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Best Ultralight Hiking Umbrellas 2021

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This is a gear review about all the best Ultralight Umbrellas for Backpacking and Thru Hiking in 2021.

I carried an ultralight hiking Umbrella while hiking both the Appalachian Trail and Te Araroa Trail. That’s 1000s of miles of testing whether they are worth adding to your gear list. You will find that the latest Hiking Umbrellas for Backpacking are not only lightweight and strong but they are very effective for protection against not only rain but strong sun.

Here is a look at the best backpacking umbrellas on the market in 2021.

Best Backpacking Umbrella 2021

The best backpacking umbrella for 2021 are:


Six Moon Designs Rain Walker Umbrella

Best Overall – Editors Choice

Weight: 5.5oz / 155g
Canopy Size: 37 inches wide
Overall Length: 25 Inches
Pros:

> Good quality
> 2 color options
> Best Ultralight Umbrella on the market
Cons:
> Expensive

I think Six Moon Designs make the best hiking umbrellas on the market right now. And the best of the best is the Ultralight Six Moon Designs Rain Walker.

The Six Moon Designs Rain Walker is a full size hiking umbrella, with a width of 37 inches when open, easily able to keep both you and your backpack gear dry for the duration of your hike.

Despite its generous canopy size, it is the one of the lightest umbrella in this review, weighing in at only 5.5 ounces. It has a packed length of 25 inches.

Not only does it shield you from the rain, but it’s also great for providing shade from the sun, too. That way, you can dress for the temperature instead of for the weather.

It’s made with top quality materials and components, including a 10 Denier Silnylon Canopy, an EVA Foam Trekking Handle, and a carbon fiber frame. This frame not only helps to make the umbrella super lightweight but also durable.

It’s available in two very nice color options, namely green and dark teal.

Overall, this is the best ultralight umbrella for thru hiking or backpacking.

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Six Moon Designs Silver Shadow Carbon Ultralight Hiking Umbrella

Weight: 6.8oz / 193g
Canopy Size: 36 inches
Overall Length: 25 inches
Pros:

> UPF 50+
> Reflects heat from the sun
> Carbon Fibre in the shaft and frame
> Comfortable grip
Cons:
> Take care in the wind
> Expensive

This ultralight backpacking umbrella weighs a mere 6.8 ounces, yet still manages to attain a canopy size of 36 inches wide, which is still quite generous.

And not only is it great in wet weather, it also has properties that make it invaluable in the sun, too. It has a UPF rating of a very nice 50+, and a canopy that reflects the sunlight, so you’re very much protected from the sun’s harmful UV rays, and from the sun’s heat at the same time.

It’s made with top quality materials and components, with carbon fiber making up not only the shaft but also the spreader and the ribs.

I love the deluxe ergonomic grip, super comfy to hold for extended periods. Overall, this is the Best Umbrella for the Pacific Crest Trail or lightweight backpackers.

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EuroSCHIRM Swing Liteflex Trekking Umbrella

Weight: 8oz / 227g
Canopy Size: 38 inches wide
Overall Length: 25 Inches
Pros:
> Well-built with quality components
> Ultralight
> Ergonomic firm foam handle
Cons:
>
Not much, if this was lighter it would be the best umbrella in this review
> A bit expensive

This is one of EuroSchirm’s most popular umbrellas. If you are trekking through the mountains of Europe and see someone with a hiking umbrella it is more than likely that it is one of these. They are very popular in Europe.

It has a good, solid construction, and is both well-designed and well-built, made with quality materials and components. 

Similar to many of the full sized umbrellas in this review there is no locking mechanism to disengage when you want to fold it away.

I like the handle, which is made from firm foam, which is comfortable to hold. 

There’s an adjustable strap for it, so you can wear it on your wrist until you need it. Or, if you prefer, you can stow it in its case. The case is made of mesh, however, so isn’t ideal for stowing with things you want kept dry. Most hikers will not use the case or supplied shoulder strap.

At 8 ounces, it’s very lightweight for such a durable umbrella.

Overall, this is the best pick for most durable light weight umbrella.

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Gossamer Gear Liteflex Chrome Hiking Umbrella

Weight: 6.6oz / 187g
Canopy Size: 37.5 inches
Overall Length: 25 Inches
Pros:

> Ultralight aluminum frame
> Good Price
Cons:
> Not much

Gossamear Gear describe this umbrella is described as the world’s lightest ever full size trekking umbrella. Close, but not quite.

