A camping trip is one of the most adventurous trips one goes to. The thrill of staying in the outdoors, putting up a tent, cooking food in the open air and soaking in the beauty of nature—bliss! If one keeps certain important things in mind and plans accordingly, it can be a successful camping trip.
The two most important aspects of an outdoor camping are cooking food and safe and clean drinking water. Both of these require detailed planning lest one runs out of food or fuel or even water. Even if the camping trip is by the river, or a pond nearby, even if the water available appears pristine clean, there are chances it may be contaminated.
The reasons for this are plenty. The spot chosen could be a favorite camping spot of camping enthusiasts. Moreover, apart from humans, there might be wildlife and cattle visiting the spot and leaving behind microorganisms through feces. This could make the water unfit for drinking. Cleaning water before drinking requires the best camping water filters that are easy to carry on a camping trip.
There is the option of boiling water before use, but then it demands carrying enough fuel for cooking as well as boiling purposes. This would mean that much more weight to carry. And, if the trip is at a higher altitude, then more fuel would be needed. Therefore, the best alternative to this would be carrying the best camping water filters.
Water filters and water purifiers—what’s the difference?
To begin with, you get water filters and also water purifiers. Choosing the one that is safe, cheap, convenient to use as well as gives clean, pure water can be tough considering there are quite a few types available in the market.
The difference between water filters and water purifiers is that, water filters remove sediment, debris and bacteria from the water. And, water purifiers use chemicals or UV lights to remove the pollutants.
Water filters do not get rid of harmful viruses and water purifiers might leave an unpleasant taste in the water. But, drinking water tasting of chemicals is comparatively better than drinking water contaminated with viruses.
Types of water filters:
Filter bottles: Filter bottles are those that have a filter at the mouth of the bottle and the water gets filtered as it passes through the straw or the mouth. It is easy to carry and use, but the downside is it can carry only enough water for a solo traveller but not a large group. Also, you need continuous access to water to refill it each time.
Pump filters: These filters consist of a manual pump and a hose, the end of which is placed in the water body and connected to a container. You then pump the water with your hand. As it does not run on batteries or fuel, it is easy to use and can fill many containers.
It isn’t too bulky an apparatus and thus easy to carry on a camping trip. The one disadvantage, though, could be that if one breaks and there isn’t an alternative, it could lead to quite a problem.
Gravity filters: Gravity filters make for a good choice because these are perfect for a large group. They do not require pumping and are easy to carry because of their lightweight. All you need to do is fill a bag with water and hang it on a tree or a pole. The water keeps getting filtered into a container.
It doesn’t require any efforts on your part. You need two bags, one for unclean water and one for clean water and you need to keep track of the same. The filters need to be cleaned regularly so that they work well.
With the kind of convenience and purification these filters offer, gravity filters could be considered the best camping water filters.
Types of water purifiers:
Tablet and drop purifiers:
These are easy to use and also require very less space in your camping backpack. The tablets or chemical drops that you get are to be added to the water that needs to be cleaned. After about 20 minutes, the water is ready to drink. The chemicals might leave behind an unappealing taste to the water, but the water is safe for drinking.
UV light purifiers:
UV light purifiers have their advantages as well as disadvantages.
They emit a high intensity UV light in the water to purify the water of harmful viruses. But, if the water is cloudy, you might need to filter it before purifying it. They are easy to use and carry, but require batteries and also have delicate bulbs and need to be carefully packed.
Deciding whether to choose a filter or a purifier needs answering a few simple questions:
The quantity and quality of water to be filtered,
The number of people that need to drink the water,
Accessibility of water, and
Ease in carrying the filter.
Taking these points into consideration will help you make your choice!