What’s the Best Camping Water Filter?

Phil & KarrieWater is an essential element for any camping or backpacking trip. However, large gallon jugs can take up a lot of space, multiple containers can weigh down your pack and longer backpacking trips typically will require more water than you can realistically carry.

So, What’s the Solution?

This is where a backpacking or camping water filter comes in handy. Not only do you need to pack less fluids, you instantly empower and enable yourself to use nature’s free resource at your convenience.

As long as you are traveling near a river, lake or stream, this means that you will always have clean, filtered water when you need it – both for drinking and for cooking as well. In fact, you don’t even have to be camping to take advantage of these cool gadgets. For example, if you travel to someplace where you are unsure of the water (ie. Mexico or even your local city water fountain), you can take a portable water filter with you.

O.K. Fine, But…

That’s great and all, but not all water filtration systems are alike. Some are bulky, not so easy-to-use or really expensive. Some water bottles filter water, but that’s the only way you can use them.

What is the Best Water Filter for Camping?

That’s why I like the Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System. It offers lots of versatility, it’s compact and simple to use and you can get it for less than $20.

But It’s Not Disposable.

Not only that, but it filters up to 100,000 gallons of water, so this baby will be lasting you a long, long time – even if you are a heavy drinker! This is no disposable system (although the price might lead you to think so).

It only weighs 2 ounces, so you won’t even notice it in a backpack or fanny pack even. In fact, you are more likely to lose it than have it weigh you down.

However, even though it is small and light, the Sawyer Mini is no lightweight. It filters out harmful bacteria and protozoa including Giardia and Cryptosporidium just like other powerful filters that cost much more.

What About Versatility?

So, above I mentioned versatility. What I mean by this is that you can use it in multiple ways. For example, Attach it to a plastic water bottle – or the hose on your camelback hydration pack – or attach the included straw to drink from any container (even an open stream!).

The filter actually comes with a durable (yet compact) 16 ounce drinking pouch, but the way this system is set up – you don’t even need a container. Therefore, if your container breaks or you lose it, you don’t have to worry about it!

Talk about preparedness! This little gadget comes in handy in lots of situations – some of which you might never even plan for. That’s right – it’s not a bad idea to keep one of these at the house…

The Kit Includes:

  • Sawyer MINI Water Filter with Tip Cap
  • 16 oz Reusable Drinking Pouch
  • 7″ Drinking Straw
  • Cleaning Plunger (Syringe) + Instructions


Honestly, I don’t know how to purify water, so I don’t know exactly how this filter works. However, I do know that the filter is rated at 0.1 micron absolute, which means that it removes 99.99999% of all bacteria and protozoa (such as salmonella, cholera, E.coli, giardia and cryptosporidium). Sawyer Products, Inc. has been in business for over 30 years and they sell their outdoor products worldwide through well-known outlets like REI, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s.

Oh, and by the way – you don’t ever need to buy any replacement cartridges.

Sawyer Mini Water Filter Review

This video has more information and compares the Sawyer Mini vs the Sawyer Squeeze (previous model):

Get it Here for less than $20


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