39666LTR Katadyn Vario Ray Estrella
- Nov 26, 2007Hello Rami,
Here is the LTR for the Vario. The HTML may be found here;
I went on a 78 mile three day trip from the Rock Creek Lake area down
to Glacier Lodge in the John Muir Wilderness in the Sierra Nevada
range of California. The temperatures ranged from freezing to 70 F
(21 C), elevations ranged from 7800' to 11800' (2380 to 3600 m).
Terrain consisted of dirt and exposed rock at the lower elevations
and snow and ice up high. My pack weight at the start of the trip was
23 lb (10.4 kg). There were lakes, creeks and springs all along this
On my last big 3-season hike of the year I had more water sources
than any trip I have ever taken. We were next to lakes, creeks,
tarns, and springs just about constantly. Because of this we carried
no more than two qt/liters of water at a time. I carried two bottles
and my brother-in-law Dave carried a 2 l (70 oz) platypus Hoser. I
carried the Vario at the very top of my pack with the intake hose
left hooked up and wrapped around the body. For Dave's Platy all we
had to do was plug his tube into the hole at the bottom cap. This is
the fastest way to go.
I use bottles on long trips so that I can mix electrolyte powdered
drinks with my water. So I had to pull out the tube and bottle clip
which adds a little more time to my refills.
The area had just received snow earlier in the week so the water was
pretty good quality and cold. I did not use any water from tarns as
they we pretty yucky. My favorite spot was the coolest spring that we
found by hearing it as we hiked. A use trail led down to the
excellent spring that may be seen below.
I used the filter on the Longer Life setting this entire trip. I had
no clogging and again noticed that it pumped very fast.
I have been prepping it for storage between trips by putting a bit of
bleach in a pot of water then pumping it through the unit. I then
take it apart and let it dry well before reassembling and sticking in
the gear room.
I have been very impressed with the Vario. I like the way that it
fits my hands and how fast it pumps. The ability to just filter
directly into a hydration bladders hose is a major plus. The only
thing that I can complain about is the weight and bulk of the unit. I
think that this filter shines for group hiking. Next year will see me
hiking with three or four of us and I expect the Vario will be quite
welcome in those situations. I will use my Katadyn Hiker for solo use
now that this test has ended. My thanks to Katadyn and
BackpackGearTest for the oppertunity tp test this filter.
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