Portable water purifiers for hikers. Note *Capacity of any device will vary depending on characteristics and concentrations of contaminants and inlet water pressure.

Below see a list of purifier devices that are available.  Another option that will kill harmful bugs is simply boiling the water.  Of course, boiling does nothing to reduce particulate matter so brown water boiled is still brown water.


AquatabsAquatabsHard to beat for weight (17 g) – 50 tablets in a box for a price ranging from $4 on ebay to $12 at Chemist Warehouse. Each tablet treats 1 litre of water.Remove the tablet from the packaging and add to the water. Ensure that the tablet is dispersed (by briefly shaking the vessel or mixing). Wait 30 minutes for the disinfection to work and then the water is safe to drink. Do not swallow the tablet.

They are effervescent (self-dissolving) tablets, whose US EPA approved active ingredient is NaDCC which is also known as Sodium Dichloroisocyanurate or Troclosene Sodium.

There are many other table versions as well.

AquaproveAquaprove water purificationKit contains – 1 empty 50 ml Aquaprove bottle (fill with water) and  1 Aquaprove tablet. One kit purifies 1 to 250 litres of water lasting up to 40 days from making up.

Add 4 drops of Aquaprove to every litre of water to purify.

Eliminates parasites and pathogens from the target water and improves taste.

Available from Anaconda.

Katadyn Micropur Forte Water Purifier Liquid.Katadyn MicropurContact Time: 30 min for bacteria and viruses, 2 h for Giardia in clear water
1 mil cleans 10 litres of water
Technology: Silver ions combined with chlorine.
Form: Tablets. Shelf-life: 5 years from manufactures date
LifestrawWeight 57 grams  23cm long. Available at Anaconda.

Up to 1,000 liters of contaminated water into safe drinking water, filtering out protozoa and bacteria.


Alkaway OKO Water Filter BottleOko parasite water filterLab tested to remove 99.994% of e-coli, 99.9999% of Cryptosporidium and Giardia Lamblia. Comes in 650 ml or 1 L size.
Aquamira Frontier Proaquamira_frontier_proGRN Line Bacteria Filter with up to 500 ml/minute flow rate
Certified filtration for 50 gallons (over 180 L)
Ultralight and compact 2.5 oz. (71 g) packable protection
Replaceable filter design means highly cost-effective extra capacity capability
Connects to bottles, bags, bladders, and gravity systems via UQC quick connects
Includes three pre-filters to extend filter life and remove twigs and debris
Comes packaged in a zipper pouch which doubles as a water collection and storage unit
Miraguard™ Antimicrobial* Technology suppresses the growth of bacteria, algae, fungus, mould and mildew within the filter media
Aquapure Travelleraquapure-travellerSpecifications from web site:

BPA free (no chemicals)

Bottle capacity 650mL (including when the filter is inside)
Filter Capacity up to 350L
Filter size 2 microns
Weight 110g

I got this bottle to provide my water filtration needs on a six day walk on the Overland Track in Tasmania Easter 2012.  Here are my initial impressions. The Aquapure Traveller water bottle is made of plastic.  It stands about 224mm high and the base has a diameter of about 90mm. At its widest point it is around 90mm across because of the offset nature of the top section. It fits easily into the side pockets of my various packs. The filter is built into the screw cap/mouth piece.  On my scales it weighs 107 g empty and 750 g full – which equates to a water volume of around 650 ml.

