An old friend emailed me to tell me about some of her trip to India. I think in total she spent about three weeks there, and during the whole time she said she never bought a bottle of water, and drank water from the tap in a bottle she got there. For a moment I thought that she must have the most stainless steel constitution in the whole world, because the rumor is that tap water and gringos visiting India don’t go well together. I’ve been to some places in the United States that had water that didn’t “agree” with me, per se, for lack of a better phrase.
Again, I gotta chock up a win for the ninja of light, ultraviolet light. Do you think that UV light’s ninja suit is indigo colored, or traditional black?
This friend told me about the SteriPen – a device that uses ultraviolet light to kick the butts of nasty, nasty life screwer-uppers like Botulism, Cholera, Dysentary and Typhoid from water. Have you ever seen what Cholera does to someone’s insides? I’ve only seen video, but holy crap. She’s no BS artist, so I gotta believe it worked for her. I believe they had some rural locations in their India trip – they visited Delhi, Rishikesh, Kankal, Varanasi, and Haridwar – some of these locations have awful pollution problems with their water. Hydro-Photon, the company that makes and sells the SteriPen, recommends it for emergency situations, military folk, people traveling, camping folk, and anyone else who needs to make nasty water drinkable.
The SteriPen sits for about a minute and a half in your water bottle – and there are three flavors of the pen. The UV lamp is rated at 8,000 hours, and there’s even a solar case for charging the batteries if you choose to get that option. I’ve done a lot of back country camping where it wasn’t too advantageous to take extra water – and I think those water purifier tablets and drops that supposedly kill protozoa and microbes taste like crap. SteriPen is taste and smell-less, which is already a big plus. It’s small, with is another plus, because I’ve usually got enough beef jerky and Cheetos in my camping pack for a weekend outside.
I found a few videos on the pen – here’s a decent one:
There are three different models of the SteriPen, ranging from about 70 bucks to about a hundred. There’s the Classic model (the basic package), the Protector model (marketed towards military personnel), and the Freedom model (which seems to be geared towards outdoorsy use). There’s also an Adventurer model, which is about half the size of the Classic, and an Emergency Pack, geared for emergency situations. Oh, and the Ultra — USB rechargeable, no batteries needed! Several package deals exist too – with a solar charger, several carrying case and accessories deals, and a few others – check out the line of products here.
I’m going to pick one of these up soon – if you already have one and use it, please post in the comments! I really want to hear your stories of the device.