By: Blonde Two
There are lots of ways to keep things dry when you are out walking (or watching lots of young people walk) in the rain. The good old rubble sack is a favourite of mine but things get a whole lot more sophisticated when you start thinking about waterproof trousers.
Different types of waterproof trousers
There are two main types of waterproof trousers: over trousers, which you pull on over your normal walking trousers and what I like to call ‘wearing waterproof trousers’, which you wear instead of your normal walking trousers. Both keep you dry but only one keeps you dressing and undressing all day.
How to choose the best pair of waterproof trousers for you
- Understand the difference between over trousers and next to the skin waterproof trousers
- Shop around to understand what’s available
- Talk to other people who do the same activities as you
- Chat with your local outdoor retailer
- Try a few pairs on (remember to sit and bend in them)
- Look for useful features like zipped bottoms and pockets
- Consider spending more on quality, don’t skimp on your waterproofs
The Rohan Dry Roamer waterproof trousers
I have had my doubts before about ‘wearing waterproof trousers’ not least because my invented name for them is a bit of a mouthful. As my new Dry Roamers from Rohan were the first pair of these I have tried I shall call them by their name. As it turns out, they do exactly what it says on the label; I was both dry and roaming in them for almost 48-hours.
Which type of waterproof trousers to choose
A huge fan of dry legs, I have grown to love my waterproof over trousers and was sad to find that they needed repair. When I was offered a pair of Dry Roamers by Rohan as a possible replacement, I had a few concerns. Luckily a very wet October DofE expedition is a really good way to find answers to such questions as:
Is it really possible to feel comfortable in waterproof trousers all day?
My answer to this question was a definite yes. With a slightly tight waistband (my fault not the trousers) I wondered if this was going to be the case but all of the Dry Roamer layers provided enough stretch for walking, minibus sitting, and kneeling on wet ground (all normal activities for Blondes).
Can what feels like a normal pair of trousers really keep you dry?
Another answer in the affirmative. The waterproof layer of the Dry Roamers is on the inside and, as far as I could tell, no water seeped through whatsoever. These trousers may be a tad on the costly side but I would spend a fair amount of money for dry knickers at the end of a wet day.
Is a pair of waterproof trousers warm enough for a day on the hills?
Although the stretchiness of the Dry Roamers would allow for an underlayer of thermal leggings, I opted not to try this and was surprisingly warm. It is relatively easy to keep warm whilst you are walking but much harder when you are hanging around waiting for teams and looking after them at camp. I think on a winter walk I would opt for thermals as well but, despite the thin feel of the fabric, the warmth was definitely there.
For how many days can I wear these waterproof trousers before they get stinky?
Not a question everyone would ask out loud but unless you can afford to buy a spare pair of waterproof trousers that are also your trousers, you need them to make it through at least a few days without becoming too pungent. Mine did two very long days, were perfectly bearable, and washed beautifully on a rinse cycle at 30 degrees (liquid detergent is recommended if you feel the need but I have to say I didn’t, my rinse dealt with both mud and any lingering camp aromas).
Walking trousers for wet days
To say I am pleased with my Dry Roamer waterproof trousers is an understatement. I don’t think I have given up on overtrousers altogether, particularly as I often end up descending hills on my bottom but the Dry Roamers are definitely going to be coming out with me on my next rainy day walk. My only problem now is deciding whether they live in my rucksack downstairs with my waterproofs or in my drawer upstairs with my walking trousers. Maybe they need a whole cupboard of their own
Get outside in the rain
Getting outside when it’s raining might require a bit of extra internal persuasion but we find it’s always worth the effort. Coming home dripping and smiling is far better than staying inside and missing out on fresh air and adventure. There are lots of outdoor activities you can enjoy in the rain (including outdoor swimming) but a decent pair of waterproof trousers is essential if you want your day to stay comfortable and safe.
Get ready for your next rain walk today
May 2021 – Since writing this review of the Dry Roamer waterproof trousers I’ve had the opportunity to try them in even more rainy-soaked situations (including several camps). They haven’t let me down so far (and I haven’t put any holes in them). I particularly like them for showery days because they let me concentrate on what I’m doing instead of what I’m wearing. If you’re tempted to buy a pair, I would say go for it!
Two Blondes Walking has an affiliate advertising relationship with Rohan.