. This is the same iodine that your grandma used to smear on your wounds (and it stung).
Amount of iodine per quart/32oz of water
- 10 drops to cloudy water or standing water
- 5 drops to clear or flowing water
- Cure time: 30 minutes (allow it to sit for 30 minutes before consuming)
- Be sure to remove sediment from water by straining it through a cloth, like a bandana.
- Some iodine bottles do not have droppers, so use the stick and “sling” a drop into the water.
- If you are going to allow the cure period longer, like you treat your water overnight, you can use a bit less. For example, were I going to use 5 drops in a quart of water, I'd reduce to three were I to leave overnight.
- If you are concerned about the taste of iodine, a vitamin C style tablet will neutralize the taste.
Method: You bring your water over a heating source to temperatures between 160-212 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Water temperatures above 160 degrees Fahrenheit kill most pathogens within 30 minutes, including the two main backcountry culprits, including giardia and cryptosporidia.
- +185 degrees Fahrenheit, pathogens are killed in about 3+ minutes.
- Little can survive sea-level boiling temperature (212° F) for any length of time.
- Keep in mind that boiling temperature decreases with altitude at roughly one degree per 500 feet. This means at 6K feet, water will boil at 200 degrees.
- The Center for Disease Control, recommend that you boil water vigorously for 1 minute up to elevations of 2,000 meters (6,562 feet) and 3 minutes at higher elevations.
- You will be safe from giardia and crypto if you follow those as best practices
There are a ton of different types of water filters out there, including gravity, pump and squeeze methods. You can review and choose the one that makes the most sense for your style of backcountry adventures at your local outdoor store. However, for Physi outdoor adventures, we use the Sawyer Mini
product. You fill up a bag and squeeze water through the filter to make the water safe. The device is around 2 ounces and will filter 100,000 gallons of water. The regular size Sawyer claims to filter a million gallons of water. We think that is pretty amazing.
- Be sure to remove sediment from water by straining it through a cloth, like a bandana before filtering.
- Don't let the filter freeze, it will destroy it's filter capabilities.
- Take the backwashing kit. This means you flush clean water through it, using a plunger like syringe, to clear out the filter and keep it operating at it's maximum.
- The Sawyer Mini is best for 1-2 people. There are other Sawyer solutions for larger groups.
- The Sawyer uses a bag that you then squeeze through the filter. Be sure to bring an extra bag, we've had them burst on the trail. We would suggest also buying quart vs pint sized bags for squeezing (less bags to fill).
- Long term storage: add a couple drops of bleach to a quart of water, squeeze through your filter. Clear the excess water out of it (using the plunger) and store in a cool dry place.
Other ways to disinfect water (links)
Our favorite method is a squeeze style filter here at Physi. It is dependable, efficient, long lasting, no moving parts (less to go wrong), inexpensive AND environmentally friendly. It is our go to solution.
If the results of the election might send you to the hills, our team here at Physi wants to make sure you are prepared, regardless of the results.