A waterproof jacket is an essential piece of clothing for outdoor enthusiasts. At Valley & Peak, we love nothing more than exploring the great outdoors and we understand the importance of being prepared for changing weather conditions. 

When picking the best waterproof jacket ensure you know what to look for: 

  • It might sound really obvious, but remember that there is a difference between water-resistant and fully waterproof clothing. A waterproof jacket will keep you dry even in a downpour whereas water-resistant jackets will only repel showers and not prolonged rainfall. 
  • Hiking can cause you to feel warm even during colder weather months. Therefore you should ensure you’re opting for a breathable jacket to prevent you from getting sweaty and then feeling a chill once your sweat dries. 
  • Look out for an adjustable hood that provides a snug fit for added wind and rain protection. Some jackets also come with peaks to keep the elements out of your eyes. 
  • Waterproof zippers play an important role in preventing moisture from seeping through and reaching inner layers. 
  • Decide whether you want a tighter or looser fit. A looser fit will allow layering during colder weather and be easier to move around in. However, if you just want to wear a T-shirt under your jacket a tighter fit may be beneficial. 
  • If you’re going to be carrying your jacket in your backpack whilst hiking you should consider its weight and also its packability. 
  • Think about any additional features you’re looking for such as drawcord hems, key clips, or quick-zip pockets. These can really help to protect items you don’t want being affected by heavy downpours.

If you take these things into consideration you’re sure to find a waterproof jacket that ticks all your boxes and keeps you dry throughout the seasons. 

We recommend the following Outdoor Research waterproof clothing:

outdoor research mens gore-text jacket red

Outdoor Research Men’sForay II Gore-Tex Jacket 

This jacket is great for every activity. The best-selling GORE-TEX waterproof jacket is now available in more sizes than ever before. It’s a modern and versatile jacket that is famous for its TorsoFlo™ venting.

An adjustable hood and cuffs help to prevent wind and rain from getting in. Allowing you to seal out the weather or adjust to allow room for winter hats and gloves. 

The famous TorsoFlo™ venting allows you to let out excess heat with the two-way zippers that run from the pit to the hem of your jacket. This also allows you to wear it poncho style over a pack waist strap. 

outdoor research mens helium rain jacket

Outdoor Research Men’s Helium Rain Jacket

This waterproof jacket is both durable and lightweight. It’s been tested and trusted since 2010. It sells out every season and wins awards. It not only packs down to the size of your palm it also has an adjustable hood, key clip, and drawcord hem. 

The Pertex® Shield with Diamond Fuse Technology enables this waterproof jacket to be 5x more tear-resistant than its predecessor. It’s completely seam-taped and waterproof but still breathable and comfortable in harsh weather conditions. 

For premium comfort and to keep yourself completely dry during prolonged downpours pair your waterproof jacket with the following gear:

outdoor research mens helium rain pants

Outdoor Research Men’s Helium Rain Pants

Keep dry with these durable and lightweight waterproof rain pants. They pack down to the size of your palm meaning you can store them away in your backpack when they’re not needed. 

You can wear them on their own or over your trousers when caught out in a rainstorm. They’re seam-taped, waterproof, windproof, and breathable, everything you need in a good pair of rain trousers. 

The elastic waist with drawcord and gripper tape along with the crotch gusset ensures comfort and freedom of movement throughout your hike. The back pocket doubles up as a stuff sack for easy storage. 

Zippers at the ankle allow you to easily remove waterproof trousers without taking your shoes off first. Rain pants are not only a great way of keeping yourself dry during wet weather, they also act as an extra layer of insulation during the colder months.

outdoor research mens crocodile gore-text gaiters

Outdoor Research Men’s Crocodile Gore-Tex Gaiters 

Waterproof, windproof, and breathable gaiters are a competent hiker's must-have. They’re hard-wearing and designed to withstand the test of time. 

Keep snow, mud, and rocks out of your boots. No one likes having to stop every mile to get rid of the collection of stones they’ve accumulated in the back of their boots. 

Secure your gaiters to your boots using the reinforced boot lace hooks and instep strap and enjoy distraction-free hiking. We recommend sizing down a size to ensure the best fit. When fitted properly the buckle should lie on the side of your shoe, not underneath. 

darn tough heady stripe socks

On rainy days when the sky's grey inject a little colour into your day with the Darn Tough Heady Stripe Micro Crew Lightweight Socks. The colours are warm and homely, they're the perfect sock to see poking over your hiking boots. After a long day of hiking these socks are sure to put a smile on your face when you remove your boots.

The Merino wool means you can comfortably wear them for multiple days when on a multi-day hike. They stay dry and help to regulate heat, wicking away sweat. The seamless toe prevents bunching. Super durable and naturally odor-resistant making them the perfect hiking partner.

Waterproof clothing works best if you layer it appropriately. You should start with a lightweight, moisture-wicking base layer to keep sweat away from your skin. During winter months you should opt for an insulating thermal layer to help keep you warm. Your waterproof jacket and rain pants should be your final layer, acting as a barrier against external elements.

Once you've got all the waterproof clothing you need. Don't forget about footwear. Dry feet are paramount to a comfortable hiking experience.

Hiking boots or trail shoes help to stop water from dampening your socks and causing your footwear to rub on wet treks. You should ensure your boots are well-fitted with adequate grip to avoid slipping.

gregory baltro 65 backpack red

Store your waterproof clothing away when the sun comes out in the Gregory Baltoro 65 Backpack designed with comfort and performance in mind.

The dynamic hip belt, rotating shoulder strap, and FreeFloat A3 suspension system with dynamic flex panels naturally move with your body to provide unmatched comfort.

The AirCushion Foamless back panel has moisture-wicking cooling benefits and eliminates pressure points. The adjustable torso and hip belt allow you to fit the backpack to your specific body shape.

For hydration purposes, there is a SideWinder bottle holster for one-handed on-the-go water bottle access. There is an internal hydration sleeve with a SpeedClip hydration hanger compatible with Gregory's 3D Hydro Trek reservoir.

If you're camping you'll be pleased to know there is a zippered bottom sleeping bag compartment with a removable divider. Keeping in-fitting with the waterproof theme, there is a custom-fitted rain cover included. The rain cover stows away in a quick-access zippered pocket on the underside of the top lid.

Any wet clothing should be kept inside a dry bag when put into your backpack. This will keep the other contents of your bag dry.

waterproof organisers

Organisers are perfect to keep maps, travel documentation, and medication together and dry inside your backpack.

To ensure the longevity of your hiking gear you should take good care of them. Only wash in accordance with the care instructions. Use a wash-in waterproofer to maintain the quality of your waterproof clothing.

You'll never regret investing in high-quality waterproof clothing. It's a must for any hiking enthusiast. Embrace the beauty of nature with confidence. Knowing that you're prepared regardless of the changing weather conditions will get you off to a great start.

We hope this blog has helped you discover the best way to stay dry on your next hike. For any further information don’t hesitate to get in touch with a friendly member of our team, email support@valleyandpeak.co.uk and we’ll get back to you at our earliest convenience. 

Why not check out our other expert written blogs to become a master of the outdoors

September 25, 2023 — Jim De'Ath