The Ultra Fast-Dry and Extreme Ultra-Light camp towels from Discovery Trekking Outfitters is a product that lives up to its promises. These camp towels are competitively priced compared to other lightweight camp towels on the market and they deliver some very nice features.
Discovery Trekking Outfitters (DTO) is a company out of Campbell River, British Columbia. They have a very diverse product line and all of their manufacturing is done in North America.
When looking for a lightweight camping towel there isn't a lot of variety. Most towels are microfiber or a chamois type material. DTO has come up with another idea and I think it is a better idea. They are using performance fabrics from Polartec to produce a very light, fast drying towel for camping and pretty much any other activity where a towel may be needed.
I will be reviewing two different towels from DTO. The Ultra Fast-Dry towel is the red towel and the Extreme Ultra-Light towel is the blue towel. In order to prevent confusion I will refer to these towels by their color for the rest of the review.
- Sizes – These towels come in a variety of sizes from 13”x10” all the way up to 34”x58”. You can find an appropriate size for pretty much any activity. In this review the red towel is the medium at 28”x34” and the blue towel is the large at 34”x58”
- Lightweight – The synthetic material these towels are made of allow them to be highly absorbent while remaining lightweight and packable. The red towel weighs in at 4.5 ounces and the blue towel weighs in at 6.5 ounces.
- Packable – The towels will roll down very small. The Extreme Ultra-Light towel (blue) gets even smaller than the red one and it is a larger cut. Not only will they roll down small, they are still very compressible so you can stuff them in a sack and make them even smaller.
- Antimicrobial – The yarns of these towels have silver encapsulated in them. Silver will inhibit the growth of odor causing bacteria and since it is not a surface treatment its effectiveness will last for years. Both towels feature the silver treatment.
- Fast Drying – Nothing is worse than using a towel that smells or a towel that never really dries out. When you are on the go there is not always a lot of time to let a towel dry out, but with these towels the dry time is surprisingly fast. When water is wicked into the towels the fibers pull the water around the fibers and that creates a lot more surface area for the water to quickly evaporate. This is the secret to the fast dry times. The water is not soaked into the fibers, it is wicked and distributed.
- Sun Protection – The Ultra Fast-Dry towel (red) also offers an SPF rating of 15-40 depending on the color of the towel. This makes a great option for a head wrap while hiking or a cover up while boating or on the beach.
- Easy Care – These towels can be washed and dried just like your conventional towels. Products like sun tan lotions can clog the fibers of the towel and reduce its effectiveness. If you launder the towels in hot water they will work like new again.
Construction and Feel
The finishing on the DTO towels looks great. I have included some detail shots of the hemming in this review.
The towels have a silky feel on your skin. One thing to note on the red towel is the sides are different. The smooth side goes against your skin and the waffle pattern is the back side.
While testing these towels I figured out that you don't use them like a conventional towel and run the towel over your skin. The DTO towels work best when you lay the towel on your skin and allow it to wick the water away. The blue towel is not directional, but the red towel has a front and back side. The red towel worked much better when you use the front side against your skin.
The DTO towels even handled wet hair great. These towels are thin but they can handle a lot of water.
Another thing to remember is these towels are not going to be warm like a fluffy cotton towel. They actually feel kind of cool when you use them. The wicking action causes evaporative cooling on your skin and you can feel that when you use these towels. It’s actually refreshing when you are hot.
The dry times were excellent. Dry times will be different depending on wind, temperature, humidity, and saturation, but in most cases a towel used for swimming or a shower will be dry in 1-2 hours. Between the silver in the fibers and the quick dry times these towels stay fresh for many uses.
Discovery Trekking Outfitters has come up with a great camp towel. After using them both I think I prefer the Extreme Ultra-Light towel (blue) over the Ultra Fast-Dry towel (red). They are both excellent products and even though the red towel was a smaller size it was still able to do a good job after a shower. The red towel does dry a bit quicker than the blue towel, but I like the feel of the blue towel better. Both towels from DTO are quality products at a fair price and if you are looking for a good camp or travel towel you can't go wrong with either one of these.
Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or would like to know anything I may have forgotten to mention please feel free to leave a comment and I will respond as quickly as possible. The opinions in this review are my own. If you found this review helpful, please consider supporting our sponsors with future purchases.