8 Greatest Rain Pants for Mountaineering & Backpacking in 2021

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This can be a gear assessment about all the most effective Rain Pants for Mountaineering in 2021.

I’m an enormous fan of carrying and utilizing rain pants when out on the path. Throughout the 1000’s of miles of climbing I’ve performed in my life they at all times discover a manner into my backpack.

The Greatest Rain Pants for Backpacking are light-weight, breathable and pack right down to a really small dimension. Light-weight Rain Pants not solely do preserve you dry when the heavens open, however defend you in opposition to the wind and stop your precious physique warmth to maintain you secure and heat irrespective of the place you might be.

However how are you aware for those who’re getting good high quality rain pants? With none prior data, you’ll solely know that you simply’ve purchased crap rain pants when it’s too late, and also you’re soaking and shivering within the backcountry! When mixed with an ultralight rain jacket you can be secure and dry within the backcountry.

Beneath I’ve reviewed 8 of the most effective rain pants for climbing available on the market proper now, they’re all out there in males’s and ladies’s sizes.

Greatest Ultralight Rain Pants for Backpacking 2021

Here’s a checklist of all the most effective light-weight rain pants for backpacking in 2021:

Marmot Precip Eco

Weight: 8.3oz / 235g

> 2 Good Hand Pockets and a Again Pocket
> Full Size Zips – Good for venting warmth
> Good saggy match with room for layers
> Doesn’t pack into itself

Made with 100% recycled materials, the Marmot Precip Eco are safe and sturdy, due to the twin slider zips on each legs secured by velcro straps on the waist and steel snaps on the ankles. For additional safety, they are often locked down for final rain safety or opened vast on sizzling days for some reduction from the warmth.

Marmot makes use of NanoPro waterproofing in lots of its clothes objects, and whereas it might not be as efficient as Gore-Tex, Pertex or eVent it nonetheless performs properly. The ‘Eco’ within the title after all refers to its environmentally pleasant development, so whenever you purchase these pants you’re serving to the planet!

The elastic waistband will stretch to suit properly, whereas the velcro at your hips secures the zipper and makes positive the pants match round your waist. The pants have an off-the-cuff saggy match, which provides you loads of room for layers.

The complete two-way zippers assist you to open the pants from hip to foot, making them much more breathable when you want to vent a few of the warmth construct up. The pants two zippered hand pockets and a zippered again pocket which can be simple to entry.

General, they’re barely heavier than a few of the different rain pants on this gear assessment however their environmentally pleasant heritage make them an incredible selection.

Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic

Weight: 10oz / 283g

> Comfy
> Quiet
> Inbuilt Belt (mens)
> Full Size Zip
> Compact – Packs into personal pocket
> A bit Heavy
> Common Pockets

Consolation is after all so vital with rain pants, and you may’t go improper with the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic. The comfortable, stretchy cloth shouldn’t be solely simple to maneuver in, but additionally quiet to maneuver round in.

These pants even have full size zippers for air flow which additionally makes them simple to placed on or take off.  The comfortable, stretchy cloth permits for relaxed, unrestricted motion.

Regardless of its compact design and good air flow, it’s a bit heavier and bulkier than ultralight pants. They do pack up fairly small into their very own pocket for storage however I might have favored to see higher pockets and solely the mens pants have a inbuilt belt.

General, I like these pants. The quiet stretch materials is nice and I believe we are going to begin to see many extra gear firms making light-weight rain pants from materials like this sooner or later.

Test Costs:

Outside Analysis Helium

Weight: 6.7oz / 190g

> Ultralight
> Packs into it’s personal again pocket
> Cheap Value
> Zippers usually are not lengthy sufficient – making it exhausting to get into and out of
Restricted air flow
Get them now as they’re getting exhausting to search out!

The low weight and packability of the Outside Analysis Helium rain pants make them ideally suited for actions like climbing and backpacking the place preserving bulk to a minimal is so vital.

I’ve been utilizing these ultralight rain pants for through climbing many lengthy trails during the last couple of years. They’ve served me properly and I really like their gentle weight and compact dimension.

The skinny materials of the Outside Analysis Helium pants doesn’t make it any much less powerful however I might not prefer to take these pants bushwacking by way of areas with sharp sticks and branches.

The small zippers make the pants ultralight however make them more durable to placed on with out eradicating your sneakers.

General, these are nice ultralight rain pants for through climbing.

Test Costs:

Montbell Versalite

Weight: 3.2oz / 91g

> Ultralight
> Small Pack Measurement
> No Facet Zips – Troublesome to placed on and take off with out eradicating your sneakers
No Pockets
Restricted Air flow

A great minimalist possibility, Montbell Versalite pants are extremely light-weight and pack down extremely small, making them excellent for through climbing and backpacking. 

Whereas the fabric isn’t as sturdy as some others, they’re nonetheless very breathable regardless of having no zippers for air flow.

The small zippers make the pants ultralight however make them more durable to placed on with out eradicating your sneakers.

