If you don’t have time to read the entire review and just want to find out what the best raingear for hiking is, then we recommend the Nicewin Portable Rain Jacket as the best choice.
With the best raingear for hiking, you won’t have to worry about getting soaked when traversing through rough terrain. By choosing the right raingear, you’ll be prepared for any weather, whether it’s a torrential downpour or a gentle mist on a spring afternoon. If you’re looking for one, we’ve found five essential items for you to consider adding to your pack in preparation for your upcoming hike.
Best Raingear for Hiking: A Review
Available in over 20 different colors, the Columbia Glennaker Lake Rain Jacket has pristine craftsmanship, similar to most other high-quality Columbia jackets. With the help of the advanced Hydroplus technology, you’ll be able to experience all of the benefits of waterproof gear.
The main features of the Columbia Glennaker Lake Rain Jacket include:
- 100% Nylon: Nylon is fantastic for its water resistance, but it is also highly breathable in warm weather. Ideally paired with a lightweight T-shirt in the summer, this 100% nylon jacket can help to moderate your body temperature.
- Hydroplus Technology: By far, the most interesting aspect of this jacket is its Hydroplus technology. With the special blend of nylon fabric, you’ll be able to stay drier for longer, even in severe rainstorms.
- Omni-Tech: As a patented technology added to most Columbia jackets, Omni-Tech is another way to help keep the jacket breathable, lightweight, and waterproof. It features wicking fabric that keeps your body cool and dry without letting water in. You’ll notice the outer shell is soft nylon and the interior is mesh.
- Convenient Features: In addition to two zippered pockets, the cuffs of the jacket are fully adjustable to your desired tightness. There is also a hood included that is easily stored away in the collar.
- Foldable: To make the Columbia Glennaker Lake Rain Jacket easier to travel with, you can fold the entire jacket up into its own pocket so that it’s simple to pack in tight spaces.
- Fits well
- Warm enough for cold weather
- Doesn’t feel cumbersome
- Not recommended for prolonged rain
- Takes a long time to dry
- Unlined sleeves
Instead of relying on nylon as the primary material, this jacket uses polyester, which could make it better at being water-resistant. The Frogg Toggs Pro Action Rain Jacket has a lot of amazing technology for you to put to good use, which could make it one of the preferable rain jackets on this list.
This jacket comes with the following features:
- Dri-Pore Bullet 2 Performance: As the second generation of this technology, the Dri-Pore Bullet 2 Performance helps make the jacket waterproof and breathable at the same time. Each seam is sealed and fully taped to help prevent water from permeating the jacket.
- Open-Waist: Instead of dealing with unappealing bunching and fit issues, the bottom hem of the jacket is designed to have an open waist, so you have optimal comfort and versatility. It also helps give you a better range of motion so that you can be flexible on your hike.
- E-X Push Hood: Adjusting the hood on your favorite rain jacket has never been easier with the E-X push hood, as you can tighten and adjust the hood just by using push buttons. Once you have the hood on, it will fit firmly to your head so you don’t have to worry about it blowing off. In addition, the hood is easy to tuck away.
- Hand-Warmer Pockets: To help keep your hands more comfortable in poor weather, its zippered pockets will keep your hands warm, so you don’t have to worry about numb fingers if you’re hiking in the winter.
- Added Storm Flap: For even more water resistance, there is a storm flap included on the front of the jacket near the zipper. This helps prevent water from entering through the molded zippers.
- Feels lightweight
- Easily keeps you dry
- Small enough to pack
- Doesn’t have a fitted style
- Hood is too tall
- The material feels cheap and is loud
At first glance, the Portwest Classic Rain Jacket looks relatively basic, but it has plenty of great features added to its design for your comfort and convenience. As one of the more affordable jackets on this list, it’s a great basic option for heading out into wet weather.
The main features of the Portwest Classic Rain Jacket include:
- Nylon Material: Similar to the Columbia jacket, this rain jacket is made from mostly nylon to help prevent water from penetrating the jacket. With that said, it’s not the most reliable material for waterproofing, especially if you’re stuck in a major downpour.
- Drawstring Hem: At the bottom of the jacket, it’s designed to sit open, but there is an added drawstring which you can use to pull the jacket closer to your body.
- Pockets with Flaps: Around the hip area, you’ll notice there are two large pockets which you can use to store your essential belongings. Also, some flaps fall over the pockets so that water doesn’t make its way into the pockets.
- Back Vent: There’s nothing more uncomfortable than sweating in a rain jacket designed to keep water out. With the help of the back vent on this jacket, you’ll have superior breathability to keep you cool on the warmest days.
- Elasticated Cuffs: Also known as storm cuffs, the wrists on the jacket feature high-quality elastic so that they fit closer to your skin to stop water from entering the sleeves.
- Comfortable to wear
- Great for hot and cold weather
- Ideal for up to two hours of rain exposure
- Comfortable collar
- Non-adjustable cuffs
- Feels cheap
- Fabric may tear over time
If you’re searching for a jacket you can store away in your hiking bag easily, this is one of the better options as it is very minimal and lightweight. Designed similarly to a poncho, it has some of the main features you’d find in most other high-quality rain jackets.
