I don’t know about you, but I have a hard time getting excited about camping or hiking if the destination doesn’t involve some kind of water. Whether it is a lake, a river, or a waterfall, there is just something that draws me towards the non-dry part of nature.
Even if you are not a water-destination enthusiast like me, if you are outside you have a pretty good chance of getting wet at one point or another. Even if your destination did not originally include H2O, nature has a way of raining on our parade (pun intended). Whether you are on a canoe trip down a river, rucking in the rain, or crossing a river, water can be a hiker’s worst enemy.
Thankfully, there are a number of ways to stay dry even in the wettest environments. Here are five quick tips to help you beat the water!
- Plastic Bags: Garbage bags will slip right over a backpack, keeping the majority of the water out of your stuff. Inside the pack, ziploc bags are a great way to ensure the dryness of sensitive, important items like powders, batteries, cell phones, etc.
- Pack Covers: Garbage bags and ziplocs work great in a pinch; however, if you are serious about staying dry, then consider putting some money toward a pack cover made to fit your carry.
- Dry Bags/Boxes: Dry bags and boxes will keep your items dry, and a number of manufacturers even offer versions that are designed to float while keeping your water-sensitive items completely dry.
- Clothing: Now that your gear is safe, it’s time to turn your attention to yourself. Layer appropriately for the weather and your activity level, working your way out to a breathable, waterproof shell. You’ll also want to make sure your footwear is either waterproof, or has water ports to allow for quick drying while you walk. Bring extra clothing as well – at the very least, a change of socks and shirt. Wet socks will cause blisters, and a wet shirt is not only uncomfortable, but can chafe where your pack straps rub.
- Waterproofing: There are a ton of different spray treatments out there designed to keep the water off your pack, clothes, and gear. It is important to plan ahead and treat everything before your trip. Here’s a great list of waterproofing sprays you can try out.
Also, keep in mind that whether you use a garbage bag or a pack cover, you are going to have to take it off in order to get into your pack. This will obviously expose your pack and gear to the elements, but that is unavoidable sometimes. The trick is the minimize the number of times you have to actually access your pack. When you do have to access your pack, use your body to shield it from the rain or, if possible, access your pack under shelter (tree, rock outcropping, etc.).
Wetness is nearly unavoidable when you are in the great outdoors. But hopefully with these tips, you’ll be able to keep yourself and your gear dry!
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
An avid archer, political junkie, and aspiring musician, Brady makes his home on the edge of society, just close enough to get good WiFi, but far enough to not be bothered.