We all know the dangers of beaver fever (giardiasis), right?

Drinking water from a stream, or worse, a stagnant lake, can mean big trouble for your digestive tract. In fact, it can be quite a serious affliction — doubly so if you can't get to medical attention quickly. At best, it'll ruin your trip.

Modern water purification tablets have come a long way since those awful iodine tablets, and filters work well too — but what if you are all out of tablets, you don't have a filter and you need safe water? You boil it. Here's how to do it right:

• Scoop up a small amount of water and bring it to a boil in your pot. Swirl it around to disinfect the pot, then pour it out.

• Fill the pot up with water and bring it to a rolling boil. Once it's boiling rapidly, it's disinfected.

• Pour out a little bit of the water to disinfect the rim of the pot.

• Fill water bottles — but don't refill the bottle you used to collect the contaminated water!

• Allow it to cool (duh).

• Drink! The water will be flat from this process, however, you can put a little life back into it by shaking it up. Or toss in some Gatorade powder. Whatever works for you!
Plan your next great adventure with explore!
Off the beaten path locations, tips and tricks, interviews with intrepid explorers and more.