/ Which travel towels work best?

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Raskye - on 07 Mar 2019

I haven't used a travel towel for about 20 years as I found they didn't really dry you but just moved the water around until it evaporated.

Have they improved and if so, which ones work best?

Thanks

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galpinos on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

No idea about current crop of travel towels but my wife and her hockey team have a mild obsession with Dock and Bay towels and my wife's seems far better than my old travel towel.

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tjin - on 07 Mar 2019

Absorption is not an issue. Just not as smooth as a regular towel, so you kind of dap part of the skin instead of just sliding over it. 

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Marmolata - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

The Tek Towel from Sea to Summit has a surface almost like a normal towel. It's very absorbent and feels quite nice. Doesn't pack as small as the sleeks ones, though, always a trade-off.

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Stefan Jacobsen - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I don’t find those techy micro fibre towels any better than cotton. They don’t absorb water better and they don’t dry faster. 

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wivanov - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to galpinos:

I've tried the micro fiber towels but I really like the cotton "Turkish towels" https://herpackinglist.com/turkish-towels-for-travel/

Sure, they're thin. But, they roll up small, are big enough to use as a beach blanket or for airline sleeping. Dry fairly quickly. I guess it depends on what kind of traveling - they're a bit large for backpacking.

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teh_mark on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I've always found the microfibre PackTowls to be excellent at absorbing water and drying very quickly, but they feel horrible on the skin.

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nniff - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

Not a lot wrong with Decathlon's

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pasbury on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

Just use yesterday's undercrackers.

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Rick Graham on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

On the advice of a local shop I bought a large green one and cut it up into more useable sizes.

US at first but rapidly improve after a few cycles through the washing machine.

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Raskye - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to pasbury:

I used yesterday's t-shirt then washed it ready for the next day.

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Wil Treasure - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

In my experience they're all terrible. They take too long to soak up water, take a while to dry and end up smelling.

The suggestion above about the Turkish towel is good. Something thin is far preferable as it absorbs the water fast then dries quickly, has a bigger surface and is very light. I've used a £5 sarong for several years which has been excellent.

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NaCl - on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

Personally I've always found a dry one works best.

I'll get my coat....

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DNS on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

A cotton 'terry' towelling nappy cheap as chips and super absorbent.

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didntcomelast on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I use a linen tea towel. It’s well absorbent dries quickly and is a darn sight cheaper than a pack towel     ( Decathlon orAldi excluded )

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mp3ferret on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

MSR Pack Towel - tiny pack size, absorbent and dries quickly.  it more of a chamois leather than a towel - but effective.  Avoid the small size - it tiny.

https://www.elitemountainsupplies.co.uk/camping-trekking-c4/travel-c40/pack-towel-c41/msr-packtowl-original-large-blue-p126

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Frank R. on 07 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I am afraid they never well enough worked for me...

For trekking, when weight is not such a concern, I just use a big scarf. Keffiyeh (shemagh) dries somewhat quickly if it's a good quality wool mix model, and is quite multipurpose. If you don't mind the look

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LastBoyScout on 08 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I've had a Life Venture one for years - and a couple of cheap version from Decathlon - which has done me well on my travels.

I've been really impressed with the flannel-sized one I got from Mountain Warehouse that I keep in my wash bag - if I was going to buy one now, I'd get one with that sort of texture.

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ben b - on 08 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

Oh god. I recall being sold some sheets of pertex from a shop by Euston station when I was off to do the coast-to-coast in the school holidays with my girlfriend. What a great idea, we thought. We soon discovered that you can create the exact same effect more cheaply by trying to dry yourself off with a bin liner.

These days a microfibre cloth does a far better job, and if you use the same one for the dishes then you get to experience the flow of fragrances. For the first few days, you smell faintly of tomato soup. By the second week all food smells like your underpants. 

If you get some sunlight and warmth you can at least keep it from growing too many bacteria and/or fungi.

I hope some more helpful answers will be available ;-)

b

  

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Orange - on 08 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

Normal towel is fine.

Ford Prefect is shaking his head. 

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Dell on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to ben b:

Survival Aids?   I still have one of their travel towels.  It's just a rectangle of pertex. The original pertex before they brought out all the different types. Rubbish of course. 

These days I find a microfiber towel from the pound shop does the job. 

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ben b - on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to Dell:

That's them! Had forgotten about them... would have been the late eighties, when even I had a lot of hair and a sheet of pertex was never going to work! I seem to recall that you could have anything in any colour just as long as it was green.

In reality I use a thermarest pack towel (and indeed have done for about 20 years), light, cheapish and unkillable. 

b

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CLYoung - on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I've got a bamboo one from Trespass that works ok.

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PaulJepson - on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

As someone with a fair bit of lightweight backpacking experience (>3000 trail miles and tons of weekend trips), I can't say enough good things about shamwow.

Have used all the micro-fibre 'travel' towels and they're a bit shit. Not very absorbent and kind of just move the water around you. You end up just using them to brush the liquid off you and never really get dry. 

A small shamwow on the other hand (I use around 30cm2), is super absorbent. You towel until it's saturated then ring it out. Super small, super absorbent, super light, dries quickly. Give it a try; I guarantee you won't be disappointed. 

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Dax H - on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to wivanov:

Just ordered a Turkish towel to try out, thanks for the heads up. I hate the feeling of getting dry with a micro fiber towel

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mik82 - on 10 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

I actually quite like the towelling micro fibre ones from Mountain Warehouse. They dry you quicker than a cotton towel and aren't very expensive. 

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wivanov - on 11 Mar 2019
In reply to Dax H:

Hope you like it. Let us know how it works for you.

I have several and they've become our favorites - along with a shemagh. (My wife uses the shemagh as a sarong when leaving the beach)

In addition to the gym, the turkish towels have gone with us to the local beach, Nevis, Belize, Costa Rica and, last month, Galapagos

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Guy - on 11 Mar 2019
In reply to mik82:

I bought one on impulse a while ago and actually it is pretty good, so good I used it rather than my normal towel on holiday as it dried faster. Bit weird feeling though!

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Kimono - on 12 Mar 2019
In reply to Raskye:

if I'm going lightweight then nothing beats a j-cloth....seriously

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