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UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose?
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David Poston
(dgposton) - F

Locale: Texas / Colorado
UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/12/2008 14:49:50 MDT Print View

I am now rethinking every item in preparation for my summer Colorado mountains trip this July. For summer backpacking in Colorado mountains, which wind/rain pants would you take?

Can I get by with the Montbell wind pants, or do I need to go heavier to get sufficient rain protection?

(jhaura) - F

Locale: Trail
Re: UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/12/2008 15:56:56 MDT Print View

I don't know about your area much, but for temps 30*F and above in rain I use a wind pant, not a rain pant. Rain pants just don't breathe well enough for my hiking exertion level at those temps. I you meander at 1-1.5mph rain pants would be fine though.

I've had the whims and ulwind, and prefer the montbells because they are lighter and more comfortable, although more expensive, as golite stuff can be found on sale easier. Some say the whims breathe better, but I have not found this to be true, YMMV of course.

(dirtt) - F

Locale: So. California
Montbell UL Windpants on 06/12/2008 16:00:43 MDT Print View

I have the Montbell UL Wind Pants and they will be fine for rain in temps above 40-50ish degrees. You will get wet in downpours no doubt, but they keep you warm. They pack very small, smaller than an OR Ion Pullover.

I have no experience with the weather in Colorado though, so...

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/12/2008 16:09:54 MDT Print View

Colorado mountains in summer? Trails? If so, then we are not talking about thick growths, rock scrambling or bushwhacking.

I highly recommend that totally windproof and rainproof -- but amazingly breathable Driduck pants. Cheap and light as heck too!

Peter Fogel
(pgfogel) - F

Locale: Western Slope, Colorado
Wind /Rain Pants on 06/12/2008 16:28:06 MDT Print View

Being from Colorado, I believe the jacket is more important than the pants. I generally get by with nylon trail running shorts and just let my legs and feet get wet. You'll be wet anyway much of the time depending upon your altitude and location. Choose shoes wisely and have a proper jacket and or just a cheap poncho to protect you during intermittent downpours. Rain here generally comes in the afternoon and USUALLY does not last all that long. If you're on a budget get a cheap Walmart poncho and call it good. Spend money on decent fast drying trail shoes and an ultralight rain shirt with a hood and bring some extra socks. I often use nylon/spandex/lycra type trail socks. They dry fast! Nylon zip offs are just fine for pants during most summer trips. I do use some Golite,[ Whim?], they're an older version, pants at 4.5 ozs. They're very thin. I mostly carry them om trail runs with A Golite Hooded wind shirt and a PowerStretch pullover or just the cut off arms from an old one. The only other thing I really recomend is a nice lightweight windstopper vest. The vest is without a doubt my favorite go to piece of clothing. You can layer with it or use it in summer without any shirt at all as conditions require. It's wind and waterproof/very water resistant.


Edited by pgfogel on 06/12/2008 16:47:45 MDT.

Paul Luther
(eredluin) - M

Locale: Northeast
Re: Wind /Rain Pants on 06/12/2008 17:53:20 MDT Print View

I have an older pair of Montane Featherlite pants. They are 4 oz. with leg zips. The leg zips are mighty nice. I think mine are made of pertex quantum fabric. They breath well too. I couple the featherlite pants with a driducks jacket to make a cost effective rain suit. I don't bushwack with this set up. I think the latest featherlite pants use microlite fabric. The featherlite pants are harder to find than the golite or montbell products.


Paul Luther
(eredluin) - M

Locale: Northeast
Re: Re: Wind /Rain Pants on 06/12/2008 18:53:55 MDT Print View

OOPS! the featherlite pants have ankle zips not leg zips.

Joshua Knapp
(Joshjknapp) - F

Locale: Northern Mn, Superior Hiking Trail
Re: Wind /Rain Pants on 06/12/2008 19:03:40 MDT Print View

Hey Dave,

If you want some cheap ultra light pants check out the Sierra Designs Microlights. I have a size small and after removing tags and elastic ankle cuffs they weight only 5.3 oz , but the best part is they are only $28.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Wind /Rain Pants on 06/12/2008 22:11:08 MDT Print View

Which brand of windstopper vest?

Peter Fogel
(pgfogel) - F

Locale: Western Slope, Colorado
Wind /rain pants.........windstopper vest on 06/13/2008 07:44:58 MDT Print View


I personally use and like the Mountain Hardwear Windstopper Tech Vest. Some might consider it just a bit heavy at 9.5 ozs, but for me it's more than worth it. It's all about finding the proper fit. There are lots of options out there now, as this has become a popular piece of gear. Even my vest required some modification to suit me. I had to cut an inch or so off the long collar. It was just too high for me.

By the way, I saw the Mountain Hardwear vest on the REI Outlet website a few days ago. You might check it out. They were offering an additional 20% off last week.


David Poston
(dgposton) - F

Locale: Texas / Colorado
Re: Re: Wind /Rain Pants on 06/13/2008 08:57:44 MDT Print View


I have these pants already. I used them last year, and they were OK, but I was just thinking of ways to save an ounce or two. The medium weigh around 5.75 oz with the stuff sack.

