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Katadyn: Making Water Drinking Water

Katadyn offers a wide variety of water treatment options for safe hydration in the backcountry. They build reliable pump filters and purifiers, offer chemical treatments, and in recent years they've introduced some handy gravity and squeeze filters. As the distributor of SteriPEN, they also give backpackers the option of UV treatment.

Katadyn: Making Water Drinking Water

One way to treat water is simply to boil it to ensure that it's safe to drink, but most backpackers need a quicker and more convenient option. These Katadyn filtration and purification systems offer safe and simple solutions to keep you hydrated on the trail.

Pump Filters

With pump filters like the Hiker Pro and the Vario, you get reliable performance that filters out microorganisms like Giardia and Cryptosporidium and also removes dirt and grit. These filters also have active carbon cores that help to filter out unwanted taste and smell. It's worth noting that the size of the pores that the water passes through are small enough to keep out much of what concerns backpackers, but they will not filter out viruses.

Gravity Filters

Gravity filters are another interesting option for backpackers, especially for larger groups. With filters like the BeFree 3.0L Microfilter and the Gravity Camp 6.0L, you simply scoop water into a holding container, hang it up, and water is filtered as it feeds naturally through the integrated membranes. These options are lightweight and can often handle a large capacity of water. You’ll need a reliable and sizable water source, and keep in mind that they do take a bit longer than pumps. They are best used when you reach camp or a resting spot.

Squeeze Filters

For even more convenience, consider squeeze filters. Rather than pumping water or waiting on gravity, you simply fill a flask or other container and push water through the membrane in the filtering cap by quite literally squeezing. The BeFree 0.6L and 1.0L microfilters are good examples and have quickly become favorites of trail runners and ounce-counting hikers or backpackers who value weight and collapsibility. These are great for on-the-go filtering, but they aren't designed to filter high volumes.

UV Purifiers

UV purifiers, like the SteriPEN, treat water by using ultraviolet light to break down the DNA of microorganisms and render them harmless. Unlike most filters, this method is even effective in neutralizing viruses. They also offer a fairly quick method for obtaining drinkable water; the SteriPEN Adventurer Opti can purify 16 ounces of water in as little as 48 seconds. The tradeoffs with UV purification are that it does require batteries, it's only designed to treat small batches of water at a time, and it does not filter out particulates. The water is safe to drink, but may not be entirely free of dirt and grit. You can address that by pre-filtering with another method.

Purification Tablets

Katadyn's lightest weight option is Micropur tablets. Each of these EPA-registered purification tablets can treat up to a full quart of water. Like UV purifiers, they are also effective against viruses, but they do need to be combined with an actual filter if you want to remove particulates. These aren't the quickest method of purification either and they are only effective for small volume treatment.

There’s a lot to consider when choosing the best treatment method for your journey, but whatever you decide, Katadyn is there to help in making water drinking water.