My “wind shirt” rant…
Mar 27, 2015 at 7:35 am #2186634Owen McMurreySpectator
@owenmLocale: SE US
DaveC: "Owen, if abrasion resistance isn't a big priority something in unlined Pertex Equilibrium would probably suit you very well."
Thanks, I'll look for info on that material. I'm thinking the Ferrosi will continue to see regular use on short trips where I do most of my playing, and weight isn't a concern. The lighter windshirt would be used almost exclusively for vacations when I'm on-trail all day and looking to make miles rather than dive into every gorge I pass, so durability would be much less important. That's assuming it performs as well, otherwise…Mar 27, 2015 at 4:39 pm #2186847Michael RayBPL Member
> I think Nisley tested propore (Dri Ducks, Frogg Toggs, etc) to rate to about a .33 CFM. Conversely, the best eVent rates at .5 CFM, making the best eVent noticeably more breathable.
I see eVent has gotten better then. Fair enough. Does it not wet out anymore as well? That seemed to be the other nemesis of any "fabric" rain jacket.Mar 29, 2015 at 2:06 am #2187129Richard MockBPL Member
@moxtrLocale: The piney woods
That's why I am a big fan of pit zips on all shells except for dedicated wind shirts that I will use only when I am inactive like in bivy or belay situations or fishing or just chillin'. I like my eVent with pit zips for backpacking and my windshirt for day trips generally.Mar 29, 2015 at 9:50 am #2187180Jeffs ElevenBPL Member
I sleep with a wind breaker EVERY night.
Damn, I love that woman.Mar 29, 2015 at 10:29 am #2187189Ralph WoodBPL Member
@visualscapesLocale: Northern CA
Like Eric, I never carry a separate wind shirt when backpacking. I use my Zpacks rain jacket in the event I need an additional layer, or "wind shirt".
I do however carry my Montbell Tachyon windbreaker on long trail runs, and day hikes, in the rare case I get cold, or worse, I get injured and need to wait for help.Mar 30, 2015 at 3:00 pm #2187524James holdenBPL Member
theres is a big difference between a solid 3L goretext/event jacket that weights 12+ oz
and a windshirt and UL rain shell that weights less (dri ducks, OR helium, etc …)
for sustained all day rain … it will become apparent pretty quickly over a few days of constant use
whether folks use a windshirt or not is up to them …
i do remember how just a few years ago you were told you MUST buy a windshirt or you were a dinosaur here
a sign of progress no doubt !!!
;)Mar 30, 2015 at 3:20 pm #2187532HkNewmanBPL Member
@hknewmanLocale: Western US
It's the same with pockets on a jacket. Pockets on a jacket were considered passé, then an article here a cpl yrs ago suggested foregoing waterproof glove/mitten shells since you can use your waterproof jacket handwarmers pockets. What pockets? One just needs to be their own UL Fashionista around here.and not take it too seriously.
Ed: sp and empMar 30, 2015 at 3:20 pm #2187533Tim SkidmoreSpectator
@timskidmoreLocale: Canadian Atlantic coast
Ok… that made me giggle.Mar 31, 2015 at 1:47 am #2187674Sam RiggleSpectator
@samriggleLocale: South East
I am able to carry my Pata Houdini (3.8) and Montane Minimus Smock (4.9) for a lot less weight than my Pata Super Cell (12) and have multiple layering options. Yeah, the Minimus is NOT as water resistant nor as durable as the super cell, but it works. And when layered over the Houdini and a base, provides good warmth. It's amazing how warm two thin layers of nylon can be. and the Houdini in most cases is my only long sleeve "shirt"Mar 31, 2015 at 11:46 am #2187776Diane “Piper” SoiniBPL Member
@sbhikesLocale: Santa Barbara
I'm not a gentleman and I'm not Eric, Jeffry or Monte, but my Houdini fits into a very small space so it serves a purpose when I want to bring a light jacket in the minimum amount of space.Mar 31, 2015 at 12:11 pm #2187788jscottBPL Member
@bookLocale: Northern California
Piper: true. As I've mentioned, I love my Houdini in lots of non-multi day backpacking scenarios. I guess that for me, when I'm out for a week, I always end up using my shell as a dual-use piece, and so save the weight of the Houdini in my pack. It's nothing more than that. the Houdini does take up almost no space at all.Mar 31, 2015 at 1:41 pm #2187822Diane “Piper” SoiniBPL Member
@sbhikesLocale: Santa Barbara
Yeah, I don't use the Houdini backpacking anymore, but if I'm out around town and the temperature is going hot-cold-hot-cold, I can stuff that thing into my tiny fanny pack along with my money and stuff and take a nice long urban hike or whatever. I don't care if fanny packs are uncool.Mar 31, 2015 at 2:01 pm #2187828Nico .BPL Member
@nickbLocale: Los Padres National Forest
I always carry either a rain jacket (Patagonia M10 at the moment) or a wind shirt (~2010 or older Houdini) on overnight trips, but never both.
If my trip is short (3-4 days or less) and the weather stable, more often than not I opt for the Houdini. I find it much more versatile than a rain jacket and find I use it on just about every trip whether it's for a little extra warmth around camp or as a bug-proof layer or for wind/light precip protection while hiking. If it doesn't get used, it takes up hardly any space and adds hardly any weight to my pack for a little "insurance."
If I'm on a longer trip, or the forecast seems to hold a chance of precip, then I'll switch out the Houdini with a proper rain jacket. It's not as breathable, but the weather protection is much better. For me, there's too much overlap between the functions/performance of the two jackets to ever warrant carrying both.
