Rain pants. Now there’s a topic that I am sure many of us have different opinions about!
I almost always wear my rain pants over my hiking pants, except when I am doing laundry in a trail town and rain pants are the only pants I am wearing!
Joking aside, I wear my rain pants over my hiking pants because it’s much easier to put them on and take them off when it starts and stops raining. Think about what a hassle it would be to switch between the two every time it started or stopped raining during the day.
I also wear hiking pants under rain pants because they slow body heat loss when my outer layer is wet. It’s the same reason I wear a fleece sweater or mid-layer under a rain shell in the rain, because it keeps the cold shell fabric off my skin where it can rapidly chill me.
I know a lot of people who don’t hike with rain pants at all. This is really a regional issue; New England weather tends to be much wetter than many places in the western USA where it doesn’t rain or doesn’t rain enough. That’s why I always carry rain pants on hikes, even on day hikes.
Lightweight Rain Pants
|Outdoor Research Helium Rain Pants||Ankle-Zip||6.7 oz||$119|
|Columbia Rebel Roamers||None||11 oz||$50|
|Marmot Precip Full Zip Pants||Full-Length||12 oz||$70|
|Marmot Precip Eco Boot Zip Pants||Ankle-Zip||8.1 oz||$80|
|Patagonia Cloud Ridge Pants||Ankle-Zip||10.9 oz||$179|
|Kuhl Jetstream||Ankle-Zip||8.8 oz||$175|
|Arc'teryx Beta SL||Full-Length||13.2 oz||$275|
|Patagonia Torrentshell 3L Pants||Mid-Thigh||11.8 oz||$119|
|Montane Atomic Pants||Mid-Thigh||10.7 oz||$175|
|Montane Minimalist||Ankle-Zip||5.3 oz||$140|
|Frogg Toggs Ultralite Pants||None||5 oz||$15|
|Montbell Stretch Full Zip||Full-Length||10.8 oz||$149|
|Montbell Versalite Pants||None||3.2 oz||$139|
|Montbell Convertible Rain Pants||Knee-length||6.1 oz||$119|
|Enlightened Equipment Visp Pants||Ankle-Zip||4 oz||$160|