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Squeeze filters are single stage filters that are good for removing bacteria and protozoa, but not viruses. However, squeeze filters typically slow down with use and must be back-flushed with a cleaning syringe regularly to maintain their flow rate. Some examples:. Gravity water filters make it possible to process larger quantities of water at once using the power of gravity.

Gravity filters are good for couples and small groups. An inline water filter uses a similar setup, but the user suck on the output hose rather than running it to clean bag. Bottle and straw filters usually use the same single stage, hollow fiber filters used by squeeze, gravity, and inline water filter systems.

The user sucks water stored in a bottle or directly from the water source through the filter, rather than transferring it to secondary storage. They are best used by individuals in places where water is abundant. Pump water filters filter out bacteria and protozoa, while pump water purifiers can also remove viruses.

They have hand pumps that force water through the filter and out to secondary storage for future use. While pump filters do require some elbow grease to operate, they usually filter water quite quickly and are suitable for use by couples as well as individuals.

Most have a pre-filter at the end of the hose that you drop into the water source to remove particulates and organic matter. They can be cleaned and replacement filters are usually available.

Chemical water purifiers are available in tablet or liquid form. The best chemical ingredient is chlorine dioxide, which has virtually no taste or color and kills bacteria, protzoa, and viruses. Chemical purification is best used by individuals rather than couple or groups because it takes anywhere from 15 minutes to 4 hours to fully purify water, far longer than other methods. While it is very lightweight, it is relatively expensive when compared to other methods.

Many hikers carry chlorine dioxide as a backup to a second primary filter or purification method, as a result. Ultraviolet Light is an effective form of water purification that neutralizes bacteria, protozoa, and viruses. It also depends on working batteries, which can run out of power. How do we know what the top 10 best water filters and purification systems are? We survey our large readership to ask. Or sign up to the weekly, award-winning SectionHiker newsletter, so you never miss out on an opportunity to participate.

I only boil in winter in conjunction with melting snow, so usually with a fairly heavy liquid fuel stove. The other filtering and purification methods are much faster. Oh well. That would be confusing. I changed it. Where are you hiking? You can also buy a type of filter that removes viruses, which is called a purifier.

The MSR guardian is the best one available. Thanks for the info Philip and Ralph. Might be overboard. Usualy use aquamira. Sometimes filter first to remove the protazoa that extends the treatment time from 15 minute up to 4hrs for the chlorine dioxide to kill them and their cysts. Well, currently Norovirus, which is extremely hard to kill, is making the rounds on sections of the AT. You get it from touching something that someone else with noro touched. Filter Schmilter! They freeze.

Steripen Adventurer. Philip, your in my age group so I have an age related question. I had to hike the last two hours stumbling from tree to tree. I had to get up to a higher elevation to get communication coverage and was successful in reaching my wife and putting in motion a rescue. Next day after a helicopter retrieval I had an open heart double bypass surgery and a month later I had a defibrillator pacemaker installed. I am now walking 3 miles a day and watching my diet.


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In another month I plan to add my backpack to my hike with 20 lbs in it. Level ground for the first two months and then add some changing elevation.

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Have you had the opportunity to talk with other outdoorsman who have had similar issues and if so how has that worked out for them? I have a friend, now out of touch, who had a quadruple bypass. A good person you might want to connect with is Dennis Blanchard. Super guy. It is a hollow fiber filter with the same specifications as a Sawyer Filter.

10 Best Backpacking Water Filters of - Section Hikers Backpacking Blog

It is the same shape as a Sawyer Mini, but closer in size of the full sized Sawyer with as good or better flow rate at a lower price. What I really like is that it has female water bottle threads on both ends along with hose fittings. This allows more versatility in how it is used squeeze, gravity, etc…. There are a number of after-market fittings and adapters that people use to make connections to the Sawyer filters that have different or no threads on one end or the other, depending on which version you have.

The photo looks the same as my old PUR filter and I just want a replacement filter for it. Your email address will not be published. Join our mailing list to receive our weekly newsletter. No spam.


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Just honest gear reviews and backpacking articles. The Mini removes The filter is made using hollow filter technology and rated to 0. It weighs 1. It can filter water up to 2 liters per minute, which is very fast for this style of filter.

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An integrated widemouth soft bottle, available in three different sizes, 0. Weighing 3. Each package of Aquamira contains two bottles, Part A and Part B, which you mix together before treating your water. Here are some of what I believe are the most important skills:. While those Backpacker Magazine and calendar photos of tents at beautiful campsites on the bare shore of a stunning alpine lake, or high on some slickrock outcrop in Utah look tempting… they are horrible places to be in stormy weather—even in a tent. You will be unnecessarily at risk when your shelter is exposed, unprotected to the full force of winds and precipitation of a storm.

So pitch your shelter tent, tarp, or pyramid in a protected area, a few hundred feet above the lowest area, preferably in trees while backpacking ultralight.

Hiking & Backpacking

Trees do a number of lovely things for you:. I am going to be blunt. Some gear is outright better than other gear. Your tent just keeps the wind and rain off—so will a tarp or pyramid shelter. What keeps you warm is a puffy down sleeping bag and jacket. In summary: the historical average weather will assist you buying gear in advance of your trips 20 degree vs 40 degree bag, etc. You can save a lot of weight and even money by selecting the right backpacking food. My nutritious and high calorie Backpacking Food gives me 3, healthful and filling calories of complex carbs, protein and healthy fats for around 1.

Over a 3 day weekend backpacking trip I get as many calories and as much nutrition, possibly more than someone carrying almost double the food weight. It just makes your pack heavy and walking slow and unpleasant. So try backpacking ultralight….

Alan grew up in northern California and spent his formative mountaineering years in Yosemite and the Sierra Nevada. At age five, he carried his own backpack into the Yosemite backcountry. See All Posts.