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[at-l] First Need experience

        During my 2 years of hiking the AT I only used a First Need Filter.
I do have to say it contiued to work while others had problems with other
brands. It was kind of funny because the time I reached Maine most people
had dumped theres and they couldn't understand why I still bothered to
pump. Most people where using Iodine by that time, but I was a bit
concerned when I saw all thier dark orange Nalgene bottles.
        However, While I was hiking this winter my First Need died. A
critical piece of plastic tubing connecting the pump to the filter busted.
By this time, I considered switching brands. I asked other people around
and it seemed that most people did not have too much problems with PUR
brands. I am not sure what model I chose, but I am now a proud PUR water
filter owner. I have to say it is much easier to use, however, I do not
have any advice on durability or long term effectiveness.
        If you are just starting out with equipment, I would buy a First
Need Filter because it could easily be used on international trips. It is
one of the few filters that removes viruses (I think) without the
chemicals.  Other people I have know originally bought them for this
Cough Drop
GA-ME 95/96

Thomas Ludden
Department of Geography  and Earth Sciences
University of North Carolina at Charlotte

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