By: Blonde Two

Mr Blonde Two has recently been very generous (and trusting) and lent Six-Foot-Blonde the water filter that he bought for a trip to Iceland in 2007 (MSR MiniWorks EX). Six-Foot requires it for a canoe trip to Scotland later this year.

Whilst we were in Up-North delivering said filter (ceramic and carbon) and previously mentioned canoe; we decided to test the cleansing power of this clever device  on the unsavoury looking waters of the Rochdale Canal.

BLONDE WARNING: DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!! As any canoeist or kayaker will tell you, river or canal water is dangerous stuff; as it can harbour Leptospirosis (Weil’s Disease), usually via the medium of rats’ urine. For more information –

Our experiment went like this:
1. Take your MSR water filter and test it on some tap water. You will find that you have something even nicer than Malvern water to drink (don’t tell anyone that I said that!)

2. Take a bottle of clear tap water and an empty bottle to the Rochdale Canal (other canals are available).

3. Marvel at the brown colour of the water and the complete stupidity of your idea.

Clean v Dirty 1

4. Carry on anyway and pump (or ask the blokes to pump) the water through the filter into the empty bottle.

Filtering 1

5. Compare the colour of the water in the two bottles. We were impressed by the clarity of the filtered water.  (We were also impressed that Six-Foot appears to have three heads in this photo.)

Clean v Filtered 1

6. Be really stupidly Blonde, and take a sip of the filtered Rochdale Canal water.

Drinking Rochdale 1

7. Go home, brush your teeth, feel a bit sick, look up the relative sizes of Leptospirosis bacteria and the holes in the filter (not favourable), panic a bit, eat your tea, write a blog post and marvel at your commitment to your blog fans’ entertainment.