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#244564 - 04/06/12 10:09 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
widget Offline
Addict

Registered: 07/06/03
Posts: 550
I have a variety of ponchos. The military one is nice because it is wider than most commercial ones and 2 can be snapped together for a nice "A" frame shelter. One makes a great bivi shelter.

I have a few commercial ones and the one I keep in my daypack is light and small, which is nice in a daypack. However, it is less useful as a lean-to because it is not very wide, compared to the military poncho. I recently went on a 3 hour hike and it started raining on the return leg. I had a Marmot PreCip Jacket on for a windbreaker and since it is a waterproof breathable, it was all I needed until the rain increased. I put the poncho on more to protect my pack than for myself. When I did that I noted that the width of the poncho was such that my arms were out below the elbow. If I had not had the rain jacket under the poncho, I would have had some wet, cold arms! So, pay attention to how big the poncho is, if you want to use it as a shelter or a rain jacket, it should cover the arms and be wide enough as a lean-to that it provides good coverage. Also, most "military-type" ponchos are just that, TYPE, they seldom are the size of the genuine military poncho, worth noting.
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#244567 - 04/06/12 11:29 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: widget]
Cauldronborn2 Offline
Member

Registered: 06/29/11
Posts: 102
Loc: UK
Could anyone tell me the size of the US army poncho?

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#244570 - 04/07/12 01:41 AM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
widget Offline
Addict

Registered: 07/06/03
Posts: 550
True, most ponchos are around 50x90. The US Military poncho is 66x80. It might be better if it was a bit longer, I have never noticed it being too short for any reason. It is the width that I notice, the military poncho will cover your arms and hands when worn and when rigged as a lean-to it is a decent width. Rig 2 together to for an "A" frame shelter and it is very comfortable. Lots of head room.
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No, I am not Bear Grylls, but I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night and Bear was there too!

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#244582 - 04/07/12 12:56 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3601
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Thanks widget. I've been looking at ponchos and have been wondering what the snaps were for. I assumed you can snap them in such a way as to make something like a sleeve for the poncho but snapping two together to make a bigger tarp is a great advantage. The ponchos I have both have gromets for lashing together but snaps seem like they'd be more effectient. Less cordage and less fiddling.
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#244584 - 04/07/12 03:39 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
Lono Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 10/19/06
Posts: 1013
Loc: Pacific NW, USA
Don't underestimate the umbrella while day hiking - I sometimes carry one, a basic little $7 compact model, and even though I wear waterproof breathable tops, the umbrella keeps me dry while walking and when stopped. Works fantastic on hot and sunny hikes too. And don't forget its also a magnet for lightning if you face that where you are. I love the rain, but don't see a need to stand around soaked in it if you can help it otherwise.

On overnight hikes with a destination and a stop, I tend to carry a trusty Kelty 9x9 tarp for a nice wide cooking and standing around area. There are lighter silnylon tarps that might save you some ounces, but I lost 90 lbs 2 years ago and counting ounces in my pack just doesn't matter much anymore.

Hunting is another matter - might be hard to juggle a brolly and a rifle. I don't hunt anymore.

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#244597 - 04/07/12 06:05 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: Lono]
comms Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 1502
Loc: Mesa, AZ
Originally Posted By: Lono
Don't underestimate the umbrella while day hiking -


+1

I often carry a small travel umbrella in my day pack, mostly for intense sun, it doesn't rain much here. Mostly for my wife and kids, come to think of it I don't think I have ever used it myself. Its a no space item. The relief one of these can provide in rain (or sun) can not be understated. Good point Lono
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#244602 - 04/07/12 07:18 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
JBMat Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/03/09
Posts: 745
Loc: NC
While 2 issue ponchos make a good hootch, 3 are better. If you sleep perpendicular and use some line on the hoods to hold the sides out you get an amazing amount of space. 2 above, one under, or 2 above, 1 for the side the wind is coming in.

Never really wore a poncho when it was raining. Wore the issue rain suit under my uniform (quieter and warmer).

Also, one poncho and two liners makes a really warm sleeping bag. The heavier rubber poncho is better than the nylon one, but you do sweat.

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#244640 - 04/08/12 08:47 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
boatman Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/10/03
Posts: 424
Loc: Michigan
Just a heads up,the Marines are no longer issuing the poncho.Gortex has become standard issue.The Marines now supply troops with a 5'x7'tarp.It is used for all the other things a poncho was used for.I do not know what the Army is doing but the U.S. GI poncho may be a relic of the past.....


BOATMAN
John

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#244652 - 04/09/12 01:19 AM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
widget Offline
Addict

Registered: 07/06/03
Posts: 550
That is what I sort of thought too. I have not seen any new ponchos, ACU or MARPAT other than the commercial ones. No issue items.

That is too bad. I used my poncho in the army for shelters, for rainwear and with the liner as a sleeping bag. A 5x7 tarp is pretty small to make a shelter that will cover you in a driving rain. A tarp also cannot be used as a rain garment. It also requires you to carry additional gear in the form of Gore-Tex rainwear.

Seems about every decade or so the military has to reinvent the wheel. Sometimes the new gear is an improvement and sometimes it makes you wonder "what were they thinking".

Stock up on genuine ponchos if you can find them. I have not seen any commercial copies that compare, for the money.
_________________________
No, I am not Bear Grylls, but I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night and Bear was there too!

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#244666 - 04/09/12 04:42 PM Re: Poncho Question [Re: boomtown]
boomtown Offline
Newbie

Registered: 04/11/07
Posts: 25
Loc: Indiana, USA
Thanks for all the information and input.
Just another reason I love this place, wisdom tempered with experience.
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It's just a learning curve, and some aloe vera

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