Forum Index > Gear Talk > Water filters, chemicals, and minerals
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ThinAir
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Joined: 15 Feb 2020
Posts: 29 | TRs | Pics
Location: Federal Way
ThinAir
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PostSun Jan 29, 2023 12:29 pm 
I have been using a Katadyn Vario for water filtration for several years. I plan on buying a BeFree to make things easier and lighter. I was reading that the BeFree doesn’t filter out minerals and chemicals and such, but the Vario does. This got me wondering what the implications are when backpacking through areas where undesirable minerals or chemicals might exist either naturally or due to mining history. I know people have been using the BeFree and the Sawyer filters for years “with no problems” but I know that there are some very knowledgeable people on the site and was hoping to get some input on the topic.

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InFlight
coated in DEET



Joined: 20 May 2015
Posts: 820 | TRs | Pics
Location: Seattle area
InFlight
coated in DEET
PostFri Feb 03, 2023 12:05 am 
It really depends on where you’re hiking and the water sources. High Mountain Streams in cascades sawyer/Befree are ideal. Silty glacier sourced water is problematic as it clogs just about anything. Definitely need a disposal pre-filter in this situation. There are pre-filter that can be added to the Be-free. Pump filters (MSR and others) often a coffee filter can be rubber-banded to dip hose. Some coastal areas in Olympics have tannins in the water. I generally would go with a filter with carbon to address the taste. The MSR ceramic filter is a common one (and heavy). Pesticides and chemicals are not typically found in mountain streams. For international travel with unknown water quality, I’d suggest the Grayl filter.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately...” ― Henry David Thoreau
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