How do you stay dry hiking in rain? - ClubTread Community

User Tag List

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-06-2013, 11:15 PM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Jogging Backpacking Mountaineering Motorcycle touring
Posts: 159
Default How do you stay dry hiking in rain?

I get wet in the rain ...

For years I have been hiking Vancouver North-shore mountains and beyond, either on trail or bush-wacking. This may be anywhere from a few hours to a few days. I have most of my gear and skills tuned except one SERIOUS issue - how to stay dry through constant rain.

Light mist is okay, typical of what Vancouver sees regularly. My problem is when the weather is raining, often continuously. Within a couple of hours my outer rain clothing has wetted through. By the third hour my inner layer (soft-shell, etc) has become fully wet. As long as I am trail running, this is not a problem as I am generating body heat, even in the colder autumn and spring, provided I can reach the parking lot by the end of the day.

Sometimes I am camping over for the night. On these occasions I am crawling into a bivy shelter after pulling off wet clothing. The next morning I am faced with wet and very cold clothing to don. Ouch! My biggest concern is the risk for potential hypothermia should I ever encounter a debilitating mishap with these saturated clothing on.

Below lists what I typically wear when venturing out in rain - even though it fails after a few hours:

Head: Ball cap with rain hood from jacket over it.
Chest: Arcteryx jacket - Goretex. Soft-shell jacket underneath. Wicking shirt under that.
Legs: Arcteryx pants - Goretex. Hiking pants underneath.
Feet: Trail running shoes (summer) or hiking boots (autumn, spring) with Merino wool socks.

I would appreciate hearing what others do to stay dry (or drier) when venturing at least half a day in the rain through the local mountains. Feel free to criticize my listed gear, and to offer improvements.

... much thanks.
skeleton is offline  
Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-06-2013, 11:21 PM
High on the Mountain Top
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: , BC, Canada.
Posts: 2,463
Default

Are you sure you are not wet with sweat? A goretex jacket is breathable but it doesn't let all the moisture out, especially when the outer surface is wet.
Steventy is offline  
post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 05:33 AM
High on the Mountain Top
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: , , Canada.
Posts: 1,193
Default

How do you stay dry hiking in rain?

Is this a trick question? Where's the punchline?

If serious (I'm still expecting a punchline) the answer is... you don't. Wool, polypropylene and fleece are best to wear by far, cotton is evil, down is useless.
If camping or remote and concerned about mishaps, layers of plastic to keep you gear dry, and a tarp outside so you can get a tarp up before opening up anything else. Great care to keep stuff dry, because once it gets wet it won't dry. Everything will be damp anyway.
alexcanuck is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 05:35 AM
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: , AB, .
Posts: 481
Default

If you are wearing all Goretex, you should be staying dry. That's all I wear hiking, and it usually works. How old is your jacket? Any wear in it?
wildtrekker is offline  
post #5 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 06:23 AM
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Interest: Adventure travel
Posts: 329
Default

Umbrella! No kidding, part of my kit for years. Works for most conditions in combination with rain pants. No sweat, no wet
Trail Talk is offline  
post #6 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 07:29 AM
tu
High on the Mountain Top
 
tu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Burnaby, BC, Canada.
Posts: 1,753
Default

tu is offline  
post #7 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 07:36 AM
Banned
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Port Moody, BC, Canada.
Posts: 981
Default

I went snowshoeing yesterday, with rain in the beginning and continuous snow higher up. Other than sweating somewhat, I was completely dry underneath. All I had was a MEC waterproof jacket, snow pants, and some cheap snow boots. So get a waterproof top and bottom, together with waterproof shoes, and you'll be set.
Arnold is offline  
post #8 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 07:37 AM
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: surrey, british columbia, Canada.
Posts: 247
Send a message via MSN to brett
Default

Hey skeleton,
Wear a rubber suit and don't move
Seriously, the short answer is you don't, just as you have proven for many years.
You're going to get wet, period.
The best jacket I ever owned was made of micro-fibre nylon. I got wet, of course, but it breathed better than Gore-Tex, it weighed less than Gore-Tex, was more compact than Gore-Tex, was warmer than Gore-Tex(draws more heat away from your body), and was less maintenance than Gore-Tex.
brett is offline  
post #9 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 08:04 AM
Scaling New Heights
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Posts: 79
Default

3 ply goretex?

