Author Topic: Water?  (Read 2263 times)

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Offline jamawani

Re: Water?
« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2021, 03:37:16 pm »
However, cold water which I often craved, was sometimes hard to come by.

Ahem .....

I have posted many times about how to have cold water on brutally hot days.
It's called "evaporative cooling" and it works wherever there is lower humidity. (Not the Deep South)

I cut off the ankle and toes of an old white cotton sock.
Then I slide the water bottle into the sock sleeve and keep the sock wet in the bottle cage.
It can be 99F and, as long as the sock stays wet, the water is 48F.
People are shocked how chilled the water stays.
Yes, you do use up some water in the chilling process.

Way better than insulated water bottles - - and way cheaper.
Not to mention a low-tech solution to a low-tech problem.
(That's how people did it for centuries before refrigeration.)

Offline hikerjer

Re: Water?
« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2021, 04:11:17 pm »
My son had a similar eperience while rossing Nevada. He failed to screw the top down on his water battle and managed to spill it all. The rest stop he planed on refilling at was closed so he was in a tough position. 100 degree heat and no rlief or water for at least 5-6 hours. Forunately, he came across some stuff left by a road painting crew. In it was an unopend bottle of Gatorade. He lucked out on that one.

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: Water?
« Reply #17 on: December 30, 2021, 01:16:45 pm »
Probably my strangest water bum was in rural IA one morning.  A high school student was hosing down her 4-H "project"--a young bull named Ace of Spades.  She let me fill my bottles from her hose.
Memories like that is why I love touring.  In a car, you would have just pressed on until you found a convenience store.

I left out the sad part:  She told me his last competition was coming up soon.  After that, he was likely going to end up covered with cheese on buns.   :'(

Offline John Nettles

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Re: Water?
« Reply #18 on: December 30, 2021, 01:28:05 pm »
I left out the sad part:  She told me his last competition was coming up soon.  After that, he was likely going to end up covered with cheese on buns.   :'(
Still, you have the memory all this time later.  It is the memories that are created that I love so much about traveling. I think it is harder for people who always stay home to create memories.

Tailwinds, John

Offline staehpj1

Re: Water?
« Reply #19 on: December 30, 2021, 04:24:58 pm »
I left out the sad part:  She told me his last competition was coming up soon.  After that, he was likely going to end up covered with cheese on buns.   :'(
Still, you have the memory all this time later.  It is the memories that are created that I love so much about traveling. I think it is harder for people who always stay home to create memories.

Tailwinds, John
Some people aren't very open to meeting the local folks and don't make many of this kind of memories even when they do tour.

Offline John Nettles

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  • I ride for smiles, not miles.
Re: Water?
« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2021, 04:54:09 pm »
Some people aren't very open to meeting the local folks and don't make many of this kind of memories even when they do tour.
Granted, some interact with the locals as little as possible and therefore have much fewer memories of locals.  However, I assume people still make at least a few memories due to their experiences when traveling whether it is due to meeting the locals, seeing new scenery, experiencing new food, visiting some cultural site, etc.  Otherwise, why travel?  My point is as I previously stated that it is harder to make memories for those that always stay home since the opportunity for "new" experiences are less in my opinion.  Of course, there are always some that do.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Water?
« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2021, 05:39:50 pm »
Some people aren't very open to meeting the local folks and don't make many of this kind of memories even when they do tour.
Granted, some interact with the locals as little as possible and therefore have much fewer memories of locals.  However, I assume people still make at least a few memories due to their experiences when traveling whether it is due to meeting the locals, seeing new scenery, experiencing new food, visiting some cultural site, etc.  Otherwise, why travel?  My point is as I previously stated that it is harder to make memories for those that always stay home since the opportunity for "new" experiences are less in my opinion.  Of course, there are always some that do.
For me it is a huge part of what touring is about, but when I compare notes with other riders in camp or on the road I often find that they don't have the same connection with the people of the area they are traveling through.  I guess we all tour for different reasons.
« Last Edit: December 30, 2021, 05:42:07 pm by staehpj1 »

Offline canalligators

Re: Water?
« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2021, 06:11:47 pm »
Many of the places where bathrooms are available can also give you water: government buildings, police stations, libraries, schools.  Churches too, if someone happens to be there on weekdays.

Offline froze

Re: Water?
« Reply #23 on: January 01, 2022, 01:19:18 am »
Water is everywhere, usually anyways.  Any fast-food place, or a one of those gas/food quick marts, will let you get water out of the soda fountain without charging you.  However, if you want to make sure you can always get water then you need to buys a water filter, and the best one is the Sawyer, you can read about it here:  https://www.sawyer.com/products/squeeze-water-filtration-system, there are two different ones, the one I showed you in that link is unlimited filtering capacity, they make another one called the Mini and that one will filter up to 100,000 gallons, the Mini cost $20 or so, and the other called the Squeeze Water Filtration System cost around $50; they both filter just as much stuff as the other.  For cycling I think the Mini is fine.  So with this system you can take water out of any lake, river, or stream, and filter it and drink it.

