Fresh running streams and crystal clear lakes are some of the best joys of camping. However, the water in them isn’t always safe to drink. To ensure you stay healthy on your outdoor adventure, whether camping, hiking or hunting, pack a water filtering straw.
The Importance of Hydration While Camping and Hunting
Hydration is important every day, but especially while pursuing outdoor adventures. Staying hydrated while in the outdoors helps your body tolerate heat and altitude challenges. A regular supply of purified drinking water prevents dehydration, which can cause headaches, dizziness and weakness.
Just because hydration is good doesn’t mean you can’t overdo it. Over-hydration can be just as dangerous as dehydration. While camping or backpacking, aim to drink 2-4 liters of water per day. Weather can affect how much water you need, so increase your intake on very hot or sunny days. If you are unsure how much water you should drink, monitor your urine color. Dark urine is a sign to increase your water intake, while urine very light-colored or clear is a good sign you are well hydrated.
As crucial as water is while camping, it’s unlikely you will be able to pack an adequate supply in your family camping gear unless you are bringing a vehicle. Luckily, nature provides many natural sources of drinking water. However, these sources might be contaminated with bacteria, parasites and particulate matter, which are detrimental to your health.
Whenever you head out camping, you need a reliable way to purify the water you find. While boiling, purification tablets and hand pump filters are incredibly useful, many of these systems are either bulky or time-consuming, making them unsuitable for campers on the go. Water filter straws offer a convenient, lightweight personal filtration system, allowing you to drink directly from the water source or a container. Here are five of the best water filtering straws to make your choice easier:
This durable water filtering straw is made from food-grade stainless steel. It has a 2-stage filtration system that can filter up to 0.2 microns. This makes the Lifestraw effective at filtering out almost all bacteria and protozoa, as well as chemical contaminants, odors and tastes.
The straw can filter 1,000 gallons and weighs just 4.2 ounces. Before use, the straw needs to be primed. which only takes 30 seconds. Some users report the only drawback to the Lifestraw is it imparts a mild metallic taste to the filtered water.
A lightweight and compact water filter, the Sawyer Products MINI removes harmful bacteria and contaminants with a powerful 0.1-micron filter, featuring its patented U-shaped hollow fiber micro-tubes. It can filter an astonishing 100,000 gallons and withstand backwashing pressure to restore up to 98 percent of the device’s filtration rate, making this a reliable, long-lasting filter well worth the investment.
The Sawyer Products MINI comes with a reusable pouch, letting you take water with you. Alternatively, you can use the pouch to squeeze water into another container, such as your reusable water bottle or hydration bladder.
The straw also comes with a cleaning plunger to help maintain the device between uses. Dedicated to quality products, Sawyer tests each MINI filter straw three times before selling to customers.
One of the most popular water filter straws on the market, the Membrane Solutions water filter straw uses a four-stage filter to remove 99.99 percent of solids and bacteria. It weighs 2 ounces and is 6.7 inches long.
This water filter straw has replaceable carbon filter packs that can filter approximately 800 gallons each. You can easily disassemble it for cleaning. It’s made from BPA-free plastics, keeping the water you drink safe. With its 0.1-micron pore size, it improves the safety of your drinking water while still maintaining an excellent flow rate.
The Survival Hax outdoor water filter straw offers powerful purification that can screw directly onto any 28mm mouthed water bottle. It’s a great addition to your survival gear kit since it comes with a signaling mirror, bear whistle, tourniquet and compass.
The 0.1-micron filter removes nearly all bacteria, parasites and contaminants. You’re left with clean water that is taste and odor-free. It can filter 400 gallons of water before it needs to be replaced.
This easy-to-use water filter straw is a compact 6.7 inches long and 1.2 inches wide. It weighs just 2.65 ounces, giving you no excuse not to pack it on your next camping adventure. The 0.1 micron 4-stage filter protects you from parasites, bacteria, micro-plastic, heavy metals and chlorine.
It’s capable of filtering 400 gallons over its lifetime. After use, simply blow through the straw to clean out any remaining water. In between adventures, the company advises you to clean the unit with alcohol before air drying to prevent any growth of mold or bacteria.
Features to Look For in a Personal Water Filter
Not sure which features matter when considering a personal water filter? All filters pass water through narrow pores to purify the water and make it safer for you to consume. When you are considering a personal water filter for camping, some features are more valuable to you than others.
You have limited space to pack a filter when headed out on a camping or hunting trip. The ideal personal water filter should be portable, which makes water filter straws a great option. They are compact, often weighing just a couple of ounces.
Time is of the essence when you are hiking and thirsty. A personal water filter that offers a high filtration speed is more valuable to you than one that takes several minutes to work.
The last thing you need when away from home is for your water filter to stop working. You want a low-maintenance water filter with easy replacement options. You should also consider cleaning as part of the filter’s maintenance. Similar to how properly cleaning a hydration bladder can extend the life of the bladder, water filters need to be cleaned well after each trip to ensure they will work the next time you need them.
A Final Word
Hydration is important when you are outdoors. No matter which water filtration straw you choose, bring one along on your next trip for access to safe drinking water when you need it.
Having the right camping apparel is just as important as carrying a filter. At Mossy Oak, we create high-performance outdoor apparel so you are prepared for any outdoor adventure.