A Winter Water Challenge
Nov 25, 2020 at 12:52 am #3685653
First a crazy idea…
Carry a 12 oz Scandium framed 357 revolver. It doubles as minimalist bear protection. Shoot the ice and let it shatter (use lead free ammo for health and weight savings). Don’t forget ear protection!
More serious idea…
That looks tough. I’m assuming that water is freezing as it comes out of the ground. There may not be much flow anywhere so the ice screw and suction filter might not work.
I think the best solution would be a hammer or hatchet to break it up and a larger pot to melt it in. Not the lightest but possibly the more efficient. Maybe a suction filter as well for when you do have some running water.
Extra weight to increase efficiency during the limited daylight hours is probably worth it in the situation. Also if you’re able to drop caches you might leave hot water in a cheap thermos. It might still be liquid when you get to it.Nov 25, 2020 at 12:55 am #3685654
I have a philosophical aversion to caches. I’m kind of an unsupported-is-purity sort. I know, it’s a disease.
Love the gun idea though. May have to explore that one. #2A for practical reasons? I’m in.Nov 25, 2020 at 1:49 am #3685658
357 revolver. It doubles as minimalist bear protection.
In mid-winter when the temps are way-sub-zero?
I reckon the bears might be all hibernating – if they have any sense.
CheersNov 25, 2020 at 4:38 am #3685662Ryan “Rudy” OuryBPL Member
@ohdogg79Locale: Central FL - Ocala NF
Couple things… first a strategy question. How much water are you trying to get out of the stream? Are you looking for a way to not carry much in your pack and drink up as you cross multiple streams per day? Or are you looking to gather a bunch while in camp that you then carry? Seems to me that would inform the appropriate gathering method.
second, I haven’t seen anyone mention SALT. You could potentially use salt to either “bore” a small hole allowing a small suction device to be used… or breakup a larger section to melt or gain access for a larger scoop. Obv you’d need to be careful not to “contaminate” your drinking water with it.
edit- just a quick note that I’ve lived in FL less than 2 yr. Lived in IL & CO for 35 yr and did lots of winter camping so do have some snow experience :)Nov 25, 2020 at 6:06 am #3685665Chris RBPL Member
Thermite?Nov 25, 2020 at 6:32 am #3685667Marcus GSpectator
Will there be small lakes too or just creeks? If it’s possible to use an ice saw that will spare you a lot of energy. This guy really works the ice and has i BIG ice saw: https://youtu.be/7fVi7oz751U
Oslo, NORWAYNov 25, 2020 at 7:45 am #3685669obx hikerBPL Member
So the question is do the conditions dictate the route, or does the ‘solution’ yet to be found allow you to dictate the route?
Good one.Nov 25, 2020 at 10:00 am #3685689
Forgive me for jumping in, here – especially to make my first post on this forum in response to a partial jest – but I thought I would include this little tidbit: bulllets shot into/onto solid ice tend to create small, explosive geysers of frozen shrapnel, and – as alluded-to – they try to deafen you in the process. They usually don’t crack the ice or make large, easily-meltable chips. The famous “bullet spinning on ice” video shows what happens; you get a vertical plume of fragmented ice chips and a possibly-interesting ricochet.
End of tidbit. That said: I like the ice screw idea. Couple that with a siphon filter and you’re done… unless there is no liquid water to be found. A pick might be the best idea in that eventuality.Nov 25, 2020 at 10:35 am #3685699
@ryan “do you pound the knife in, or drive it in with some type of hammer? Or chip out ice chunks that then need melting?”
The knife (BK2 and the like) has enough mass and stocky with a good handle I just pound a hole in the ice. Did that recently up in the BWCAW to get water. The pommel is flat enough a sturdy club can be used also to hammer it in. Use the knife to acquire a nice club. In defense of such a extreme knife, it’s just a tool I carry when I anticipate conditions warranting it. Not for everyone, and certainly not all the time. A small 3 oz fixed slicing knife has become its companion blade.
Note the UL lanyard to save weight ….. ;-)Nov 25, 2020 at 12:26 pm #3685720
Roger bears are out in surprisingly cold weather, I believe lack of food triggers hibernation more then cold.
Bonzo yes there would be some issues shooting ice but I want Ryan to try it (on video).
Seriously though this is a tough situation. If it is like spots I’ve been there probably won’t be a lot of water. Shallow water can freeze completely. So unless there are significant rivers or ponds we need to think about melting ice. I still think a tool and a lot of fuel is the way. It might add a couple pounds but days are short in winter. Better to carry a bit more and move efficiently then spend an hour breaking up ice with a knifeNov 25, 2020 at 12:43 pm #3685725
I thought hibernation was (mostly) due to day length, but I don’t have a doctorate in ursine biology so don’t listen to me.
If you really want someone to pop a 125-gr. round into a slab of ice, I can try to make that happen. I have the scandi .357 and the 125’s and a firing range, so all I need is the ice. Fair warning, though; unless it’s a big slab like you would find in a creek, it’ll probably crack. Or, I can try 158’s in a less-insane platform that won’t cause me to regret my life choices as soon as I pull the trigger. Your choice… unless you want Ryan to regret his life choices. I’m fine with that, too.Nov 25, 2020 at 1:28 pm #3685728
I rather like the thermite idea. A short length of fine magnesium ribbon to start it. Yes, I have played with both in times past. Once the ice has been broken in one place, the rest becomes easier.
