Lightweight Backpacking Hydration & Gravity Water Filtering System

This combination of lightweight hydration items is what I take for filtering water on backpacking trips. It’s compact, simple to use, and only takes a few minutes using gravity to filter 2 liters of water.

my ultralight backpacking hydration & filtering system

Shown above:

  • SmartWater 1 liter bottle with sports cap (for drinking water while hiking and at camp)
    Instead of using a hard-sided water bottle, I like using disposable water bottles for their ease of use, low cost and ultralight weight. The bottle pictured above has been used for 3+ years.
    Purchase at grocery or convenience stores
  • HydroBlu 64 oz. collapsible canteen (for storing filtered water)
    These collapsible water containers are my favorite for storing water while at camp. The handles at the top make it easy to carry, and the carabiner at the bottom makes it easy to backflush my Versa Flow filter by reversing the order of my gravity filter setup. (see my post on DIY gravity setups)
    Purchase from: HydroBlu
  • HydroBlu Versa Flow filter (see my full review of this filter)
    I’ve been using this filter for several years. It’s super easy to backflush, and the flow rate is consistently fast.
    Purchase from: Garage Grown Gear   |   CNOC Outdoors
  • Sawyer Fast Fill Adapter (shown above with a blue cap and white adapter)
    This kit helps to connect hydration hose to filters and water containers.
    Purchase from: REI Co-op   |   Amazon
  • HydroBlu silicone hose (pictured with a clamp and small adapter on one end)
    Water filters faster when adding a hose to a gravity setup.
    Purchase from: HydroBlu
  • CNOC Vecto 2 liter water container (for collecting water to filter)
    The Vecto is the only water bladder with openings at both ends for ease in collecting water to filter.
    Purchase from: Garage Grown Gear  |  CNOC Outdoors
  • HydroBlu Water Filter System Package (includes water filter, two collapsible canteens, hydration hose, clamp)
    Purchase from: Amazon   |   HydroBlu

Total storage capacity with this system: 5 liters (add another Hydroblu canteen for 7 liters capacity)

Total weight of this setup: 10 oz.

For easy access to water while I’m hiking, I add a hydration hose with a bite valve to the SmartWater bottle. It’s important that the hose is inside the bottle, pushed all the way in so the water is pulled up from the bottom. I use this tube and cap setup and place the water bottle in the side pocket of my backpack.

Filtering water using gravity

See my post on how to setup a DIY gravity filter system.


I Heart Backpacking: How to Get Started


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links for some items, which means that I make a small commission if a purchase is made. This does not change the price of the item. I am not sponsored by any gear companies and the items listed here are owned by me and unless otherwise stated, are purchased with my own funds. All gear reviews are honest and not paid for by any company. Thank you for supporting this blog!