General, these among the finest ultralight rain pants for through climbing however they lack the sturdiness for use off marked trails.

Zpacks Vertice

Weight: 2.5oz / 70g

> Ultralight
> Small pack dimension
> Massive leg match
> No Pockets
Not as sturdy as different pants on this checklist

When you’re searching for pants which can be as gentle as attainable then the Zpacks Vertice pants are an incredible possibility.

Not solely are they extremely gentle, however their extra-wide legs imply you’ve elevated airflow. They don’t have zippers so stepping into them is barely tougher than different rain pants however they make up for that with their extremely light-weight.

The skinny, light-weight materials sacrifices a little bit of sturdiness. The burden of the pants vary from 2.5oz to three.3oz relying on what dimension you might be.

General, If you wish to preserve your backpacking gear as light-weight as attainable, you’ll be able to’t go improper with Zpacks Vertice pants. These are among the finest ultralight rain pants for through climbing. In case you are through climbing then get a pair of those.

Marmot Bantamweight

Weight: 3.7oz / 104g

> Very comfy
> Ultralight
> Small Pack Measurement
> Quick zips make it exhausting to place the pants on and off
Not as sturdy as a few of the different pants on this assessment
> Getting troublesome to search out in most retailers

Compact, properly fitted and intensely light-weight, the Marmot Bantamweight are made with a skinny, stretchy materials that make them simple to maneuver in and pretty breathable.

The waistband specifically could be very comfy below a backpack hip belt. Nonetheless, being so light-weight means you do must be very cautious with them. Nonetheless, they’re nonetheless extremely comfy, gentle, and packable.

These ultralight rain pants pack down extremely small into their very own pocket however the skinny materials means they aren’t as sturdy as another rain pants on this assessment. The small zippers make the pants ultralight however make them more durable to placed on with out eradicating your sneakers.

Their skinny light-weight materials means these pants usually are not as sturdy as others. The zippers imply these pants are troublesome to placed on and take away with out taking off your sneakers within the course of.

General, I like these ultralight stretch rain pants however they’re getting more durable to search out, so get them fast earlier than they disappear.

Arc’teryx Zeta SL

Weight: 8.1oz / 230g

> Light-weight
> Sturdy
> Good match
> Good lengthy zips
> No Pockets
Can really feel somewhat stiff

The Arc’teryx Zeta SL Rain Pants provide an incredible stability of being light-weight and sturdy on the identical time, product of more durable and extra substantial supplies than related pants.

Their trim, natural-looking match means they’ll look nearly as good as they really feel. Not solely are these pants extremely light-weight however you’ll be able to pack them down small too. They’re sturdy, particularly across the bolstered cuffs and supply good air flow.

The lengthy zips make it simple to placed on and take off. They haven’t any pockets however all the pieces else about these rain pants is nice.

General, among the finest light-weight rain pants for backpacking. They’re good sturdy possibility.

Patagonia Torrentshell 3L

Weight: 11.8oz / 335g

> Sturdy
> Lengthy Zips make them simple to get on and off
> Good Pockets and packs into it’s personal pocket
> Heavy
Massive pack dimension

Reasonably priced, sturdy, and solidly made, the thicker cloth utilized in Patagonia Torrentshell 3L makes it extra protecting in opposition to brush and heavy rain than different ultralight pants.

Additionally they characteristic handy pockets the place you’ll be able to retailer your keys or pockets. These are notably fitted to front-country use. Their thick cloth protects in opposition to heavy rain.

If you would like light-weight rain pants for the backcountry the place the paths finish and the bushwacking begins then these are value contemplating. These provide good safety and are simple to tackle and off.

The pockets are good and work higher than most on this gear assessment. 

General, these are nice light-weight rain pants however they’re bulkier than another pants, and the fabric is a bit stiff.  Purchase these if you need strong rain pants which can be sturdy and waterproof.

Purchaser’s Information

Rain Pants Review

You will have observed there are a couple of options that make up a high-quality pair of rain pants. It’s vital to look out for these options when shopping for, as there’s nothing worse than a hike being ruined by subpar clothes and tools.

Beneath, we’ll check out some key options.

Air flow

You may by no means have an excessive amount of airflow, or not less than, the choice of getting extra airflow. Zippers alongside the edges of rain pants imply you’ll be able to let extra warmth out for those who get too heat. However they arrive at the price of weight and sturdiness. Zips are a weak level of all rain pants.

Nonetheless, some ultralight rain pants zippers (particularly these with a roomier match) breathe virtually as properly with pants that includes zips as a result of they’re usually product of thinner supplies. 


When carrying rain pants on a chilly, wet day, condensation could type on the within cloth. When folks see this, they might assume their rain pants are defective, however in truth your rain pants are doing their job.

When you really feel wetness forming inside your pants, don’t panic. So long as you’re carrying applicable wicking layers beneath it’ll seemingly evaporate with physique warmth, and so long as you retain transferring it is best to keep dry and cozy.

