To enjoy backpacking in the woods, you need to have clean, safe water that doesn’t contain nasty chemicals. The last thing you want to do is drink from a stream with the chance of getting a bacterial infection, or worse, botulism poisoning. Filters are the key to keeping your backcountry drinking water clean, and there are lots of options to choose from.
Many backpacking enthusiasts suffer from the dreaded thirst problem, which can be a real killer during a long day hike or a long weekend camping trip. To prevent dehydration, backpacking water filters are a must-have for long-term travelers. They are significantly more efficient than the micro-filters that are included with most water bottles and provide about a 5-fold or more increase in the amount of clean water that can be filtered.
Backpacking is a fantastic way to get outside, commune with nature and reconnect with the outdoors. It is also a demanding outdoors activity. From the nutrition to the sleep to the hiking and camping itself, there is a lot to worry about. We have put together a list of the best backpacking water filters on the market to help you quench your thirst.
Luke Cuenco 05.12.21 One of the most important pieces of equipment no hiker can be without is a good water filter. Although there are sources of drinking water, such as. B. fast flowing wells with clean water, rainwater is also an option. Despite these options, they are not always available, and the modern hiker needs clean water quickly to keep up and replenish the body’s water needs. Let’s take a look at some of the best backpack water filters you can buy for your next adventure. Backpack water filters must have several key elements to be considered good. First of all, they must be able to filter solids, viruses and bacteria from the water you want to drink. Secondly, they should also be light and comfortable enough to take with you on a camping trip. There are also water purification tablets, but we’ll leave those out of this list for the sake of clarity. Table of contents
1. Katadyn Hiker Pro water filter/pump – Editor’s Choice
The Katadyn Pro is a reusable water pump that is slightly larger than the palm of your hand and comes in an ultra-light 11 oz. case. Ounces are worth pounds when you have to carry something all day in the wild, and the Katadyn Hiker Pro lives up to its other advantages. The pump and filter can be cleaned on site and have an additional filter layer against large dirt particles that can damage the sensitive internal carbon filter. The Hiker Pro can also be connected directly to water bottles from Camelbak and Platypus. So you don’t have to open your bag to fill the Hiker Pro’s tank – just plug it in and pump. The Katadyn Hiker Pro comes standard with a clear pump, a set of filters and adapters for attaching water bottles. The Katadyn Hiker Pro is available for $84.95. Pro/ Pumps water directly into your hydration pack or water bottle without adding water. Disadvantages/Can take up more space than other filters on this list and requires expensive replacement filters. Conclusion / Ideal for serious hikers on long trips where water availability and quality are uncertain.
2. Platypus GravityWorks High Capacity Water Filtration System – Selection for large volumes
The GravityWorks 4 and 6 liter water filters are ideal for groups of campers who need a clean water source. The in-line filter can filter out 99.9% of pathogenic bacteria, protozoa and other viruses. Requiring no pumping or suction from the user, the GravityWorks uses a gravity filtration system that can filter 4 liters of water in just 2.5 minutes or 6 liters in just under 4 minutes. This is a great option for large groups who are camping and need lots of clean water for cooking, cleaning and washing up. Each cartridge filter is designed to filter up to 1,500 gallons. The Platypus GravityWorks filtration system is available for $109.95 for the 4.0 liter version or $181.99 for the 6.0 liter version. Advantages / High filtration volume in a small housing Cons / Requires gravity and time for water filtration In short, the best application for large volume water filtration for groups of campers.
3. LifeStraw personal water filter – economical version
You’ve probably heard of the Life Straw water filter, which is probably one of the most common or well-known portable water filters on the market. The LifeStraw is different because it is small and light and does not require any additional tools or peripherals to operate. The Life Straw can last up to 5 years with occasional use, but Life Straw recommends replacing it about every 2 months with constant use. Based on my experience with the rescue straw, I have to say that since there is no pump to push the water through the filter, it is quite an ordeal to get the water out, which requires a lot of sucking. Still, you won’t find a more compact and portable filter, and this is one of the items I recommend always having on hand in case of an emergency. The LifeStraw personal water filter can be purchased from online retailers for just $12 per filter when purchased in a bundle. Pro/ The most portable and simple filter on the list. Cons/ Requires strong suction to pass large amounts of water – may not be suitable for children or people with low absorption. Conclusion/ An essential and potentially vital item that should be in every hiker’s emergency kit.
