7 Top-Notch & Best Rain Poncho for 2018 Reviewed
Coming from a semi-nomad family, wondering the world is practically written in my DNA. I have checked outdoor camping, long rucksack mountain hikes, climbing, city tours and countryside bike rides off my “must do list“.
Packing and unpacking is a matter of minutes for me because I always travel light. Plus, I take only items that have multiple uses. Thus, although “chique”, my umbrella stays at home. To avoid getting soaked or beaten by the wind, my best rain poncho comes with me all the time.
I have also used it instead of a picnic blanket, to get shelter from the sun or to cover my sleeping bag. I even turned it into a small tent when my friends and I lost our midnight train to Ljubljana (that’s in Slovenia) and we had to rest under the summer sky.
A diva-like mantle is not quite suitable while exploring new places unless you are on a shopping spree in New York, Paris or any other fancy metropolis. What you need is something that looks good on you but it also durable, waterproof and has a hood.
Since dedicated excursionists help each other all the time, we have hit the stores, looked for the highest rated trip cloaks and made a complete review for you.
Best Rain Poncho For Backpacking & Travel Comparison
The below links will bring you to Amazon:
- JTENG Camouflage Rain Coat
- Frogg Toggs Ultra-Lite Rainy Waterproof Coat
- 4ucycling Easy Jacket Poncho
- Totes Unisex Wet Weather Coat
- Mil-Tec Men’s Waterproof Hooded Rain Poncho
- Sungpack Patrol over the Head Kit
- Arcturus™ Super Lightweight Camo Poncho
Prime Characteristics Travelers Want and Pay Attention To:
Veteran globetrotters search for things that are versatile and can be used during all climate conditions. Moreover, they appreciate a high-quality material that prevents sweating. They also look for various accessories such as grommets, pockets with zippers, and snap closures.
The long version of these products, which cover your back luggage as well, will be your best alley when caught unaware by a storm.
In the beginning, you might have the impression that you look like a giant turtle, but you will get over this once you walk for hours in a never-ending drizzle.
What Makes a Great Waterproof Poncho?
This type of hiking equipment is valuable because it literally saves your skin during strong tempests or blizzards. The best products of this type are covered with a laminated membrane which hinders water from passing through.
Your top pick should be impermeable, breathable and durable.
When we bring into the discussion this aspect of fabrics, we actually refer to their resistance to water pressure.
Manufacturers usually measure this, using the formula pounds/square inch. A common rain produces about 3 PSI while in the case of a downpour the figure rises to 10 PSI.
Producers recommend 25 PSI because this is the standard of the US Military. However, items with lower PSI values can serve your purposes just as well.
Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate
High-quality water protection travel gear has to be breathable. Therefore, when purchasing one take a close look to its MTVR.
The MTVR gives you details on how much perspiration can be eliminated through a certain fabric. If this feature misses, you will feel as if you were trapped in a sauna.
Experts will tell you that it is not quite accurate to associate the above notion with breathability because the latter implies that gusts of air can pass through your clothes. Waterproof items do not allow that.
However, they permit the vapors from your perspiration to get out due to your body temperature. The value of the rate is measured in g/m2/day. For mild and quite short hikes you need a garment that it is over 10.000 g/m2/day.
In case you want to pursue an extreme activity like reaching a very high altitude, you should purchase something which exceeds 15.000 g/m²/day.
A disposable rain poncho comes in handy during an unexpected showery day when you have nothing to wrap yourself in.
To explore the wilderness and not only, you need something that can be used for at least several years. You do not want a material that rips and cracks no sooner it has touched a branch or a thorn.
The mountain regions may be pretty dangerous. Your cape has to be strong enough to be used as a stretcher to transport a wounded person.
Lots of excursionists prefer polystyrene because of its resistance and rapid drying. Plus, it keeps its shape and does not get wrinkles and folds. Unfortunately, it does not allow the optimum circulation of the air flow.
Men vs. Women Wet Weather Cloaks- Is There a Difference?
Most of the models available on the market fall into the unisex category and can be worn by both men and women. Some can even be adjusted to fit the silhouette of a young adult.
Moreover, there are the super convenient one-size fits all, which satisfy the needs of both solid and slim individuals. It is true that some buyers do not feel very comfortable in these. If you are one of them, go for your usual size S, M, L or XL.
Both men and women raincoats are made of polyester, nylon, polyurethane or very high-tech materials. However, there are some dissimilarities in terms of cuts and design.
Since the majority of women do not want to look like a ghost or a mobile tent, the capes produced for them are more flattering for the body. Pastel shades and feminine patterns and prints are available for them. The most expensive ones have a very edgy bat cut.
Women should opt for the lighter versions which are easier to carry and wear.
