Top critical review
Light weight, though there are cheaper and more hassle-free options
on September 17, 2013
This water is a great choice for any nature enthusiast who wants a lightweight and hassle-free way to filter drinking water. Sawyer guarentees 1,000,000 gallons out of this thing, and I don't doubt it. Not only is this filter one of the easiest to use (cut the hose on your hydration system, insert the filter, drink away) which saves precious calories that would otherwise be used with traditional pump style filters, but requires the least maintenance. On my latest backpacking trip, my buddy had to spend roughly 10 minutes each time he wanted to refill his camelbak using a traditional pump filter, and would also have to clean the ceramic element of the filter almost every night. On the other hand, I simply dunked my camelbak in my water source, closed it back up, and put it back in my rucksack. The water quality was there the whole time, and I doubt that I even had to backwash the filter once I got back home, even though I did.
Update: I used this filter on the Wonderland Trail that circles around Mt. Rainier. I connected the filter inline with my camelbak and after the first two days it felt like I was sipping through one of those little red stirring straws. Since it can be a hassle to remove and backflush the filter from your hydration bladder to improve the water flow, I would recommend a separate filtration system such as the Sawyer Mini, which I have used extensively and weights almost half as much.