4. Sawyer water filter 0.1 – Portable pick
The Sawyer 0.1 water filter is the optimal choice when it comes to versatility and reusability. The 0.1 filter requires no replacement and can be field flushed by reversing the water flow, restoring up to 98% of filter capacity when flow begins to stagnate. The PointOne kit includes three squeeze bags that can be filled with water, attached to the removable filter lid and poured directly into a bottle, jar or mouth. If you don’t want to use bags, the 0.1 can be adjusted to fit almost any plastic bottle with a water port, and it can even be used as a built-in filter for your water bottle. Each Sawyer 0.1 filter is tested 3 times during production to ensure the highest quality filtration. Each filter is tested to have a pore size of 0.1 microns or less, meaning harmful bacteria, protozoa and cysts are virtually impossible to pass through. The Sawyer 0.1 water filter can be purchased for 36.87. For / High versatility and portability, reusability The counter pockets / compression pockets wear out after a while Conclusion Large reusable water filter for trekking and survival
5. SteriPEN Ultra – the most advanced
It is the most advanced and modern water treatment method available today. Steripen Ultra is light, fast and destroys viruses, bacteria and almost everything that can contaminate water. However, a clean water source or special pre-filter is required, as Steripen does not filter turbid water. The Steripen is powered by a rechargeable battery that, when fully charged, is expected to last up to 50 treatments on a single charge and 300 charge/discharge cycles before the lithium polymer battery needs to be replaced. On paper, the Steripen looks practical, and if it works as intended, it’s all you need to travel to foreign countries where tap water is available but of questionable quality. However, I would carry a separate battery for the water filtration. Steripen Ultra can be purchased for $109.95. Advantages / Fast filtration and compact design Cons / Runs on batteries and cannot be used directly with sprayers, does not filter solids. In short, it’s ideal for treks where water of questionable quality is common, but it does require pre-filtration.
Water filtration process
Water filtration can be done in many ways, but the most effective way to filter water in nature is to use a filter that allows the water to flow through itself, trapping solids and impurities in the filter before directing them to the clean water on the other side. Methods such as solar panels and boiling water are also effective ways to purify water, but they are often time-consuming and labor-intensive, and not really suitable for camping conditions.
How much water do you need?
That’s a good question. It depends on the person and the weather, but it is generally believed that for two hours of hiking you should carry a liter of water. If you do some simple calculations, you will see that this amount increases quickly, so that it is often necessary to bring a water filter, unless you like to carry liters of water on your back for miles.
Do I need a water filter for travel or backpacking?
Unless you can carry all the water you need, including a supply for emergencies. Remember that filters cannot filter out viruses, so be careful.
How long will my filter last?
Most don’t have a limited lifespan, unless it’s a disposable filter or the filter gets clogged or brittle as it ages. You must be willing to travel several times over several years.
Is the river water safe to drink?
While untreated river water may seem safe, you simply can’t know what’s in the water when you’re outside. The most dangerous substances in water are those you can’t see, and the only reliable way to make sure your drinking water is safe is to purify it by filtering it before you drink it.
About the author
Luke Cuenco. Luke writes regularly for TheFirearmBlog.com, OvertDefense.com, AllOutdoor.com, and of course .com. Luke is a competitive shooter, gun enthusiast, reloader, outdoorsman and generally interested in all things outdoors. Luke is also a licensed private pilot and is in the process of obtaining his commercial pilot’s license in hopes of becoming a professional pilot. Luke’s other interests are all things aerospace and defense, and American Conservatory activities. Instagram: @ballisticaviation YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/BallisticAviation thefirearmblog.com/blog/author/luke-c/ overtdefense.com/author/luke-c/ alloutdoor.com/author/lukec/ We are committed to finding, researching and recommending the best products. We receive commissions for purchases you make through the links in our product reviews. Learn more about how it works.The ultimate goal of any backpacking trip is to have a great experience, whether it be by getting out in nature and seeing the sights, or by spending time with friends and family. For most backpackers, that means bringing their own water on the trip.. Read more about backpacker magazine best water filter and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best water filter for backpacking?
When you’re dehydrated, you feel thirsty and need to drink more. But, if you’re drinking contaminated water, it’s not helping you. The best backpacking water filter for backpacking will keep your water safe and clean, filtering out viruses and bacteria before it reaches your stomach. Choosing a water filter for backpacking is often the number one thing that holds people back from enjoying their camping experiences. It’s a simple problem with a simple solution—but the choice of water filter can be a huge deciding factor on how enjoyable a camping trip will be.
What is the best survival water purification system?
When you’re ready to start your next outdoor adventure, good water can be hard to find. For many outdoor enthusiasts, the key to having real water is purification—a process of filtering water through a material that removes all impurities. There are a lot of ways to purify water, but a few stand out as the best. If you haven’t yet made your own water filter, it might be time to do so! We’ll explore the best backpacking water filters that you can order for a few dollars, and we’ll also discuss some of the less expensive options for good boof water.
Can you filter lake water to drink?
You don’t need to carry a water filter in the backcountry. For most campers that means they’ll get by with a portable filter that can be used hundreds of miles from a source of clean water. Do you drink lake water instead of clear tap water? Do you avoid water that comes out of a faucet at the city park or hiking trail because it “smells” bad? Do you want to get the “best” water filters so you can drink lake water and feel safe about it? If so, take a look at the backpacking water filters. There are backpacking water filters that are designed for clearing out water that has been living in a lake or stream for days, weeks, or even months.
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