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19868[John Muir Trail] Re: I'm seriously considering leaving my water filter at home next summer

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  • Herb
    Jan 4, 2012

      #1 I don't really care for the taste, so would prefer to drink untreated water if the opportunity is available. The Sierra poses the least risk of any hiking area I frequent, so I enjoy the luxury.

      #2 While the weight may be the same the location of that weight is not. Lets face it, carrying weight on your back--even with the best most comfortable pack in the world--is unnatural. A liter weights about 2 1/4 pounds. I can feel a 2 1/4 pound addition to my pack; I don't notice any weight differential after drinking a liter of water. And that makes sense--the water is quickly disbursed throughout my body and is thus more efficiently carried.

      The other advantage is that most hikers probably do not drink enough liquids while hiking. Just drinking when you are thirsty may not be enough during vigorous exercise. While toxicity from too much water is a risk, I think far more hikers suffer from dehydration. Cameling may, in fact, help the chronically dehydrated hiker meet his/her water needs and improve hiking efficiency.

      It is true there is less water available for multi-use purposes. But with the exception of a longer dry stretch than anticipated, I generally I do not carry water for those purposes anyway.


      --- In johnmuirtrail@yahoogroups.com, John Ladd <johnladd@...> wrote:
      > On Tue, Jan 3, 2012 at 1:54 PM, Herb <hstroh@...> wrote:
      > > **
      > >
      > >
      > > ... At trusted water sources we also "camel up" by drinking extra.
      > >
      > > I agree with most of what Herb and others have said but have 2 comments
      > 1) If you carry chemical purification anyway and don't mind the taste (I
      > don't) why not just treat routinely. If you mix the 2-part Aqua Mira into
      > a third small bottle each morning, it is super-easy to just add 14 drops to
      > each liter of water and then totally not have to worry. I will
      > occasionally drink it straight (the taste can be a treat) but usually just
      > treat on the theory that a little effort removes the small hazard.
      > 2) Most of the hiking community seems to believe in cameling up. But an
      > extra liter of water in your stomach (beyond the water your body needs in
      > the next hour or so) weighs the same as a liter of water in your pack and
      > your body will use the same energy to carry it whether in your stomach or
      > in the pack. Water in a bottle is more multi-use than water in your
      > stomach because (1) you can ration it if it turns out to be a longer-than
      > anticipated dry stretch; (2) if you are hiking with a friend, the more
      > thirsty person can use it; (3) if you need to irrigate a cut from a fall,
      > it's available to you; and (4) you avoid any risk of excess water toxicity,
      > though admittedly most people who camel up don't do so to the point of
      > causing a danger of toxicity. I noticed that the Army's mountaineering
      > training manual discourages over-drinking, though they don't explain why
      > (beyond water toxicity).
      > John
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