Top Features for Travel and Easy Packaging
A well-made equipment has to be packable. It must fit one of the smaller pockets of your backpack or suitcase. A pouch is more than necessary. You put your wet mantel in it and all your other garments will remain dry.
An overloaded rucksack is one of the main ingredients of a failed trip. Therefore, opt for water protection gear which weighs around 16 ounces.
The Ri-stop nylon products with a coating inside are for hardcore trekkers.
Running after streetcars, hopping of trains or descending a steep slope and doing sports on the rain requires liberty of movement. Do not make a beginner’s mistake and choose a piece of apparel which will be the cause of your stumbles.
Long, Extra-long Or Short? Which should you buy?
This aspect might depend on where you go and what you want to do. Anti-rain gear with adjustable length is a good pick due to their versatility.
An extra-long one is not vital for city breaks during which you visit museums and art galleries and you only have it for emergency against rain. An item that covers your upper legs is suitable for this situation.
On the mountain, the wind blows and precipitations flow erratically. Consequently, it is advisable to have a long mantel which goes way below your knees. For kids, these ones are advisable, too. The extra-large alternatives can be turned into a hammock or spread down to sleep on.
Are Visible Cloaks A Must?
This is another characteristic that depends on your travel plans. It is recommendable to be visible during drizzle or foggy conditions while in the woods.
The same rule applies when riding a bike on a circulated road at night. Phosphorescent colors or reflective elements at the front and at the back will help others to spot you immediately.
Darker shades have their advantage too – they make the dirt on them difficult to see. For the common traveler, the selection of color depends on personal taste.
Accessories You Couldn’t Do Without
The hood has to be adjustable or detachable. Tightening straps are all right, but very practical are the zippers and the hook-and-loop fasteners are key. The whole of the head must be cut wide enough to allow your head to go through without too much effort. Hoods with overhangs protect your forehead and your eyes, most will even cover larger pack packs, such as external frame backpacks.
A top-notch trip apparel as such has snap closures under armpits, front pockets, strong grommets, and snap buttons in the neck area. The ones created for professional alpine climbers are provided with elastic pull tabs, cuff buttons for the writs and drawstring locks.
JTENG Camouflage Rain Coat Review
Our Top Pick
This piece of garment is a star. It’s usually found in the luggage of adrenaline fans who enjoy taking the most difficult and remote trails as it offers long coverage all over your body. Men appreciated it more due to its obvious military design. Women are a bit reluctant on spending money on it, because of its ghostly shape.
What do we love about it?
- its extreme sturdiness due to the waterproof nylon and polyester layers present in its composition
- its breathable feature which hinders you from getting drenched into your own sweat as if you were inside a plastic bag
- its versatile and convenient aspect; it may be easily turned into a tarp, hammock or a ground coverlet
- its accessories
Who is this top heavy duty kit for?
- for those who enjoy spending time outdoors an doing demanding physical activities
- for tall and robust individual
- for people who put emphasis on functionality and survival, not on style
Available in green and maple leaf colors and camo pattern, your JTENG will enable you to blend in the landscape, making you almost invisible. It will also safeguard your sack against harsh weather phenomena.
Some useful specs:
- durable military type article
- entirely non-porous
- dimensions: 59” x 55” (Length x Width)
- weight: 725g or 1.6 lb – do not forget that it was not designed for a stroll in the park
- when laid on the ground it covers a surface of 78” x 57” (Length x Width)
Special features and great accessories
- the zip in the neck region allows rapid take on and take off
- the hood overhang shelters your eyes from drops of water and wind
- the garments attached to the hem
- the impermeable storage pouch
Should I buy a military JTENG if I am a woman?
If you are a petite person, it may be a bit too big for you. If you are not bothered by its weight and camouflage style, it is a good investment.
Frogg Toggs Ultra-Lite Rainy Waterproof Coat Review
With more than 600 hundred Amazon reviews this expedition equipment is gaining more and more popularity. Its affordable price might determine certain buyers to disregard it. This is a mistake because, even though it’s cheap, it is a well-made product. It has a quality that exceeds its money rate.
What drew our attention towards this ultra-light item?
- its amazing ventilation which makes it wearable during warm days
- its potential to keep clothes dry because it is laminated and made of nonwoven polypropylene
- how it fully cloaks your dorsal luggage
- its recyclable and eco-friendly nature
Who is it for?
- people who want a budgeted yet a lasting cape
- long distance city walkers
- stadium goers
It is great for longer trips which take you on rocky trails. It suits both men and women due to its feature one size fits most. It covers the shoulder area nicely. You needn’t worry if you are over six feet tall, it is long enough and it works great for you, too.
