Gear Review: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter

Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter

On both the Appalachian Trail and the Pacific Crest Trail, our preferred method of water purification is the Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter (full size). This is what I recommend for water treatment to others and what I will continue to use in my backpacking career. (This is my unsolicited opinion after hiking over 5,000 miles!)

Lightweight and Portable

Unlike bulky backcountry water pumps, the Sawyer Squeeze is a small filter that weighs 3 ounces and is 5″ tall and 2″ wide. It includes a 32 oz water bladder that screws onto the filter.

Oh the life of a thruhiker

Quickly Purifies Water

Unlike purification drops that take a half hour to work, the Sawyer Squeeze takes about 30 seconds to filter. Sawyer’s website claims that it “removes 99.99999% of all bacteria, such as salmonella, cholera Leptospirosis, and E.coli; removes 99.9999% of all protozoa, such as giardia and cryptosporidium”

All backcountry water needs treated – especially this one designed for cattle

Easy to Use

The Sawyer Squeeze is super easy to use. Just fill the bladder with water from a spring, stream, creek, etc. and attach the Sawyer filter. Squeeze the water through the filter into a clean vessel or you can drink directly from the filter itself. Easy peasy.


If you’re spending time in the backcountry, you’ll need a water purification method. This is the simplest, quickest, and lightest weight method on the market. I highly recommend a full size over the mini to increase your flow rate. I’ve seen dozens of minis in hiker boxes abandoned by annoyed hikers. I also recommend carrying an extra filter bag as the ones included have a tendency to spring a leak.

Do you have another lightweight water purification method you swear by? I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments!

Follow along!

3 Comments on “Gear Review: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter

  1. Best water filter ever. We have traveled all over the world with ours and it has saved us tons of money, intestinal distress, and kept hundreds or thousands of plastic bottles out of the trash.

  2. Pingback: Lordsburg to Pie Town: Exploring the Gila River on the CDT

  3. Pingback: Lordsburg to Pie Town: Exploring the Gila River on the CDT

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