What to Wear and Pack for Rainy Weather

What to Wear and Pack for Rainy Weather | The American Outdoorsman

Summer is here, and that usually means more sunshine and warmer weather. But not all climates attract those perfect rays and puffy clouds, which leaves many of us wondering what to wear for rainy weather. There’s a secret to preparing for this type of weather, and that’s layering. Layering will ensure that you stay dry and comfortable in any condition.

Preparing for the Rain

In a perfect world, all of our outdoor activities would take place in optimal weather conditions. But, of course, that’s not the reality. And with unpredictable patterns occurring in any environment, it’s critical to be prepared. 

Did you know that deaths from lightning strikes are one of the leading causes of weather-related fatalities? The odds of being struck by lightning are low, of course, but they change based on region and season, with summer being the deadliest time of the year for strikes. Many cases are due to inadequate preparedness when enjoying the outdoors. We must be even more careful in places where the weather can change suddenly and without warning, such as in the Rocky Mountains where summer hiking and campaign are very popular, yet so are summer storms.

What to Wear for Rainy Weather

A huge part of preparing for outdoor activities is what you wear. A lot of outdoor enthusiasts don’t consider clothing to be such an essential part of the experience. But without the right outdoor gear (including clothing), you can find yourself in danger. 


As noted above, layering is critical in the summer months because of three main reasons:

  • Temperatures can differ drastically from morning to afternoon to evening
  • Rain is just as likely as sunshine 
  • Weather conditions can change suddenly and unexpectedly

Base Layers

You can protect yourself by preparing with essential layers. If you’re at high altitudes or in colder climates, consider starting with a base layer. A wool base layer is best, as it protects your skin from the cold and wicks moisture, meaning you stay drier. In warmer conditions, base layers aren’t necessary and will probably be too warm for your body.

Waterproof and Water-Resistant Layers

Next, check the weather forecast of your destination and make sure your middle layers are suitable. In colder temperatures, you should add a warm layer like flannel or fleece. In hot weather, stick to a moisture-wicking long-sleeved shirt over a t-shirt. And lastly, always pack raingear. When you consider what to wear for rainy weather, you should never be without a proper rain jacket that is breathable and waterproof or water-resistant. 


Finally, consider your footwear. In the summer, we often want breathable materials to keep our feet feeling fresh. But if there’s even the slightest chance of rain, it’s crucial to have a reliable pair of waterproof shoes. Wet shoes, wet socks, and wet feet are a recipe for disaster during any outdoor activities. 

When preparing for rainy weather, prioritize these three things:

  • Layering to prepare for all possible temperatures and weather conditions
  • A breathable and waterproof or water-resistant rain jacket 
  • Sturdy, waterproof footwear

With these three things in mind, you will enjoy your time outdoors while staying as dry, comfortable, and safe.