It’s several ounces lighter than the EuroSCHIRM Swing Liteflex Trekking Umbrella but not quite as light as the Six Moon Design Rain Walker which is more than 1 ounce lighter.

The reason it’s so light is down to its lightweight yet sturdy aluminum frame, combined with the handle, which is composed of comfortable to hold high density foam. I wonder how light this umbrella would be if they used carbon fiber instead of aluminum.

The canopy is just under 38 inches which is the standard size for most umbrellas in this review.

It performs equally well in rain or sun, and when used to keep off the sun. They claim it can lower the feel of sun’s heat by up to 15 degrees. Having used hiking umbrellas in the hot sun I can confirm that all the umbrellas in this review will lower the temperature including this one. Overall, I like the bright silver material that reflects the sun.

That’s thanks to the 100% polyester fabric, and it’s special coating. It repels both water and dirt, and has an impressive UPF rating of 50+.

Opening the umbrella is a easy. There’s no fiddly hardware mechanism to get to grips with, and to open it, all you have to do is simply push up and voilà.

Overall ,this a great lightweight hiking umbrella well suited to the ultralight thru hiker.

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Snow Peak Ultra-Light Umbrella

Weight: 4.7oz / 133g
Canopy Size: 33 inches
Overall Length: 8.5 Inches (folded)
Pros:
> Ultralight
> Compact size
> Great for travel
Cons:
> Expensive
> Not good in wind
> Not the best choice for hiking

Snow Peak have produced one of the lightest and most compact good quality umbrellas on the market. In fact, it happens to weigh under 5 ounces, which makes it even lighter than the my favorite Six Moon Design Rain Walker Umbrella.

It folds to about 8.5 inches when folded, which means that it’s easy to carry around in either your backpack or when traveling. And with the accompanying case, you can safely carry it without the risk of other items getting wet. It also features a strap to carry the umbrella on your wrist if you prefer.

One of the interesting features of this particular umbrella is how, under heavy gusts of wind, it will collapse to prevent unnecessary damage. Not like a regular umbrella which will simply blow inside out and never truly go back into place.

Both the frame of the umbrella and the handle are composed of aluminum and carbon, and it is pleasing to see that the frame and handle are one piece, so you can trust that the handle won’t ever come off. It’s top quality stuff.

Overall, this is the best travel umbrella on the market due to the ultralight weight and compact size. If I was traveling somewhere which also included some hiking or trekking then this would be the best choice.

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Sea to Summit Ultra-SIL Trekking Umbrella

Weight: 8.2oz / 232g
Canopy Size: 38in
Overall Length: 9.5 Inches (Folded)
Pros:
> Very compact when folded down
> Good Size canopy
Cons:
> Not good in wind, even light wind.
> Expensive

The canopy is quite large for a compact umbrella, coming in at 38 inches wide, perfectly able to keep both you and your hiking gear completely dry for the duration of your hike.

But despite the large canopy, it’s very lightweight to carry around, coming in at just 8.2 ounces. And when folded down, it is only 9.5 inches in length.

It’s made with the highest quality materials and components, including an aircraft grade aluminum shaft, a rubberized handle, and special patented solid brass rivets.

It comes complete with a handy zippered mesh tote bag which could easily fit into your backpack or your purse if you want to carry it that away. Or if you would be concerned about getting your belongings wet, you can instead clip the mesh tote bag onto shoulder straps or to a belt.

I used this umbrella when thru hiking the Te Araroa Trail in New Zealand which is 3000km long. I found this umbrella performed poorly in wind and despite the lightweight and compact size I prefer all the options from Six Moon Design ahead of this umbrella.

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Montbell Sun Block Umbrella

Weight: 7.1oz / 201g
Canopy Size: 38.6in
Overall Length: 9.8 Inches (folded)
Pros:

> Protects you from 99.7% of harmful UV rays
> Top Quality
> Small folded size
> Ultralight
Cons:
> Not much
> Only one color

The sun block umbrella is the perfect companion for your long hike in the sun. With a UPF rating of 50+, it will protect you from 99.7% of the sun’s harmful UV rays.

And should you hit a little rain, it will protect you from that as well, thanks to the super thick canopy, made of 75 Denier polyester, with its water repellent polyurethane silver coating.

It gives you plenty of coverage for both you and your gear, since the canopy measures 38.6 inches when fully open. 

