Imagine for a moment that you’ll be crossing a great distance with no support. There will be no one driving behind you with water or a warm place to sleep. No food ready to go except what you bring for yourself or perhaps what you’ve stashed in advance along the way. There are people who are able to carry their life support system over these great distances already, they’re called backpackers.
But all that weight? The average backpack weight is around 40 pounds, give or take. Much of that weight is comprised of objects we use to support basic life-support operations. So as a runner who wants to remove that support leash as much as possible it has become critical that I locate the lightest weight options available to support my basic life support requirements.
Water is one of those basic requirements. More correctly potable water, because while it’s available in many places it’s not always something you can drink. When and where I don’t have to carry large quantities of the stuff on my back to connect resupply points I’ve been using the Katadyn Exstream Purifier Bottle. At around seven ounces empty its comparatively light weight for a physical filtration system. The flow rate isn’t fast, but since I’m generally pushing the fluid directly into my face I’m happy with the results.
There are two things that I wish Katadyn would consider adding to their great product. First, would be a way to track how many uses you’ve put on the filter. A small pocket with a piece of paper you could hash as you filled would do the job. Second is a hand holster which could support the first. Right now I’m using an Ultimate Direction Fast Draw Plus hand holster on the bottle which fits the bill, but could be better.
In really dry areas I’m very certain I’ll have to go back to a bladder system and carry larger amounts of water with me. This spring and in the high country this filter has been perfect.