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Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain?
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Barry Pollock
(Barry1492) - F

Locale: Media
Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 10:49:42 MDT Print View

From a light weight perspective, how can I deal with the rain on my hands and feet. For hands I'm thinking primarily when its a bit cold. Years ago, as a runner, I had a pair of wind/rain shell mittens that could pretty much go over any type of glove. They weighed almost nothing.

Since I don;t wear "boots" anymore (technically my shoes are boots, but they are really high top trail runners), I don;t have fancy goretex to keep the feet dry. Do you just bring extra socks and change out once the shoes get dry enough?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 11:55:23 MDT Print View

Have long enough sleeves on your rain jacket so they cover your hands.

When you need to use your hands, close the velcro strip so it's around your wrist leaving your hands free.

Gaiters around the top of your shoes

Not a total solution to your problem but maybe a couple useful ideas

Mike In Socal
(rcmike) - MLife

Locale: California
Latex Gloves on 04/16/2011 12:04:00 MDT Print View

I thought this was really clever.

Mary D
(hikinggranny) - MLife
Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 13:57:39 MDT Print View

Hands--Mountain Laurel Design eVENT rain mitts. Possibly with thin wool liner gloves inside depending on how cold it is.

Feet--I use gaiters (again, MLD eVENT), but that doesn't keep the rain from coming into my trail runners through the mesh top of the toe box. If I expect a lot of rain and not much drying time, I take two spare pair of socks instead of one, in addition to the Goose Feet down booties that I wear at night. I take a pair of plastic bags to keep my socks dry inside the wet shoes around camp (where the morning dew on the grass gets them just as soggy as rain). I don't bother with the plastic bags while hiking, though.

The difference: my feet are being exercised hard, so even when wet they stay warm while I'm hiking. My hands aren't working so hard (just holding the trekking poles, with the weight on the wrist straps, not my hands), so they need a covering.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 14:43:07 MDT Print View

Hands: I just bought a pair of Extremities Tuff Bags mitts. These things will get a lot of use in cold, wet weather next fall. Made from GoreTex Paclite, fully seam taped (so no seam sealing necessary), reinforced palm for durability, and still pretty light. Waterproof and windproof. I believe these will be replacing my eVent mitts for good.

For colder, not so wet weather, I also bought a pair of Extremities Velo gloves. For a couple of years I've really liked my Manzella silkweight Windstopper gloves with some type of light merino liner, but the Manzella gloves wear out quickly in the 'thumb crotch' area when using trekking poles (as pointed out in a BPL review). The Velo gloves are the same design/outer Windstopper fabric, only with a light lining (so no merino liner necessary) and with a reinforced 'thumb crotch' area. I believe these will be much more durable and can't wait to try them out next fall!

Feet: If it's not cold, I don't worry about it, I just get wet feet and carry extra socks. If it's cold, I'll either wear GoreTex socks, or a plastic bag, over my regular socks. I also wear MLD eVent gaiters.

Chris Gray
(ChrisFol) - F

Locale: Denver, Coloado
Re: Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 15:24:27 MDT Print View

How "cold" is a bit cold?


For winter in Colorado I picked up a pair of OR Meteor Mitts (10oz with liner).

I just love how versatile they are; not only do they have removable liners so that you can switch to a lighter pair for warmer temps but you can also just leave the liners at home and just use the outers for rain and wind protection. The "mitt" also folds backwards exposing just the liner for when you need to perform more delicate tasks.

In sub-zero temps then I take the entire glove and an additional thin liner, so that I can rotate when necessary and there is always something dry to wear.

A lot of my friends use the BD Mercury Mitt with the same results.

Both of these gloves are going to be overkill if you do not anticipate such conditions and you could probably just get by with using your standard gloves with a basic over-mitt of some kind. However if you are thinking about the MLD rain mitt then that will set you back $45+shipping. For the extra $10 I would rather go with something more useful for year round use-- however I do live in Colorado and I do climb above tree-line in the winter, so this was important to me when looking for products, but it may not even apply to you and your needs.


- Gaiters and extra socks are about your best bet to keep your feet dry and warm if you are going the non-gortex route. Down boots are also great to have as this allows you to easily dry out your socks/boots overnight and still have something on your feet to keep them warm.

I generally wear one REI liner sock with a smart wool sock over that, then my shoe and the gaiters.

In winter and most of spring when I am climbing (think ice axe, ice tool, crampons, snowshoes etc) then gortex boots just offer me piece of mind and are much better than simple trail runners for this application. In the summer out come the trail-runners and strap-on crampons.

FWIW, I was just up climbing Blanca, Ellingwood and Little Bear in zero degree conditions and the above kept my hands and feet warm both in camp at 10,800 feet were the wind-chill was probably negative 5 to negative 8 degrees and during the day while climbing the temps hovered around +5 degrees.

Edited by ChrisFol on 04/16/2011 15:27:14 MDT.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Hands, feet - how do you deal with the rain? on 04/16/2011 15:32:30 MDT Print View

+1 on Jerry's recommendations.