10 Hiking Rain Gear to Stay Warm on a Multi-Day Backpacking Trip.

Hiking in the rain is so much pleasurable. When I say rainy hike, I mean light rain, not a heavy one. I’d almost always advise you not to go out in heavy rain. Most stormy trips tend to be too challenging to enjoy hiking.

But rainy-day hikes, in general, have made lasting memories. All you need is quality rain gear to stay warm in wet weather. Your rain gear doesn’t have to be very expensive. Little stuff like a rain jacket and a rain cover with a good positive attitude is enough to get the most out of your rainy day hike.

In wet weather hiking, it’s essential not to lose your body heat. Dropping body temperature could cause hypothermia. A condition where your body can not produce heat as fast as it loses.

This list is not a complete list of hiking rain gear. But the most critical ones you should not ignore. Read my previous post for a better understanding of the different challenges in rainy hiking.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission for qualified sales. But it never affects your price or what we recommend.

Rain jacket

Rain jackets are not a surprising item in this list, and it’s perhaps the best rain gear.

You already know why we wear a rain jacket. But you should be mindful about the type of rain jacket you bring. You should get a lightweight, breathable rain jacket for most hikes. You may also choose a heavy coat in the freezing rain for shorter walks.

It’s a good idea to stick with rain jackets instead of ponchos or trench coats. Although they are great for rainy and cold conditions, their loose design is unsuitable for hikes.

The essential features of a rain jacket for backpacking trips would be waterproofing and breathability. Water-resistant rain jackets are not the best as they can’t withstand heavy rain. A nonbreathable rain jacket is not preferable for backpacking trips. You may wear them for a casual walk in the shower.

I’d suggest wearing a rain jacket of environmentally friendly colors. Don’t wear super bright yellow or red. You’d scare wildlife. It’s my personal opinion, but I am sure you’d agree with me on this.

But a little luminescent line on your rain jacket if you’re traversing through dense rain forests. It’ll help your companies easily find and follow you. It would be difficult without these lines because the sound of rain is powerful in rainforests, so you can’t hear others’ sounds. And it’s sometimes very dark even in daylight because, in most rainforests, only 2% of the light reaches the earth.

Rain pants

Like rain jackets, rain pants are beneficial on a rainy hiking trip. I’d say it’s not as crucial as your rain jacket, as your torso is the most vulnerable to cold weather. But the most significant benefit I find with rain pants is your socks don’t get wet quickly. We will talk about socks later.

Rain pants are usually made from polyester, nylon, or Gore-Tex. You should get a pair that’s both waterproof and breathable. Breathability is crucial because you don’t want your rain pants to make you feel uncomfortable due to excess sweat.

Waterproofing is also necessary because it will help keep you dry in light rain. I advise sticking with a lightweight pair of rain pants, but they should be durable enough and not rip easily.

Rain pants offer extra protection for rain gear like a gusty wind. It helps to keep you dry in heavy rain while it’s still breathable.

Most waterproof hiking pants get the job done efficiently. But you’ll also find some better-than-average rain pants. For instance, the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic offers excellent comfort. And the Patagonia Torrentshell 3L is both a durable and affordable option.

A waterproof rain cover for your backpack.

Most hiking backpacks are waterproof. For instance, the Earth Pak Waterproof Backpack is an excellent choice if you’re worried about keeping your gear dry. But when they’re not, you need rain cover.

A good rain cover is an added protection for your hiking gear. Especially if you have valuable, fragile items such as a DSLR camera. For instance, the Joy Walker Waterproof Backpack Rain Cover is an affordable option that works great. Better yet, it costs less than $10.

For emergencies, you have options, too, like using a trash bag or a zip lock bag to protect your gear in case of rain. But these options only work for very light rain and can’t withstand heavy rain for long hours.

Rain covers are very cheap. Yet, they are very effective in water resistance. Therefore it doesn’t hurt to bring one with you anyways.

Waterproof socks

We’ve heard of waterproof pants but not much about waterproof socks. They exist. And they are handy too. It would be a great addition to your hiking rain gear.

As we all know, our feet are the most needed part of hiking. Most importantly, our toes are the most vulnerable part.

Also, because these parts are constrained for a prolonged period, you should avoid water dripping in there at all costs. If it’s too wet, you might get infections and blisters, which can even cause numbness in your feet. This is why we recommend waterproof socks.

It’s so important to keep your feet dry. A good pair of warmer socks could help.

An additional pair of synthetic or wool socks

On camping trips, you might also want another set of socks. This one is preferably wool socks. You’re more likely to face extreme wet weather when hiking in the rain.

You may wear wool socks inside your tent. This one is a pair of warmer socks reserved for in-tent usage, and they are not your hiking socks.

So why wear wool socks? Because they are more moisture-wicking and dry quickly compared to cotton. They are also very soft on your skin, non-irritating, insulating, and durable.

