Nature is a very kind but unforgiving entity that won’t hesitate to make your life miserable if you aren’t prepared. You can bring tools, food, and water, but most of the time, you will forget to bring something to protect you from the cold and wet rain. But a survival poncho, a truly invaluable item, is something you will always have on you after reading this article.
Let’s take a look at some of the best survival ponchos on the market today and see if any of these excellent products will be the right choice for you:
1. Coleman Emergency Poncho
The Coleman Rain poncho combines its reasonable price with a good set of features that result in an end product that managed to check all of the boxes for us.
Unlike most models on the market, it strays away from the traditional PVC construction and uses 15-millimeter EVA, and as a result, it is even more wear-resistant. The different parts have welded seams, so when it comes to any type of moisture, you will be almost 100% protected.
Your head is also protected with a full-coverage hood that can be adjusted using drawstrings. For closure, it uses a side snap enclosure, and with its versatile Grommets, it can fit almost anyone and be used for various tasks.
- PVC free 15 millimeter EVA construction at the core
- Welded seams for an even more watertight body
- Full coverage and an adjustable hood to protect your head
- Bright color perfect for emergencies
- Not very durable
- A little bit expensive for what it offers
2. Arcturus Lightweight Ripstop Poncho
At only 0.68lbs, the Arcturus reusable poncho is super-lightweight and ideal for almost any emergency or survival situation, as it packs in a very small and convenient carry bag that the manufacturer includes.
It is a very versatile piece of gear and can be used as a tarp, emergency shelter, or even a groundsheet to help you stay as comfortable as possible. The Arcturus can be opened from both sides to access its full size, and if you need to tie it down, you have four steel grommets on each corner.
It is built from 210T rip-stop taffeta and coated with two layers of waterproof polyurethane. This makes it able to withstand a plethora of weather conditions, even if something unexpected manages to surprise you.
The hood is large and deep, which provides ideal protection from adverse weather. And depending on the weather, you can adjust it anytime using the drawstrings.
The Arcturus is extra-long in size, so for most adults, it will be below the knee and even at boot level, and even in the most extreme of areas and situations, like a deep river or a flood, you will be extremely thankful for this extra protection.
- Extra long for added protection
- Quality materials
- Small footprint
- Not too many for the price
3. Anyoo Waterproof Rain Poncho
Aside from the many different colors and styles the Anyoo comes in, it is well built with heavy-duty 210Tex nylon and PVC coating. You will stay dry and safe no matter the situation. It also comes in a convenient carrying bag with a drawstring enclosure, and together they weigh only about 6 ounces.
The Anyoo poncho is rugged and resistant to tearing and abrasion thanks to its PVC-coated nylon fabric. It is rated at 3000mm, so rain protection is assured. And with a single-piece construction and well-glued overlock, the waterproofing and water repellency are even better.
The hood has a drawcord, and with its hook and loop fasteners, you can adjust it to your head and face better than almost any other product. The sides and the armholes aren’t too tight, and thus you have nice ventilation and amazing comfort.
It is even big enough to keep not only you but also your backpack protected without restricting your movement. Or, if you need it to fit a little bit tighter, there are drawstrings to adjust the sides easily.
And with the included eyelets along the hem and the hook & loop fasteners, you can use it for even more things.
- Water-resistant and reusable
- Made of durable, rip-stop material
- Offers multi-use functionality
- Lightweight and easily portable with the included storage bag • Has snap closures on the sides to deal with windy conditions
- A little bit too oversized for its good
- Even though the hood is adjustable, it can be a little bit too tight at times
4. Foxelli Hooded Rain Poncho for Adults
The Foxelli military-style poncho has the right mix of high-quality materials and functionality to make it the go-to rain gear for every outdoor activity. Whether going on a hike, at a concert, trying to survive an emergency, or just going out in rainy weather, this stylish product is an excellent choice.
Made of 210Tex polyester that has been waterproofed with a 3000mm polyurethane coating, it provides the best cover in heavy rain and strong winds. The material is not only water-resistant but also extremely wear and tear-resistant, so you are going to get the most out of it.
Not to mention its size, at around 100 to 60 inches, that will allow you to wear it even with a big 50 or 60-liter backpack. But that doesn’t compromise its weight because it manages to stay as lightweight as possible even with its huge size.
It can protect you from other outdoor elements when used as a sunshade, tent tarp, sleeping bag cover, or camping blanket. The included steel grommets allow for quick form transitions and easy fastening.
The hood has a cap for extra protection and features a drawstring for quick and easy fit adjustments. The sides have Velcro fasteners, so closing it in case of a strong wind won’t be that hard.
