By Sara Baird.
I took my first wilderness trip when I was 12. It was a weeklong trip into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in Northern Minnesota with an environmental school. I will always be grateful that I had the opportunity to take this trip as it changes the way I see the world. I have memories of great friendships, sleeping under the stars during a meteor shower, and a sense of awe the entire week. The only thing I remember not enjoying on the trip was the taste of iodine in our water.
Iodine tablets were all that we had to ensure we would not get sick when drinking water from the lake. These days wilderness travelers have access to a variety of options to ensure their drinking water is clean. Travelers need to research how to safely treat the water they will have access to and determine the best option for the experience. Options include pumps, ultraviolet lights, and even individual water bottles with filters installed. I have not had a chance to try out one of the individual water bottles so I enthusiastically agreed to try out the Wakiwaki Filtered Water Bottle.
The Wakiwaki Filtered Water Bottle is made of BPA-free and food-grade plastic with a silicon mouthpiece it is heat resistant and dishwasher safe. The bottle features straw that is actually a 4-stage filtering system that can remove 99.99999% of bacteria, parasites, and microplastics.
This filter will also reduce both cloudiness and heavy metals while also absorbing chlorine and odors. The filter is made of an activated coconut carbon filter with cotton fiber and has a capacity of 15,000 liters or 396 gallons of water.
The bottle holds 20 ounces without the filter so less than that when the filter is installed. The stay-clean lid holds a mini survival compass. The bottle comes with a carabiner to make it easier to carry and a syringe to dry out the filter.
Using the Bottle
I was excited to use the bottle on a fall camping trip to Northern Minnesota but my plans were foiled by a leaky radiator on our truck. Instead, I used the bottle day to day to get a feel for it. I washed it and filled it up with tap water to start.
The instructions said it would be difficult to drink out of at first and that was correct. When I finally got water to come out it tasted horrible. It was so horrible I didn’t want to take another drink but I decided I needed to give it a fair shot.
I continued to have trouble getting the water to come out through the mouthpiece so took the filter off and put it back on. I was able to drink easily out of the straw filter and mouthpiece after that. After spitting out several mouthfuls of water I found the water actually tasted good. I’m fortunate to have great-tasting tap water so I had to look for some other ways to test the taste of the water.
I took the bottle to work where any unfiltered water in our 100+-year-old school building tastes horrendous and is sometimes orange. I found that it dramatically improved the taste of the water and took out cloudiness. I also took the bottle with me on a field trip where we spent the day visiting local employers. We were on and off the bus and on walking tours throughout the day.
I found that the bottle was a nice size to carry with me, I could tuck it into my purse or clip it to the outside of my purse. It did not leak during the day. I did find that I ran out of water early in the day and had to wait until I found another water source.
As with any piece of equipment make sure that it fits your needs before selecting it. Make sure the filter or purifier will take care of any risk of bacteria or other organisms that may be present in the water. Getting sick, even a mild illness can not only make your trip less enjoyable but also put you at serious risk if you are in a remote location. It is important that you ensure this filter will meet your needs.
This bottle provides an easy way to filter water and after the first few drinks, it does improve the taste of the water. It is a vast improvement over iodine water. The design of the mouthpiece cover is a little awkward. It works and it does keep your mouthpiece clean but it does not lift all the way up so it is not the most comfortable bottle to drink out of if you have a well-defined nose like myself. The compass is also not very reliable, it did not consistently point in the correct direction, so while it looks cool, make sure you do not rely on it for navigation.
The small size of the bottle and the fact that it is a straw limits the capacity of water you can filter but it does make it easy to carry. You can always carry an unfiltered bottle of water to fill this one up but you would not be able to filter water for other people unless you drink from the same container.
If you would like to filter water for a group Wakiwaki also sells gravity filtration bags that will serve this purpose. They also sell a straw that can be attached to water bottles or even a hose that would allow you to use various containers.
I would be happy to the Wakiwaki Filtered Water Bottle if I was on a canoe trip or even out kayaking or fishing for the day on certain lakes. You can check out their products at https://www.gowakiwaki.com/product/purifier-water-bottle/
What is your impression of the Wakiwaki Filtered Water Bottle? Would you like to have this on your adventures to stay hydrated? Perhaps you have had your own experiences you would like to share in the comments below.
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