What to Drink on the Trek
If you are trekking with a responsible local crew and leader you may well find that you don't need to treat your drinking water as they should ensure that all water you drink in the tea houses is boiled for a sufficient length of time. However, it is a good idea to take additional precautions to be to be absolutely certain of avoiding waterborne bacteria and viruses. It is also a useful to have a supply of purification tablets handy for the occasions where you want to top up your water bottle from an untreated source. Generally, your water bottle/s will be filled each night with boiled water and this will cool overnight and become your main source of drinking water for the next day. It is up to you whether you carry one large bottle or two smaller ones or even use a water pouch instead. Metal water bottles do have the added advantage of doubling up as hot water bottles overnight which can be very welcome! How many tablets you need to take with you will therefore primarily depend on the size of your bottle/s, the length of the Everest trekking route and the make of tablets or drops you are using (read and follow the manufacturer's instructions carefully). Please note that from 1st of October iodine-based tablets and drops will no longer be available and you should look to use chlorine dioxide products instead.
Other general advice we give regarding food and drink is: 1. Do not drink tap water or use it to brush your teeth. 2. If there are jugs of water in your hotel room, we advise you to purify this. 3. Avoid ice cubes, milk and ice cream. 4. If possible, wipe your plate and cutlery with a paper napkin. 5. Carry a small bottle of anti bacterial hand gel. 6. Do not buy cold food from street vendors - only eat in town if it is cooked in front of you. 7. Eat only fruit that can be peeled. Hope this is helpful, Jez - have a great trek in October. Kirsty
There was an interesting question recently asked by Jez in the comments to Rosanna's "kit list for the everest base camp trek" post. I thought I would reply to it thoroughly and post the answer for all to see. Jez asked about how many iodine tablets he would need for the Everest Base Camp Trek, and how much water he can expect to get through.
It is very important to remain hydrated whilst on an Everest trek so don't ration your water intake and take full advantage of the seemingly endless flasks of black tea (or instant coffee) that are available at every tea house stop along the route. You are likely to drink as much tea as you do water.