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Bombproof Rain Gear_what do you recommend?

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gear, Survival Equipment & More' started by Quirt, Apr 23, 2016.

  1. Quirt


    Oct 10, 2005
    Okay, I live in a very wet environment and much of my wilderness time is in a damp, wet, rain forest. Think of 55" of 60" of rain per year. Our forest is also loaded with things that poke and stick - Trailing and Himalaya Blackberries, Devil's Club, and the like. I have a lot of lightweight, breathable, rain gear which performs "okay" after extended periods of time- including GoreTex and similar knock off variations. But eventually they start soaking through.

    I've tried the Marmot and other expensive REI gear with similar results. I also have a lot of Filson gear which again, works great when new, then even after copious amounts of re-greasing works okay. The Filson is by far the most effective but after a while the forearms and shoulders start getting wet. I try to regulate the heat factor so perspiration isn't causing or contributing to the problem.

    I'm ready to try heavy-duty, non-breathable or semi-breathable gear and have been looking at Helly Hanson and Grundens. Ideally it would have pit zips but that isn't probably realistic unless I go back to REI gear. I have a Grundens Shackleton 120 Dry Bag and I'm VERY impressed with it. So who here has experience with the heavier nylon and/or PVC styles of rain gear and in particular the Grundens? Also if anyone has tried the KUIU rain gear. It is expensive but has impressive claims with one buddy saying it is the best. I'm not ready to spend $250 for just the jacket to find out, just yet. Please sound off. Much obliged!
  2. Maven


    Nov 27, 2015
    I use a USMC issue full Goretex "Parka, Cold Weather"
    Its just a goretex shell. No insulation. It works excellent. Nice coverage. Plenty of room since its meant to be the outer layer of a system and I've never gotten wet in it. I spent two weeks ago out on training it was 37F and rained for 12hrs straight. A couple inches of rain. I was bone dry and happy. The key to goretex is to be sure your garment has fully taped seams and to keep it clean. Dirty goretex is what leaks in my experience
  3. leghog


    Aug 10, 2013
    Get a LIGHT shell only. I'm happy with the Marmot I've had for the last couple of years. I keep a nearly ten year old Arteryx shell packed, but there is no way I'd now pay what they now cost. 20+ years ago I had a Helly Hansen. It didn't hold up as well as the Marmot or Arcteryx are holding up. You can find Marmot shells on sale for good prices. Think I paid $65 or $69 for mine on sale. Just wait, watch, and then strike when you find it on sale.
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2016
  4. sideways


    Feb 19, 2013
    I have a bunch of old waterproof HH jackets and pants, and a stack of rubber boots.

    They are a GREAT thing to have on hand when you have to go out, soldier through, and work in the rain.

    It's also great to take them off when you are done so you can get washed up and dry. If you take my meaning.

    It's gear you only want to be wearing when it is raining or you are rolling around in the wet grass.

    If you can accept that... you and the waterproof stuff will get along great. :)
  5. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    After years of trudging around the mountains of New England in the rainy shoulder seasons (think 35f and all day rain), I've concluded the purpose of rain gear is to control your body temperature, not to keep dry.

    Eventually, any rain gear will let in rain at the cuffs and zippers and just as eventually, you'll out-sweat even the most breathable of wind gear.

    I find it's easier to regulate my temperature with something like GoreTex so long as the garment has pitzips. The Scottish Buffalo System is an example of just giving up entirely on waterproofness. I'll stick with WP/B gear.

    Either way, I treat trail clothing as "will get soaked" when hiking gear. Dry gear is in the pack. I change into wet gear last thing when packing up camp.

    If you are trashing your gear in your hard forests... I would stick to brands that sell to climbers. Look for thicker fabrications. I think you probably have as good as you're going to find.
  6. gadgetgeek


    May 19, 2007
    Rain gear is always a compromise, I'd be looking at durability first, or replace-ability. laminated cordura won't breath, but if its got good pit zips, that will help. I had a Viking jacket that was heavy, but very tough. might be worth looking that way as well.
  7. Sidehill Gouger

    Sidehill Gouger

    Dec 29, 2007
    Sounds like you might live in the Northwest by the vegetation. From my years working in the woods as a forester, I would say there isn't anything I would call bomb proof. You just constantly replace tops and bottoms as needed. Our log camp had a "company store" you could charge new rain gear at before starting work each day if you needed.
  8. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    Having reread the OP, I should add that I used non-breathable rain gear (from Patagonia) for several years, incluidng a stint as a ski instructor. I was no dryer than my buddies in GoreTex during the rain and was more wet when the rain reduced to drizzle or on/off rain. The problem is sweat.
  9. trestle


    Feb 2, 2008
    Dutch Harbor Gear is another choice besides Grunden's and HH. I've used their bibs and their parka and preferred their weight to the Grunden's. However, trekking through the underbrush as described by the op, the Grunden's will be more durable.

