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  1. #1
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    Rain jacket recos?

    Hi, everyone. First post here.

    I'm in the process of finding a new rain jacket. Currently, I'm using a Kuhl Jetstream. Unfortunately, it's not very waterproof. Even in a light shower it will get damp inside after about 15 minutes.

    I understand that "waterproof" may only mean it will keep you dry for longer, before it starts to soak through.

    Basically, I'm looking for something packable, not too heavy, and with some abrasion resistance against bags and backpacks. I don't expect to walk around for hours in a torrential downpour, but I do expect to keep dry in moderate rain until I can find shelter. This is mainly for city travel, with some light hiking.

    I've been looking at some of the Patagonia jackets.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Forum Member Muni_Jedi's Avatar
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    I don't have any specific jacket recommendations, I do however, recommend eVent fabric. It tends to repel water pretty well and regular washing does a good job of refreshing the fabric's water resistance.

  3. #3
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    Welcome to the Forums @Yarpy!

    Be sure to google around for the 2018 and 2019 'best of' lists as a place to start... a lot of the main producers update make/models/specs and name every couple years, so it can be hard to keep up. Visit your local outfitter or REI and check out what they have.

    Regardless of where you start, be sure to read the specs carefully... waterPROOF is what you're looking for, with sealed/taped seams... a lot of coats will be waterRESISTENT instead, which means it will soak through in a downpour.

    Often thicker/heavier material will stand up longer, but that makes it a bit harder to be as minimal/lightweight/packable....

    Hopefully some of the PacNW and other rainy area folks will chime in on coats that have worked well for them...
    I like all the blues and greys...and all the happy citrus colours too! My search unicorn is the Sapphire Dyneema original Small Shop Bag...

  4. #4
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    A couple of broad reviews:

    https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/be...y-rain-jacket/

    https://www.outdoorgearlab.com/topic...st-rain-jacket

    Both go pretty deep into the pros/cons across several options, ranging from roughly $50 and up.

    I've been using a packable "C9" 1.5-layer from Target for a few years, and it's starting to soak through more quickly now; I'm hoping that a DWR spray will fix it, but was doing research in case I need to replace it. (There's a successor, but I haven't tested it yet: https://www.target.com/p/men-s-packa...4/-/A-54512104)

    (I've also been considering single-layer wind shells with DWR, but haven't found any that are "perfect" for layering and accessibility.)

  5. #5
    Forum Member Duggy'sMom's Avatar
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    I've had very good luck with my LL Bean stowaway Gore Tex rain jacket. I've had it for over 20 years. It's kept me dry on long sails during monsoon seasons. My daughter prefers this old jacket too the newer ones available now.[URL][https://global.llbean.com/shop/Stowaway-Rain-Jacket-with-Gore-Tex/91008.html#start=1/URL]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. #6
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    Patagonia is always a good choice for rainwear. The versatile design and ironclad guarantee make them my first stop when looking for new clothing. Their Torrentshell is a mainstay for good reason; it's durable, priced fairly, not heavy, and packs easily.

    The Outdoor Research Helium II is an even better choice for lightweight travelers. It's about half the size and weight of the Patagonia Torrentshell. It won't keep you dry if you're in the rain all day, but it will keep you dry for a couple hours. Despite the gossamer fabric, I've used (and abused) mine for years and it's still in great shape.

  7. #7
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    Everything recommended so far is based on membrane waterproofing (gore tex, event etc).

    I find membrane waterproofs not very breathable and for our temperate wet climate in the UK I much prefer Paramo.

    YMMV Rain jacket recos?

    Sent from my SM-T713 using Tapatalk

  8. #8
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    I'm in constant search for a Florida strength raincoat. It has to be waterproof because we have bone soaking downpours. And it has to go down to my ankles because I want it to cover everything I'm wearing AND be breathable in 100F weather, and have an attached hood with a bill. So far, the H2OFF raincoat from LLBean has worked, but I preferred the old version that was A-line and had a mesh cape that breathed. The newer version is snug which makes it hard to carry my purse UNDER my raincoat so it doesn't get wet.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for all the replies.

    re. the best of lists. Yup. Been doing that. I try to look for trends. I forgot to mention I did order (and returned) an OR Helium ll. It was way too short at the waist. My under layer stuck out by 2”. I could have gone up to a large, but then the sleeves would be too long.

