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If you’re thinking of using an IcePlate outdoors here are some general tips and tricks to make sure your experience goes as smoothly as possible. Wilderness refills are an area where IcePlate, along with any hard container, will do best when paired with other products. IcePlate has a uniquely wide shape and a relatively small opening compared to wide mouth bottles or hydration bladders. Filtering technology is relatively new but has quickly gained traction as a quick option to get large amounts of clean water, that doesn’t add flavors or colors. This is an excellent option for IcePlate users.
LifeStraw, Sawyer, and MSR, make a number of great filters. Many attach to ultra lightweight and ultra low-bulk bags. You can drink directly from these but for transport they’re usually low capacity and low durability. You can easily fill IcePlate using these bags or one of the higher end gravity filter options. There are even “in-line” filtration options. These attach directly into hydration hoses and provide safe water with minimal waiting time.
If you have a soft container or pump but want an alternative method of purification there are two main chemical options. Iodine is usually small tablets that dissolve. They leave a relatively strong flavor in the purified water, and stain containers and fabrics aggressively. However, they are extremely cheap. Generally you will be adding one or two tablets per liter of water and need to wait 30 minutes until the water is safe to drink.
Chlorine based options are usually a two part mixture. They have minimal flavor and don’t stain. However, they can bleach fabrics with prolonged contact so don’t leave this in a rucksack or bag that you want to preserve. Multi-part mixtures take a few minutes to activate before use so factor in sufficient time during stops. Generally there will be two parts to the mixture and you will mix equal parts of these together and wait five minutes. My current option is seven drops of each mixture for every liter of water. After adding to the water it’s recommended that you wait at least 15 minutes before drinking.
For both chemical options if the flavor is particularly unpleasant adding liquids or powders can help to not only mask these but actually help to sustain performance. Nuun, EmergenC, Strike Force, and MiO, all make water enhancement products that can improve flavor. You need to be careful with electrolyte supplementation so if inexperienced go with the doctor’s orders. Also, intense energy supplements can be a detriment on extended movements. Take care adding effervescent options to closed systems, especially hydration bladders that aren’t hard plastic.
Water purification is a broad topic with lots of good options. Exceptional durability combined with ease-of-use and large capacity in a convenient shape make IcePlate an option worth integrating into your outdoors adventures!