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mPalozzola01
04-26-2017, 10:08
So I'm curious who would recommend one over the other for a long trail/thru hike. Preferably someone who has experience with both. But pros vs cons for each. I am looking for a like weight but versatile option... i feel the poncho is a more versatile option. What do you all think?

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AfterParty
04-26-2017, 10:22
I am a poncho guy. It also closes off one end of my tarp. Acts as a pack cover and liner. Snugpack patrol ponchos have a hoodie pocket and sleeves I like mine

mPalozzola01
04-26-2017, 10:26
Yeah I like the concept of also being able to use it as a ground cover or sit pad etc... and I feel it would keep the pack dryer in one less step then a pack cover. What is your poncho made of and how much does it weigh?

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jimmyjam
04-26-2017, 10:56
Poncho here also. And like above I can use mine to close off the end of my tarp. Pack covers do not work the rain gets in between your back and the pack. You'll sweat a little less with a poncho too. I made mine from silnylon about 7 ozs I believe.

QiWiz
04-26-2017, 11:30
For hiking in the rain, unless it's a very exposed and windy trail, I prefer the Packa combo poncho and pack cover (google if not familiar), with chaps or a rain skirt for legs. Has best ventilation IMO. Only issue with the Packa is when its raining and you have to get the pack off for some reason (like a bathroom break, layer change, setting up camp) you have to take the packa off and put it back on, which can get you pretty wet if its raining hard. Best feature of Packa is [1] no rain down your back and [2] ability to put on and off while walking without stopping to remove pack.

Traffic Jam
04-26-2017, 12:28
After hiking in pouring rain a few weeks ago and my gear getting damp (had a pack cover), I'm considering a DIY poncho. I've tried a pre-made poncho but it was too large and cumbersome.

JJ, do you have written instructions for yours or did you wing it?

AfterParty
04-26-2017, 14:56
Mine the snugpak patrol poncho weighs 12 oz and fits different then most traditional ponchos. The sides are sewn and seam sealed and it has arms. I couldn't find its material its not ripstop no grid pattern. The sleeves have elastic at the wrists. It works great for my style.

Jayne
04-26-2017, 14:57
Well, rain jacket and pants are a more complete coverage and an additional warmth layer if it's cold out (and it doesn't have to be very cold rain to suck the heat out of you) but they are bulkier, heavier, don't cvoer your back pack, and much more expensive. I use a sil-nylon poncho when I'm not worried about cold weather - otherwise I use a rain suit. Also, a poncho doesn't work well if you actually have to go through brush - it just gets caught on everything.

skylark
04-26-2017, 15:04
Hot weather: poncho. Cold weather: rain jacket.

MikekiM
05-25-2017, 16:48
...JJ, do you have written instructions for yours or did you wing it?

+1 on this..

I have a ton of material.. would love to make a decent poncho

Ethesis
05-25-2017, 17:00
So I'm curious who would recommend one over the other for a long trail/thru hike. Preferably someone who has experience with both. But pros vs cons for each. I am looking for a like weight but versatile option... i feel the poncho is a more versatile option. What do you all think?

Sent from my SM-G900T1 using Tapatalk

this is like the question of which shoes.

It really differs person to person.

Ive tried a few ponchos. I really wanted to like them.

Ive used some bad rain jackets.

Currently a rain jacket and kilt/skirt.

You need to find what works for you.

Ive a friend who just wears shorts even in CMT sleet storms.

Some people water proof their pants from the knees down.

Try the alternatives for a few few days of rain hiking each until you hit what works for you.

There are really cheap ponchos. Costco has really cheap rain jackets.

Sometimes cheap is lighter and better.

Tipi Walter
05-25-2017, 17:14
Well, rain jacket and pants are a more complete coverage and an additional warmth layer if it's cold out (and it doesn't have to be very cold rain to suck the heat out of you) but they are bulkier, heavier, don't cvoer your back pack, and much more expensive. I use a sil-nylon poncho when I'm not worried about cold weather - otherwise I use a rain suit. Also, a poncho doesn't work well if you actually have to go through brush - it just gets caught on everything.

This sums it up for me. My rain jacket and pants are survival gear to prevent hypothermia when backpacking in a cold rain---and cold rains happen from May thru September. My rain jacket is not meant to cover my pack---I carry a pack cover for this.

Slo-go'en
05-25-2017, 17:40
My problem with a poncho is I need another person to help me get it over my pack properly. Doing that by yourself is difficult and if it's windy out good luck! Ponchos also don't do well in exposed, windy areas or where the trail is overgrown. Which is a lot of the AT. I really hate hiking with a poncho. If you want to stop and get something out of your pack, it's a real pain in the butt.

But in the summer, I carry a poncho in addition to my rain jacket. During the summer you don't usually hike in the rain all day. The threat is thunderstorms which usually blow by in reasonably short order. Having the poncho to hunker under until the storm blows over is really nice.

