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Water Filters

Recommended for portable kits. The Sawyer Mini (review) is my personal favorite because it can connect to a standard water bottle, water bladder (included), or hydration pack. It filters up to 100,000 gallons, filters to 0.1 microns, costs about $25, and is easily cleaned by backflush. Every hiking and vehicle kit should include a Sawyer Mini or Squeeze filter.

Recommended for home kit. The Sawyer Point ZeroTWO (review) filters down to 0.02 microns which should filter all bacteria and viruses. It comes with a faucet adapter, can be cleaned by backflushing, and should filter about 1,000,000 gallons.

Recommended for portable kits.

The Sawyer Squeeze (review) connects to a water bottle, bladder (included), or can be connected inline on a hydration pack. The Squeeze is slightly larger than the Mini and can filter a greater volume of water more quickly. The Squeeze Personal Kit includes the filter, backflush syringe, bladder, and straw.

The Lifestraw looks like a very fat straw. Insert it into a water source and drink directly from it. The Lifestraw is small, inexpensive, filters down to 0.2 microns, and will filter about 1,000 liters (264 gallons) of water.

The MSR Guardian (review) is a high-volume, pump filter that removes contaminants down to 0.02 microns. This level of filtration should remove viruses and bacteria. Search Internet for better price (should be around $350).

Water Storage

Recommended for home kit. WaterBricks (review) are stackable water storage containers that hold 3.5 gallons of water, can be interlocked and stacked up to 4′ high, BPA-free, and made from high density polyethylene (HDPE). WaterBricks can also hold food, ammunition, or other supplies (up to 120 pounds).

These Sawyer water pouches are very nice for storing smaller quantities of water. They can be used in in the vehicle or hiking kits. These pouches are inexpensive, effective, and rugged.

The Camelbak Unbottle contains a hydration bladder in a lightweight and tough carrier. These would work well in a vehicle kit or for an extended hiking kit.

The Camelbak Unbottle is also available in a smaller, 2-liter size.