Why should you look for a rain jacket that folds into a pouch? Well, it has many benefits as you will see here.
Travel and outdoor jackets used to be big, bulky and heavy. Even if you are curvaceous (for women) or you have those incredible six-pack abs… they would be hidden under the bulk of the jacket.
But not anymore! not with something as good looking as the White Sierra Men’s Rain Jacket. This and others like it is designed to keep water out, for traveling as well as for outdoor recreational adventures.
If you are an outdoor person or a constant traveler, you must have a few jackets in your closet. It is practically impossible not to encounter rain while you are out there hiking on those lovely trails in Sedona.
When taking a family camping vacation in one of the campgrounds in Florida, you need to carry a rain jacket. The weather turns without much notice.
It is better to bring a travel rain jacket and not get to use it, than not bring one and the need to use it arises.
Inside your travel backpack, you want to pack a few items. They include:
- An electric travel toothbrush
- A coffee mug to keep coffee hot
- Diaper bag if you have a baby
- Travel pillow for long flights
- Travel camera
- Flashlight for camping
- Portable charger and your devices
You should not forget to pack a packable rain jacket. Just stash it in your backpack each time you are heading outdoors.
These travel rain jackets are made with the needs of the constant traveler in mind. They are light in weight.
These jackets also come with ample pockets for the storage of your personal items. To save the space in your hiking backpack, they can fold nicely into a compact pouch.
You need all the space that you can save in your travel backpack.
How to buy the best rain jacket that folds into a pouch
Finding the perfect travel rain jacket is not as simple as ordering the first one that you come across online. There are many factors to consider.
Of course, there are many travel rain jackets on amazon.com. They are sold at different prices. They come in all sizes, shapes and styles. Looking at the array can be a bit confusing.
Thus, you need to be aware of the factors to consider when buying one. Otherwise, you could end up spending money on a jacket that you will detest wearing.
The Jacket Fabric
The fabric used to make the rain jacket is a very important factor to consider when buying your jacket.
Rain jackets are made from all manner of fabrics. When buying your rain jacket pay closer attention to the manufacturer’s description of the jacket fabric.
Some rain jackets will be labeled waterproof, water repellent or water resistant.
A waterproof rain jacket is made from a waterproof fabric and it does not allow water to penetrate inside.
A water repellent jacket fabric is simply treated so as to reduce the amount of water that it absorbs. This means that it will eventually let in some water especially in case of a prolonged downpour.
Water resistant jacket fabric on the other hand is able to hold up to some water, but the water will eventually find its way inside the jacket.
Travel rain jackets are made of crease-resistant material. Thus, even when it has been packed into its pouch for many days, when you pull it out, it will be alright to wear.
The best packable rain jacket should have fully sealed or taped seams for it to be waterproof.
Some waterproof jackets will have all taped seams while others have sealed seams in all the key parts. However, do not assume that a rain jacket is completely waterproof just because it is seam taped on the shoulders and on the hood.
Some water-resistant jackets also have taped seams on such areas. A rain jacket with more taped seams is better because it tends to be more comfortable and has a better fit.
Breathable rain jacket
One of the features of a best lightweight rain jacket for travel is the waterproofing ability. However, this can also be a big downside, because the fact that water cannot go in also means that sweat cannot escape either. This means that the jacket can become very uncomfortable, given that most of the outdoor activities are strenuous.
Just thing of insulating a tent for winter camping. If the tent is not breathable, then it means all of your sweat and condensation stays with you.
It is vital to keep moisture out of the jacket. It is also very important to allow air to circulate. Only a breathable rain jacket can be able to do that.
To ensure you remain dry and comfortable, choose a rain jacket that is breathable or has moisture management mechanisms. Moisture management and breathability can be achieved through venting or though the fabric construction.
The two mechanisms can also be blended together, since even a very breathable rain jacket can be overwhelmed easily when you perspire too much, especially when hiking a challenging trail.
To achieve proper venting, most of the rain jackets have pit zips or underarm vents. Some even have some mesh liners in the torso pockets to boost ventilation.
These vents allow the moisture to escape and fresh air to get in, preventing the jacket from overheating.
They open and close, allowing you to manage your body temperature accordingly. Most of the mesh panels do not keep water out.
If you want a breathable rain jacket with more sophisticated vents, be ready to part with more cash. You will love it though. The cost does not matter. What matters is the value you will be getting out of the item.
A comfortable fit is crucial for any kind of clothing and a rain jacket is no different. The fit can also be influenced by the type of the outdoor activity you will be engaging in.
If you are going to run, a more fitting jacket would be more appropriate to avoid too much flapping.
When determining the right fit in a rain jacket, look out for various things. One, do not go for one that is overly long. It will restrict your movement while moving around. Second, it should not be too short as to expose your back while moving.
You should also be able to fasten the cuffs at the wrist and the waist drawcord should be at its proper position.
Again, the jacket fit should be large enough to fit other layers that you wear to keep warm. Finally, the zip should be able to go all the way up to your chin.
A packable rain jacket with a fleece-lined collar is also a great choice. The fleece adds onto the comfort and it can also help wick off the moisture.