CheersNov 25, 2020 at 1:38 pm #3685732
@cameron “I still think a tool and a lot of fuel is the way. It might add a couple pounds but days are short in winter. Better to carry a bit more and move efficiently then spend an hour breaking up ice with a knife”
You brought up a good point and I totally agree – if there’s too much ice to punch through to water or crack off slabs with a couple blows, you need a better tool.Nov 25, 2020 at 2:04 pm #3685737
@rcaffin – How about detcord? That would make ice-carving very quick and easy!Nov 25, 2020 at 2:26 pm #3685740
Really – I would like some kind of cord I could lay a 6 inch circle on a foot of ice, light it, and have it quietly cut a plug of ice out. Flames and sparks for bonus points.Nov 25, 2020 at 5:14 pm #3685774
Detcord – with or without blasting cap on the end. I would prefer without. In short lengths.
Laid out in a circle on the ice – not a bad idea in fact.
ASSUMPTION: that the user knows what he is doing! If not, DON’T.
CheersNov 25, 2020 at 6:32 pm #3685793
And I thought I was a crazy redneck….
Fun fact a (retired) Special Forces officer told me they would burn C4 to hear meals because it didn’t have the flames of a wood fire. Apparently it was frowned upon though. Would have been the 80s I believe. Modern MREs have probably changed this.
Bonzo I have made many poor choices in my life including heavy loads in that Scandium .357. I also have a 6.8 lb 375 Ruger Magnum. No need to suffer for my entertainment. But I think Ryan going from SUL to blowing up ice with a gun or det cord would be hilarious.Nov 25, 2020 at 6:38 pm #3685797
Dunno about that. Consider weight of axe vs weight of solid G-pick vs weight of mid-calibre gun vs weight of 12″ of detcord.
Me, I think the detcord would be Light, if not UL.
But if you don’t know how to handle detcord, don’t do it! You could blow your hand (head) off.
CheersNov 25, 2020 at 6:44 pm #3685799
My dad has a fun story about an irritating CO on a firebase and how the rope for said CO’s laundry line was suddenly and inexplicably replaced with another kind of “rope”; evidently, the resulting confetti and nervous condition were something to behold.
Scandium is great for SUL folks; it carries wonderfully! Just don’t, you know, use it. ;)
Back on topic: if a tool was to be used, could something be easily made that’s lighter than the commercial options? Steel pick/chisel head with a light wooden or carbon handle? Hell, for that matter…why not just use a regular ice pick? Isn’t that what they’re made for?
(Oh yeah, by the way: you can, in fact, use certain plastics as meal heaters. That’s true.)Nov 25, 2020 at 9:20 pm #3685821Paul LeavittBPL Member
You must have an Ice axe in your climbing bag. Won’t that work?Nov 25, 2020 at 9:25 pm #3685822
Ice climbing tools aren’t great for chipping away ice. They either stick into the ice, or bounce off. They just aren’t “heavy” enough to do damage. That’s by design, of course.
I’m going to take a bunch of “tools” back out to that location over the weekend and test them. I think the ability to hack out chunks and melt them with a powerful stove is the leading option right now, and then have enough water carry capacity that I’ll just suck up the water weight, so I don’t have to do this multiple times a day.
I’ll report back!
I’ll google detonators and explosives later on. Sounds fun, but I imagine it’s prohibited, we are still in Stage II fire restrictions.Nov 25, 2020 at 9:44 pm #3685825
<p style=”text-align: left;”>How about a titanium ice pick?!?!</p>
I literally never knew such a thing existed…much less multiple different options of it.Nov 25, 2020 at 9:49 pm #3685826
OMG that Ti ice pick. 1.68 ounces. You’ll clearly need a hammer for it but based on the dimensions it’s clearly strong enough to deal with serious force. Hmmm…
Also this review:Nov 26, 2020 at 7:31 am #3685848
When I first said “pick” I was thinking of an actual pick, like a geologist’s pick/hammer, and then when I said “ice pick” I was thinking of one of those things that bartenders and sexy serial killers use…but then I thought that a conventional ice pick might be too light and small to chip solid river/stream ice. So, I figured that there might be an industrial-duty pick, or some kind of tool that ice sculptors use, and I did a search for something like “heavy ice pick”…and ironically, the uber-light titanium model was the first thing that came up. Furthermore, there there were several titanium ice picks on the market, from $35 to $85 just on that initial search…but I wasn’t sure if they would be 1) worth that money for the weight savings, or 2) that much stronger than a normal ice pick. So, I weighed the regular ice pick that I keep under the pillow in case Sharon Stone comes over and discovered that it was a few ounces heavier and significantly smaller in diameter/length…but it has a WAY better grip than the handle-less vampire stake above. It also has a metal end-cap that is the diameter of the handle, and which offers a surface for legit hammering. So, the vampire stake kind of fails in that regard, but all hope isn’t lost: not only do we now live in a world where there are lightweight titanium ice picks, but also one in which there are tactical ice picks…most of which weigh in at no more than two or three ounces. Seriously…look it up. It’s both interesting and somewhat frightening, the amount of work that some companies have placed into perfecting what is, in essence, a prison shiv.Nov 26, 2020 at 9:11 am #3685861Ken LarsonBPL Member
@kenlarsonLocale: Western Michigan
Welldoit 9″ Stainless Steel Ice Pick with Wooden Handle and Sheath Kitchen Tool
SIZE: Length 9″,width 0.7″
SAFE COVER: When not in use, wooden cover can protect people from being hurt;
EASY GRIP: Wooden handle provides a comfortable and easy grip that won’t slip when used;
PORTABLE: Easy to carry
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