Little Itty Bitty Bottles

Saving ounces: Micro-sized plastic bottles carry just the right amount of products on a trip.

Who would have thought that Itty Bitty Bottles would become an obsession?  I had seen some gram-counting backpackers repackage their Bonner’s soap and other liquids into tiny bottles. Not me, I always thought — and then I bought an assortment of the tiny containers.  I was hooked.

A one ounce tube of triple antibiotic first aid ointment, which weighs about 1.4oz, can be reduced to a tiny bottle weighing mere grams.  Muhahahaha.  I went through the first aid kit and ditty bag looking for other products to repackage in Itty Bitty Bottles: zinc oxide, tincture of iodine, hand sanitizer, bleach, Bronner’s soap, and toothpaste.  They were all itty bitty bottle-ized.

Then I was reading Mike Clelland’s Ultralight Backpackin’ Tips (a great book by the way) and came across Tip #106 on repackaging AquaMira.  He uses two 10ml dropper bottles to repackage parts A and B, and a 3ml cylinder black dropper bottle that is the “Mix” bottle.

At the start of a day of hiking, Mike mixes an equal amount of Parts A and B into the MIX bottle.  The bottle holds about 40 drops total.  The MIX bottle eliminates the need to stop and mix the Aqua Mira in a cap and wait every time you want to treat water.

With Mike’s technique, there’s no need even to take off your pack since the MIX bottle is carried in your pocket throughout the day. It’s a quick and easy way to treat water on the go.  Check out Mike’s video on YouTube to see exactly how he does it.

It’s important to know that the dispensed drop of the repackaged bottles is specified at approximately 40ul (microliters), which differs from the dispensed drop size of AquaMira is approximately 57ul (microliters). You should test your mini dropper bottles drop volume versus the stock bottles and make the volume conversion yourself.


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