Backpacking in the rain, under a rainbow, in Wyoming's Wind River Range.

5 Tips for Staying Warm and Dry on the Trail

In Backpacking, Hiking, Skills   |   Tagged , , , , ,   |   4 Comments

By Michael Lanza

There are only three guarantees in life: death, taxes, and getting rained on when dayhiking or backpacking. As we all know, wet clothing conducts heat away from your body, making you colder. And simply donning rain shells may make you so warm that you sweat a lot, thus getting wet from the inside rather than the outside. Staying as dry as possible while on the trail or in camp is key to staying warm in the backcountry when the weather turns wet—especially in temperatures below around 60° F and in wind, which swiftly chills your body.

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4 Responses to 5 Tips for Staying Warm and Dry on the Trail

  1. Draggin' Tail   |  October 11, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    Your idea of “tucking” an umbrella under pack straps is laden with calamity and frustration. Simple solution IS Euroschirm’s hands free trekking umbrella. Clips included for each side of your pack straps work wonderfully. As for rain protection from the waste down, how ’bout a rain kilt. Several companies make them and are easy to hand craft out of tyvek. Great for water shedding with the best of ventilation. ~Draggin’ Tail

    • MichaelALanza   |  October 12, 2017 at 5:29 am

      “Calamity” may be an exaggeration, but as I wrote above, it depends on your pack’s design, meaning side compression straps. But I like both of your suggestions, the hands-free umbrella (which I haven’t used) and the rain kilt.

  2. Kim Neill   |  September 19, 2017 at 8:22 am

    Hi Michael: Here’s another umbrella to add to your list. Has good ratings. This company made umbrellas for GoLite at one time (Chrome Dome). Available online at various prices: http://www.euroschirm.com/schirm/liteflex/info.cgi?sprache_land=englisch

  3. Camping equipment Man   |  October 20, 2014 at 6:30 am

    Some great tips in the post that will be really helpful in the future. I especially like and completely agree with wearing shorts when hiking. Nothing worse when your pants absorb the rain. Its just so uncomfortable. Getting the right equipment is so critical.

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