The basic line is… just because you are wearing a packable rain jacket, you do not have to look haggard in any way.
You can look beautiful in an outdoor jacket. Just choose your jacket and other traveling or outdoor apparel carefully.
A jacket hood is one of the most important elements of a good packable rain jacket. The jacket hood helps protect your head and face against the rain.
A good hood that fits perfectly can make even the heaviest of downpour only feel like a drizzle. Besides, you do not want to damage your hair by exposing it to the elements.
Some hoods have a wire peak that helps customize your fit and its level of protection. Others are large enough to fit over a helmet, which is ideal for bikers and mountaineers. There are also rain jackets that have detachable hoods that can be packed inside the collar.
Although most of the hoods have an adjustable size and fit, always ensure that you wear the jacket hood appropriately.
You should always fasten it firmly yet comfortably around your head without restricting your vision. The fit should also not limit your head movements in any way.
A travel rain jacket is usually light in weight and having a hood does not add much weight either. Thus, always buy a jacket that has a hood than one without.
Zippers are a very important aspect of a rain jacket. They should not be taken for granted.
Having a rain jacket with dysfunctional zippers is the last thing that you would want if you get caught in nasty weather.
When buying your rain jacket, test and confirm whether the jacket zippers are running smoothly without any hitches.
Do make sure that the zippers have been fitted with storm flaps or rubberized coating to make them waterproof. If not treated well, zippers can let in a lot of water or cold when you are on an outdoor camping adventure.
Apart from keeping water out, zippers also provide ventilation when the activity starts to get intense.
Higher-end rain jackets have pit zips that help in regulating your body temperature by facilitating aeration.
If you are more prone to sweating consider buying a rain jacket with pit zips. This way, you ca unzip them when you feel too hot.
When wearing your travel rain jacket, you want to keep your small personal items such as keys, cellphone and candy within reach.
The jacket pockets are a great addition in any rain jacket. They increase the storage space for the items that you need for your activity.
Different rain jackets come with different number of pockets. The intended use of your jacket determines the number of pockets that you require in the travel rain jacket.
When purchasing your rain jacket, check whether the pocket zippers are waterproof. This ensures that your items stay dry.
If you plan of wearing your rain jacket over a small or mom’s traveling backpack, consider one with hand pockets just above the waist belt. Such pockets allow you to access your pack without having to remove the jacket.
If you love listening to music while traveling or engaging in some outdoor fun, consider getting a rain jacket that has a cord port.
This feature allows you to listen to your music player as you walk or ride a bus. Other jackets are designed with pockets along the seams or under the storm flaps, making them harder to be noticed by pickpockets.
Rain jacket inside pockets are safe and protected from the elements. Such can be used for money and cellphone.
Jacket draw cords
Draw cords comes in very handy when you want to customize your fit. The jacket draw cords make sure that you enjoy a perfect personalized fit.
Mostly, the draw cords in a rain jacket are found at the back of the hood, around the wrists and on the waist.
Apart from enhancing the fit, these adjustment features can also help keep you dry. They help seal the areas around your hands and head by creating a tight closure that keeps water from sneaking in.
In addition, the draw cords can be used to enhance the ventilation when the jacket is overheated. By loosening them, moisture can escape from your body while fresh air can find its way inside the jacket.
Packable rain jacket
Non-bulky rain jackets are very easy to pack and convenient to travel with. The best thing about rain jackets that fold into a pouch is that they have a pocket that doubles up as their storage.
This means that it has its own stuff pouch, it is packable.
Such packable rain jackets are also the best lightweight rain jackets for travel. When traveling, you want to save as much space of your travel backpack as possible.
You want to fit all the items that you have to take with you. If it is not possible to put the packable jacket in your backpack, you can carry in your hands.
In any case, your packable rain jacket will occupy a very small space in your pack. It compresses into a small and compact size.
The intended use of the jacket
Before settling on just any rain jacket, consider your intended use. This will help you to avoid ending up with one that cannot meet your needs.
Designers make most of the rain jackets with a specific outdoor activity in mind. Some are for running. Such are more breathable.
Others are for skiing or mountaineering. Such have more waterproofing abilities.
With a clear intended use of the jacket, you can get a travel rain jacket for just about everything. The good news is that these jackets come in a wide range. It is quite easy to find one that suits your needs.
However, note that the rain jackets that fold into pouches come in a light fabric. This makes them good as travel rain jackets. For outdoor activities like mountaineering, you may need something heavier.
This is not compulsory, but it is important. When buying your rain jacket consider choosing one that will enhance your visibility.
The best rain jacket should come with reflective piping and tape for optimum visibility. It should also come in highly visible colors or highly reflective materials.
After reading this post, finding the best rain jacket that folds into a pouch need not be daunting for you. Do not fear enjoying your favorite outdoor activity or traveling to your destination of choice. When you do not want to wear the jacket, just “pack it into itself” and carry it easily. The fabric used does not get creases or wrinkles even when stashed into a pouch. Thus, you can pull it out, wear it and it will straighten itself up fast.