A Great Paintball Outing . . . In the Rain?
When I ask you about Seattle, what is the first thing you think of? The Space Needle . . . ? Or the weather? If you want to play paintball in Washington state you are going to have to be ready to face a little weather and with our experience running paintball scenarios, paintball tournaments, open play games & private groups we have a few tips that will turn your wet day paintball outing from a bust to a bang.
Dress Appropriately – Staying Dry and Warm
When playing paintballs in the outdoors I always recommend layers regardless of the season. By wearing layers you can add or remove clothing as you get warm or cold.
The first layer I like to start with is usually a polyester layer. Polyesters don’t retain moisture like other natural fabrics, so it will help keep you dry in wet weather paintball. I will usually wear some type of polyester boxer briefs along with a polyester top.
The next layer I normally wear would be basketball type shorts and if it is cold enough a long sleeve shirt. Even if you don’t end up wearing the long sleeve to the field, I do recommend bringing it so you have it to swap into if your exterior layers get too warm, or you want an extra layer throughout the day.
Again, I try to use moisture-wicking materials as they are good for all seasons.
Over the shorts, I will wear a final exterior layer, my paintball pants. For those without paintball pants we have found that snowboarding pants work great, but be aware they may get dirty! Really any durable, moisture-resistant exterior layer is a good choice.
For my upper body exterior layer, I will bring a hooded sweatshirt and if it is raining I have a heavy-duty raincoat. The coat I have just happened to be camo, but any color will do.
In order to keep your feet dry and warm, I would suggest that you use wool socks with boots. I have a pair of old work boots that are pretty close to waterproof, so those are ideal. If you don’t have work boots bring a high traction shoe like cleats or hiking boots. Keep in mind your feet might get wet if you don’t do something to keep them dry!
For headwear, I recommend a simple beanie. Nothing too thick as you want it to be able to breathe or you will have a higher chance of experiencing The Fog of War . . .
The Fog of War – How to Fight the Fog
It has happened to nearly everyone that has played paintball . . . The Fog of War . . . Imagine those really wet days where your windshield has to defrost. It is always a pain. Well, your paintball goggles can do that too.
So what can you do to prevent that? Be Proactive. Once fogging starts it is very hard to get rid of. I actually have two masks so that if one gets bad I can start over!
Paintballs & Water (& the cold) – why your paintballs must stay dry & warm
Let’s be clear here, paintballs are a food product. They are a gelatin capsule that gets harder (more brittle / breaks easier) when they get cold and they get softer (less brittle / more likely to bounce off) when they get hot. . . but what does water do?
Well, water will cause the ball to soften up. This softening can make the ball go out of round making your gun jam up, not firing correctly, and even if they do shoot they will usually fly all over the place and bounce if you even hit someone.
For more information on the effects of different temperatures on paintballs check out this article.
Helping your paint fly straight
Keep your paint barrel dry! Think about it this way, the ball is flying down your barrel and on one side of the barrel, there is a drop of water. Do you think that drop of water is going to create a little drag, causing the ball to spin? The correct answer is YES. So, what a lot of people will do is to take a little electrical tape and wrap the porting on their barrel. This prevents water from getting into the barrel.
If you do get water into your barrel you will want to squeegee it out! If you are renting just ask a referee and they can help you. You can also shoot a few paintballs and sometimes that will help, but most of the time it requires you squeegee the barrel.
Using these tips effectively will help you
- Stay dry and warm
- See your target
- Hit your target
So get your stuff ready and get to the field. If you discover anything else that helps you enjoy your rainy paintball experience shoot me a line at [email protected] so we can add it to this resource.
GM – DoodleBug Sportz