Imagine feeling one with nature after discovering a secretly hidden waterfall during a vacation in the mountains. After swimming back to shore, you step on the sun-warmed pebbles and reach for your towel as the warm breeze greets you. However, as soon as you bring the towel to your face, you smell a repelling musty odor that quickly snaps you out of your daydream. Plus, the cloth feels like sandpaper. Nobody wants to experience that! You want the best, most comfortable towel you can get, and that means finding the best quick dry towels for backpacking.
But where to find these towels can be a bit of a mystery. You want a quick drying towel, and that usually means it’s not very absorbent. That’s not asking too much. Is it?
Best Quick Dry Towels for Backpacking Comparison Table
The Best Advice for Finding the Best Quick Dry Towels for Backpacking
Here are a few helpful tips when shopping for the best quick dry towels for backpacking. First, you want to make sure the cloth is the right material. A good travel towel typically contains modified polyester and nylon fibers which capture water in pockets between them, allowing you to squeeze water from the cloth.
Travel and backpacking towels come in many sizes, and the best size to choose is based on your personal preferences. However, keep in mind that larger towels weigh more and take up more backpack space. Additionally, a good weight for a body towel is around four ounces.
Finally, make sure the towel has antibacterial properties. Treatments such as Polyiegene and other antimicrobial treatments inhibit the growth of odor-causing bacteria and keeps your towel fresher much longer. But, it’s important to remember that antibacterial treatments eventually get washed out over time. There are no permanent antibacterial treatments available at this time.
How We Found the Best Quick Dry Towels for Backpacking
To find the best quick dry towels for backpacking, we searched a lot of travel forums and social media pages for the best recommendations from real outdoor adventurers from around the world. We then chose the products with the best customer reviews. Finally, we explored what the customer reviews revealed about each towel. Often we find that customer reviews tell us things about a product that the manufacturer and retailer fail to mention. After careful evaluation, we settled on the best quick dry towels for backpacking.
Here Are the Finalists
After consulting numerous online forums and social media pages, we managed to refine our list to the top nine travel towels on the market. We picked these towels after making sure they had specific features such as antibacterial treatments and microfiber material. Most of these towels are sold individually and cost between $ and $ based on size. Also, some have limited or unlimited term money-back guarantees, while others offer limited or unlimited term warranties.
Our first contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the PackTowl Personal Microfiber Towel. This towel features a soft microfiber fabric that’s smooth against your skin. It has four times absorbency that can hold four times its weight in water and wring out easily. Also, it’s said to dry almost 70 percent faster than cotton towels, and Polygiene® odor control helps ensure your cloth stays fresh. This towel is compact and perfect for backpacks. Finally, it includes a convenient hang loop and zippered storage bag for quick drying and packing. Plus, the Packtowl is machine washable.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.5 out of 5 stars. One customer said that she and her husband now use these towels exclusively at home and while traveling. She said they’re soft and dry very fast. Another customer said that he’s used it as a cooling rag, a blanket, and even soaked it in ocean water to help soothe a jellyfish sting.
Other customers complained that the towel did not dry their skin, but instead pushed water around. One customer said it did not wring out water as advertised. Another said that it would bleed color if you machine-wash it without hand washing it three times before first use.
This towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a limited lifetime warranty.
Our next contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the ShamWow towel. This towel features super absorbency that soaks up to 10 times its weight in any liquid. It’s also drip-proof, so it doesn’t leave a mess. Furthermore, it’s suitable for multi-purpose tasks like washing, drying, and polishing. Additionally, the ShamWow is non-abrasive and guaranteed not to scratch any surface, and it’s machine washable. These towels sell in packs of 2, 4, 8, and 16.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.3 out of 5 stars. One customer said it worked well for spills and said it seemed to pick up crumbs and dirt better than her other microfiber cloths.
However, another customer claimed the towel left lint everywhere and felt more like a piece of dense felt.
This towel set can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a 10-year limited warranty.
Rainleaf Microfiber Towel
The third contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the RainleafMicrofiber Towel. This towel is super absorbent and fast-drying, allowing for repeat use. It’s also antibacterial, killing lots of common mildew and germs. Plus, it’s soft on your skin. Finally, the cloth is ultra-compact and lightweight, with a hang snap loop and a convenient reusable and waterproof carrying bag.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.6 out of 5 stars. One customer called this product “the perfect travel towel.” She said the cloth dried off quickly and never smelled musty afterward.
However, another customer said the towel smelled like a brand new tire no matter how many times he washed it. Also, customers complained about color-bleed during washing.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a lifetime warranty.