The other thing you can do is to get a set of adjustable water bottle cages so that you can carry larger water bottles instead of the standard bottles that are not really made for long distance riding.  The cage I use and like is the Arundel Looney Bin, this cage will fit bottles from 65 to the standard 73mm bottle that all cyclists use, and all the way up to 95mm, that means that the largest bottle it will hold will carry about 41 ounces instead of 21 ounces for the max in a standard plastic bottle.  If you have a second water cage bosses on the underside of the down tube you probably won't be able to put a big bottle there due to size constraints where the top of the water bottle will hit your tire and or fender.

You can also get a twin bottle holder that can mount onto the rear seat, but usually if you're touring that probably won't work since you will probably have a saddle bag of some sort back there.  There is also a seat bag now on the market that has a bottle pocket built in, the problem with this seat bag is I don't know what the quality of the bag is, they claim it's water resistant, but when touring you will find out if it's truly water resistant.

Another option is to carry a Camelback on your back, but the problem with that is the weight of the water on your back for hours while you ride.

There are plenty of ways to carry water, and to get water.  If you plan your route carefully you shouldn't have any problem getting water, but I would carry the Sawyer filter for sure.

Offline jinx

Re: Water?
« Reply #24 on: January 01, 2022, 08:44:21 am »
Thanks again everyone for the input.

I'll try a water filter. They don't seem to do much for chemicals. I'll try it out on some day trips from different ground water sources and see how hard/practical it is to use, see how the water tastes and see if I can give myself the shits.

I'll also try to reposition and carry more water on the frame. But I don't want the handling or personality of the bike to be altered too much. Dragging a trailer seems less psychologically cumbersome than to much weight on the front end. I don't want to hate my bike.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Water?
« Reply #25 on: January 01, 2022, 08:59:03 am »
Water is everywhere, usually anyways.  Any fast-food place, or a one of those gas/food quick marts, will let you get water out of the soda fountain without charging you.  However, if you want to make sure you can always get water then you need to buys a water filter
That may be true the majority of the time.  I have relied on them much of the time.  The times where it isn't were what was being mentioned and they do come up now and then particularly on trancontinental type tours.  I know that I have on ocasion run into places where they was no water restock for a full day or even a day and an overnight.  There are places where there are no stores gas stations, mini marts, or whatever.  Any ranch house may be behind a locked gate, out of sight, and miles off the road.  As far as the filter goes those tend to be the places where the filter is useless because there just isn't any surface water.

I have used a water filter a lot for backpacking and other trips, but have not found it useful on most bike tours.  It was of so little use that I mave mailed it home in the days that I carried a pump type filter and have usually not carried one since then.  I did find one useful on the SC route to get ice cold water from snow melt mountain streams when the air was 100F, but found it useless on the ST and the TA.

I have not been touring during the pandemic, but have heard of folks who said the soda fountains and rest rooms were closed in many places due to covid.  I do not know how widespread that was or is, but they said that they needed to buy a lot of bottled water.

Offline staehpj1

Re: Water?
« Reply #26 on: January 01, 2022, 09:19:00 am »
Thanks again everyone for the input.

I'll try a water filter. They don't seem to do much for chemicals. I'll try it out on some day trips from different ground water sources and see how hard/practical it is to use, see how the water tastes and see if I can give myself the shits.

I'll also try to reposition and carry more water on the frame. But I don't want the handling or personality of the bike to be altered too much. Dragging a trailer seems less psychologically cumbersome than to much weight on the front end. I don't want to hate my bike.
The filter will work great for making water save to drink when it comes to bacteria.  I have drank from shallow nasty mud puddles without issue.  Don't drink mine runoff with heavy metals.  It does nothing for that.  The problem is that you have to have surface water to filter.  Usually where I have toured where there wasn't a tap there wasn't much surface water either. Most of the remote places without resupply were in the desert or dry plains.  So the filter is great where it is actually useful but in most touring situations it is useless because when you don't have tap water you don't have water to filter.

The handling of the bike will only be impacted while you are carrying extra water.  Typically ou only need to carry extra water a day at a time here and there.  Also you use it up throughout the day, so the weight will reduce quickly as you drink.  Halfway through the day you will be down to a fairly normal load.

