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9 Devilishly Simple Backpacking Hacks to Help You Win at Hiking

Hiking is hard. From damaged equipment and funky water sources to less-than-perfect weather, thru-hikers face a constant struggle to survive and thrive on the trail. Thru-hiking will never be a walk in the park, but you can still take steps to make the endeavor more pleasant. Use these handy backpacking hacks to make your life easier and win at hiking.

7. Use Sawyer’s cleaning coupling to create a leak-free gravity filtration system.

This cult classic gravity filtration system is one of the best backpacking hacks there is.[/caption]

Sawyer makes a double female cleaning coupling that mates with the Sawyer Squeeze for easy backflushing. It works well for backflushing, but it’s more useful as an ultralight, leak-free gravity filtration attachment. With the coupler attached, you’ll be able to screw a clean water container on one end of the Sawyer and a dirty water container on the other.

This system works with plastic water bottles such as the ubiquitous Smartwater. Just note that you’ll need to screw the bottles loosely to allow air exchange, or the system won’t work well. Flexible water containers like the Evernew or Cnoc Vecto bags work better since they don’t need air exchange.

Finish reading Kelly Floro's full list of backpacking hacks here.

LAST UPDATED

May 6, 2022

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The Trek

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Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide Trail, Pacific Crest Trail, and everything in between. We are dedicated to serving long distance backpackers.

We are All Things Long-Distance backpacking.

Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide Trail, Pacific Crest Trail, and everything in between. We are dedicated to serving the thru-hiking and long distance backpacking community.

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MEDIA MENTIONS

While DEET products may be more familiar by name and their chemical smell, sprays with 20 percent picaridin, like Sawyer Products, offer comparable protection without the harsh odor and oily feeling on your skin.

Kevin Brouillard
Travel & Leisure

MEDIA MENTIONS

The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).

Halfway Anywhere
Media Mentions from Halfway Anywhere

MEDIA MENTIONS

SAWYER MINI WATER FILTER, $22 This has been my water filter of choice for years now. The bags can be iffy — I have had a few break – so carry a couple. However, the filter itself is reliable, light and inexpensive. -Logan

Bikepacking Team