Camping and hiking in the rain can be a fun and thrilling experience- however, it is not advisable to get wet as that may cause severe discomfort and ruin the excursion. Therefore, it is imperative that you keep yourself and your gear dry in wet weather. Here is how you may go about it:
1. Carefully Choose What to Wear
What you wear when venturing out into the outdoors, especially in a rainy season, is extremely important. Long sleeve shirts and mid-weight tights are perhaps the simplest, extremely comfortable clothing to have under a waterproof jacket. That is because they keep the jacket off the skin. Most hikers going on short trips into a rainy weather ditch the conventional hiking pants and solely rely on tights and a waterproof jacket.
If on a multi-day hike in the rain, carry a set of dry clothes for when you stop to camp for the night and another set which you’ll be spending the day in. That will ensure you can warm when you stop, though you’ll be spending the entire day in the same cold and wet clothes. It is very important that you get to keep warm.
As a rule of thumb, avoid cotton. Cotton attracts and absorbs water. If your clothes are made of cotton material, they will get wet very fast. Therefore, opt for synthetic and fleece materials as they can maintain some of their warm and puffiness even when it is soggy. Besides, synthetic and fleece materials are somewhat waterproof and are usually lightweight.
For footwear, get waterproof trekking boots featuring waterproof gaiters for short excursions into the rain, and do breathable trail runners if on longer trips. Waterproof trekking boots having waterproof gaiters under hard shell pants create a shingle effect that is effective in keeping out the rain by sealing off the space between boots and pants.
However, these gaiters, boots, and pants can’t suffice to keep dampness and sweat away for long; therefore, in a multi-day rain trip; it is prudent to go for trail runners as they are softer and more breathable than boots. Besides, trail runners minimize potential blister damage that may be caused by stiff leather. They are easy on the legs and dry quickly.
2. Build the Right Shelter
One of the factors you should put into consideration when looking for a tent is the kind of outdoor weather condition you will be exposed to when camping. Rainy conditions usually require double-wall tents- but make sure they are made by reputable outdoor companies.
While out there, build and stretch the tent properly because by leaving any sagging parts, you will have inadvertently created funnels. Also, ensure gear inside the tent doesn’t touch the walls of the tent- especially if it is a single wall tent- as contact with membranes will make water outside to seep or soak through.
Don’t pitch the tent at the foot of a hill: look for an elevated ground. Pitching a tent on the foot of a hill can expose you to very many hazards, including flooding. If there is a problem, you can dig a trench around your tent so as to keep off any floods or rivulets of water from the tent.
3. Get a Zip-lock Bag
There is no other feasible way some of the essentials will survive being damaged by water if you don’t carry them in an appropriate zip-lock bag. These bags are ideal for protecting your first-aid kit, books, oats, cell phone, toilet paper and even your map. Zip-lock bags are strong and durable; therefore, they can serve your for many trips and months.
4. Carry Your Stuff in a Waterproof Backpack
While you endeavor to protect wet-sensitive gear in garbage bags, zip-lock bags, and sacks, it is still important to protect them the outside by carrying them in a waterproof backpack. Waterproof backpacks keep away rain water and stuff inside the bag will always be dry and safe. Moreover, if your stuff gets drenched, it will get heavier.
Also, open the pack as little as possible. That is because each time you open the pack, some rain will get in, and wetness will build up.
5. Space Blanket
Carry a space blanket when going for a multi-day excursion in the rain. A space blanket will come in handy if you are caught in an unexpected intense rain storm. It will cushion you from the rain and keep you warm.
With the right gear and enough preparation, an excursion on a rainy day will be fun, thrilling and memorable. Just follow what is outlined above, and you will love the experience.
About the Author
Jack Neely is a fitness expert, survivalist, and world traveler. He’s been in several life or death situations, and he’s making an effort to spread his knowledge around the web to help others survive these situations as well. He’s also on the content team at The Tactical Guru.