Five tips for surviving Oregon's fall rains
Updated: Oct 19
Art by Maizy Goerlitz.
Fall season has arrived, and with it, the famous Oregon rain. First-year and transfer students with little rain experience may be wondering what the best ways to stay dry and safe are. Whether readers are part of Willamette’s large California population, or from somewhere else with a hot climate, Oregon weather is not to fear. Here are a couple of tips for weathering the storm.
1. Oregon rain isn’t constant.
Oregon rain doesn't function like one might expect rain to. Rather than exhibiting a constant downpour, Oregon rain might rain for two hours, stop, then rain again in another three hours and stop after one hour, etc. Essentially, Oregon rain exhibits on/off behavior. Do not expect any Seattle-type storms any time soon. If one is hankering for some averages, this source from weather-and-climate.com may be useful.
2. Oregon rain isn’t constant, so be constantly prepared.
Since Oregon rain isn’t constant, the best way to stay dry is to be constantly prepared. Check the forecast before leaving, and if there’s a chance of rain, bring a raincoat or an umbrella. They may not be necessary leaving home, but in two hours one may walk out of class into a downpour.
3. Walk slowly.
This is self-explanatory, but it’s worth reiterating, because it can be easy to become complacent with this safety precaution. Obviously, a wet floor makes it more likely to slip, so avoid fast-walking and running when possible. Treat the world like there’s a wet floor sign in the bathroom and a bunch of puddles on the floor.
4. Avoid puddles.
Jumping in puddles may seem like a fun activity, or maybe you’re just too lazy to sidestep out of the way, but neither strategies are recommended if one is not wearing rain boots. Jumping in puddles will only result in one’s feet (and socks) becoming sopping wet and creating a miserable feeling for the next couple of hours. It will also add to your laundry pile.
5. Be mindful of the road.
Most drivers will try to slow down when it’s raining to avoid sliding in puddles and slow-walking pedestrians. However, drivers are human, so it is best to cross the road under the assumption that they may not be adhering to these precautions as much as they should be. If it looks like it has just rained recently, look both ways before crossing the street, and try not to run. The last thing one will want to do is slip in a puddle and fall in the middle of the road. And to any student drivers, please remember to be extra cautious in these circumstances.