However to be as comfy as attainable when backpacking, be sure to take care of your rain gear, comparable to airing it out at evening. You must also keep away from bushwhacking, that could be a assured manner of ripping holes within the pants. 

Nonetheless, it should be famous that no climbing gear will ever be actually 100% waterproof. When you spend all day in torrential rain, then the gear will grow to be moist sooner or later.

It’s good to know this to keep away from disappointment in case your rain pants do get moist on a very moist, depressing day.

An important factor is that your rain pants preserve you dry for so long as attainable, however at all times remember that there’s a restrict to only how dry they’ll preserve you.


The variety of layers a pair of rain pants has will decide how waterproof and breathable they’re. It’s extra frequent to search out 2-layers and they’re normally probably the most reasonably priced.

They’re sometimes designed with a Sturdy Water Repellent-coated (DWR) outer shell and a breathable liner that’s normally made with mesh.

In the meantime, 2.5-layer pants are sometimes the lightest and made with the identical DWR outer shell. The within layer is product of a skinny polyurethane laminate or coating that’s designed to stop sweat and grime from clogging up the breathable pores of the pants from the within. 

3-layer pants are the simplest. They’ve all the pieces 2-layers and a pair of.5-layer pants have, comparable to a DWR-coated outer shell, a breathable and waterproof midlayer, after which a polyurethane lining of the innermost layer. However they’re additionally heavier.

Weight and Packability

Good packability and a lightweight carrying weight is so vital with regards to rain pants. Layering could be tough to get a cling of whenever you first begin climbing, and also you undoubtedly be taught from expertise.

After a whilst you’ll have it down pat, however chances are you’ll be not sure what to take with you at first, or when you want to add or take away a layer. Your rain gear is your outer layer, a protect defending you from the weather.

Rain gear will normally be in your pack loads of the time, solely busted out whenever you want it.

Due to this fact, your rain pants can’t be heavy or cumbersome, and should be simple to hold round whenever you’re not carrying them. They need to be simple to wrap up and tuck away into your pack.

Most rain pants match this invoice, and are packable and light-weight by default. Nonetheless, some will likely be higher and lighter than others. Light-weight, minimalist pants are sometimes all of the safety you want from gentle rain and wind.


Mountaineering gear has advanced to the purpose the place you now not must unsettle for plasticky supplies, pants that prohibit your actions, or uncomfortable waistbands that dig into you.

There are many nice rain pants which can be designed with motion, consolation, and hip-belt compatibility in thoughts. 


Whereas ultralight rain pants are nice whenever you wish to scale back the quantity of weight you’re carrying round, the materials do put on out faster. When you’re venturing out into extreme climate or powerful terrain, chances are you’ll wish to spend money on a thicker pair of professional quality rain pants.


Whereas I touched on zippers when speaking about air flow, let’s discuss their different perform: elimination of the pants.

Rain pants which have full-length zippers provide probably the most airflow, are the simplest to placed on and take off whereas preserving your sneakers. However zippers do add bulk and weight.

Ceaselessly Requested Questions

Best Rain Pants Review

When ought to I put my rain pants on?

As a result of rain pants retain physique warmth, you’ll most likely sweat and get them moist from the within for those who put them on too quickly. So long as you’re carrying artificial clothes, it’s alright for those who get somewhat moist earlier than you get into your rain pants.

When you preserve transferring you’ll heat up rapidly and the layers beneath will begin to attempt.

However whenever you’re climbing in dewy mornings when the vegetation is moist, it could be a good suggestion to place your rain pants on right away. The power to decorate for climbing comes with expertise.

Whereas taking off your sneakers to get into rain pants generally is a ache, there are sit pads you’ll be able to stand on to keep away from getting your toes moist. It additionally protects the bottom of your pants whenever you sit right down to take away your sneakers.

Professional Tip: Sporting climbing pants to mattress (provided that they’re clear and dry) provides an additional layer of insulation. They work significantly better than you assume. Strive it and also you is perhaps amazed how a lot hotter you can be.

Are there options to rain pants?

Sure, for those who don’t wish to put on rain pants, rain skirts and rain kilts have gotten in style for many who love ultralight backpacking. They’re simpler to tackle and off than rain pants, have nice airflow, and are sometimes lighter. Nonetheless, they don’t entice physique warmth in addition to rain pants, don’t block the wind as properly, or defend your decrease legs. They’ll additionally get caught on brush simply when climbing on overgrown trails. 

How ought to rain pants match?

Similar to every other pants, it is best to at all times assessment your dimension earlier than shopping for rain pants so that you’re getting the proper match.

When you need the waist to suit properly, the pants themselves needs to be a bit free to permit for air circulation. It’s additionally vital to remember you can be carrying climbing boots along with your rain pants.

These boots are normally cumbersome, so you want to be sure that your rain pants will match over them. 

Whereas they need to be a bit free, they should match comfortably over your regular gear. As elasticated waists are actually frequent on rain pants, they need to sit cosy however not too tightly in your waist.

One other one of many Greatest Mountaineering Gear Critiques from BikeHikeSafari.

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