David Poston
(dgposton) - F

Locale: Texas / Colorado
Re: Re: UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/13/2008 14:42:36 MDT Print View


Do you know how much the Driducks pants weigh (size medium)? (Actual, not listed weight).

It appears that the Driducks is sold as a set on this website (for 14.95 for both?), am I right?

Dylan Taylor
(nevadas) - F

Locale: California Coast
montbell ul wind pants on 06/13/2008 15:42:40 MDT Print View

the montbell ul wind pants are amazing! they are 2.5 ounces and pack up so small you will be grinning for like a week. of course, you have to pay to play with these-- they are among the most expensive. if you hunt, you can find them on sale though...

i use these in conjunction with the SMD gatewood cape as a shelter/ full-on rain protection. in other words, i put on the wind shirt/ pants under the cape when its raining steady and that protects me from rain that gets in under the poncho b/c of wind.

but having the golite wisp windshirt (2.5 oz, medium), the montbell ul windpants (2.5 with stuff sack, large, side note:sizing is small so go one size up), and the SMD gatewood cape i have wind and rain protection, a pack cover, plus a shelter for exactly one pound. o, the stakes add a couple of ounces.

but still, that is hard to beat.

i also have the reed pants. they work well in rain. they are definitely a thicker, less breathable material than the montbells but will repel more rain before wetting out than the montbell pants. of course, they are double the weight.

Edited by nevadas on 06/13/2008 15:51:32 MDT.

Tom Kirchner
(ouzel) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
Re: Wind /rain pants.........windstopper vest on 06/13/2008 16:33:58 MDT Print View

I was sort of wondering if that wasn't it. The MH Tech Windstopper vest is my go to wind shirt for snowshoeing out here in the Cascades. Paired with a Patagucci R1 Hoody, it's all I ever need unless the weather really goes south.
20% off at REI Outlet, huh? Hmmmmm, maybe I should salt one away.....? Thanks for the heads up.

Jason Brinkman
(jbrinkmanboi) - MLife

Locale: Idaho
Re: UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/13/2008 22:48:57 MDT Print View

I just ordered a couple sets of Driducks. The XL sets I got weigh 11.1 ounces once I pulled out the hood string with oversized cordlocks. The pants are 4.8 ounces. Would speculate that the mediums might be 4 ounces or less?

Shawn Taylor
(staylor310) - F

Locale: Sierra
Re: Re: UL Wind/rain pants - which would you choose? on 06/13/2008 23:02:20 MDT Print View

I like the montane feather lite pants for wind pants. I always bring these unless I'm expecting heavy rain, when which I would bring Golite Reed rain pants instead.

Scott Peterson
(scottalanp) - F

Locale: Northern California
Weight versus Volume on 06/14/2008 10:23:14 MDT Print View

I have successfully used the driduck pants and was impressed with weight and functionality (just do not get them close to heat!).

I found that they were very bulky though. I would give an ounce or two back and pay a few bucks more to have them take up less room in my pack.

How does this group view volume as opposed to weight? I am getting ready to haul a bear canister for the first time (after going light) and I am fearful that space is going to be very limited once I shove that canister in there! Is it always about weight???

John Sixbey
(Wolfeye) - F
my UL raingear on 06/14/2008 22:39:21 MDT Print View

I use a set of breathable gear from Cabela's; they claim their "Micropack" jackets are less than 6 ounces, which feels about right. I'm guessing the pants are about 4 ounces. The set breathes well enough to use as windbreakers, and they've held up through a few weeks of bushwacking with only a little rip to show for it. My only complaint is that they only come in camo. I like that they use neoprene tabs instead of cordlocks for the hood.

Edit: To answer your volume concern, I had the same issue when I had to pack a bear canister for the first time. I picked this brand of raingear because it claimed to squish down to a tiny package, and I find my set is a little larger than big rolled-up winter socks once they're in their stuffsacks. The sack that came with the pants was too large, so I replaced it with the tiny silnylon sack that my Integral Designs compression sack came packaged in. On that note, I find compression stuffsacks for the sleeping bag & clothes are more useful than regular stuffsacks even though they're a tad heavier - my gear wouldn't fit in my bag without them.

Edited by Wolfeye on 06/14/2008 22:53:55 MDT.

slavenya slavenya
(slavenya) - F

Locale: Israel
Where can one buy Driducks on 06/15/2008 11:03:25 MDT Print View

Which online retailer has sell Driducks?

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Where can one buy Driducks on 06/15/2008 11:12:45 MDT Print View

Google and you'll see.

I am surprised by the 'bulky' comment. For me anyway, Driducks fold down just as small as most any nylon jackets. As impressively light and compact as they are, the thing that truly impresses me the most is its extreme breathability! For trail use -- I'd say Driducks are the best wp/b layer out there.

Warning: Driducks sizes are off by at least two sizes! I normally wear a Medium. But the "Small" that I got is actually bigger than most Large that I know!

Edited by ben2world on 06/15/2008 11:16:09 MDT.