Raqpak Antibacterial Microfiber Towel
Our next option is the Raqpak Microfiber Towel. This towel features antibacterial properties that kill germs and prevent mildew. It also helps prevent that nasty wet towel smell. It’s lightweight and can absorb up to three times its original weight. It’s also a soft and gentle multi-purpose towel that resists fading. Additionally, this cloth dries three times faster than cotton or terry cloth towels, and you can wring it dry quickly. Finally, it’s space-saving and fits easily into any bag or backpack.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.5 out of 5 stars. One customer said that it was the perfect travel towel for the gym and outdoor activities, stating that it dried quickly and felt soft and smooth. Another customer said it made drying her hair much faster.
However, other customers were not as impressed. A few said the towel stuck to their skin, did not absorb water well and had a mildew odor when wet.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Plus, it includes a money back guarantee for an unspecified period.
Youphoria Outdoors Microfiber Quick Dry Travel Towel
The Youphoria Outdoors Microfiber Quick Dry Travel Towel features a super absorbent and fast drying microfiber material that can hold up to 5 times its weight in fluids and dries up to 10 times faster than terry cloth and cotton towels. The fabric is also antibacterial and resists mildew and odors after use. Each towel comes with a convenient travel bag for easy storage in any luggage or backpack. Lastly, they are ultra-soft and feel terrific against your skin.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.4 out of 5 stars. One customer, who’s an avid backpacker, said these were the best travel towels he’s ever used. He said they’re super absorbent, dry quickly, and take up very little space.
However, another customer warned that the stitching came apart after he washed the towel the first time. Furthermore, another customer didn’t like the towel’s smell after use.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a 30-day money back guarantee.
Wise Owl Microfiber Camping Towel
The next contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the Wise Owl Outfitters Camping Towel. This towel features a convenient snap loop for hanging, and it makes an excellent multi-use towel for all kinds of activities. This towel is also lightweight and takes up very little room in any backpack. The cloth is a super-absorbant and fast-drying material that’s said to feel soft while soaking up any liquid.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.8 out of 5 stars with over 800 reviews. One customer who swears by this product said she uses it for everything, including drying her 13-month-old baby. And most customers agreed that the towels are indeed super-absorbant and dry fast. Another customer praised Wise Owl’s outstanding customer service.
However, a few customers complained about color-bleed after first wash and said that the towel has an unpleasant chemical odor.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes an indefinite “no questions asked” money-back guarantee.
SYOURSELF Microfiber Sports & Travel Towel
Next up in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the SYOURSELF Microfiber towel. This towel features a fast drying and super absorbent microfiber material that can soak up four times its weight in water. Its extra-fine fibers are said to have a luxurious touch that’s gentle on your skin. It’s also multi-purpose and can be used for activities such as camping, swimming, going to the gym, cleaning, or bathing. Also, the towel is easy to clean and takes up little space in a backpack or gym bag.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.5 out of 5 stars. One customer called it a “must have” for active people, stating that the cloth is super absorbent, durable, lightweight, and travels very well.
However, another customer complained that the towel felt cheap, and did not dry or absorb well.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.
INCITE Elite Blue Microfibre Travel Towel
The next contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the Incite Elite Microfiber Towel. This towel features a fast drying and super absorbent antibacterial microfiber material that absorbs water 4 times faster and dries 10 times faster than regular terry cloth or cotton towels. They are also lightweight and very portable; the perfect towel for backpacking or any number of other activities. It also features a hanging loop for convenience and is machine-washable.
Amazon customers rated this towel 4.6 out of 5 stars. One customer said it was a fantastic camping towel that worked much better than towels twice the cost. Another noted that it was the highest quality microfiber towel on the market.
However, a smaller minority of customers didn’t like the towel’s slick feel. They also claimed that it did not dry as well as cotton towels.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. It also includes a 100-percent lifetime money-back guarantee.
Sea to Summit Pocket Towel
The final contender in our best quick dry towels for backpacking contest is the Sea to Summit Pocket Towel. This towel features a durable synthetic microfiber material that’s whisper-light, yet feels silky smooth and soft on your skin. This new woven technical fabric is also said to be ultra-absorbent and dries remarkably fast. Finally, it comes with a convenient nifty neoprene storage bag and is machine washable.
Amazon customers rated this bag 4.3 out of 5 stars. One customer called the pocket towel an excellent addition to her camping gear, noting how well it traveled and dried her hair. She also said the cloth was bone dry after 30 minutes.
However, other customers complained that the towels did not feel as smooth and soft as the Drylite model made by the same company.
A single towel can cost from $ to $ depending on the size you order. Additionally, it includes a limited lifetime warranty.
Our Picks for the Best Quick Dry Towels for Backpacking
After careful consideration, we picked the Wise Owl Microfiber Camping Towel, the INCITE Elite Blue Microfibre Travel Towel, and the Rainleaf Microfiber Towel to represent the best quick dry towels for backpacking. However, we gave a slight edge to the Wise Owl towel, selecting it as the best of the best due to its incredible customer satisfaction ratio.
Do you have a favorite quick dry towel for backpacking? Tell us all about it!