How To Choose the Right Waterproof Jacket For Your Hikes

There’s nothing more unpleasant than wearing wet clothes? Being a child on the coast of Cornwall, UK, which is home to an average of 156 rainy days per year, as well as a tendency to provide the four seasons all in one day, I’ve had plenty of dog walks in the rain or thru-hikes as well as bike rides. If I was to stay in the house each day that the weather was unpleasant, I’d be unable to go out therefore the right waterproof jacket is now an essential item in my wardrobe.

Not all waterproof shell jackets are made equal, and although an open-front poncho may suffice for a rainy event it’s not likely to aid in a storm on the mountain. This is what you must think about.

What’s the main difference between waterproof and water-repellent?

If you’re looking for protection against the elements and elements, choose outerwear that is waterproof as well as water-resistant. Water-resistant gear will offer some protection from light showers but let water in quickly.

A waterproof coat can stand against harsher weather environments, but if don’t purchase one that’s ventilated, you’ll see an accumulation of moisture on the inside of the jacket instead. If you exercise hard, it will leave you soaked and uncomfortable. Finding a jacket with a waterproof membrane can help ensure that the coat is air-tight and lets moisture let out. You’ve probably heard of Gore-Tex, the most famous waterproof membrane available. It operates by using small pores that are small enough to prevent drops of rain from entering your jacket, but large enough to let sweat wick out. Gore-Tex isn’t even the only waterproof membrane on the market and a variety of outdoor brands have distinct versions of the membrane.

If your jacket hasn’t been as waterproof as it was in the past, the good thing is that you don’t necessarily have to purchase a brand new one. A water-repellent, durable coating (DWR) is applied to the exterior of a water-resistant or waterproof jacket, and if your jacket loses its impermeability, it’s very easy to apply a DWR yourself. To determine whether your jacket requires to be topped up with a DWR topping-up, spray it with water and observe whether the water evaporates and falls off. If it does, then you’re in good shape. If it’s leaving damp, dark patches of fabric, then it’s time to buy a DWR replenishment solution and then recoat your coat.

How can I tell what degree of protection a water-resistant jacket will provide me?

There’s a useful scale for this, and most retailers will indicate the waterproof rating on their jackets. A minimum of 5,000mm is the level of waterproofing needed to be considered waterproof not just water-resistant but this level won’t stand against anything other than light drizzle or drizzle. 10,000mm-15,000mm should be able to withstand the most severe rains, while 20,000mm and up is the best for massive deluges or extreme weather but the jackets generally weigh more.

What fit should I go for?

Given that you’re probably not moving around in only a bikini and a waterproof jacket, choose a coat that has enough space to layer. For hiking in three seasons and mountaineering, a jacket with a waterproof design that allows you to wear a base coat and an overcoat underneath will be adequate, but If you’re planning to go on winter mountaineering, you’ll require something a bit more roomy to allow you to layer up.

What other features could be helpful?

Check for jackets with taped seams. This means that the seams are sealed and prevent water from entering through the small gaps. Storm flaps are an additional practical additional feature: flaps outside that cover jacket zips also have a porous area in which rain can enter. Personally, for the majority of activities, I would prefer an outfit with an open hood. It keeps the rain from your eyes, whereas jackets with a drawstring hood allow rain to run down your face.