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Rain Pants?

Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2018)
#1
I'm starting the CF in September and have a lightweight REI rain shell with lightweight rain pants. Are the rain pants a good idea? I thought they might keep my feet dryer longer when its raining since they cover the top of the shoe. Anyone have experience with this? Thanks!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015); Camino Norte/Primitivo (2016); Camino Frances (2017); Le Puy (June 2018)
#6
I would take them, especially since you say they are so lightweight. If you need them you will be happy you have them, and even if not needed, they will still give you peace of mind knowing they are within reach as extra protection in case of cold rain, wind, or sleet!
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#7
Last Camino out of abt 40 days on the camino we had 3 dry days and lots of heavy rain. I found the rain pants useful when it snowed and was very cold. Otherwise I walked even in considerable rain without them. I wore base layer thermal pants and medium weight pants. I found I sweated in the rain pants and was just as wet so chose, to forego them.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF, June 2012
CF, July 2012
CF, September 2016
Camino Primitivo, May 2017, followed by Camino Frances, late May, 2017
#8
I took a set of Frogg Toggs rainwear. For 20 bucks, they were completely waterproof, and held up better than some of the $200.00 goretex jackets I saw. I walked the Camino Frances in late May 2017, and some of the rain was simply driving. Rain pants, even for those with ponchos, were invaluable. However, a few observations:

- Go out walking with your raingear, whatever you choose, and a full backpack in the hardest, driving rain possible. I noticed that although I was bone dry to the skin while walking on the CF, water seeped in constantly between my back and the backpack. At one point, water was draining continuously out of the drain holes from my backpack. Luckily, I had all my clothes in gallon ziplock bags, keeping them dry. However, it took days to get my backpack to fully dry out.

- Consider gaiters. I took a low pair of trail gaiters, and they were a godsend. Outside of stepping in two feet of standing water, my feet remained dry during the entire walk. My shoes, Oboz Sawtooth low walking shoes, had NO GORETEX but my feet and socks remained dry in driving rain. Not one blister either.

Bottom line, don't wait until you are out on the Camino to see if you system works.
 

Mark Barnes

Old Engineer
Camino(s) past & future
Frances - September - November (2017)
#10
I walked Sept 20 to Nov 02,2017 starting in Pamplona. I took rain pants that where light weight and said they where breathable. The mistake I made was I did not walk at home with them on prior to leaving for Spain. I wore them two days and found I had a choice of getting wet from the rain or getting soaked from the sweat. I did not wear them in the rain after that second day. I would try the Frog Tog rain set next time instead of my GoreTex. FYI it only rained four or five days last year when I walked.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2020)
#12
I use Rain pants as much for another layer, as for keeping dry. They protect from cold winds very well.
Feeling hot in them? Not really. I guess it depends on the fabric. A good breathable fabric will help. Full length zips also help with getting them on and off, as well as allowing some extra ventilation. (when not raining)
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(x4), Fisterra/Muxía(x2), VdlP, Jerusalem, VF, Walsingham,
C inglés. 2019? Who knows! ;-)
#13
- Consider gaiters. I took a low pair of trail gaiters, and they were a godsend. Outside of stepping in two feet of standing water, my feet remained dry during the entire walk. My shoes, Oboz Sawtooth low walking shoes, had NO GORETEX but my feet and socks remained dry in driving rain. Not one blister either.

Bottom line, don't wait until you are out on the Camino to see if you system works.
Gaiters is a good idea. I could have done with some when walking in snow or torrential rain, I just didn’t know about them! (Amateur! :D). My fellow walkers in England wear them in Winter (oh and often in Spring and Autumn too ;)) and they seem to do the job. Must get round to buying some.
It could be your answer :)
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#16
I used an Enlightened Equipment Rain Wrap last September and October. I stuffed into a ball half the size of a tennis ball, and left in my rain jacket pocket. It was easy on, and easy off. It was super light, allowed airflow, but good enough as a wind breaker.:D:cool:
I second the rain wrap / kilt / skirt. Best 2 ounces of rain gear ever!!! :D:D:D
 
#17
I simply washed my Rohan Striders (for cooler/cold conditions, with a brushed lining) in Nikwax TX Direct wash-in (for breathable fabrics).
I figured that I wouldn’t be bothered by warm rain and would just wear thin quick drying trousers for that.
I used them on the first full day, Orisson to Roncevalles, and they kept me dry, in constant, cold rain (mid September).
And they didn’t soak me in perspiration!
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Via de La Plata (spring, 2019)
#18
I used an Enlightened Equipment Rain Wrap last September and October. I stuffed into a ball half the size of a tennis ball, and left in my rain jacket pocket. It was easy on, and easy off. It was super light, allowed airflow, but good enough as a wind breaker.:D:cool:
My quilt is from EE and that wrap is definitely on my list.
 
