If you love being outdoors, you know the importance of staying dry and comfortable and you don't give up when the rain starts coming down.
Let’s have a look at why a waterproof jacket is so important, and find the best one for you.
Your clothing contains millions of tiny pockets of air, and they help retain your body heat by warming up and slowing down the loss of heat, like a blanket. If the air is replaced by water, however, that insulating property is gone, because water is about ten times more conductive to heat than air. Your body heat just escapes into the atmosphere, and cold air and wind from outside get in. Out in the wilderness, that’s not a good situation.
But water doesn’t always come from outside. If you’re exerting yourself, your sweat will soak your clothes pretty quickly, and if you’re wearing an impervious jacket, it has nowhere to go. You’ll get wetter and wetter, even in cold weather. That’s why having a good waterproof jacket is essential.
What are some features to look for in a waterproof jacket?
Aside from the waterproof material and taped seams, there are several other features to consider when choosing a waterproof jacket:
- Hood: A hood can provide additional protection for your head and neck in rainy or windy conditions.
- Pockets: Look for waterproof pockets to keep your valuables safe and dry.
- Adjustable cuffs and hem: These allow you to customize the fit and prevent water from entering through the sleeves or bottom of the jacket.
- Breathable lining: A breathable lining can help keep you comfortable and prevent moisture buildup inside the jacket.
- Consider the weight and packability of the jacket as well. If you’re going to be carrying the jacket with you, you’ll want it to be lightweight and easy to pack. Also, think about the fit and style of the jacket. You’ll want something that is comfortable and looks good on you.
If you're not sure which technology you'll be needing on your next adventure, take a look at the difference between waterproof technology and water repellent technology.
- Designed to prevent water from penetrating through the fabric, even in heavy rain or other wet conditions.
- Made from completely waterproof materials, such as Gore-Tex or eVent, and have sealed seams and waterproof zippers.
- Ideal for activities that involve prolonged exposure to heavy rain or snow.
Water repellent clothing:
- Designed to resist water and prevent it from soaking into the fabric.
- Made from materials like nylon or polyester that have been treated with a durable water repellent (DWR) coating.
- Ideal for light rain or snow, and are often used for everyday wear.