Rain gear for Costa Rica - need your experience

Jul 5th, 2008, 09:41 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8
Rain gear for Costa Rica - need your experience

Hi! We will be leaving for Costa Rica in 2 weeks (hurray!) I love Photography so usually have a camera in my hand (already have camera rain gear). I only have 2 hands so an umbrella is not convenient. Does anyone have any advise on what kind of rain gear to bring? I already have cheap, light rain ponchos, will they be too hot? What about a hat? Can I wait to buy hats there or should I purchase hats before we leave, what kind is best? (I have a bit of an REI addiction right now - shopping is not a problem) Any advise would be much appreciated. Thanks!
disneydan is offline  
Jul 6th, 2008, 04:26 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 325
Frogg Toggs

Far less heat retention than plastic.
Kinkazote is offline  
Jul 6th, 2008, 04:35 AM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 12,269
Going on a photo safari again next
week.Rain sometimes torrential in
some areas possible/probable so for me GoreTex light jacket with hood.I am partial to North Face


Good discussion of best rain gear.

Cheap poncho also

Umbrellas are a joke in aguaceros.

Also consider 2 pair waterproof
hiking shoes and change out...

Have Fun,
qwovadis is offline  
Jul 6th, 2008, 12:46 PM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 17
Cheap plastic ponchos worked well for me.
drummindave is offline  
Jul 6th, 2008, 06:52 PM
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 6
We just got back from the CR and would definitely encourage getting something with a hood. Mine was a light weight plastic, not too hot with a hood, which worked much better than my sisters poncho. Mine was a little oversized so it covered and tightened around my thighs. I actually have never seen it rain as hard as in the CR. Definitely try to do most things in the morning if you can.
Dmp is offline  
Jul 9th, 2008, 08:23 AM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,265
Hi disneydan,

Regarding the poncho situation, we took the cheap discardable plastic versions and they were okay, but they aren't the most breathable things, and we ended up feeling a bit overheated at times. Since the REI addiction is already in effect, it might be just as well to buy something with more utility. ;-)

You may already be familiar this camera tip if you've traveled quite a bit; throw a few dessicant packs in your camera bag to help prevent the humidity from potentially affecting your equipment.

Lots of people travel down there without taking any particular humidity precautions and have no issue, but I had read a few horror stories before my first CR trip (people's camera's actually ceasing to function...). I usually keep a few packs on hand just in case. I figure it can't hurt, and might help!

You'll have some incredible photo ops in CR, that's for sure!
cmerrell is offline  
Jul 9th, 2008, 01:29 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 83
Great idea on the dessicant. Where would you buy something like that?
hazelnut is offline  
Jul 9th, 2008, 03:01 PM
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Save your $$ for fun in CR, use the small dessicant packs that come in most every shoe box or such!
4explore is offline  
Jul 9th, 2008, 03:18 PM
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Posts: 99
For raingear, we take the thin, packable, breathable, windbreaker type. Work really well, not too hot, easy to take anywhere. We got all 4 of ours for $60-100 each. Have had them several years. Ours are just roomie enough to keep our small fanny hike packs under them. Ponchos are a little ackward for me.

These have hoods, very handy, but we also have the total tourist looking hats that have a full brim with adjustable cord, are quick dry and are made by Columbia.
They are good in the sun (UPF30)if you need extra coverage. I like the full brim, it keeps water out of your eyes much better and sun off the neck. My 16 yr old son thinks he's pretty cool yet I have many pics of him in his "CR Hat" at various beaches and surfing even. Even my 18 yr old daughter uses hers hiking and at the beach.
They are just very versatile if you swallow your pride a little! HA!
We were going to see CR no matter the weather!

Hope you don't need raingear!
4explore is offline  
Jul 10th, 2008, 12:35 PM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,265
Hi hazelnut,

As 4explore mentions, you can scavenge the dessicant packs from shoe boxes (some vitamin and herb bottles also have them...). If you can't find any in your house, some camera shops carry them. I'm assuming you could also track them down online if need-be.

I have a full brim, corded hat too, 4explore! A bit goofy perhaps, but they do serve a useful purpose. I figure mine just completes the no-makeup, frizzy-hair, just-back-from-the-jungle look I typically sport in CR!
cmerrell is offline  
Jul 11th, 2008, 07:45 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 8
Thanks everyone! We went to REI and got our leightweight, breathable rain jackets and I guess I will have to break down and buy the Columbia hats (they are NOT flattering! I laugh every time I try one on!) We leave a week from tomorrow - I am so excited!
disneydan is offline  
Jul 12th, 2008, 05:21 AM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 99
HA cmerrell! The CR travel look is special!
So true the hats are not flattering, but as I said, you get totally hooked on the usefulness and suck it up!

Happy travels disneydan, you'll be looking good!
4explore is offline  
Jul 12th, 2008, 06:49 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 378
my wife and I both bought these. They roll up into their own pocket.

nonstop is offline  
Jul 13th, 2008, 03:06 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 7
My husband and I have black ones made by Outdoor Research with and OR on the front. We call them our aussie pirate hats and say ORRR Matey a lot while wearing them. Our young adult children think we are nuts.
NulGravitas is offline  
Jul 13th, 2008, 03:26 PM
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 1,265
Lol, NulGravitas! The pirate-speak sounds like something I would do too!
cmerrell is offline  
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