Camino(s) past & future
cycled from Pamplona Sep 2015;Frances, walked from St Jean 2017.
#19
Are you used to walking in rain pants? Personally I do not like them, I get much too how wearing them even in Winter... We all differ. :)
Hola @domigee . I have a foot in both camps. In the warmer months a good poncho, covering me and the backpack with shorts or zipped of legs is OK. But from Sept/Oct I would be wearing them to ensure that at least the pants above the knee stayed dry (and me warmer). But as you say - to each his/her own!!
 

nidarosa

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Yes please!
#20
I normally walk in tights and a skirt and prefer a poncho to rain jacket and trousers, until I discovered a really good and lightweight pair of goretex rain trousers with long zips that go both ways to allow plenty of ventilation. In Galicia in March they made perfect walking trousers with a pair of tights under, didn't need washing like normal trousers do (and wouldn't have dried), all I did was rinse the mud off the bottom of the legs every evening! They were also easy to pull on and off over the tights and skirt if the day became warmer, or if there was sudden rain (because Galicia). They are now among my favourite pieces of kit!
 
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
#21
@Brooks Berry , as well as the rain pants I guess you will also have a rain jacket and a waterproof pack cover. That seems a lot. And when it rains you need to stop, get this stuff out of the pack etc And the weight ...

I know we are all different from one another in our physiology etc

Normally I would wear shorts with long hose. These all dry quite quickly.

For the past several years I gave worn a lightweight kilt type garment, with long hose. It works just like my real kilt, warm in cold weather, cool in warm weather. And the added advantage of inbuit air conditioning. And these dry quite quickly.

And I carry an Altus rain coat which reaches well past the knee, covers the head and pack and weights about 300 gram. I try keeping things as simple as possible.

But here's the thing: depite walking in April, May, June and October I have encountered rain on only two occassions. Maybe I'm just not on the right Spainish plain.

Kia kaha (take care, be strong, get going)
 

Morgan Holmes

Every day is a path to walk.
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances to Santiago from SJPDP (2014); Fromistá to Santiago (2018).
#22
With apologies to the OP, this is more a commiseration and a request for input than it is a reply.

This is the one thing that I just can't settle on. Honestly, I went through 2 ponchos on my first Camino -- one I bought in Burgos, and the other I had brought from home. The first one tore. The second did the job, but the blowing about was awful. So now I have a raincoat. At 256g, it's not bad for weight, and it comes down to mid-thigh.

And I bought new rain-pants, but I don't know if I will take them, as I went through 2 or 3 pairs on my first trip. Every pair failed to keep me dry -- either because they tore in heavy winds, or because they made me wildly sweaty. I was often walking in shorts on the Meseta and when the skies would open there was no time to put on long pants under the rain gear. The result was wet legs. And from there one would end up with wet feet.

My first Camino was 810 K in late summer through fall (Sept 5-Oct 9). I walked in driving rain at Belorado, Burgos, Portmarin, and Triacastella.... like, anywhere from 10k to 24 k in manic winds and heavy rains.

This time I have 3 weeks and 400 to 500 K (depending on whether I try to get to Fisterre), but the trip is mid-August to early Sept (I will hit Sahagún around August 21 and go from there).

Years vary, to be sure.... but my experienced friends, would you take rain pants on this stretch of the Francés at this time of year, or leave them home? I will have the jacket. And my walking companion will be the patient type who will let me put pants over my shorts...

I'm thinking of gaiters because they would keep my feet dry and I could just towel off wet legs easily enough.

You'd think I have nothing else to think about.... but really this is a good distraction: to fuss over little things while I try to work out the bigger details of day-to-day work/life....
 
Camino(s) past & future
Plan to walk with my husband June 2018
#23
I'm starting the CF in September and have a lightweight REI rain shell with lightweight rain pants. Are the rain pants a good idea? I thought they might keep my feet dryer longer when its raining since they cover the top of the shoe. Anyone have experience with this? Thanks!
My hubby and I loved our cheap rain kilts! So quick and easy to put on or take off and super cheap and lightweight!
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
#24
The poncho I use is from Zpacks, weighs 4 ounces / 115 grams, and has been with me for the last six years including a Pacific Crest Trail thru-hike and the Colorado Trail thru-hike. Wind is no biggie, as I use an elastic tie around in those conditions. it works as a ground sheet, shade producing tarp suing my trekking poles, serves well as a windshell if needed, and covers my pack and me during rain. I can reach it quickly without removing my pack and slip it on or take it off, with a short pause in walking while doing so so I don't trip; no need to remove my pack. The venting is superb and can keep me from getting soaked with sweat while walking uphill at a quick pace.

