• Southern Ontario Hiking Resources


Selecting a water bottle

It is important to drink - before, during, and after walking. Thirst often doesn't catch up with our body's need for water.  Your comfort and stamina depends on getting enough water while walking. You need to drink every half hour if walking at a moderate pace, more often if you are sweating it. A good rule of thumb is one litre for every 10 km. On a really hot day you might need more.


sigg-water-bottlesPlan your route: Include a water stop on your regular walking route. You should be drinking a half litre every hour, so you need to carry water.

Bottle holder: The best way to carry water is in a pack.Get a waist pack with an external bottle holder to be able to get to your water quickly. Balance the load in the pack or get one that carries the bottle in the middle of your back to preserve your body alignment. Most backpacks have built in bottle holders.

Water bottles: If you buy water, use those bottles only once and recycle them, they are not meant for re-use. To re-use a bottle, buy a good water bottle at a sporting goods shop.  These have a higher grade of plastic that won't leach into the water on re-use.

Hydration Packs:
Many companies are now also offering full-sized backpacks with integrated hydration systems that are perfect for day hikes. "Hydrate or Die." It's a registered phrase that is used by CamelBak in their marketing campaigns, but it's a healthy truth that has been medically supported for decades. "Water is life," "Without water we die..." Whatever the phraseology, the message is the same. You have to drink.

stream0094Safe water sources:  Never drink from a stream unless you filter or sterilize the water first. Most running water sources are contaminated with parasites and germs that will make you sick.  That sparkling mountain stream is filled with Giardia, a very cute little smiling flagellate just waiting to infest your gut and liver.

Keep your water bottle clean.  Wash it after each use with soap and water, or add a couple of drops of bleach and fill it with water overnight, then rinse thoroughly in the morning.

Don't share your water bottle with anyone you wouldn't exchange a sloppy kiss with and even then...



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