There are three things you can count on in this world: death, taxes, and the fact that nobody gets rained on like John Cusack.
As we head into stick season in the Northeast, rain season in the Northwest, and DUI season in the Rocky Mountains, you should be prepared with all the rain-friendly gear you can find for the nasty days of November ahead.
All these beauties come with the official Wicked Outdoorsy stamp of approval -- meaning that they've been personally tested and verified in raining-so-hard-I-wouldn't-even-know-if-I-wet-my-pants conditions.
* The Firetrail Winter, from Ahnu Footwear (LINK) ... A Vibram-soled four season trail runner from the Bay Area innovators, the Firetrail Winter is made with hydrophobic mesh, meaning that unless you're standing in a puddle, your toes will stay nice & toasty. Hydrophobic mesh is a huge step up (no pun intended) from waterproof bootie construction that essentially wraps your foot in a plastic bag. Ickie sweaty, if you know what I mean. ($120).
* The Wet/Dry Backpack, from Aquapac (LINK) ... First introduced in a limited-edition test run, the Wet/Dry Backpack comes with my highest personal recommendation. I dig the urban black exterior as well as the internal "dry" sleeve that's the perfect size for my MacBook. But what I really dig is how the thing carries close to your back. The ultimate commuter pack, in my opinion. ($85).
* The Superlight Insulated Jacket from Simms Fishing Products (LINK) ... Yes, I know, this is not a rain shell. It's a LAYERING PIECE. I love it because when I need some synthetic warmth underneath a shell, this is the way to go. It fits under anything, and the Simms designers say it best: "there's no bad weather, only bad gear." ($150).
* The Buffalo Check Shirt, from Woolrich (LINK) ... When I was ripping down chicken wire in the rain last weekend, this was the obvious choice. When I went into the thick and thorny northern forest for an October exploration, this was the obvious choice. And when I do anything where the physical terrain is just as nasty as the weather, this will continue to be the obvious choice. It's wool, it's durable, and it's warm. Damn warm. ($85).