It’s also very lightweight at the same time, weighing just 7.1 ounces.

Overall, this is one of the best umbrellas for the desert and very popular with ultralight hikers wanting to have protection from the sun and rain.

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Helinox Umbrella One

Weight: 7oz / 198g
Canopy Size: 38in
Overall Length: 25 Inches
Pros:

> Large Canopy Size
> Choice of colors
> Lightweight
> 5 year warranty
Cons:
> Expensive

Helinox make some of the best lightweight backpacking chairs but not many people consider the Helinox Umbrella One. This is a large umbrella, offering full coverage for both you and your hiking gear. It has a water repellent canopy to keep off the rain, but at the same time is also able to protect you from the sun’s harmful UV rays, thanks to the canopy’s UPF 25 sun protection.

It’s made with top quality materials & components, including a lightweight DAC alloy shaft. This shaft has been designed not just to keep the overall weight of the umbrella down, but also to give the umbrella great strength, which can become particularly handy when you are met with high winds. The overall weight is 7 ounces which is great for an ultralight umbrella for the backcountry.

And you don’t have to worry about sticky buttons that jam, it simply slides open. It’s available in 3 great color options, namely black, red or coyote tan.

Overall, this is yet another great lightweight umbrella for backpacking with one of the best warranties of 5 years.

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Zpacks Lotus UL Umbrella

Weight: 6.8oz / 193g
Canopy Size: 38 inches
Overall Length: 25 Inches
Pros:

> Ultralight
> Good Quality
> 38 inch canopy
Cons:
> Not much
> Can be a long wait list

Zpacks are one of the leaders in ultralight backpacking gear. The Zpacks Lotus UL Umbrella is no exception to their commitment to ultralight gear. You will see this umbrella on all the long distance hiking trails throughout the world for good reason.

It’s just what you need to handle what the weather can throw at you during a long hike. It’s very sturdy, and can handle even the most intense downpours and storms.

And when you have the opposite problem with the sun beating down on you, it can offer you great comfort from that, too. This is thanks to its large 38 inch canopy, which is rated to UPF 40.

As with all things Zpacks it is lightweight, weighing in at a negligible 6.8 ounces. You’ll forget you are carrying it.

If you find yourself on the Zpacks website, why not check out their umbrella holsters and umbrella stuff sacks. Overall, a great ultralight and durable umbrella for thru hikers.

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Buying Guide

There are several things to consider when purchasing a hiking umbrella.

Lightweight

When you’re going on a long hike, the last thing you want is to be left carrying heavy items that you might not even need. So, you should look out for an umbrella that’s lightweight, and not some big heavy golf umbrella.

Made of Quality Materials

Your umbrella must be durable and able to withstand months of abuse on a long distance thru hike or weekend backpacking trip. In order to stand up to the elements, it needs to have a sturdy frame and highly water repellent fabric.

Comes with a Strap and Case

Luckily, most umbrellas these days come with a handy strap that you can either wear on your wrist, or tie to your backpack straps. Or if you wanted to keep it in your backpack, it should also come with a case, so that when you put it away it won’t get other items in your backpack wet. I don’t find a case all that important but a strap to keep the canopy closed when hiking is required.

Even better than straps or cases is fitting the hiking umbrella to your backpack to enable hands free hiking.

Hiking Umbrella in the rain

Value for Money

A cheap umbrella is not necessarily good value for money. Cheap umbrellas are not good quality, and are not built to last like the best brands are. In this review of hiking umbrellas all the best ultralight umbrellas for backpacking are quite expensive. The quality is very much reflected in the price.

Unfortunately, the prices of the umbrellas shown here are liable to change, so please ensure that you check the prices as you go along. 

Lightweight Hiking Umbrella being used hands free while backpacking

Rain Jackets and Hiking Umbrellas

All the best hiking umbrellas in this review work very well in combination with the best ultralight rain jackets and best ultralight rain pants for backpacking.

Check the current prices on Hiking Umbrellas:

Another one of the Best Hiking Gear Reviews from BikeHikeSafari.

Read More:

Best Hiking Umbrella

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About the Author:
Brad is an Australian who has completed the hiking Triple Crown after he hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, Continental Divide Trail and Appalachian Trail. He has hiked on every continent (except Antarctica) and has cycled from Alaska to Ecuador. He is an expert on outdoor gear currently living in Sydney, Australia.

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