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Katadyn 6l Gravity Water Filter Review

Summary: The Katadyn Gravity water filter is perfect for campsite water filtration. No hand pumping water into jugs, just fill the 6l bag, hang it in a nearby tree, attach the hose and enjoy fast flowing filtered water when you need it. Obviously great for drinking and camp cooking, but additionally perfect for washing hands, dishes and showering.

Purchase The Katadyn Gravity Water Filter

Water filtration is one of the most important things you need to plan for on any camping trip. Without a good filtration system, you may be exposing yourself to all kinds of harmful bacteria and virus’s that can make your camping camping trip an unforgettable one for all the wrong reasons.

Checking A Map
Finding a campsite on the map.

For example, on a camping trip in Colorado a few years back, I was filtering my drinking water with iodine. Iodine can be tricky, you need to get the right amount in for how much water you have as well as how dirty it is. In my case, I am guessing that on one particular batch, I either put in an insufficient amount or didn’t bleed my water bottle. Needless to say, within a couple weeks of returning home I had a nasty case of Giardia that took a few doctor visits and a long time to get rid of!

Personally, I’ve used iodine, chlorine dioxide, large water pumping systems and each has their own problems or hassles. For one, iodine treated water tastes terrible and is incredibly easy to contaminate and chlorine dioxide takes 4 hours to create safe drinking water, not to mention that neither of these filter out sediment.

When you are using a water pump, you have to bring your water jug along with you to your water supply. This allows for easy contamination of unfiltered water into your filtered water if you are not careful. Not to mention it is also a hassle if you are filling from a canoe.

Almost to a campsite
Almost to camp.

The Katadyn 6L Gravity Water Filter

The Katadyn Gravity Water Filter is a bag based water filtration system that provides up to 1500l of safe drinking water against bacteria, protozoa and sediment.

The Katadyn actually solves many of the problems that people experience with other types of water filters. It filters out sediment, which tablets and drops cannot do. The sediment left if you water when using drops & tablets can actually be dangerous as it can hide bacteria.

Katadyn 6L Gravity Water Filter

I’ve personally used my Katadyn on 3 different types of camping trips from canoeing, SUP boarding and car camping with my family. For each situation, this filter worked wonderfully. In each situation, I take take the 6l bag to my water supply, fill it up and leave the water hose at camp. Then the bag gets hung in a convenient location, typically in a nearby tree with a solid branch, and the hose gets attached to the bottom of the filter bag. By keeping your hose away from the water supply, you eliminate almost all changes of contaminating the hose that you will be using to pour your water into bottles and cooking situations.

Once the 6l bag is hung and hose attached, we then have a fast flowing supply of clean drinkable water. We typically use this to fill our water bottles, cook our meals, rinse our dishes and even for a body rinse. By using the filter for all of our water uses (not just consumption) we are eliminating as many chances for contamination as possible. Note: giardia can actually survive outside of water on dry surfaces for a long period of time, so washing your dishes or showing with unfiltered water can lead to problems, though the chances are much slimmer than when drinking the water.

Camping in BWCA
The Katadyn on a recent camping trip. Upper left corner.


Who is the Katadyn Water Filter For?

The Katadyn 6l Gravity Water Filter is great for campers who will be setting up camp for any significant period of time. If you are hiking, canoeing, car camping or any other camping where you will be setting up camp for a long evening and cooking meals at your site, then the Katadyn is great. However, if you are day tripping or just spening a quick night at a campsite, then it may not be the best solution (the Vapur Microfilter is perfect for these situations).

Features Of The Katadyn 6l Gravity Water Filter

  • Obvisously, the Katadyn 6l version holds 6 liters of water which is equivalent to 1.58 gallons of water (there are larger versions such as the Katadyn Base Camp 10 liter).
  • It has a flow rate of 2 liters per minute, which is actually quite fast. Standard flow rate for pump filters in 1 liter per minute.
  • The filter can filter up to 1,500 liters of water before needing to be replaced (that’s 396 gallons of water!).
  • The filter is replaceable and new filters cost $33.
  • The entire bag, filter and hose weighs only 11oz and packs to a size a bit smaller than a jar of spaghetti sauce.
  • Converts into a camp shower with a shower adaptor, which eliminates the need for a separate showering system.
  • Quick connect hose allows you to easily remove the hose when refilling to avoid contamination.

This filter has made clean water on my camping trips incredibly easy and honestly, I can’t imagine going back to pumps, drops or tablets. One of my favorite parts of the gravity filter was simply turning on the hose and using it to brush my teeth, then topping off my water bottle.

I was simply amazed at how convenient the system was, it was like having clean running water available for any of our needs.

Napping In Hammock
Not a care in the world, especially not about water!

One item to note, if you do use it to clean off dishes, make sure to do this far away from your campsite. Even small food scrap particles can attract un-wanted guests to your campsite!

Video coming soon (gotta sit down and do some editing!!).

Products Mentioned In This Post:

Camping Sunset

Ott Mountain

Saturday 10th of June 2017

Hey Ryan, do you have any experience with the Platypus Gravity Works system? Haven't tried this Katadyn filter yet but it seems like with all the gravity filters the flow rate can slow done quite a bit without back flushing. But the problem with that is if you don't have much water in your "clean" bag, it can be tricky to get enough head of pressure to backflush.

Gregg lindahl

Friday 10th of February 2017

Ryan - Glad to see that Katadyn has improved this product. I returned mine to REI and bought a Sawyer system, which has worked very well. I will never go back to pumping ????


Friday 10th of February 2017

Hey Gregg, Can I ask, why did you return yours? Totally agree, will not go back to pumping!