It just doesn't become a big deal unless you are in need of carrying multiple days of water. and you can usually manage to keep it to 24 hours in my experience.  Personally if it gets beyound two days of water I'd start to rethink the trip and wonder if I could arrange for a cache of water along the way, or catch a ride, or do a different route.  I know that I find it a bigger issue for backpacking and I just choose to not do some trips that I otherwise would if there is no other way than to carry multiple days of water or weeks of food.  I might have been more willing to be a pack mule when I was younger, but these days as an old geezer  I refuse to.

Offline froze

Re: Water?
« Reply #27 on: January 01, 2022, 03:16:53 pm »
I've heard from other touring people I spoke to that they carry about a 1/2 a day of extra water just in case, and they are aways stopping to refill even if only one bottle is empty.  I carry currently about 176 ounces of water, that is the water I start out with and it lasts all day and into the morning the following day and into mid day, but for backup I put 2 store bought plastic water bottles in my panniers, just in case, and I have that filter.  But I always plan the trips so that I will be near water.  I'm sort of at a loss myself if I was out in the desert and it took 3 days to find water!  Ouch!  But I would think with prudent route planning that shouldn't become a problem.

I carry the filter because I know people who have done extreme backpacking and bike camping and they all recommended having one just in case.

In the desert you have to learn survival skills to find water, which I'm admittedly not really good at, but they do have stuff on the internet that one should research if they know they're going to be in that situation.  I think if I were about to head into that sort of situation, I would start out by stocking up on water, yes water is heavy but so is carrying out a dead body!  So, I would probably put 4 store bought plastic bottles of water in the bottom of each pannier, so that would be 8 bottles, with two more going into each of my handlebar bag bottle holders, a lot more weight but as one person said you would be going through the water and eventually losing that weight.   But using survival skills to find water in a desert is a last-ditch effort to stay alive, and what water you do find, especially during the dry seasons, is scant to none!  you might get a few drops from certain plants, but not enough to sustain you for a day, and digging into the desert sand near a plant will yield nothing.

I don't like carrying a Camelback so I probably wouldn't do that, since that will make your back not only tired but hot.  I have one of those, a small 70-ounce version I used when I lived in the Mojave Desert of Calif, but I never liked it except for it carrying the extra water I needed, but I didn't have a touring bike back then so I relied on by two water bottles that the bike could carry plus the Camelback.  Now my touring bike can carry 5 bottles on the frame and fork, I use those Arundel bottle holders and can carry 4 32-ounce bottles, plus the underside of the down tube can carry a 16-ounce bottle.  Plus, the two 16.9-ounce store bought water bottles. 

I sort of mislead in my earlier post, my Arundel bottle cages can carry up to about 41-ounce bottles, I don't have any 41-ounce bottles, I only have 4 32-ounce bottles and one 16-ounce bottle I use on my camping trips, those are insulated steel bottles too so I don't have hot water to drink an hour or two into a ride.  The bottles are kind of heavy but I was willing to pay for the weight penalty to avoid hot water.

I went bike camping all that year of the covid shut down, and I was able to find water.  I went into a McDonalds that had the drive thru only open, and rode the bike up to the drive thru and they gave me a large water with ice for free and I filled up an empty bottle with it that I had finished off during the ride up to that point.  Gas stations with mini marts stayed open too so they could sell gas, they had water not only in bottles but at the fountains and even outside spigots could be used if necessary, in addition to plenty of ice and other assorted drinks in the fridges. the state parks had their stores open and they had water, other drinks, not to mention water at the spigots around the camp grounds, and they had plenty of ice which melts down into water.  Plus, those campgrounds had lakes, but I didn't have to use the filter anyways since there was plenty of water.

I wouldn't personally map a route where I know I could be without a source of water or any sort, or some other liquids for more than 2 days during the ride.

Offline Westinghouse

Re: Water?
« Reply #28 on: January 01, 2022, 04:36:45 pm »
The need for water is a vital concern. The thing is this. I have Bicycle across the continent of North America five times east to west. I have also bicycle over the roads all around the United States and some in Canada and Mexico. I have cycled extensively in Europe and Asia and the former Soviet union. The availability of water was never a problem. With a little planning and foresight in remote areas it is not a problem. However, Cycling long distances over dirt and gravel roads in remote areas is a different matter. I have never done that so I have never been presented with the challenge of finding water in those circumstances.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Water?
« Reply #29 on: January 01, 2022, 06:08:56 pm »
I carry a water filter when backpacking, but never when cyclotouring on mostly paved roads. First, there’s the problem Pete mentioned of chemical pollutants. And then there’s just the annoyance factor of scrambling down some brushy riverbank in my cycling clothes.

But the biggest reason is that with just a tiny amount of planning, it’s unnecessary.