A proper towel is essential when going on a backpacking trip. While you may not be showering much on a camping trip, backpacking towels come in handy for drying off after it rains, you sweat, or you take an impromptu swim.
They can also be used as a blanket or maybe a sleeping bag liner, picnic blanket, or just something to lounge on. In order to aid you in purchasing one that suits just your taste and pocket, I have provided this guide.
12 Best Quick Dry Towel for Hiking and Factors To Consider
Since regular towels are heavy, bulky, and slow to dry, making them unsuitable for hiking, I have chosen and reviewed the best towels for hiking for you.
Let’s get this!
1. Youphoria Quick Dry Travel Towel
Youphoria’s Quick Dry Travel Towel is one of the most popular hiking towels on the market and they have made it there for good reason. This hiking towel is made from a fine blend of microfiber and performs the best features of a hiking towel at a high level, so it’s sure to become a trusted companion on your hiking adventures.
It is available in three sizes that include 20 by 40 inches which is great for sweaty hikes because the microfiber will almost immediately absorb any sweat on your skin, also comes in 28 by 56 inches, and a relatively large 32 by 72 inches, all providing something that can at least meet my taste.
The material is anti-mildew and anti-odour, which is ideal after a few days of hiking, and it dries up to 10 times faster than terrycloth or cotton — air it out using the attached loop. People have also preferred to use this towel as a sleeping bag liner and travel blanket, which I feel is brilliant.
2. PackTowl Ultralite
The PackTowl Ultralite towel is extremely light, making it ideal for hikers, backpackers, and others looking for ultralight equipment for their challenging trips. The towel is made of a 100 g/m2 polyester/nylon fabric. Most summer base layers, on the other hand, have a higher fabric density (typically more than 130 g/m2).
Despite this, the towel is extremely absorbent, absorbing up to four times its own weight in moisture. Because of the thin fabric, the towel can also be packed very compactly.
It includes a storage pouch with a loop so you can easily attach it to a backpack or other gear if the towel doesn’t dry before you hit the road again. The towel comes in four different sizes and three distinct colours, I mean, isn’t that just amazing?
- Packing Dimensions
- Rapid drying
- Absorbent of water
- Looped storage pouch
3. Sea to Summit Pocket Towel
The Sea to Summit Pocket Towel is heavier as it weighs 190 g/m2 fabric density, but then this towel absorbs more water in a very unique way. As a result, it is extremely popular among outdoor enthusiasts and travellers.
For added comfort, the towel is very soft and silky to the touch. It dries quickly and comes with a zippered EVA case for convenient storage. The Sea to Summit Pocket towel comes in four sizes and six different colours that include cobalt, eucalyptus, lime, berry, grey and orange. It is slightly less expensive than some of the towels on this list.
- Material is soft and silky.
- Absorbent of water
4. PackTowl Personal
The PackTowl Personal towel has a fabric that is soft and smooth to the touch and absorbs moisture four times its own weight. As a result, the towel is extremely comfortable. It is also applied to the fabric to eliminate odour-causing bacteria. Polygiene employs silver salt, that which is naturally present in water and soil to safely inhibit the growth of bacteria and fungi, I choose to call it healthy for this.
As a result, the towel stays fresher for longer, with no negative consequences for you or the environment. Interestingly, this towel comes in four different sizes and five distinct colours and also comes with a zippered pouch with a loop for easy attachment to a backpack.
- Absorbent of water
- Looped storage pouch
5. Sea to Summit Tek Towel
The Sea to Summit Tek towel is ideal for those looking for a towel that dries faster than a regular cotton towel while still providing comparable comfort with this is so because the Tek towel is extremely absorbent and extremely soft to the touch. It is, however, the heaviest product in this review, with a fabric density of 400g/m2.
Additionally, since the fabric is fairly thick, it does not pack as small as the other towels on this list. There are five different sizes and seven different colours available for the towel and it includes a zippered mesh pouch.
- Extremely absorbent of water
- Excellent Fabric
6. Matador NanoDry Towel
Matador’s NanoDry towel is a favourite among hikers that I know of, it is not surprising then that the brand has this amount of following as it is a high-quality product that can withstand a beating on the trail while remaining durable.
This towel is made of super-soft Nanofiber and 85% polyester, together with 15% polyamide which combines together in making it even lighter than other microfiber towels.
More so, it comes in its own silicone travel case with a carabiner for added convenience and portability all you need to do is just hook it to your bag and go. It also absorbs 2.3 times its own weight in water and weighs only 5 ounces, and is 47 by 24 inches in size.
