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How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:38 am
by balance
Hydration at altitude has critical affects such as: How well your heart pumps blood, the condition of your legs and feet, your sleep. Here's a two part question:

What sort of container do you use (Nalgene, hydration pack, recycled plastic bottle, etc.)? What electrolyte supplement do you employ, if any (Cytomax, Gatorade, Hammer, etc.)? I've worked as a health and fitness instructor, and find that current research and opinions cover a wide range, so support your ideas with as much information and experience as possible.

I'll kick things off. I use a Nalgene bottle, because its easier to keep clean when using electrolyte supplements, and carry a simple Platypus bag for extra capacity making camp. I used Gookinaide (now Vitalyte) because it's relatively low in sodium. It worked fine. I now use EFS 1st Endurance because it has high electrolyte content, with dextrose and sucrose for sustained energy. They also claim better bioavailabity and absorption.

Who really knows? This complex, evolving, confusing subject confounds experts and everyday people alike. Don't expect a lot of agreement, but maybe we'll learn something useful about this subject from the wealth of HST experience.


Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 1:26 pm
by ucangler
Nalgene bottle for me as they are compatible with my Steripen (UV treatment) and its corresponding prefilter.

I dont take any additional sodium or potassium supplements as I find my food has a sufficient amount of electrolytes.

Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 5:07 pm
by Jimr
Nalgene filled with water.

How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 5:25 pm
by AlmostThere
I would be dead of dehydration without my platypus big zip. never drank enough using water bottles.

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Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Fri Jul 18, 2014 9:06 pm
by longri
I used to use a nalgene bottle. The original ones weigh over 100g so I switched to empty 1 liter soda bottles (about 40g). Lately I've been using a bottle that was sold with water in it. It's very thin material so it's a little lighter (30g) than a plastic coke bottle. It's also got a pull top for drinking. So I can reach back, pull out the bottle with one hand and drink and then pop it back into the side pouch. It's basically one motion and I don't have to break stride to use it.

Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 6:06 am
by freestone
A Sea to Summit collapsable one shot cup, I keep in my pocket to dip into select streams and lakes. I'm a non filtering sipper. On longer waterless stretches, the Gatoraide style bottle. No electrolyte supplements, but that is a good idea for people who drink, pee, and sweat a lot. Otherwise, I snack on my dried apricots and avoid sugary empty calorie foods for electrolytes. An imbalance in electrolytes can make you feel really crappy! I know that many folks advise forcing fluids to ward of AMS, but I believe in never forcing anything, and only drink when I'm thirsty, and only enough to quench my thirst.

Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:17 am
by Eiprahs
Our hydration strategy for hot and dry trail conditions, 2 to 4 people:

Plan trip and daily start time so that the most strenuous segments are done mornings in shade--well, that's the plan.
Carry enough water for morning break on person--quantity per personal choice.
Sit down lunch and afternoon snack with shared beverage from pumped water--usually Crystal Light--approx 1 quart/person each break.
Dinner starts with soup, prepared dilute (6 cups water if instructions specify 4, with extra dehydrated vegies), and ends with unlimited extra beverages per personal choice--cocoa, tea, Alpine Aire Cider.

Open foods, bulk foods, and drink mixing container carried in food pack so that other packs remain food odor free. We don't always hike together, so we pre-arrange snack stopping places. Fastest person gets to pump water. We don't use electrolyte replenishment products or even carry packaged salt (never got used).

We use a 1.5 qt nalgene bottle for mixing drinks, soda/water bottles for carrying water.

Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 8:20 pm
by Jim F
I carry two platypi for day hikes and three for multi-day hikes. While hiking, I drink from one immediately after it is filled. I do not like to carry water unless it really seems necessary. I seem to tolerate sustained periods (say half a day) of mild to moderate dehydration fairly well. When camping away from a water source, I can fill up two or three platypi to make life easier around camp. Also, one platypus is devoted as a spare. A spare cap is also kept, as sometimes a cap ends up going over the waterfall.

When I did much bigger mileage in the 1970s, I used to purchase ERG (aka Gookinade) directly from Bill Gookin out of his San Diego residence on Wenrich Drive. A chemist, Bill supposedly tried to make ERG similar to human sweat. I think it was good stuff, but he ran a small family operation and was soon overwhelmed by big commercial enterprises.

Currently good alpine water is my favorite drink, sometimes with Crystal Light added.

Two to three cups of coffee with breakfast and one with dinner works for me.

If available, to conclude a hard day a slug of "vitamins" after dinner is never refused!

PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 6:50 am
by sheperd80
Platypus with 1 to 2 liters depending on the hike. And i bring 1 of the small Sawyer mini bags or a recycled soda bottle that fits the Sawyer. And i usually bring a frozen 12 oz gatorade or 2 which doubles as a cooling source for any fresh food i may bring.

Nothing scientific about it really but it works for me. I drink from the platypus while hiking and then fill up the sawyer bag/bottle and drink from that whenever i cross a source. This supplements whatever ive drank from the platypus without having to drop my pack.

I find that i rarely have to carry more than 1 liter in the platypus as long as ive got a trusted source or 2 along the way.

And i try to drink alot of water/gatorade on the way to trailhead and the night before to prehydrate.

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Re: How do you hydrate?

PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:57 am
by sparky
I use water bottles, I find they pack much nicer than anything as I can flatten them. I put 2 one liter bottles in the pack and keep a 16 oz bottle that I actually drink from.