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Can we drink the water?

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While exploring the woods and waterways while on your canoe trip with Northern Lights, keep in mind the importance of eating healthy.

The constant paddling motion, coupled with the energy expended on portages, equals a healthy wilderness appetite. Water intake should equal two quarts per person per day. A well-balanced menu, high in breads and grains, supplemented with plenty of vegetables and fruits, and rounded out with protein will assure you receive the maximum energy needed.

While many visitors drink directly from the lakes, we recommend that water should be treated before used in non-cooked foods and beverages. Treatment options should kill the Guardia bacteria present in most free flowing and stagnant waters:

  • Boil water rapidly for 15 minutes
  • Water tablets
  • Personal water filtration systems

The most inexpensive route will, of course, be boiling. Drawbacks consist of hot drinks instead of cold, and delays in preparing some of the freeze dried foods which require cold water.

Water tablets are quick and easy to use, but do take about 10 to 20 minutes to kill all bacteria, and leave behind a chemical taste. Adding a little fruit drink base to the water helps to mask the unpleasant taste.

Personal water filtration systems come in handy if a group member prefers not to use the method(s) used by the entire group.

To receive the most mileage from a water filtration system (big or small), avoid muddy or sediment filled waters when possible. Backwash the system to remove sediment build-up. Clean filters and system after each trip and store in a dry place.