In continuing with our series on Ultralight gear for hiking and backpacking we are going to take a look at two products to keep the rain off you. There is a ton of rain gear on the market to choose from and they all use some form of technology to repel the rain. Between the number of choices and all the different technologies used, your head can start spinning wondering which one to go with. I’ll be upfront and let you guys know that ponchos are not an option for me. They are too baggy when wearing them and my pants from the knees down tend to get soaked from the rain running off the bottom of the poncho; just my honest opinion.

The two products we are going to take a look at are a lightweight rain shell/jacket from Black Diamond Equipment and an ultralight trekking umbrella from Gossamer Gear. Both products are ultralight, durable and keep you safe from the elements.

Black Diamond Alpine Start Hoody

Ultralight and incredibly versatile, the Alpine Start Hoody uses Schoeller stretch-woven softshell fabric to provide highly breathable, weather resistant protection for alpinists and other weight-conscious climbers. Gusseted construction allows complete freedom of movement, and the hood fits over your climbing helmet for added weather protection when the wind picks up in the afternoon. This highly packable jacket stows in its own chest pocket when not in use, and a carabiner loop lets you clip it to your harness and take it up a route.

  • Adjustable, climbing-helmet-compatible hood
  • Stows in internal chest pocket with carabiner clip loop
  • Underarm gussets for added range of motion
  • Lightweight stretch cuffs
  • Drawcord hem
  • Primary fabric is bluesign approved
  • Weight: 8.8 oz
  • Fit: Slim
  • Size: S-XL
  • MSRP $149.00

Gossamer Gear Trekking Umbrella

  • Umbrella Weight With Strap: 8 oz
  • Extended size: 25.2 in (length) x 39.4 in (width)
  • Closed size: 25.5 in (length) x 1.75 in (width)
  • Frame: High-density fiberglass ribs, lightest fiberglass shaft with special coating, highly flexible.
  • New developed safety runner.
  • Handle: Lightweight and comfortable high-density EVA hardfoam with grooves ensures a dry feeling on the handle when wet.
  • Canopy: 100% Polyester fabric, as lightweight as a breeze, tear proof, with Teflon coating for high water repellence – soil-resisting.
  • UV protection factor 50+
  • MSRP $39.00