- Extremely absorbent
- Highly Durable
7. PackTowl Nano
The PackTowl Nano towel is ideal for hikers and backpackers who frequently travel away from civilization and knowing that they are going with limited showering options; thus require a small and portable towel. The PackTowl Nano towel is extremely light (0.9 oz.) and only comes in one size which is 1919 in. The fabric is very soft to the touch and absorbs up to twice its own weight in moisture.
The towel can be said to be a multipurpose as it can also be worn as a headband to keep sweat from getting into your eyes and also comes with a mesh pouch for easy attachment to a backpack or other gear.
- Carabiner clip storage pouch
- Dries quickly
8. BOGI Microfiber Travel Sports Towel
The towels come in six stunning colours bright blue, grey, pink, navy, orange, and purple but they’re best known among backpackers for their low profile and absorbency; hence if you’re new to microfiber towels this BOGI towel is a good place to start.
Each comes with its own breathable carry case to allow it to breathe if it’s still a little damp, and you can attach it to the outside of your pack with the carabiner. There’s also a bungee loop to help you hang it up.
The medium condenses down to about the size of a tennis ball and packs down extremely compactly. The smallest size is 16 by 32 inches, but there is also a 72 by 32-inch version.
9. Wise Owl Outfitters Camping Towel
Wise Owl Outfitters camping towels are popular among backcountry enthusiasts due to their high absorbency and quick-drying abilities because they can do these up to 10 times faster than a traditional towel, the thing is that it takes only about 10 minutes in direct sunlight and 30 minutes in the shade, more if it’s very humid out for it to dry up.
This towel, like other good hiking towels, has a snap-closure loop so you can hang it anywhere to dry and air out before putting it back in the backpack — though it does come with its own carry bag if you need to leave before it’s completely dry.
Nevertheless, I also like that the large towel comes with a free washcloth and the extra-large towel comes with a free hand towel, so you’re ready to wash your face or clean up the occasional spill at the campsite. They don’t dry in the hard, scratchy way that some towels do, so they’re super soft and ready to use the next time.
10. Nomadix National Parks All-Purpose Towel
Outdoor gear is frequently rugged, both practically and aesthetically, and form frequently takes a back seat to function. Nomadix, on the other hand, is for those of us who enjoy a splash of color in our lives.
The company sells bright, National Park-themed travel towels that redefine what it means to be one with nature. The four designs depict scenes nothing is dull about the towel, from the Grand Canyon, the Smoky Mountains, Yellowstone, and Joshua Tree National Parks.
They come in a comparatively large size (72 x 30 inches), which may be too large for those who are obsessed with every square inch and are made of GRS-certified post-consumer recycled plastic, which makes it sand-resistant
- Antimicrobial contained
- Beautifully designed
11. OlimpiaFit Three-Towel Set
A towel set is a great way to ensure you’re prepared for anything especially if you’re not sure of what your needs will be while hiking. The thing is that this small towel is 15 inches by 15 inches, the medium is 15 inches by 30 inches, and the large is 30 inches by 50 inches.
Each has snap-close hooks for hanging and airing, and they can withstand up to four times their weight in water while drying 10 times faster than cotton or terrycloth.
More so, I like the large and small ones for washing and drying off on the trail, and then the medium-size ones for going to the gym because the antimicrobial properties are great for guarding against gym-equipment germs as well.
The only drawback is that there isn’t a separate carry bag for each, but that’s hardly a deal-breaker with this set. Just remember to wash them before using them for the first time
12. Rumpl Shammy Towel
if you want to avoid synthetic microfibers Rumpl’s Shammy Towels are fantastic for you, the industry’s standard for hiking towels is known for material that will dry quickly, absorb a lot of water, and not weigh too much in the pack. These polyester and spandex blend towels, measuring 29.5 by 72 inches, are softer than they appear and extremely lightweight.
They’re also great as a beach towel because sand won’t stick to them as it would to a standard towel’s hook-and-loop weave; plus, the material is stain- and odour-resistant, so mildew won’t grow on these. Irrespective of what these towels were designed specifically for, they check all the boxes for an ideal hiking trip except for a breathable carry case, but then I recommend picking up a cheap lingerie bag to clip on to the outside of your backpack.
- Extremely soft
In the end, when hiking, whether, through the woods across a mountain, you’ll want a lightweight, easy-to-pack towel that dries quickly and efficiently.
And since the best backpacking towels are typically soft, compact, and highly absorbent; I have provided a few things to keep in mind while shopping for one. Enjoy!