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How to Dress for a Rainy Adventure

A sport-by-sport guide to staying warm, dry, and comfy when it's wet

A sport-by-sport guide to staying warm, dry, and comfy when it's wet

Rain is no excuse to stop you from going outside and getting after it. But while wet weather doesn't have to change what you do, it will certainly change what you wear and how you gear up. Here’s a sport-by-sport breakdown of how to dress when the forecast calls for rain. 

Day Hiking: Lightweight Wins

If you’ll be out for only a couple of hours, a lightweight but still fully waterproof and breathable jacket like Marmot’s EVODry Phoenix may be all you need. You'll hardly notice the seven-ounce EVODry Phoenix in your pack if it turns sunny. But thanks to a cinch-down hood and 2.5-layer MemBrain® Eco waterproof-breathable fabric—made from recycled nylon in a process that’s both water- and PFC-free—it’ll keep you dry even if it starts coming down sideways. Pro tip: Put essentials in a zip-lock or lightweight drybag, and consider taking those trekking poles—when footing is slippery, they can be a huge help.

Canoe and Sea Kayaking: You Can’t Be Too Prepared

Because you’re not exerting as much energy, it’s easier to get chilled paddling in the rain. Your PFD will help keep you warm—all that buoyant insulation also helps retain body heat—but you’ll want to have quick access to all of your key layers. Start with a sturdy waterproof-breathable jacket like Marmot’s EVODry Eclipse, which boasts a supercharged DWR coating that's 10 times durable than conventional DWR coatings, then layer underneath accordingly. Marmot’s Indio 1/2 Zip, which has a handy hood and is cut from Polartec’s quick-drying Power Dry fabric, might be all you need. But be sure to also pack a warmer layer, like Marmot’s Featherless Hybrid Jacket, which is aces at maintaining warmth in damp weather. Thanks to its DriClime® wicking lining and 3M™ Thinsulate™ synthetic loose-fiberfill insulation, which has the same thermal performance as natural 700-fill down, it won’t wilt in the wet stuff. Pro tip: Even if there’s no serious precipitation in the forecast, pack a pair of rain pants, like Marmot’s EVODry Eclipse. Their three-quarter zippers let your legs breathe when you’re on the move, and the articulated knees guarantee you won’t have a hitch in your giddy-up. Your (dry) buns will thank us later.

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Backpacking: Suit of Armor Required

The farther you get from the trailhead, the more important your gear becomes. This is especially true with rain gear—your first line of defense against the elements. The ideal backpacking jacket is like the EVODry Eclipse—cut from a fabric burly enough to withstand all-day rain, with a stout hood and pit zips you can crack without having to take off your pack. Pro tip: If it’s looking especially soggy, pack rain pants and a full-brimmed, waterproof hat like Marmot’s Precip Safari hat, your best bet for keeping rain off your glasses or running down your neck. And be sure to waterproof the interior of your pack with a trash compactor bag—it’s the easiest and least expensive way to keep everything dry.

Running: Start Cold

Running in a jacket that wasn't built from breathable materials like Marmot’s MemBrain Eco can make you wet with sweat. That's why ample pit zips, like the water-resistant ones on the EVODry Eclipse Jacket, are a great feature—they let you vent excess heat quickly. While you can get away with a little looseness in the jacket, it’s key that your next-to-skin layers are snug, like Marmot’s Kestrel Long Sleeve Crew, so they can grab the moisture off your skin. Pro tip: Start a touch cold, wearing one less layer than you would feel comfortable standing around in. Once you start running, you’ll warm up right away and reduce your chances of overheating.

Mountain Biking: Extra Layers Are Key

Trails dry enough to ride? Tire pressure reduced by 5 to 10 psi for added traction? If yes times two, and it’s cool and rainy at the trailhead, a thin synthetic base layer like Marmot’s Windridge LS layered underneath the EVODry Phoenix Jacket might be the perfect combo. Pro tip: If you’re heading out on a ride that starts with a big sustained climb, and it’s only raining lightly, keep the EVODry Eclipse and an extra base layer in your pack. Instead, start out wearing a more breathable outer layer, like Marmot’s windproof and water-resistant Trail Wind Hoody, which should keep you mostly dry on the way up. When you top out and it’s time to rip back down, peel off (and pack) your sacrificial layers, put on your extra base layer and the EVODry Eclipse, and bomb back down drier, warmer, and happier.


Marmot’s EVODry collection is the evolution of rainwear, garments that outperform current technology with minimal environment impact. EVODry uses a revolutionary Breathable Water Protection™ finish that allows water to bead off even in the heaviest most prolonged storms with no wetting out.

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