If the weather is very wet, you can wear two pairs of socks. One is a pair of wool hiking socks, and one is a pair of moisture-wicking sock liners for additional protection. You can get both at any outdoor gear store or on Amazon.

Check out the Merino Wool Hiking Socks for men and women.

Waterproof hiking boots

For the same reason as keeping your feet warm, you also need suitable waterproof footwear. Most modern hiking boots we have on the market are waterproof boots. You can wear them when you are hiking in the rain.

For extended trips, you should not be wearing your running shoes. Even regular hiking shoes may not be enough to carry heavy weight. You must wear hiking boots designed explicitly for backpacking trips.

Learn more about the different types of hiking boots you can buy.

You must double-check that what you’re buying is waterproof hiking shoes. Because some backpacking boots made of leather are not good waterproof shoes. When you have nonwaterproof footwear, you may be able to apply some waterproof spray to make it water resistant.

Here are some of the best waterproof hiking shoes I’ve found. The Lowa Renegade GTX Mid (Men, Women) is excellent for heavy backpacking trips. If you need a single boot that you can take for a variety of hikes, try Salomon Ultra 3 Mid GTX (Men, Women.) Another great choice is the KEEN Targhee III Waterproof Mid boots (Men, Women.) They are durable options that won’t disappoint you on your rainy backpacking trip. They are also fantastic on slippery rocks.

Sleeping bag

You must preserve your body heat in every possible way when hiking in the rain. The biggest hurdle is nightfall. Rainy weather with wet clothing is enough reason to induce hypothermia.

Thus inside your tent, you must wear clothing suitable to preserve body heat. A sleeping bag is a massive plus if it helps you keep warmer.

Like most other hiking gear, you should check the comfort, durability, weight, and affordability when buying a sleeping bag. Warmer sleeping bags usually take up a lot of weight. The Coolzon Lightweight Backpacking Sleeping Bag satisfies these conditions well and above.

But if you’re looking for a lighter, warmer sleeping bag, there are also some excellent options. Just don’t compromise the warmth factor.

Hiking poles (trekking poles)

Hiking poles are not just for balance. The lightweight aluminum or carbon fiber construction makes it easy to carry up the mountain. They also provide added support if you hike in the rain often. On a long walk, you may also want some shock-absorbing support.

When hiking in the rain, you need every edge you can get. A pair of trekking poles, such as the LEKI Black Series FX Carbon or the Black Diamond Trail Ergo, gives you that extra support and stability you need when traversing slippery terrain.

Whether hiking on muddy trails, rocky ridges, or slippery slopes, trekking poles give you more traction and balance, making challenging navigating terrain easier. And suppose you’re hiking with a heavy pack on your back. In that case, the added stability can help prevent injuries or falls that could leave you stranded in the wilderness.

So if you’re looking for reliable gear to keep you moving safely and efficiently during rainy days on the trail, consider investing in a pair of trekking poles. With the right tools and proper preparation, you can face all kinds of weather head-on, no matter how challenging!

You can learn more about trekking poles in my previous posts.

Urinals and urine bags

If you’re planning to hike for long distances in the rain, you may want to consider bringing along some urinals and urine bags. These handy devices help you go when nature calls, even in less-than-ideal conditions.

The urinals are typically made of durable plastic or rubber and come with a funnel-shaped spout, making it easy to direct your urine wherever you need it. And the urine bags are lightweight and flexible, with a wide opening at the top that makes them quick and easy to use.

So if you’re worried about having to stop in the middle of your hike to take care of business, bring along some urinals and urine bags to keep you moving without any delays. And then, you can focus on enjoying your outdoor adventures without worrying about staying hydrated!

Urine bottles for men

Urinals for women

Disposable urine bags (aka camping pee bags)

GPS

GPSs are a must when hiking in the rain, especially when walking in unfamiliar territory. With a GPS, you can easily track your location and stay on course even when bad weather strikes.

The best GPS units for hiking are the Garmin Montana 700i and the Garmin GPSMAP 64sx. These durable devices offer a great range and battery life. And with various advanced features and mapping options, they will help you stay on track no matter what Mother Nature throws your way.

So before your next hiking trip, be sure to invest in a high-quality GPS unit. You can enjoy your adventures fully with the right tools and proper preparation.

Conclusion

To stay safe and comfortable, you must invest in waterproof hiking boots, pants, rain jackets, a good sleeping bag, and trekking poles. Whether you’re tackling muddy trails or slippery slopes, these essential rain gear will help keep you moving efficiently and safely on your rainy backpacking trip.

Do you have what it takes to tackle the challenges of hiking in the rain? With the right hiking rain gear and proper preparation, you can conquer any trail in any weather! So what are you waiting for? Get out there and explore!

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