- Durable and weather-resistant
- It is made of high-quality materials
- It comes with a carrying bag
- Lightweight and packs compactly
- Multipurpose in usage
- It has a capped hood
- Not easy to adjust
- Quick discoloration
5. A-MORE Waterproof Raincoat
Тhis raincoat from A – More is hooded, but with a simple zipper, you can separate the hood so that you can use it as a blanket for the grass or ground, a tarp for a shelter, or even as a fishing net.
It is extremely easy to carry with its lightweight nature and small size when folded. As it is waterproof and super durable, it can even be used for hiking, fishing, camping, and outdoor activities without worrying too much about reliability.
Its size is in the middle of the road, but it is still big enough to protect you and your large backpack, even in torrential rain.
- Very durable and made of quality materials
- Super watertight able to protect you from both rain and snowstorm
- Big enough for any task that you may want to use for
- A little bit too overpriced for what it offers
- Not many colors that you can choose from
- Many reports of defects
- Too thin and made without much care for quality control
How to choose a good rain poncho for survival?
How to choose the correct size and weight?
- 1 1. Coleman Emergency Poncho
- 2 2. Arcturus Lightweight Ripstop Poncho
- 3 3. Anyoo Waterproof Rain Poncho
- 4 4. Foxelli Hooded Rain Poncho for Adults
- 5 5. A-MORE Waterproof Raincoat
- 6 How to choose a good rain poncho for survival?
- 7 Final Words
It’s important to get the balance right regarding a poncho’s size and weight.
Most raincoats utilize a one-size-fits-all design, and they are always a little bit loose, so most of the time, you won’t need to worry about it, but if you are looking for one for your kids, your better option is something specifically made for kids.
The best case scenario is to find a product that can protect not only you but another person, too, while remaining pretty lightweight even when packed. If you are traveling alone, though, choosing a smaller model is a better option, but remember that the bigger ones have more functions. The good ones, though, will focus on only one thing – making a product that has a large set of different features that retain a lightweight construction.
What is the best color?
While for most other products, color is just a cosmetic option that is irrelevant in the end, for a poncho made for survival, it is something extremely important. While you can’t predict where you will need one, two main color groups correspond to what you will be using it for.
If you are running away from a crisis or a war-like situation, your main priority is to hide, so the best option is to go for a light-colored or a camouflage one. This way, you will blend in with the background much more easily than with a bright red one.
But if you are lost in the wild and your intention is to be rescued as soon as possible, having bright clothing is the best way to be noticed as quickly and easily as possible. A red or neon-colored option is the best way to get the attention of a rescue team even when it gets dark, and you are far away from them. If you have the budget, get both a bright and a camo one to be prepared for any situation.
When finding a good poncho, you’ll need to get something much better than just a thin nylon piece. While PVC is great at repelling most of the unwanted harsh conditions mother nature can present at you, it isn’t the most breathable material, so for prolonged use, you can start to get sweaty and uncomfortable.
PU-coated nylon is a sensible option, as it is known for its waterproof properties. On the exterior, we have comfortable and durable nylon, while on the inside, there is a waterproof polyurethane to protect you from rain and snow. But at the end of the day, they have the same core problem as PVC ones – low breathability.
For arguably the most lightweight option, cube fiber is perhaps the best material to look out for. It combines plastic mylar with other fibers to ensure you have the lightest fabric possible. It isn’t on the cheap side, though, so not anyone can afford it.
Many models will use silicone nylon or silicone polyester for a tough and waterproof design. For an affordable and durable product, these options are ideal middle-of-the-road you can find.
Should you get a disposable poncho or a reusable one?
While up to this point, we have discussed mostly long-lasting models, a disposable variant is something worth considering. They are the perfect choice for a lightweight survival kit where you need as much space as possible and you don’t need the quality of a long-lasting poncho.
They differ from most other survival gear, and here is the case again. For a survival knife, for example, it is best to be durable and rigid. Still, in most cases, a disposable one will be an amazing option because even if something happens to it, in the pack, there are probably 20 more.
In the pack, they not only come in large numbers but in different colors, too, with a clear one always included, and with a little bit of maintenance, they can last you a lot.
What to consider about waterproofing?
If your fabric isn’t waterproof, then why do you even have it?
Many of the best models out there have watertight construction to keep even the smallest of moisture away. You should look out for ponchos with taped seams as they keep the water out even better. And you should also try to find one with a hood because the head is the most important area of your body.
In this article, we’ve looked at some amazing ponchos, but one thing ties them all together – the fact that they will protect you from anything that you can encounter while out and about, no matter if it’s a little bit of rain or a huge storm. While something more durable and long-lasting like the Arcturus is an amazing choice for someone who hunts or goes out trekking a lot, in my opinion, the formula that makes the best poncho for you is the one that offers you all the protection and features that you may want, at a decent price and it is small enough to carry with you at all times.