Understanding Water Column and Waterproofness in Outdoor and Hunting Clothing

Choosing the right clothing for your outdoor activities, whether you're an experienced hunter or new to outdoor life, is crucial for your comfort and protection. Here's a simple guide to help you understand the concepts of "water column" and "membrane" and how they affect your clothing choices.

Step 1: Consider Your Needs

Before purchasing outdoor or hunting clothing, think about how you plan to use them. Do you need protection for an entire day outdoors or just for short periods?

Step 2: Water-Resistant or Waterproof Clothing?

There are two main types of clothing to choose from:

Water-Resistant Clothing:
These garments are your go-to choice when the rain is light. They withstand small showers and keep you dry while allowing your body to breathe freely. These clothes are soft, comfortable, and windproof, making them perfect for shorter outdoor stints. 💧🌦️

Waterproof Clothing:
These garments handle sustained rain for longer periods and are suitable for extended outdoor activities. They breathe well and release excess heat to avoid internal moisture from sweat. A waterproof Pinewood garment usually has taped seams to prevent water ingress, making them ideal for long outdoor activities in persistent rain. ☔️🌧️

Taped seams prevent water intrusion and enhance the waterproofness of clothing and gear, which is crucial in rainy conditions.

> 2.000 mm: Water-resistant but not waterproof.

2.000 - 5.000 mm: Withstands light to moderate rain for short periods.

5.000 - 10.000 mm: Withstands moderate rain for extended periods.

10.000 - 15.000 mm: Withstands prolonged rain for extended periods.

15.000 - 25.000 mm: Withstands heavy rain for extended periods.

Step 3: Water Column

The water column is a measure of how waterproof a material is and is measured in millimeters. It shows how high a water pressure the material can withstand before it becomes wet on the inside.

By understanding these concepts, you can better choose the right gear for your outdoor adventures, ensuring you stay comfortable and dry, no matter the conditions.

Step 4: Membrane for Comfort

Membranes are a crucial element in modern outdoor and hunting clothing. They act as a protective layer integrated into the garment as a plastic film on the backside of the outer fabric or freely hanging between the lining and the outer fabric, preventing water from penetrating while allowing excess heat and moisture to be vented out. This is how our shell garments and other membrane-equipped clothing can breathe and keep you dry and comfortable during various activities and weather conditions.

During intense physical activity, the body needs optimal ventilation. Since no membrane alone can provide the necessary breathability at higher activity levels, it’s wise to use the ventilation zippers available on many of our garments or to open the main zipper to release excess heat.

Smart, right?! Most membranes are incredibly thin and flexible. They allow moisture to pass through in one direction but not the other. This makes them not only waterproof but also comfortable to wear, which is especially important when you are active in rainy conditions. Membranes in outdoor clothing are designed to be durable and retain their function over time. They can withstand repeated washes and wear, continuing to keep you dry and comfortable.

Good to Know:

Sitting in wet conditions, kneeling, or carrying a heavy backpack in the rain increases the pressure on the membrane. This raises the risk of water penetration, regardless of the membrane brand.

Step 5: Care for Durability

The more you use your clothing, the more it wears and becomes less water-repellent. To extend their lifespan and maintain water repellency, regularly impregnate your clothes and follow the washing instructions on the garments. Check out our care products.

A membrane garment that is not re-impregnated will absorb rainwater and hinder ventilation, creating a warm and sweaty feeling. To avoid this, it is important to re-impregnate waterproof garments to ensure high comfort.

By understanding water columns and the different types of clothing, you can make an informed choice that helps you stay comfortable and protected during your outdoor adventures, whether hunting or exploring nature.

Good to Know:


When it comes to zippers, water intrusion is a common concern. Our carefully selected zippers are designed with water-repellent technology and are often complemented with a protective flap on the inside and/or outside of our products to minimize water ingress.

Tip: Always wash your garments with the zippers closed.

Capillary Action

Sometimes you might notice getting wet inside a bit up the sleeve or pants leg when it is very wet outside. This is completely normal and has nothing to do with the garment's functionality. It is the so-called capillary action, the phenomenon that can cause water to seep around the edge of your clothes in extremely wet conditions. Our materials and constructions are developed to minimize the impact of capillary action.

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