Aquamira Frontier emergency water filter systemfrontier_emergency_water_filterBLU Line Parasite Filter with up to 450 ml/minute flow rate
Certified filtration for 30 gallons (over 110 L)
Lightweight and compact 1 oz. portable protection
Comes packaged in a zipper pouch that doubles as a water collection and storage unit
Miraguard™ Antimicrobial* Technology suppresses the growth of bacteria, algae, fungus, mold and mildew within the filter media
Certified lead free to NSF/ANSI 372
BPA free, chemical free, and iodine free
Filter made in the USA
General Ecology XL EliteFirst Need water filterPurifies water instantly
Removes: bacteria, cysts, giardia, crypto, viruses, particles, foul taste, odors, specific organic chemicals.System Weight — 16 oz.Pump Length — 6.25”A bit on the heavy side for a through hiker but maybe worthwhile for a vehicle based trip.
Grayl Ultralight Compact Purifier BottleGrayl Ultralight water filterCapacity: 16 oz (473 ml)
Weight: 10.9 oz (309 g)
Height: 9.625″ (24.5 cm) H
Diameter (at base): 2.7 (6.8 cm)
Active Technology: ion exchange, ultra-powdered activated carbon
Flow Rate: 15 seconds per 16 oz (2 liters/minute)
Removes: waterborne pathogens (99.99% of viruses, 99.9999% of bacteria, 99.99% of protozoan cysts), including Rotavirus, Hepatitis A, Norovirus, Giardiasis, Cryptosporidium, E. Coli, Cholera, Salmonella, Dysentery and moreThe Geopress version is heavier at 450g  but is faster – in eight seconds, it makes 24 ounces (710 ml) of safe, clean drinking water
Katadyn Minikatadyn_miniKatadyn make a range of light weight filters suitable for hiking.  The Mini weighs 7 ounces or around 200g.

Dimensions 3 x 7 inches
Output (gal) 1 quart/min
Technology Ceramic depth filter 0,2 micron

Note the Pro Hiker  model weighs a little more at 233g.

Lifesaver LibertyLifesaver LibertyWeight of 425 grams

Removes:  Virus – 99.999%
Bacteria – 99.9999%
Cysts – 99.99%
Independently tested to exceed full NSF/ANSI P231 and WHO2011 ‘Highly protective tier’ drinking water standards
Comes with 5ft Scavenger Hose for drawing water directly from source, meaning:
Easier accessibility to water
No need to get hands wet
Filter larger volumes in one go
Ability to filter directly into additional containers
Screws right in to most wide-mouth water containers, like Nalgene or Hydro Flask bottles
Filters up to 2,000 litres
Filter Cartridge is replaceable

MSR Hyperflow


msr_hyperflowHigh Flow Rate: Pumps more than 3 liters per minute or one liter every 20 strokes.
Ultralight: Just 7.4 oz. (209 g).
Ultra-small: Just 7×3.5 in. ( 17.8 x 8.3 cm) makes it easy to take along even when space is at a premium.
Field-Maintainable: Can be cleaned repeatedly for flow recovery without tools.
Super Convenient: Quick Connect bottle adapter lets you filter water directly into a variety of containers, including all MSR hydration products and other wide-mouth containersReview
Platypus GravityWorks™ 2.0L Water Filter – Bottle KitPlatypus 2 litreBottle Kit: Minimalist setup uses a Universal Bottle Adapter to connect the system directly to an existing water bottle or reservoir*.
No pumping: Just fill the dirty reservoir, hang it, and let gravity do the hard work—yep, filtering water can be as easy as fill, hang, relax.
Fast: Filters up to 1.5 liters per minute; microfilter lifetime up to 1,500 liters of water.
Effective: Every microfilter is individually tested to ensure it meets all EPA & NSF guidelines for the removal of 99.9999% of bacteria and 99.9% of protozoa**.
Ultralight & Ultracompact: System can weigh as little as 6.6 oz. (187 g) and stows smaller than most 1L bottles.
PUR WaterEach packet treats 2.5G/10L of water. Kills bacteria & viruses and removes dirt, cysts & pollutants. Maintains pure, fresh taste. Easy to use; water is ready to drink after 30 minutes. Also includes a replacement cotton filter cloth.

Point Zero Two

With no pumping and no chemicals required, the Sawyer Point Zero Two™ water purifier with bucket adapter delivers 5 gal. of clean drinking water in under 45 min. Simply install the purifier to nearly any plastic bucket (not included) and you’re setup with a large-volume gravity purification system. 0.02-micron hollow fiber membrane purifier physically removes particles, protozoa, bacteria and viruses while maintaining a good rate of flow. All Sawyer water filters and purifiers exceed Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations for removal rates. Purifier is fully field maintainable to ensure a fast flow of water; includes a back wash syringe and a faucet adapter for thorough back washing in the field and at home. Sawyer Point Zero Two water purifier includes hollow fiber purifier, tubing, bucket adapter, hole cutter, faucet adapter, filter cleaner, filter hanger, and instructions.