Drybones
05-25-2017, 17:43
I've used them both, when I had one i wished I had the other, each has it's pros and cons. A poncho will cover your pack to keep it dry, it's easy to regulate body temperature by opening the poncho up to let air in or closing it to keep the air out, it's a PITA hiking up steep areas when you step on the poncho, it makes a crappie (not the fish) layer, I even used mine as a shelter when I didn't want to set the tent up...BTW, got a little wet when it started raining in the middle of the night. A lightweight shell is a great layer for when it's windy and cold, and it's comfortable....bottom line is they're both okay, I use the shell if it's cold and the poncho in warmer weather. As for the pack cover...forget it, get you a compactor trash bag and a pack that repels water.

martinb
06-22-2017, 11:29
I converted to a poncho after using rain jacket for years and years. Much more versatile than a jacket/pant combo and less sweaty, if it's not clinched down.

nsherry61
06-22-2017, 11:57
I use a Sea-to-Summit Ultrasil poncho. It weighs in about 8 oz. It is my rain-gear, my summer shelter, my ground cloth, my pack cover, my portable tent for eating lunch (or navigating) in the rain, my extra tarp for filling in around another tarp pitched in extreme conditions, my table cloth, my gear mat . . . hmm what else . . .

In disagreement a couple of posts up-thread, I have done quite of bit of bushwhacking with my poncho, expecting it to get damaged and to interfere with my movement, and instead I found it quite effective at both keeping me dry in soaking wet brush and not snagging on things . . . and this was often in western Oregon coastal forests with dense underbrush. Maybe bushwhacking issues are highly material dependent instead of a basic problem with poncho design. That being said, yes, a rain suit is easier to bushwhack in, mostly because you can see your feet better, but is still worked okay with a poncho.

As for getting backpacks on and off, one of the great beauties about using a poncho for me is the ability to take my pack on and off in the rain while keeping both myself and my gear completely dry under it.

And, for what it's worth, I don't have a problem putting my poncho on while walking and wearing my backpack. Others I hike with sometimes do. I think it depends on how your bag is packed (i.e. crap tied onto the outside of the pack interferes with sliding the poncho on) and also on how flexible your arms and shoulders are. I find it a complete non-issue.

Lastly, in windy conditions, a piece of line tied around your waist as a poncho belt enables pretty high functionality in pretty windy conditions, no, not hurricane winds, but pretty windy ridge-lines none the less.

I would say, because of their phenomenal versatility, poncho skills are well worth a significant effort to perfect, so that if it can work for you, you figure out how to make it happen.

cmoulder
06-23-2017, 09:20
Others I hike with sometimes do. I think it depends on how your bag is packed (i.e. crap tied onto the outside of the pack interferes with sliding the poncho on) and also on how flexible your arms and shoulders are. I find it a complete non-issue.

Totally agree — directly proportional to pack size and how much stuff is on the outside.

I have a Zpacks poncho and keep the left side zipped and stow the poncho itself in the left side pocket. It can be deployed within seconds without removing the pack, and then removed and stowed again very quickly. Nice when there are on and off showers all day long.

emilialovve
08-12-2017, 11:43
Pack liner vs. pack cover? Or both?!

MuddyWaters
08-12-2017, 11:51
packliner, and water resistant pack, and rainjacket

and umbrella

works great

no need to wear hood, or zip up jacket all way, leave pit zips wide open, stay cooler

OkeefenokeeJoe
08-12-2017, 18:21
+1 for the Packa. Easy and effective.

OkeefenokeeJoe

Cheyou
08-12-2017, 18:27
Totally agree — directly proportional to pack size and how much stuff is on the outside.

I have a Zpacks poncho and keep the left side zipped and stow the poncho itself in the left side pocket. It can be deployed within seconds without removing the pack, and then removed and stowed again very quickly. Nice when there are on and off showers all day long.[/COLOR]


Would love to get one , but I choke on the $175. Price tag

thom

Hikes in Rain
08-12-2017, 20:47
Poncho here, too. A couple of times while hiking through a multi-day rain (my user name is earned the hard way!), I wished for a pack cover so I could get some water, where the only places to set my pack down was in a puddle. Heck, the whole place was one big puddle!

bigcranky
08-12-2017, 20:53
this is like the question of which shoes.

It really differs person to person.

Ive tried a few ponchos. I really wanted to like them.

Ive used some bad rain jackets.

Currently a rain jacket and kilt/skirt.

You need to find what works for you. \



Yeah, it's really personal and ideally you'd try them both. I tried a poncho several times and just couldn't get it to work for me. I like a good rain shell, a homemade rain kilt, rain mitts for cooler weather, and my Tilley hat. I also use a rain cover for my pack, as well as a cuben pack liner (belt and suspenders for me!)

DownEaster
08-12-2017, 22:30
I haven't found pack covers to be good at much but catching the wind or the occasional branch. And when it's windy, a poncho is just going to make you cold. So I go for a cheap Frogg Toggs rain suit so I don't get cold and wet. The pack has no outside protection, but everything inside is in dry bags which are in turn inside a 3 mil contractor-grade trash bag. If the pack gets soaked, it gets emptied and placed upside-down in my tent vestibule overnight to have a chance to dry out. At least there won't be any standing water in there to start the day.

Ethesis
08-13-2017, 11:47
Yeah, it's really personal and ideally you'd try them both. I tried a poncho several times and just couldn't get it to work for me. I like a good rain shell, a homemade rain kilt, rain mitts for cooler weather, and my Tilley hat. I also use a rain cover for my pack, as well as a cuben pack liner (belt and suspenders for me!)

I love my Tilley hat as well.

I tried two different ponchos and am on my third rain jacket.

But, I think I've found what works for me.

I think that experimenting and testing to see what fits you really helps.

That said, almost anything can let you survive. I could survive in any of what I used. I'm just happier with what I have now.

I also use a pack cover and some dry sacks and they've worked well.