    I’ve discounted any of the “DWR” stuff. I know it will only help in a light, short-duration rain only.

    I’m going to check out a Torrentshell on the weekend. Patagonia has a store in downtown Toronto. Will probably be on the train with all the Raptors fans (if there’s a game 7). I’ve looked at Arc’teryx, but that’s outside my price range.

    No Target or REI in Canada. We do have MEC, which is like REI …
    https://www.mec.ca/en/

    Shopping here is always a challenge for specialty stuff. We never get the selection the US does (makes sense, we’re 1/10 the population). Plus, once it crosses the border the price goes up by about 30%.

    Question: On the rain jackets you have, does the inside ever get damp? I did hear back from Kuhl, and they explained the inner layer of the Jetstream is supposed to absorb water and turn dark blue so you can “see the technology working”. That just seems weird to me.

  10. #10
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    I have found my eVent jackets to be the most breathable and waterproof in prolonged downpour rain compared to some of the others. Less clammy feeling overall compared to GoreTex or H2no from Patagonia, even though I love Patagonia products.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    "Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt
    "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." -Ferris Bueller

  11. #11
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    I wear a North Face Venture for Florida rain. It isn't full length (I think they make a longer version) but the material is definitely waterproof and has a hood. It has no padding on the interior, so it packs well as an outerlayer. It is part of my usual one-bag travel wardrobe when facing rain. Because it is waterPROOF, it lacks breathability, so has zippered underarm vents to compensate. I was thoroughly disappointed with the water-resistant "breathable" pocket-able jackets out there, but have been happy with the downpour performance of this one. I do wish it had a removable zippered tail to provide some protection of the legs.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by gqb View Post
    Everything recommended so far is based on membrane waterproofing (gore tex, event etc).

    I find membrane waterproofs not very breathable and for our temperate wet climate in the UK I much prefer Paramo.

    YMMV Rain jacket recos?

    Sent from my SM-T713 using Tapatalk
    Thanks for this rec, what an interesting fabric! I've been looking at used ones on eBay. Do they hold up well over time?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cristina View Post
    Thanks for this rec, what an interesting fabric! I've been looking at used ones on eBay. Do they hold up well over time?
    Yes, I have bought second hand with great success (and saved a ton of money).
    I have been using some gear that I bought new since 2011 and it is still perfect, apart from a few grubby marks on the cuffs, which I think I can blame on me!
    The key to success with paramo imo is to always use the recommended products for cleaning and reproofing, follow the instructions carefully and don't be tempted to wash too often. I only reproof my gear a couple of times a year and I work outdoors.
    Paramo have a shop in London, or you can try their gear on in places like Cotswold Outdoors. Their sizing tends to run rather large.

    Sent from my SM-T713 using Tapatalk

  14. #14
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    I have a polartec neoshell jacket from Westcomb. The fabric is significantly more breathable than gore-tex and has a slight stretch to it.

  15. #15
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    I realized I never responded to this thread. Got caught up in pre-trip prep and it fell off my radar.

    I ended up getting a Marmot Precip for $100CDN (which is a good price here). I had hoped to test it sooner, as we had nothing but rain last spring. Of course, as soon as I got it, things got hot and dry.

    We recently got back from a 10 day trip to Ireland. I threw the jacket over one of my messenger bag straps for exploring. While we never had any heavy rain, it kept me dry and shed water easily. It was also excellent as a windbreaker and the adjustable hood stayed in place. It isn’t quite as light as the OR Helium ll, but pretty close. I’m 180cm (5’11”), and the length was enough to just cover my overly long Icebreaker sweater.

    Not sure if I would wear it in very hot weather, even with the pit zips. But for 3 season wear I find it excellent. I could only find my size in black. I may have to get another colour!

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