Water Treatment Tips

BOTTOM LINE: Best treatment in lab is a water filter.  On the trail in “real life” -- most everyone gets sick sooner or later. ;-)  Want the facts?  Here:

Hiker water treatment studies:

IN THE LAB  (Ongerth, J. E. et. al "Backcountry Water Treatment to Prevent Giardiasis" American Journal of public health, Dec. 1989)

Iodine, 8 hours 99.9% effective

Iodine, 30 minutes 90% effective

Best filters(new) 100% effective

Filters after 88 liters 75% effective

Chlorine 85-90% effective

Heating 60 degrees C 10 min 96%

Heating 70 degrees C 10 min. 100%


IN REAL LIFE  (AT thru hikers; 1994 Roland Mueser Long Distance Hiking, (Camden Maine, Raged Mountain Press)

Purification method -- % illness in 5-6 months -- % Giardia only

Iodine --26% became ill, 6% Giardia

Filtering--30% became ill, 9% Giardia

Boiling--34% became ill, 3% Giardia

Chlorine--75% became ill, 0% Giardia

No treatment --27% became ill, 3% Giardia