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Water Filter Buying Guide for Campers and Hikers

Water, water everywhere you go, but not a drop to drink unless your packing a quality water filter. This is a vitally important piece of gear because you are literally trusting your health — perhaps even your life — to it. Get a good one.

Portable water filtration can go everywhere you can go. Today’s systems are so small, lightweight, and inexpensive, there’s never a reason to drink questionable water again. Whether you’re camping, hiking, fishing … doing anything outdoors … you can simple whip out a right-sized filter system for the situation and be certain the water you and your family are drinking is free of bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and even particulate matter. Filters make water taste better and smell better, too.

Filter first; then hydrate!

Life Straw Personal Water Filter

Perfect for hiking, camping, fishing, hunting, and more, this system weighs just two ounces, yet exceeds EPA standards for water filtration. Will filter up to 264 gallons by simply putting the lower part of the straw into the water source and sipping through it.


MSR MiniWorks EX Microfilter

Durable carbon/ceramic element ensures safe, taste-free drinking water even with heavy use. AirSpring Accumulator increases filtration speed up to 1-liter per minute. Can be cleaned repeatedly for full filter recovery with no tools required.


Platypus GravityWorks 4.0L Water Filter System

Just fill the source reservoir, hang it, and let gravity do the work. Delivers four liters of filtered water in just two and a half minutes without pumping. Keeps filtered water ready when you need it. Total capacity between source and filtered resevoirs is eight liters.


SteriPEN Classic 3 Handheld Water Purifier with Pre-Filter

Rather than a physical filter, the SteriPEN uses germicidal ultraviolet light to destroy more than 99.9 percent of viruses, bacteria, and protozoa (giardia) in water. Purifies one liter in 90 seconds. Runs on four AA batteries. The pre-filter system removes particulates and debris from water you then purify with SteriPEN.


Sawyer Products Personal Water Bottle Filter

34-ounce BPA-free water bottle with 0.1 micron absolute hollow fiber membrane filter inline. Designed for high flow rate for easy access to free, clean water. Includes 63mm cap, backwash syringe and two replacement straws.


Katadyn Pocket Water Filter

This is the Cadillac of camping water filters. It’s made of rugged, heavy duty materials and built to last a lifetime. Uses a silver-impregnated ceramic filter to remove all micro-organisms larger than 0.2 microns. It will purify approximately one quart of water per minute over its 13,000-gallon life expectancy.


Aquamira Frontier Straw Filter

Let’s you drink safely from any water source. BLU Line Parasite filter with up to 450 milliliters per minute flow rate. Use like a straw to pull the water through the filter. Weighs just one ounce. Filters 30 gallons of water.


RapidPure Explorer Camp 2.2-Liter Water Filtration System

Perfect size filtration system for a solo camp or camping couple. Reservoir holds 2.2 liters. Output is approximately 1.33 liters per minute. Small size is convenient … just 2.5-inch filter.


Katadyn Base Camp Pro 10L Water Filter System

Designed to serve the needs of an entire camp, the gravity feed system system has a flow rate of two liters per minute. All you do is fill, hang, and use. This is Katadyn’s highest capacity gravity filtration system. Comes with multiple quick connects to easily fill most reservoirs.


MSR Trailshot Microfilter Pocket Water Filter

Weighs only five ounces and is built to fit the stash pocket on your pack. One-hand operation filters approximately one liter per minute directly from any water source.


RapidPure Pioneer Water Filter Straw

The ultra-fast flow rate of the Rapid Pure Pioneer makes it comparable to drinking through a regular soda straw, expect this straw filters out 99.9999 percent of cryptosporidium, giardia, cysts, bacteria, and viruses … all without chemicals. Has a lifetime 7,000 gallon capacity and comes with its own carrying pouch.


Sawyer Products PointOne Squeeze Water Filter System

Complete water filtration system in one package. Highest level of filtration on the market. Bucket and faucet adapters in addition to hoses for open source filtration. Filter with built-in and removable push/pull cap. Comes with one 32-ounce BPA-free collapsible pouch. Backed by manufacturer’s limited lifetime warranty.


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