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Changed My Mind - Rainpants For Next Camino

Discussion in 'The Weather' started by BROWNCOUNTYBOB, Dec 6, 2018 at 1:50 PM.

  1. BROWNCOUNTYBOB

    BROWNCOUNTYBOB Well-Known Member

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    My wife and I have successfully walked Camino Frances twice. During our first camino, it rained once per week until we reached Galicia, then it rained every day. Some days the rain was light and intermitant, and other days it was a downpour for several hours. During our second camino, the first day was clear, then it rained off and on during the next three days. After that, we had over 30 days of clear skies and sunshine. For both caminos, if it was raining, my wife and I wore hiking shorts, put on our Goretex jackets and backpack rain covers. For our second camino we brought along gaiters, which helped keep the rain from rolling into our socks and shoes. We did not carry rain pants. During off and on rains, we saw others struggling to put their pants on, take them off, put them on again. And we didn't want the extra weight.

    With the weather being so nice during camino 2, I believe our destiny is to experience lots of rain during our third camino next Sept-Oct, 2019. I saw a bargain price on Marmot pre-cip rain pants, which have side pockets, a drawstring around the waist, and zippers by the ankles to easily put the pants on while wearing boots. And the weight of the pants is only 6 oz. My wife does not like walking in the rain and cold, so I decided to purchase a set for her and me. Well worth the cost and weight if we only use a few times.

    Bob
     
  2. Wily

    Wily Francés 2016; Portugués 2017; Inglés/Fisterra 2018

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    Hey Bob - My experiences have been almost identical to yours: a couple dry Caminos, but one very wet Camino Inglés. I carried rain pants on the CF and only needed to wear them in Galicia. Unfortunately, as they didn’t breath well, I was wetter on the inside from perspiration than on the outside from the rain. No rainpants on the Inglés since the year before, during the very same week on the CP, we had nothing but sunshine and blue skies. Consequently, we suffered through eight days of rain without the proper pants. However, our rain jackets, ponchos, and gaiters got a good workout. One of the first things I did after returning home was to pick up a new pair of rain pants for my next Camino.

    To add another option to those Bob found, I got a pair of Dry-vent Venture 2 pants (average wt. 8 ounces depending on size) made by The North Face. These pants are very lightweight, comfortable, and breathable. I’ve worn them several times on wet spring hikes and have stayed completely dry. I’ve also switched from a low to high gaiter to help deal with muddier conditions. Since neither weigh much nor take up much space, They’re worth bring along. If you do run into a lot of rain, staying dry will make hours of hiking much more pleasant. Buen Camino!
     
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  3. RJS

    RJS Well-Known Member

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    I never took rain pants for any of the Camino’s I walked and used the system similar to that you described of a single skin Gortex Jacket, Shorts, gaiters and Lightweight Gortex boots – The rain then ran off the bottom of my jacket, down my bare legs and over my gaiters which kept my socks and therefore the insides of my boots dry, At least for many hours.

    Over the years I walked Caminos in all sorts of weather including a lot of rain and I always found the system as above worked well for me.

    Over the years I also tried various styles and makes of waterproof trousers and they all had the same failing, and that was when the weather is warm and wet, you sweat and end up getting wetter than if you had worn shorts – There are other drawbacks including the extra weight, knowing when to put on and take off the trousers when the weather is showery and also the sheer difficulty and inconvenience of doing this.

    You no doubt saw many other pilgrims wearing waterproof capes – These have the advantage of keeping both you and your rucksack dry and although I have never used one myself, I think I would favour a cape over the waterproof trousers ;-)

    Good Luck and Happy Dry Camino Walking

    Rob
     
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  4. Wily

    Wily Francés 2016; Portugués 2017; Inglés/Fisterra 2018

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    From La Voz de Galicia last March, here’s a great photo of weather conditions pilgrims found themselves walking in during Semana Santa.

    8142125C-6FB4-4E6D-ADA1-AA6CEFA4093E.jpeg

    Rain pants, jackets, and ponchos all needed to help fend off strong wind and a driving rain. But, spirtits didn’t seem at all “dampened.” At every stop for coffee or wine, everyone celebrated the simple joy of being on Camino!
     
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  5. anniem

    anniem Active Member

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    Don't like rain pants or overpants as they are called in NZ. Too much trouble getting them on and off even with the zips, find them uncomfortable to walk in and don't want the extra weight. After two Caminos and and a few other long distance walks my preference is for a lightweight rain jacket and a poncho. Gaiters if you want to keep rain out of your boots. For me , the poncho goes right over the pack and dispenses with the need for a pack cover which is inclined to come off. Even with the best jacket they still let the damp in where the pack straps rub but with the poncho over the jacket you have a good chance of keeping dry. An elastic strap for around the waist of the poncho prevents the "Mary Poppins" problem in the wind. Each to their own I guess.
     
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  6. BROWNCOUNTYBOB

    BROWNCOUNTYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Thanks to all for your perspectives on this topic. Three factors which caused me to keep an open mind for our next camino. My wife and I will be staying in private rooms every single night, so we'll leave our sleeping bags behind, which more than covers the additional weight of rain pants. Secondly, having walked two caminos with my backpack every single step, I have decided that for our third camino, I will ship my backpack ahead for those days with challenging uphill climbs, so again, weight is less of a concern. Finally, and most importantly, my wife's tolerance for cold, windy or wet days is limited. Having rain pants available for those days with downpours will keep her happy, and therefore me too ! Bob
     
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  7. Wily

    Wily Francés 2016; Portugués 2017; Inglés/Fisterra 2018

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    Hey Bob - You sum up very nicely why this works for you. Like anyone else who has walked a Camino, the experience gives each of us a perspective on what best works. Your insights once again reinforces the idea of how we do indeed each walk our own Camino which may mean that some walk with while others walk without rain pants (to put it simplistically). It’s why The Way is so uniquely special for each of us.

    Speaking of perspectives, I’m in the middle of reading Kate Harris’ Lands of Lost Borders: A Journey on the Silk Road. Kate is a bicigrina of sorts who recounts her cycling journey across the Tibetan Plateau. Although her location and trek are far from the better known pilgrimage routes in Spain, she nonetheless exemplifies the same pilgrim spirit we are familiar with and the reasons why one searches to better understand both oneself and others. It’s a good read for anyone looking to pass the cold winter months ahead and vicariously wander. Buen Camino!
     
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  8. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    If I can get back to the Camino, what you outline is exactly what I plan to do.
     
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  9. hindsfeet

    hindsfeet Collect moments, not things Donating Member

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    UncleHammy.....always say WHEN, not IF! :D
     
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  10. anniem

    anniem Active Member

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    Sounds like a plan Bob! Buen camino
     
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  11. UnkleHammy

    UnkleHammy Well-Known Member

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    I want the "when" but I have to acknowledge reality and it's "if". However I can still have a positive attitude and be semi-active here.
     
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