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Re: purifying water



>i bring Kool-Aid and Gatorade power with me to cover the iodine taste in
>my water.  :)
>
>Always remember that if the water's cold, use twice the dosage.  Always
>take from running water, stay away from lakes if you can help it.
>
>That's my two-cents worth.  :)
>
>david hughes

I'm a little confused here and I hope someone can clarify something for me.
General consensus "I guess" is to "stay away from lakes and always collect
from running water" but I have always been under the impression that the
giardia cysts will settle to the bottom of any place where they are
suspended. This always has meant to me that you actually run a greater risk
from running water (ie the cysts are suspended) or areas along the edges of
lakes (ie shallow, where you actually stir them up while collecting your
water) but that you are reasonably safe collecting water from the middle of
deep pools in streams or the middle of ponds or lakes. Here any suspended
particulates and giardia cysts have supposedly settled to below where you
are collecting. I realize this could be something that you can't always
accomplish not having a canoe or such, but a hiking stick can come in
handy.  I have been drinking water unfiltered for years collected from the
middle of lakes while canoe camping with no problem, so far, based on this
assumption. I know, I know, there are plenty of lake beavers.  Have I just
been lucky? Is it because I travel in more pristine areas? Who knows the
real story? I've used filters, iodine and "Potable Aqua" tablets in Latin
America and at times when I just get a hunch it's time to use one or the
other, but by far the majority of my experience has been to melt snow or
drink without purification. Am I living on borrowed time? To be honest with
you I hate all the rigamarole and weight involved with the water
purification stuff. I have heard it only takes one bout with protozoa to
change your mind about the investment in time. Later

Douglas "Cap" Introne
Stable Isotope Laboratory
Sawyer Environmental Research Center
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469

Tel. (207) 581-2192
Fax (207) 581-3490
E-mail introne@maine.maine.edu