Having a great rain jacket is an essential piece of gear that know backpacker or outdoor enthusiast should be without. Deciding on the right rain jacket for yourself depends on a lot of variables. The two biggest of these variables would have to be your budget and where you do most of your outdoor activities. For most of you, the price is going to play a huge part on which rain jacket you pick. Rain jackets can easily be upwards of $250+.
As I said before, one of the big variables of which rain jacket you will buy is where you will be using it the most. While a rain jacket should be pretty functional in any sort of rainy environment, sometimes they may offer more than you need. For example, if you do a lot of hiking in drier climates or warmer summer months, you probably don’t need a rain jacket that is designed to withstand hurricane force rain. Do you and your budget a favor and pick a rain jacket that matches your activities.
If you don’t know a lot about what to look for in a rain jacket, the search for the perfect one can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many various hi tech fabrics and terminology that its enough to make your head spin. Here are a few basic rules to keep in mind when looking for a rain jacket. But first, check out some of my reviews of rain jackets to get an idea of whats out there.
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Here are some of my favorite rain jackets:
- Arcâ€™Teryx Alpha SL Jacket
- Arcâ€™Teryx Stingray Jacket
- Outdoor Research Rampart Rain Jacket
- Outdoor Research Foray Rain Jacket
- Mountain Hardwear Quark Rain Jacket
Ok, now that you are a little more familiar with whats out there, here is my advice. Plenty of ventilation is always good. Waterproof fabrics can get you hot fast. Look for ones that have breathable fabrics, lots of vent zippers, and moisture wicking liners. More expensive doesn’t always mean better. Don’t buy a rain jacket just because it is high priced. Buy one based on its ability to meet your needs.