Some good to know about specs:
- very light; it weighs only 8.8 oz or 227 grams
- dimensions: 36”x 54” (Length x Width)
- available in dark green and khaki shades
- adjustable drawstring hood
- snaps under the arms to take it off effortlessly
- bag for storage
- strongly welded seams
What about the cons?
- less durable than similar clothes on the market
- if you do not fold it properly, it will come out of your baggage all snagged out
Although it feels like a paper-made garment, it will accompany you on many of your adventures. As long as you are a bit careful while wearing and cleaning it, you will not have to purchase a new one soon.
4ucycling Easy Jacket Poncho
Dynamic individuals will be pleased by this ingenious piece of apparel which combines the characteristics of jackets and ponchos used in humid environments.
Despite looking a bit different from the other goodies on this list, it has got some awesome particularities to consider it a five-star choice.
What impressed us the most:
- its avant-garde looks
- its long lasting, hard to rip off yet lightweight fabric
- its suitability to be worn in any seasons, late autumn and winter included
- perfect for cycling, strolling, trekking and outdoor physical exercises
Who is it for?
- passionate bicycle riders
- active people who do not want to give up their walking sessions not matter the weather outside
Other specs of this warmist pick:
- material – one layer of 100 % polyester
- dimensions: 37 inches long, 59 inches in the chest area
- one size fits all
- acceptable ventilation, though you might feel quite heated if you engage in more demanding actions such as running along a rough stretch of land
- it has got an army-green shade so fashionistas might not want to take it on while walking their dog
In spite of its 0.11 pounds, the 4ucycling Jacket will not tear apart not even after you lose track of the number of times you slipped your body into it.
Some marvelous accessories
- long sleeves with stringed seams
- wide head opening and a chest zipper to pull it on you smoothly
- cuffs with a strong yet not bothering elastic band
- a hood with drawstrings
- front impermeable pocket with a zipper where you can safely deposit your ID card, wallet or smartphone
Unlike other wet weather equipment, this one can be stowed away in its chest pocket or in its customized bag. Either way, if folded carefully it will look great when you take it out.
Totes Unisex Wet Weather Coat
Totes is one of the greatest brands out there. You can take the Totes Coat with you while touring museums, castles or shops because of its translucent look and modern cut.
It is highly appreciated and demanded and for this reason, the market has been invaded by low-quality replicas. The almost 700 positive reviews on Amazon are a statement of its popularity,
Why do we like this inexpensive gear?
- its manufactured from EVA – a feminine short form for Ethylene-vinyl acetate – hence it is waterproof
- its difficult to loose seams since they are heat-sealed and not in mesh.
- its reduced weight – only 9.6 ounces
- its satin finish which may be appealing to the more fashion sensitive ones
Who is it for?
- holiday hikers
- people who are passionate about sightseeing
This is not a military rainy days gear so you should not expect extreme durability from it. Nonetheless, it does its job well even in mountainous areas, reputed for their changeable environmental conditions.
Some interesting specs:
- you can choose from several colors and shades, including blue, smoke, green, yellow and clear
- one size fits most
- length equal to 38 inches
Accessories to pay attention to:
- side snaps that contribute to its pullover-like look and provide a better fixture on the body
- hood that has a specific cut which makes the use of zipper, drawstring or hook and loop fasteners futile; nonetheless the wind does not blow it off
- the 6” x 10” storage pouch has a zipper
This type of hiking apparel does not have an interior lining. In case you get too hot, you just open the snaps on the side and the air will go through. Your bag goes beneath it as well provided that you are not one of those big towering guys.
Remember not to wash it in a machine but to utilize a soft, damp piece of cloth to remove traces of mud and other stains.
Mil-Tec Men’s Waterproof Hooded Poncho Review
This travel garment is extremely popular with thrill-seeking backpackers. Mil-Tec is a very trustworthy brand. It is no wonder since it has got so many fantastic features.
What we love about it:
- the durability of its ripstop nylon exterior and its polyurethane coated interior
- its 100% protection against precipitations
- its multifunctional aspect; it can be used as a tent or ground cover
- wearable by both men and women
Who should purchase this top tactical rainproof equipment?
- mountain trails enthusiasts and campers who want to enjoy the view
- bird watchers
If you miss your United States Army days, this product will chase away our nostalgia. It allows you to move swiftly and silently.
Some super-cool specs:
- it is appropriate for individuals whose height is above 6’ tall
- large enough to cover your rucksack
- the head opening is well cut and wide enough
- occupies little spaces in your luggage and it is delivered with its own bag
Extra features and accessories
- the hood is adjustable and it is sewn onto this piece of clothing
- the snap buttons on the sides and the internal belt fix it better on the body
- 6 eyelets made of brass plus the press studs give it other purposes than the original one
What about the cons?
