CamelBak, the company that perfected the hydration pack, has recently released a new water bottle with a built in purification system. Dubbed the All Clear, this system uses ultraviolet light to kill 99.9% of all bacteria, viruses and parasites found in water, making it safe to drink no matter where you are.
The All Clear features a tough plastic 750 milliliter water bottle with a high tech lid that incorporates the ultraviolet light, a small LCD screen, and an on-off button. Travelers simply fill the bottle with water, screw the cap on and hit the power button. That will turn on the UV light and start a sixty second countdown timer. While that timer is ticking away, you simply rotate the bottle 180º to circulate the water, ensuring that all of the liquid is exposed to the bacteria killing rays. Once the timer stops the water is safe to drink.
UV purification systems obviously aren't new but what makes the All Clear unique is the fact that the light is integrated so nicely into the the lid of the water bottle. After all, we rarely go anywhere without a good water bottle these days and the fact that that same bottle can clear harmful bacteria from the water we drink is a convenience that is hard to deny.
CamelBak has integrated some other excellent features into the All Clear as well. For instance, the UV light is powered by a rechargeable batter that is good for about 80 uses before needing to be plugged in. The battery can also be charged via USB, which means it can be plugged directly into your computer, a battery pack or even a portable solar charger. That makes it perfect for those wanting to travel light. The USB charging cable is included and the package also includes a second lid – one that is more suitable for drinking – and a nice carrying case.
The All Clear is a well built and well designed purification system and it is difficult to find fault with it in any way. CamelBak has made it a snap to use and the powerful battery and light are good for 10,000 total purifications. The only real knock I have against the product is that the UV lid is a bit on the heavy side, especially when compared to the competition, although it is by no means particularly large.
If you're in the market for a new water purification system, and you're tired of using iodine tablets, then perhaps its time to move up to a UV solution. The All Clear from CamelBak is a fantastic option that costs just $99, which is a small price to pay to ensure the water you're drinking on the trail is safe.
Tip: I'd recommend using the bottle to purify several liters of water at one time, pouring each dose into a hydration bladder in your pack, and then stowing the bottle for future use. That way you have all the water you need for the day close at hand and you can hike for hours without having to find more.