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4 Important Pieces Of Gear For Wet Weather Trail Running

When embarking on a lengthy run of around 10 miles or more, the topic of fueling becomes crucial. Some runners may opt for gels and electrolytes, but personally, I find them too overwhelming. I prefer to sustain myself with ‘real’ food. When it comes to wet weather trail running, it’s essential to consider how you’ll protect your snacks from moisture. Items like nuts, dried fruits, and jelly babies can be stored in small Ziploc bags and then carried in the pocket of your waterproof jacket or in a compartment of your hydration vest. Avoid snacks that come in paper or cardboard packaging, as they are likely to become damp by the time you intend to consume them.

1. Smartphone

One of the perks of trail running is the opportunity to disconnect from your phone for a while, which is often much-needed. However, personally, I feel more secure as a lone female runner knowing I have my phone with me. Besides safety, I use my phone for tracking my runs, navigation, time checks, and occasional selfies during breaks.

As it’s likely that we’ll have our phones when we run, it’s important to consider how to prevent them from getting wet. While most smartphones nowadays are somewhat water-resistant, they still require protection, particularly during prolonged exposure to rain. Pockets are convenient, but if caught in heavy rain, they may not suffice. Investing in a waterproof pouch or dry bag will provide optimal protection for your phone against the elements.

2. Neck Gaiter

One of the most affordable additions to your wet weather running kit is a neck gaiter, also known as a buff or snood. This tubular piece of fabric worn around the neck proves invaluable when running in the rain, as wind and cold often accompany rainfall. A neck gaiter prevents cold drafts and rain from seeping down your neck, offering an additional protective layer in wet conditions. Additionally, buffs are handy for clearing rain off your face and shield your eyes, plus they serve as a practical tissue substitute in such weather!

3. Wet Weather Running Apparel

At the beginning of your run, you may feel chilly, but as you warm up, shedding layers may become necessary. However, in rainy conditions, removing too many layers risks getting thoroughly soaked. While waterproof jackets are essential, what about the other clothing items for wet weather trail running?

Opt for lightweight running gear made of nylon or polyester, with moisture-wicking properties to draw sweat away from your body. This prevents excessive chilling and maintains a lighter feel to your clothing as the fabric doesn’t retain unnecessary moisture.

Layering is key for wet weather running. Start with a water-resistant outer layer, followed by a moisture-wicking long-sleeved top and a supportive sports bra. Wearing snug attire helps prevent chafing and enhances temperature regulation. Lastly, select quick-drying fabrics to ensure rapid drying once the rain subsides.

4. Illumination/Reflective Gear

With the time change, visibility is less of an issue, but rainy days tend to be darker. Ensuring your visibility is critical for wet weather trail running. Wear brightly colored clothing with reflective elements, especially for early morning or evening runs when natural light is low. Consider using a light for added visibility, particularly if part of your route includes roads. I personally prefer a chest light over a headlamp for more consistent lighting and comfort. Although removing it can be bothersome when needing to shed layers due to overheating. If you run with a dog, also ensure they are well illuminated. My black Cockapoo sports a blue light-up collar on darker runs, which I affectionately refer to as his disco collar!


Convinced that running in the rain can be enjoyable? Remember the famous saying, “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing”. Wet weather trail running adds an adventurous twist to your runs, presenting different challenges. Embrace the dirt, mud, wetness, slipperiness, and occasional cold. Properly outfit yourself with the necessary wet weather gear, and nothing should deter you from conquering those rugged trails!


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