The most interesting features of the Nicewin Portable Rain Jacket include:
- Quality Nylon: According to the manufacturer, the nylon used to create the jacket is wear-resistant as well as water-resistant. They coated the entire jacket with an anti-splashing treatment and transparent adhesive to prevent hydrostatic pressure of WR3000.
- Waterproofed Zippers: On the outside of the zipper, there is a waterproof coating which prevents water from permeating the zipper.
- Breathable: Under the storm flap on the back of the jacket, there is also mesh to help add to the breathability of the jacket. You’ll also notice breathable holes added to the underarm area.
- Safety Features: On the shoulders, there are reflective bars added so that you can stay safe while trekking down the road at night.
- Adjustable Elastic: On the bottom of the jacket, there is an adjustable elastic which you can use to create the perfect fit regardless of your body type. You’ll also have cuffs with a hook and loop closure for added comfort.
- Dries quickly
- Entirely waterproof
- Fits well on all bodies
- Easy to pack into a bag
- The material feels very thin
- Hard to use zippers
- Sizing runs small
Designed specifically for outdoor activities, such as camping, the Geek Lighting Hooded Rain Jacket has almost everything you would expect from a quality rain jacket. From abrasion-resistant materials to advanced waterproofing, this jacket has plenty to offer.
The key features of the Geek Lighting Rain Jacket include:
- Durable Shell: The outer shell of this jacket is its most notable feature as it is highly durable and abrasion-resistant, which is ideal for hikers. You won’t have to worry about tears from regular use.
- Breathable and Quick Drying: With the help of the shell, you won’t have to worry about feeling like you’re overheating in your jacket, as it features a breathable mesh lining. In addition, it dries quickly.
- Water-Resistant Zipper: On the front of the jacket, it features a water-resistant PU zipper to prevent water from permeating the front of the jacket.
- Attached Hood: With the help of the attached hood, you can protect your head when in torrential weather. It also features a stand collar for added comfort and protection.
- Convenient Features: The pockets found on the front of the jacket are designed with a slanted style and feature a full zipper to keep them closed. The cuffs feature hook and loop closures and are elastic to fit comfortably against your wrists using bungee cords.
- Easy to Pack: Similar to the other rain jackets on this list, the Geek Lighting Hooded Rain Jacket can be folded down into its own hand pocket easily. This is ideal for keeping it safe inside of your hiking bag.
- Easily balances body temperature
- Very breathable
- Easily blocks wind
- Ideal for light rain
- The material will be caught in zippers
- Not recommended for downpours
- The material feels very thin
When shopping for a great rain jacket for hiking, there are plenty of features to keep an eye out. Using this buyer’s guide, you’ll get on the right track in order to find the perfect jacket for all of your needs.
1. Waterproof Material
As you can guess, any type of raingear you invest in should be as waterproof as possible. There’s no need to invest in an expensive jacket that is only going to leave you soaking wet at the end of the day. It seems to be that polyester and nylon are the two most popular materials used to help prevent water from penetrating your jacket.
For an added benefit, you may also want to consider a jacket treated with a waterproof coating which makes water roll right off of the outer shell. It’s also recommended you look into the advanced technologies manufacturers have to offer, as the way they process the jacket’s materials can have a lot to do with its water-resistance as well.
Although you’ll want a rain jacket to prevent water penetration, you’ll want to make sure the inside of the jacket allows your body to breathe. Otherwise, you’ll feel like you’re stuck inside of a plastic jacket which keeps all of your sweat close to your skin. Ideally, opt for a jacket that has a moisture-wicking interior.
With moisture-wicking, the inside material will pull sweat away from your body so that you can stay cool throughout your hike. Also, you may want to consider a jacket with an added layer of mesh to allow air to flow in and out of the jacket.
Everyone’s body is different, and when hiking, you’re going to need as much flexibility as possible. The perfect raingear will allow you to make minor adjustments, such as being able to adjust the elastic around the cuffs. You will also want to consider a jacket with an adjustable cord at the bottom hem as well as a collar that you can customize.
4. Waterproof Zippers
Along with needing a waterproof jacket, you’ll also want to ensure the zippers are waterproof. The vast majority of rain jackets forget this small detail, as water can penetrate the material of zippers easily. This is especially important if you’re storing your valuables in the jacket’s pockets.
It is important to remember, though, that any waterproof treatments added to zippers can make them slightly more challenging to open and close. Nonetheless, this is a small feature to worry about compared to wet valuables.
5. Easy to Pack
You can’t guarantee you’ll need the jacket for your entire hike, which is why it can be incredibly useful to pack your jacket away without having to take everything out of your bag. Most rain jackets are so lightweight that they can be folded down into a tiny ball. The highest quality ones can be packed into their own pockets and then stuffed into your hiking bag with ease.
Our Final Recommendation
Our choice for the best raingear for hiking is surely the Nicewin Portable Rain Jacket since it has the best waterproofing out of all of the other jackets on this list.
With the added weatherproofing on the exterior of the jacket, you won’t get wet even when caught in a torrential downpour. It’s also effortless to pack away if you end up not needing the jacket in the middle of your hike.