Don’t we just love the outdoors? For me, it’s definitely the crisp air and the scenery that keep me going. However, there are times when the weather gets me. When it starts to rain, it could be disappointing. Luckily, backpacking rain ponchos are a thing now! Here’s my top list:
JTENG Rain Poncho
Terra Hiker Rain Poncho
Sara Glove Adult 10 Mil Reusable Rain Ponchos
Charles River Apparel Pacific Poncho
Top List: Best Backpacking Rain Poncho
JTENG Rain Poncho Waterproof
I love hiking on long trails and camping overnight, but chances are I’m going to experience rain, so an all-around rain poncho is what I bring during such trips. The JTENG Rain Poncho is waterproof, so I’m guaranteed to have a dry time while I’m outside. In terms of durability and price, it’s definitely my pick since the hems are well-stitched and made out of Ripstop, and it’s all just for a fair price.
If you think that the JTENG only works as a raincoat, then you’re wrong. The exciting part is that you can unclasp its buttons and use it as an outdoor mat too. As a person who loves to picnic, this feature is certainly convenient especially when the ground is wet from the rain; plus, I can even spread it out and hang it on a rope to make a tent, making it one of my best rain poncho picks of all time.
Terra Hiker Rain Poncho
The second on my list is the Terra Hiker Rain Poncho. Mostly, because it’s lightweight, I use this for casual walks or during light hiking trips with my friends. Although the material is light, it still works well during a heavy downpour. It also has extra space at the back so that you can bring your backpacks and camping materials without them getting soaked in the rain.
So far, the Terra Hiker is not only great for hiking but for outdoor activities like picnics and camping too. Sometimes, when we have a barbeque cookout, I personally use this as an additional mat since its highly resistant to moist and durable enough to sit on over jagged rocks on the ground.
Sara Glove Adult 10 Mil Reusable Rain Ponchos (Sold in Packs of 1, 6, 12, & 48)
If you want an affordable raincoat, the Sara Glove rain poncho is one of the cheapest rain gear that I know of. You can even buy this in bulks. So, personally, this is the coat I bring when I go out with a group of friends while we’re camping. Though the quality is not at it’s very best compared to the expensive ones, because it’s very affordable, I worry less as I can purchase as many as I want anyway.
This makes it excellent for group camping because I can share around a pack with my friends. For single usage, you can also opt to buy only one. What I like about this aside from its price is that it comes with a sealable pouch for convenience, making it easier to carry around wherever I go.
Charles River Apparel Pacific Poncho
I have a Charles River coat that was given by my friend. Though I’m not a direct user, I still commend it for its stylishness and its wide array of colors to choose from. Aside from this, I also love how it’s made from waterproof fibers. It has a heat-sealed seam feature and a hood with drawstrings and snap necks for extra protection. Lastly, I like that I can hand-wash it when needed, so you can reuse this as much as you like.
I love the quality and feature of this raincoat. However, it’s leaning more on the expensive side though I won’t hesitate to buy one. Personally, if you want a long-lasting rain poncho, this one is worth it despite the price.
Poncho vs. Rain Jacket: Which One is More Useful in the Rain?
Advantages of Using a Rain Poncho when Hiking and Camping
There are a number of reasons why a rain poncho is more ideal than your typical jacket or umbrella. If you’re not a regular user, here are some of the benefits when you’re using a rain poncho when hiking or camping:
As an outdoor enthusiast, I tend to pick products that have a lot of usages. For me, rain ponchos have that flexibility and practicality. Aside from using it as cover, you can also use it as a mat, a tent, and even a hammock.
Because you’re hiking and camping outdoors, you’ll definitely need your hands to hold other important things as often as possible. You don’t get this freedom when you’re bringing an umbrella or when you’re fussing over your soaked jacket. So, it’s a convenient gear when you’re out in the woods.
You’re far from being soaked when wearing a rain poncho. Plus, its pockets and hoods are designed to keep the water out, so you can definitely bring your gadgets or other important stuff without worrying that they’ll get wet.
Breathable and Lightweight
Rain ponchos are made to be lightweight. Wearing one means that you’ll be able to move without struggles and feel like you’re not wearing anything at all.
What to Look for in a Rain Poncho?
When I purchase my raincoats, I always follow a checklist. You can have your own ways of picking a raincoat, but this works for me:
First of all, I inspect the material being used. It doesn’t matter what type of material it is made of as long as it’s breathable and lightweight to use. Since I always camp out, it’s important that my gears are manageable for convenience.
For this, I opt for the all-in-one kind of rain poncho. I go for the ones that are waterproof and windproof. As long as it’ll last long since I usually camp for days, then I go with it.
Make sure that you check out all of the seams, zippers, clasps, Velcro, and strings on your rain poncho. Those that are strongly sewn and attached on the coat is what you should consider. One way of determining this is by lightly tugging them, and if they don’t loosen up too quickly, get them.
As a practical outdoor enthusiast, rain ponchos should have multiple usages and features. Things to consider are zippers, hoods, pockets, drawstrings, vents, and a storage bag for packing. The more features there are, the better it is for you.
Lastly, take note of the design though I don’t really pay much attention to this. Now, you can already choose from a variety of colors and designs. Just pick out what you prefer but still consider the outdoor activity you’re joining in.
Tips to Care for your Rain Poncho
Taking care of your rain poncho isn’t that complicated. In fact, because I constantly hike, I always end up cleaning it as often as I plan to. Despite this, I don’t mind. Here are some of the ways I clean and take care of my raincoat:
Follow the Coat Label
Most of the time, a label with cleaning instructions are placed at the back of the coat. If you want it to last long, follow it.
If it isn’t forbidden by its manufacturer, you can simply air dry your coats. Sometimes, I wipe off the excess water with a tissue or cloth especially when it’s dripping or when I’m in a hurry to fold it for storage.
You don’t have to wash it every after use. However, if you’re noticing grim, oil, or mud, you can hand wash or toss it in your washing machine. But, keep in mind that you’re not using your regular detergent. Instead, opt for Nikwax; I personally use this for washing since it strips off dirt without ruining the material. Once done, dry it before you store it in the bag.
Though I like all of the rain ponchos mentioned, there can only be one that I prefer above all else. I pick the JTENG Rain Poncho. The Ripstop is durable enough to handle my constant outdoor activities whether it’s raining or not. It’s waterproof and does not blow easily by the wind, making it a reliable gear when you’re into extreme hiking or camping under extreme weather conditions. As for the durability, I’ve been using this for months now, and it still hasn’t been damaged greatly. There are also a lot of features and usages, so it passes on my practicality checklist. Lastly, though the colors aren’t that varied, I still prefer a simple design with mellow colors. Overall, the JTENG coat is my pick when it comes to quality, durability, and price.