Enlightened Equipment Rain Wrap
This simple, kilt style, silnylon wrap is great for those who hate wearing rain pants because they need more ventilation. Light to carry and easy to put on, especially compared to rain pants, the wrap works best on open trails and paired with a jacket or short poncho.
- Small and light so very packable
- Easy to put on even while wearing a pack
- Very well made with with some nice features
- Great ventilation!!
- Bushwhacking can lead to wet legs
So often I find that getting raingear out and on before I'm soaked is a pipedream. Combined with the steamy interior I often opted to just get wet from the rain rather than bother unless it was really cold. I'd just hike faster to keep warm and dry out in camp. The EE Rain Wrap has changed that and given me something that works on family trips where fast hiking isn't an option and goes on fast.
Fit & Comfort:
The EE Rain Wrap is basically a rectangular, silnylon tarp that has snap closures and a gathered elastic waist. The shock corded belt lets you adjust the tension so you have enough room while keeping the kilt from falling down as you hike. Once on I pretty much forgot it was there while I was walking unless I looked down. The vertical slit opening allows the wrap to ride up and down the legs as you walk, which is especially nice when climbing.
The silnylon, while lightweight, is great in this application. Being vertical, water easily slides down the surface as you walk. Even after hours of heavy rain the upper thighs stay dry.
Function & Features:
EE took the simple idea of a wrap around skirt and kept going by adding some really nice features. The waist closure is actually two snaps which gives you extra security if you use both, but also allows you to use just one if you want to eliminate the overlap and create more airflow underneath. There also is an additional button located part of the way down the opening which can be used to keep it more closed which is nice when dealing with wind driven rain.
Not content with just making a well appointed rain skirt, EE added six tiny loops around the edge of the material which allow you to use the wrap as a tiny tarp. It can be staked down as a vestibule mat, strung up between two trees to protect a small cooking area or whatever other use you can come up with. Maybe a kayak sail?
Ease of Use:
Pull it out, wrap it around your hips, and snap it closed as needed. It can't be any easier than that!
Made of 15d silnylon with nicely stitched overturned edges. The snaps are backed by small tabs of heavier material on both sides to avoid stressing the silnylon. The Rain Wrap looks and feels well put together.
Full dimensions of the wrap vary by the waist size ordered. The small which is listed as fitting 18-24" waists measures 24"x44.5". The medium is listed as fitting 28"-38" waists measures 26"x54.5. The large is listed as fitting 38"-48" waists and measures 28"x64.5". Listed weight on the EE website is 1.5oz but the medium came in at 1.7oz/ 49g on my scale.
Used with OR Crocs the legs are completely protected and dry with plenty of airflow.
I used the EE Rain Wrap extensively over the last four months on day hikes and multi day backpacking trips in New Hampshire and Maine. It has been a very rainy year, or maybe it just seems that way after last year being so dry. Either way there have been ample opportunities to take this thing for a walk in the rain.
This small item has really changed my feeling about rain gear. It packs so tiny I can carry it in my Aarn Sport Balance Pocket where it can be reached instantly when needed. Instead of getting wet getting my gear out it is on in a flash without taking my boots off.
On trail it keeps my upper legs dry without me knowing it is there. Rain pants tend to make my legs work harder to walk and almost always end up leaving me steaming inside. The Rain Wrap never felt like it was impeding my stride and even steep climbs were no problem.
The one area I found less than perfect was off trail use, though I don't consider that a fault in the product, just a reality. Brush and branches push the skirt around and can leave legs exposed enough to get wet. If you spend a lot of time in heavy underbrush this would probably not be a good solution for you.
I find that pairing the Rain Wrap with my OR Crocodiles works really well for me with the gaiters taking the water coming off the kilt past my boots nicely. Testing was also done in warmer weather wearing shorts and UL gaiters. This worked pretty well in light showers, but heavier rain tended to overwhelm the gaiters. The shoes would have probably soaked through soon anyway, but I noticed the extra water coming off the kilt was dripping inside first.
Over all I have been very happy with this purchase. Used within the product's expected limitations it performed admirably. Hiking for hours in heavy rain and having dry pants when I get to camp seems strange, but in a good way. I'm thinking I may have to upgrade my rain jacket because the legs are cool and dry while I'm still steaming up top.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $35
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Historic Range: $40.00
Reviewers Paid: $35.00