There aren’t many and most of them refer to:
- its weight – it is not the lightest on the market but it is, after all, a camo product not a disposable one
- its color – it comes only in one shade but this might be a problem only for very stylish individuals
Its simple yet ingenious design makes it reliable and easy to fold.
Sungpack Patrol over the Head Kit
In case you are a bit more traditional, the Sungack Patrol matches you perfectly. If you have to make your way through a torrential downpour, both you and your back will come out in good condition.
What drew our attention to this pocket rain poncho?
- its top rated Paratex Dry material which guarantees its waterproofness
- its longer back meant to keep safe the burden you carry
- in edgy situations, it can become a windproof Bivvi
- its Velcro sealed front pocket enclosed with a storm flap – you can hide your hands in here to keep them warm
Who is it for?
- travelers wandering far from the beaten tracks
Although, not as complex as other military-style camping cloaks, it stands out due to its design. It has sleeves with cuffs strengthened with an elastic band. Unfortunately, the snaps and grommets miss so it cannot be turned into a temporary shelter.
Some other specs:
- dimensions: 76 x 60 x 0.2 inches
- weight: 14 ounces
- sack for storage – you can cram your Sungpack Patrol in it and then rest your head on this alternative pillow
- available in black or olive
- hood with loops to fit any head size and to stop water running along your neck and spine
- practical thumb loops
What about the negative points?
- unless you carry your backpack, you can see the difference in length between the back and the front
The Sungpack Patrol is effective while you work around the house or while cycling around your neighborhood.
Arcturus™ Super Lightweight Camo Poncho
Tall guys who have always struggled to find a gear that goes over their knees should take a closer look to Arcturus™. With is dimensions of 54” wide x 48” long it reaches the shins of adults measuring more than 6’.
Why did we notice this oversized item?
- it is super-light, weighing only 11 ounces, so you will not even notice its presence in your bag
- you will not freeze under it due to its double polyurethane coating
- it is manufactured from high-quality 210T Ripstop Taffeta material which means that it is waterproof
Who is it for?
- well-built and tall guys
- followers of the ultra-light packing trend
Minimalist travelers, who take with them just the hand luggage permitted on the plane, will consider it an inspirited choice. Why? Because it has got metal grommets in the corners so they can have a piece of garment, one-person tent, a tarp, and sleeping bag cover all in one product.
A few specs:
- available in black, green and camo
- very compact, projected for long time use
- the hood is large enough to impede water from blurring your sight; plus it has drawstrings to fix it in the positions that it is most convenient for you
- the stowage punch has an elastic string
One great aspect is that you there is sufficient space in the hood for you to put a scarf or a cap on your head.
Definitely not the cheapest option in stores, Arcturus™ Super Lightweight is worth every cent you pay for it.
Instead of Conclusions
These were our picks. Obviously, both offline and online markets have such a generous offer that you might spend hours, even days looking for the “this is it” object.
Like any other travel items you purchase, you should not go for an offer that sounds too good to be true. A wise investment now will save you lots of troubles while you are away from home.
When accessing or entering the store be sure of:
- your budget
- your destination and leisure activities so as to select something that matches them
- your height and weight – we assume that you do not want to be a goofy appearance
Final thought: always read the reviews and filter them carefully!
Do not hesitate to contact us or leave a replay in the comments sections for more information and additional suggestions. Also, have a look at our FAQ below.
Frequently Asked Questions and Helpful Answers
Are all ponchos reusable?
The answer is yes, for the majority of them. The ones having the label “emergency” or “disposable” are less resistant and theoretically should be used only once. However, if you take great care, you might benefit more from them – do not expect months or years.
Do they all come with a hood?
You can find hoodless models, but there are not quite many. If you resent this feature, you should look for those which have a detachable one. Thus, you can take it off when precipitations cease.
Should you buy nylon?
Rip-stop nylon is considered an ideal fabric for the garments presented in the article above. It is waterproof and light.
Should I machine wash it?
You can toss them in your washing appliance but you must choose a gentle cycle and cold water. Though hand washing is better because the gear does not brittle so fast. Always check the tag and follow its indications.
How can I remove difficult stains from a polyester coat?
You have several alternatives:
- the washing machine (respect the manufacturer’s rules)
- hand cleaning with soapy water
- the vinegar cleaning method (you can dilute it with water and wipe the dirty area with a soft cloth)
- go to a dry cleaner’s
How should I dry this piece of clothing?
You’d better not iron it or put it in the dryer. Hang it on your balcony or in your back garden and let nature do its job. Your garment will be wearable in no time.
Do they easily catch fire?
There are some special ones with have in their composition aramid fiber and they are fireproof. Nonetheless, the best advice is to pay utmost care while around flames.
Any further questions? Ask us and we guarantee that we will do our best to satisfy your curiosity and inquiries.