    None of the laminate or pTFE gear will keep you dry indefinitely, seam-taped or not. If you prefer the nylon/synthetic shells to the rubberized vinyl mentioned above, you're much better off with a polyurethane coating than a laminate for true water repellency. You'll sweat more but you can vent that out.
  10. bore


    May 20, 2015
    I've got the Helly Hansen jacket with the rubber liner and hood and nylon outside shell. It's the green one w orange hood and liner. Been good for years. For pants I've got double nylon bibs. Had them for years as well. Forget the brand of the bibs. The Helly Hansen jacket should be easy to find. I've seen it on a few construction sites

    Edit.. this is the jacket

    Last edited: Apr 25, 2016
  11. J. A. Baker Knives

    J. A. Baker Knives

    Aug 30, 2013
    I use Cabelas MT050 rainwear and it is the best I have used. Pricey, but worth it.
  12. Chignecto Woodsman

    Chignecto Woodsman

    Aug 2, 2014
    Arc'teryx. Nothing really compares as they have the best designs, materials, and coatings. Expensive, but you can always find sales on last year's designs. Mine is a Beta AR. I also have a pack which has proven the weatherproof quality of their materials.

    If you think something is comparable to Arc'teryx then make sure it is one of the top GoreTex materials. And whatever it is you will have to keep it clean and eventually retreat it.

    The Filson Double Logger coat is another option as it has an extra layer over the shoulders, chest, and arms. This increases water repellancy and also durability. Certainly this is the way to go if looking at bombproof gear as contemporary materials just won't compare.

    Unfortunately there is no way to stay completely dry when working in the rain as the humidity and build up of moisture in the materials will eventually make you feel wet. This is just a fact of how the materials work, and one of the problems with GoreTex is that it eventually becomes so soaked with moisture that it hardly breathes at all, just like non-breathable rain coats.
  13. leghog


    Aug 10, 2013
    I own Arc'teryx raingear. You can get the same quality and function MUCH less expensively than even Arc'teryx on sale.
  14. sams


    Apr 21, 2001
    Price is a guide to quality. Good gortex is over $300, and I spent close to $500 on my pants and jacket. Yes i stayed dry in down pours in Florida. :)

    Gabelas is a good place to start for ideas regarding rain gear. Make it an adventure, spend a month or two studying all the types and styles available, and the terrain you will be in. I used mine elk hunting so the "hush" fabric" was one jacket I bought.
  15. Chignecto Woodsman

    Chignecto Woodsman

    Aug 2, 2014
    Such as what brands? The OP is looking for bombproof raingear, so it would be a disservice to suggest 'good enough' when there are many out there who have proven that the cheap jackets do not hold up the same. They leak and tear.

    I'm sure there are a few other companies with similar quality, but the price would be about the same. And Arc'teryx is widely regarded as being tops.
  16. Ebbtide


    Aug 20, 1999
    Surf fishing I wear a Grunden Pull over top.
    50ยบ and below, with a micro fleece or thicker fleece or both condensation isn't a problem.
    Wind and downpour proof.

    Not as comfortable in hotter weather though because of the condensation problem.

    I also have HH & Rainskins deck gear and the Grunden seems a little more heavy duty.
  17. leghog


    Aug 10, 2013
    Arc'teryx is no more bombproof than any number of products from other makers. The Chinese make just as good of other brands as they make Arc'teryx.
  18. BladeScout

    BladeScout Basic Member Basic Member

    May 16, 2010
    The best raingear, that Ive ever worn is my TadGear Spectre hard shell.

    As rain proof as it gets and with plenty of ventilation. The latter being important as its no magic to keep the rain out - the trick is to not get drenched with sweat at the same time as one is keeping the rain out, if one is active that is.

    I believe its not discontinued and the prices for Tad is just nuts anyhow but maybe you can find sometihing in that vein. If not from Tad then else where.
  19. Fallbrook Forge

    Fallbrook Forge KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jan 1, 2006
    Could you educate us please? What gear is as durable, well constructed and breathable as Arcteryx for MUCH less? What environments have you used them BOTH in? What tasks were you completing?
    I'm seriously asking you, because I'm saving for Arcteryx rain gear right now, for use backpacking, camping and in firearms training courses.
    It's what most of the guys from well known military units recommend, and they've used it in the harshest conditions known to man, for long periods of time.
  20. leghog


    Aug 10, 2013
    I've used them both in the mountains of the Eastern USA, central Afghanistan, and the Pacific. I was in the military for 20+ years. Arc'teryx doesn't breath well at all. If I were buying a Chinese rain shell today, it certainly wouldn't be Arc'teryx (especially at the prices they go for these days), and that's after my owning mine for about ten years now.

    We each spend our money as we each see fit. To each their own.

    Pics are from the last time I wore my Arc'teryx shell less than three months ago on the highest peak in Virginia:
    Last edited: May 1, 2016

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