Expand-O-Towel

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ultralighttowels.com

expando-lightload-2_14518

If Towelly from “South Park” were real, he’d for shizzle drizzle his bizzle with a DYNA-E INTERNATIONAL LIGHTLOAD TOWEL ($6 for a three-pack, ultralighttowels.com). When I first saw the towel, packed down into a 1.75-by-0.5-inch puck, I was skeptical — what, if anything, could I dry with something so wee? So I took it on a camping trip, prying open the 0.5oz viscose (a material made from downed wood) towel to its full 12-by-24-inch size, using it to dry everything but my hair. The Lightload packed a mighty punch, absorbing water with slurping zeal. The machine-washable, biodegradable towels are great whenever space/weight are at a premium (multi-day approaches, minimalist car camping). Now, if only it would carry my pack and pitch the tent.

—Audra Ord