If the rain is a bit chilly --- and since I always hike in shorts my legs are bare -- if I need more protection, my rain kilt is equally quick to deploy. But in almost all cases, the length of the poncho is more than sufficient. :)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
Camino Portugues
#25
I have walked frances in sept. I took rain pants as precautionary measures. But never used them once. Even in the rain I preferred not to put them on. I like the rain I suppose. My mother has walked twice also and taken rain pants that she never used. But if you ever got into a situation that you needed them for extra warmth they would be great. I would still suggest taking them. Or not? I may not take them next time I walk.
 

linkster

Nunca dejes de creer!
Camino(s) past & future
Francés 05/17 brazo roto Portomarín
Francés 09/17 SJPdP - Santiago
(Portuguese: 09/18)
#26
I simply washed my Rohan Striders (for cooler/cold conditions, with a brushed lining) in Nikwax TX Direct wash-in (for breathable fabrics).
/QUOTE]
@chinacat bloody brilliant idea. Is this what you used? I think I might do my pants and shirt. Would it make sense to do my DarnTough socks?:D:cool:
 

wynrich

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés 2013, 2014
Portugués 2016
Norte 1st half 2018
Norte 2nd half 2019
+ Via Francigena 2017
#27
For our first camino, my husband and I brought good-quality fairly lightweight rain pants from REI but ended up mailing them home (with 5 or 10 pounds of other stuff) at Logroño. The rain pants just didn't seem worth the weight or trouble to put on and off. For the next Camino we got feather-light rain kilts and have used them happily every since. Our experience is that usually when it's rainy the rain comes and goes throughout the day and you are constantly putting on and taking off rain gear. So, the easier to get on and off the better. Kilts are great for that. I will add we've been lucky and haven't been in too many downpours ... but a few.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2015 Frances, 2017 Frances, (2019 ???)
#30
I'm starting the CF in September and have a lightweight REI rain shell with lightweight rain pants. Are the rain pants a good idea? I thought they might keep my feet dryer longer when its raining since they cover the top of the shoe. Anyone have experience with this? Thanks!
I have done dos Caminos and both have been end of Sept into early Nov.
My thinking was a light under my pants liner, my kuhl pants, and my rain pants just in case of cold temps along with excessive moisture and, perhaps, a little wind.
In '15 I used the pant, rain pant combo a couple of times and was happy I hadn't brought a poncho. In '17 I can only remember putting on the rain pants in the middle of the bridge crossing into Portomarion. It had gone from light sprinkles as I stepped onto the bridge, to a torrential downpour at the halfway point. When I reached the other side and had ascended the"Stairway to Heaven" (you'll get the reference when you successfully cross the bridge and climb the 'Stairway'). the rain had stopped and the sun broke through creating a spectacular rainbow.

Oh well...

So yes rain pants are a good idea as they can play a multi-useful applicational purpose (there's a mouthful). I have yet to don my inner liner level, but they don't weigh much and ,if needed, would be worth their weight in gold.

CAUTION:!!! The bit about 'not weighing much' can add tons to your pack. BEWARE!!!

As always if you try and compensate for every contingency you will need to ship your pack with a semi-truck, and even then you will most likely forget something. Like your anti-anxiety medication...never enough pills do they prescribe.

Sooo... I vote for dryness and some warmth.
You will have to make the call as to what you want to carry (and perhaps not use).

I'm excited for you.

Buen Camino
 
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2016
Kumano Kodo 2015
#31
I'm starting the CF in September and have a lightweight REI rain shell with lightweight rain pants. Are the rain pants a good idea? I thought they might keep my feet dryer longer when its raining since they cover the top of the shoe. Anyone have experience with this? Thanks!
On my CF in Sep-Oct, I discarded my heavy raincoat ahead and walked with a poncho I bought in the camping shop opposite and down the hill a bit from the pilgrim office in SJPP.
It was light weight and closed up in front, but airy and came down below my knees, kept me and my pack dry.
Its only problem was the elasticised wrist cuffs that caused my arms to sweat, I cut the cuffs off and it was perfect. In the heavy rain I wore shorts under it.
 
Camino(s) past & future
2015 Frances, 2017 Frances, (2019 ???)
#33
I LOVE my rain kilt. I got mine from AntiGravityGear and now use it for everything from hiking to hunting. Light and adjustable.

https://antigravitygear.com/shop/product-category/antigravitygear-rain-kilt/
I'm looking at the picture and thinking the bottom of my pants and the tops of my boots are going to get damp. Whereas my rain pants 'cover' my lower limbs and upper feet. Am I missing something???

The kilt, I'm assuming, could stand (lay) in as a quick rain tarp or ground cloth which in a 'situation' could prove useful. Always nice to have some options when traveling light.

Peace be with you.

Buen Camino
 

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