How Much Water Do You Need for a 3 Day Backpacking Trip?

By Michael Ferguson

When it comes to backpacking, packing the right amount of water is essential. It’s important to know exactly how much you need for a three-day trip so you don’t run out or carry too much weight. Here are a few tips for figuring out how much water you’ll need for your next backpacking trip.

Calculate Your Activity Level
The first step in determining your water needs is to calculate your activity level. This means considering how strenuous your activities will be and how hot or cold the temperature will be.

If you’re planning a strenuous hike with lots of elevation gain, you’ll need more water than if you’re taking a leisurely stroll through the woods. Likewise, if it’s hot outside, you’ll need more water than if it’s cool and overcast. Knowing your activity level will help you estimate how much water you should bring on your trip.

Carry Water Bottles
Another way to figure out how much water to bring is to carry individual bottles with a specific capacity. A 1-liter bottle is usually enough for one person for one day, so if there are three people on the trip, carrying three 1-liter bottles should give each person enough hydration for the day. However, it’s important to keep in mind that this depends on activity level and temperature conditions; if it’s hot or if activities are strenuous, then more water may be necessary.

Bring Water Purification Tablets
It can be difficult to know exactly how much water each person needs on a backpacking trip since everyone has different needs and activity levels. One way to make sure everyone stays hydrated is to bring along some water purification tablets or filters so that any available natural sources of water can be turned into safe drinking water. This is also helpful in case someone accidentally runs out of their own supply of drinking water during the trip; they can simply purify some natural sources instead of having to ration their own supply until they get back home.


Figuring out exactly how much water each person needs for a three-day backpacking trip can be tricky since everyone has different activity levels and temperatures can vary greatly from day-to-day. The best way to determine your exact needs is by calculating your activity level and carrying individual bottles with specific capacities as well as bringing along some form of purification tablets or filter in case you run out or encounter any natural sources of drinking water during your trip.