Agreed with the sweat - or your DWR coat is wearing off

I've had luck with eVent, but don't put anything in the pockets you don't want wet
shaynetonio is offline  
post #10 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 08:12 AM
High on the Mountain Top
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: , , Canada.
Posts: 1,193
Default

If you are moving with any effort, once you get enough water-proof layers on to keep the rain out, you will sweat so much you will be soaked anyway. So be sure everything you wear is still warm-ish and especially comfortable when wet, (that mean wool, fleece, polypro and a micro-fiber shell) and be sure you have a tarp/bivy and enough extra dry clothes inside plastic to survive a mishap. That varies hugely with conditions and remoteness, of course!
There is no way to stay dry after 4+ hours in the pouring rain, simply ain't gonna happen, nor will wet clothes dry overnight in the rain.
alexcanuck is offline  
post #11 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 09:27 AM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Jogging Backpacking Mountaineering Motorcycle touring
Posts: 159
Default

Thanks all for your input. This is what I have thus learned:

1) I think some of you have confirmed what I suspect I am doing wrong. When I am trail running, of course I am sweating. I guess the moisture is building up either because the Goretex can't breath sufficiently or I have too many layers which constricts the ventilation. I guess I need to strip off a middle layer, open up the zippers on the Goretex outer layer and accept the consequence of being cool for the benefit of not overheating and allowing ventilation.

2) Even when not exerting myself (sweating), eventually the Goretex layer will fail from the outside. As expected, I always carry at least a small backpack (20 liter) with essentials. The backpack and its straps are squeezing surface water through the outer layer of the Goretex. This is unavoidable and results in premature wetting of the inside face of the rain jacket.

skeleton is offline  
post #12 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Jogging Backpacking Mountaineering Motorcycle touring
Posts: 159
Default

My backpack always includes:

Rain protection
- Silponcho/tarp (this guarantees staying dry above the knees for days).
- If not raining, I still carry at least a light-weight eVent jacket and pants for emergency bivy.
- Spare: merino wool shirt, goretex rock socks, gloves.

Miscellaneous
- 10 essentials for day trip(compass, map, headlamp, first-aid, sparker, knife, whistle, water bottle, phone, t/p).
- Supplemental essentials for multi-day (bivy bag, satellite beacon, duct tape, fuel, purification, food).



My feedback:

- I have used an umbrella years ago. I find them great for coping with heavy deluge which only lasts for half hour (typical of Ontario). On the west coast where rain, as drizzle, will persist all day, holding the umbrella becomes tiring and encumbering (can't use trekking poles, etc).
- Thin fabric rain gear (eVent) is best for summer season which offers higher breathability. The warmer evenings will allow eventual drying under a tarp, etc.
- Heavier fabric (3-ply Goretex) is better for spring and autumn, which gives me one or two more hours of protection before it fails.
- Merino wool is supreme. I have had soaking wet socks and shirts from hours of trail running but they (wool) are still warm (wet wool still overs 80% of its thermal performance compared to dry state).
- When I arrive to my bivy camp, I usually strip off outer and middle layer. It may be -5 to +5 oC; I then proceed to work frantically to build my camp over the next half hour. The rapid pace has my body generating sufficient heat to cause my wet inner layer (poly or wool shirt) to evaporate and become dry. Afterwards, I don my outer layers and proceed with dinner and eventual sleep.
[u]</u>[u]</u>
skeleton is offline  
post #13 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 09:59 AM
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: , , .
Posts: 103
Default

If you're going out in heavy rain an umbrella is the best option. I did a four day hike in heavy rain and had an umbrella. It worked very well, except for my feet getting wet.
loose overhang is offline  
post #14 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Jogging Backpacking Mountaineering Motorcycle touring
Posts: 159
Default

Early last December I went out for two days, recognizing that we would be having continuous heavy rains as forecasted. I bush-whacked up The Needles mountain as a test of my minimal emergency (rain) provisions. This extended into the early evening with darkness.

I was wearing eVent jacket and pants over hiking clothing. The hike was about six hours of medium rain exposure; this eventually wetted the inside face but not my inner layers (I endeavoured not to sweat much, and ventilated often). My shelter was merely a I.D. silponcho/tarp (which I did not wear during the hike). My bedding was a W.M. summer rated sleeping bag inside a thin bivy bag over a mattress of evergreen bows. For pajamas, I had a down sweater, toque, and gloves over my inner layers.

Conclusion:

- The poncho/tarp with string line was the most essential item for this event.
- The bivy bag was probably more important than the inner sleeping bag, if I had only one of the two. Bivy bag kept me dry and stopped any cooling from convective air.
- Quality hiking boots kept my feet warm.
- Gloves in the rain eventually (and soon) fail. Goretex over-mittens was the remedy.
- Compass and water-proofed map was essential for navigating both during daytime in heavy rain (even paths disappear with the confusing glitter of wet ground) and dark evening.
- Headlamp is essential to continue hiking in the early evening and setting camp.


On the lighter side:

- I tried but had no hope of starting a fire. It was raining!
- What is a pocket knife for ... I bring it but never need to use one.
- I don't need to bring water; just bring a bottle. Rain pours off the tarp into my bottle.



skeleton is offline  
post #15 of (permalink) Old 01-07-2013, 10:32 AM Thread Starter
Headed for the Mountains
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada.
Interest: Jogging Backpacking Mountaineering Motorcycle touring
Posts: 159
Default

OK, I have now read two recommendations for an umbrella.

... time for me to consider this as a viable remedy. Thanks.
skeleton is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome
 

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.1