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Desert Explorer Recommended Gear

Gear Shop Page 1- Packs, Gaiters, Trekking Poles
Gear Shop Page 2- Shelters, Bug Nets, Ponchos, Sleeping Pads

Gear Shop Page 3- Water Storage and Purification

Water Storage and Purification

Options abound for water storage. I have stuck with the MSR Dromedary bags over the years. They are extremely durable, especially the original Dromedary, as opposed to the Dromlite. The Dromlite does not lack for strength. I am still using all of the original Dromedary bags I have purchased, both original Dromedaries and Dromlites- I have not replaced one yet, my first one being purchased at least 15 years ago. I have tried one gallon Platypus bags, but all of them have given out within a trip or two. I still carry one of the Platypus 2 Liter Plus bags with me for adding that margin of safety if I feel it is necessary. I used to carry a regular one quart wide mouth Nalgene bottle. I now carry the Nalgene collapsible wide mouth one quart Canteen in order to cut down on weight a bit further. My only reason for carrying the bottle is for use when purifying water. The gusseted bottom allow the bottle to be stood up when I am purifying drinking water.

MSR Dromlite dromedary water storage bag MSR DromLite Bag
The Dromlite comes in 2, 4, and 6 liter versions. It is a rugged bladder with a wide mouth- the same wide mouth as on a Nalgene bottle. It comes with a second, smaller cap on the large cap, which is perfect for drinking from. There is also a very small flip-up spout on the small cap in case you have enough water to wet your head down, or even use it as a shower.

The Dromedary bag comes with a handle around the mouth which makes filling easier, although it adds extra weight. There is one grommet on the opposite end of spout for hanging or tying down.

MSR makes a Hydration Kit for the Dromedary, essentially a hose with mouthpiece. I use one on mine, and have for many years. It attaches to the Dromedary by replacing the small cap.

Nalgene 32 ounce wide mouth canteen Nalgene Wide Mouth Canteen
This canteen is one item I have recently started carrying. I abandoned my old 32 ounce Nalgene bottle for this lighter version. So far it seems to be holding up well. The wide mouth makes it easy to fill and the gusseted bottom allows the canteen to stand while I pour in treated water from my MIOX. Thread pattern accommodates Nalgene-compatible water filters. Loop-top retainer prevents the cap from getting lost (cut it off- save a couple of grams of weight!) 

playtpus 2 liter collapsible water bottle
Platypus 2-Litre Bottle

The Platypus water bottle is a reasonably priced option for carrying extra water. I carried one and sometimes two of these for many years. Although the early models were not very strong and required frequent replacement, in recent years they seem to be a bit stronger. The only drawback is the very narrow mouth. If you are filling from a limited water source, or trying to scoop it full of water, it can get be difficult. The Nalgene wide mouth canteen is a better option in this case.

aquamira purification tablets AquaMira Water Purifier Tablets
I carry these chlorine dioxide tablets as a backup in all my packs and survival kits. The tablets are individually wrapped and sealed in foil. The wrapping allows them to be cut into single packages, or into large set of 2, 4, 6, and so on, making them easy to carry. These do expire, so be sure to watch the dates on them and replace them when necessary.



MSR MIOX water purifier

MSR MIOX Water Purifier
I have carried this pen as my primary source of water purification for many years now. It does require batteries. I use Surefire batteries because of their long life. The purifier uses salt to create a form of chlorine for purification. There are test strips to test initially, and after the process is complete so you know that your water is safe. Yes, there are a few steps involved, but unlike the SteriPen, the MIOX will purify any water- no matter how cloudy or dirty it is. These have been discontinued by MSR. They were a special collaboration between MSR and the MIOX company, for the military I think, and the contract has expired. So if you want one you should act quickly as they may not be around much longer.


Back to Top
Gear Shop Page 1- Packs, Gaiters, Trekking Poles
Gear Shop Page 2- Shelters, Bug Nets, Ponchos, Sleeping Pads

Gear Shop Page 3- Water Storage and Purification

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