Most of my trips are in the Sierra or the deserts/mountains of southern and central CA, thus the weather forecasts can be relied upon to be fairly accurate. When in doubt about a given trip's weather prospects, I err toward the rain jacket. YMMV.May 6, 2015 at 12:38 pm #2197260
Hoy Cow! I never expected my "rant" to generate this many responses – or this much emotion.
I like Richard's Hume quote on factual evidence.
Then there's the other famous "evidence quote":
"I've made up my mind so don't confuse me with the facts." ;o)
Anyway, my point, like many others, is that I want my eVent parka to do double duty, knowing all the while that, when used as a wind shirt, I'll be wearing away the DWR finish that I so lovingly maintained.
So, yeah, it IS weather and climate dependent whether one takes one or the other. I'm just saying' I don't want to carry both.
After all, I'm over 70 and lightening my load is a bit more relevant than it is for you younger whippersnappers of 50 or 60, not to mention the Young Republicans among you of the 20s through 40s decades.May 6, 2015 at 1:33 pm #2197275John VanceBPL Member
@servingkoLocale: Intermountain West
I have been in the poncho and wind shirt camp for a while and take the wind shirt on every trip and the poncho if rain is in the forecast. This has served me well but can be a bit unwieldy off trail and in high winds. Throw in sleet and snow and it leaves a bit to be desired long term, but I have preferred it to a w/b jacket with a pack worn over it.May 12, 2015 at 12:09 pm #2198912KRSBPL Member
@krshomeLocale: Virginia USA
So I'm new to this wind shirt idea and wondering if it would be practical in the MidAtlantic area. I now wear a silinylon rain jacket made by Lukes UL and like it for all the reasons everyone wears a wind shirt. It does not breath but has pit zips that help with that. It rains here and in the warmer times of the year its humid so in the dead of summer if its raining i just get wet unless the rain is cold. Would there be any reason for someone in my area to try a wind shirt over a light weight rain jacket that weighs 4.8 oz?May 13, 2015 at 7:42 am #2199128Link .BPL Member
STICKS BLOG (he lives in Georgia and hikes mainly on the AT) and really likes hisMay 16, 2015 at 5:34 pm #2200039Nick GatelBPL Member
@ngatelLocale: Southern California
"Anyway, my point, like many others, is that I want my eVent parka to do double duty, knowing all the while that, when used as a wind shirt, I'll be wearing away the DWR finish that I so lovingly maintained.
So, yeah, it IS weather and climate dependent whether one takes one or the other. I'm just saying' I don't want to carry both. "
You can't change the laws of thermodynamics ;)May 19, 2015 at 6:46 am #2200677G SticksSpectator
Last year on a ridge in Shenandoah my Houdini saved me from bugs. It was a little hot but it got the job done – I've thought about it and I'm not sure what else I could have used – I was getting bit through my wickable shirts. So I think a windshirt in the Mid-Atlantic can be useful at times. It's also usually hte only rain protection I need for a weekend trip.May 26, 2015 at 4:32 am #2202193Matt DirksenBPL Member
@namelesswayLocale: Mid Atlantic
I always use my wind shirt – all year, especially if I use a Gatewood cape as shelter.
However, I don't always bring a rain jacket nowadays. In mid-Atlantic spring/summer climate, one can become very uncomfortable trying to "not to get wet." I find it much easier to have a plan on how get dry when I purposefully get wet.
While my wind shirt gets wet quickly, it also gets dry quickly. And yes, it's descent bug repellent as well.Jul 6, 2015 at 10:18 pm #2212792
I once did use my REI Sahara polyester long sleeved shirt as a windshirt on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon in April. :o)
It was very cool and blowing cooler so I put on a 100 wt. fleece vest. That didn't cut the wind so I took off my Sahara shirt, put on the vest and put the shirt back on. Granted it had a big back vent so it isn't a true wind shirt but that that was covered by my backpack.
And it worked! I was warmer. So, yeah, wind shirts certainly are useful. Probably my .511 brand nylon shirt would have been better because it is more tightly woven. And my Cabela's Guidewear poly shirt would not have worked due to mesh vented sheet pockets.Jul 13, 2015 at 9:56 pm #2214524Tom D.BPL Member
@dafiremedicLocale: Southern California
I think this is less an issue of "facts" and "evidence" than of opinions and personal preference. Everyone will have different priorities and desires from their clothing choices.
I tend to look at BP'ing with a similar philosophy to how I do my job. A wind shirt and a rain shell are tools. To accomplish a given task (in this case a hike, with the concerns of weight, comfort, and safety), I have a "menu" of tools and techniques that I can choose from to accomplish the task.
At 2.7 ounces, I always take my wind jacket on day hikes, and the rain shell as well. I see no reason not to when my pack weight is already below 10 lbs total.
For me, I have yet to find any material for a rain shell that breathes sufficiently to hike in for any distance without using the zippers and openings for ventilation. Others may have had a different experience. Mine current choice was made for cycling and is nylon, cheap ($13.99), very light at 5.6 oz, cinches around the face and waist, and doesn't wet out after many hours in constant rain. The problem is that it doesn't breathe well at all, but has a 1/4 zip at the neck for airflow. Not ideal, but light, reliable, and keeps the rain out. The wind jacket does breathe nicely and is much preferred if the weather allows for it. But that being said, I often don't bring the wind jacket on longer multi-day hikes where weight is more of an issue. In the end, I can make do without the wind jacket, but its much more difficult to make do without the rain jacket when it starts to come down.Feb 18, 2016 at 7:15 pm #3382978
Yes, for 3 season use I always carry a polyester long sleeved shirt for sun protection and to help keep off bugs (but black flies have bitten through it). Mountain sun out west is brutal. And then there is my home Mojave Desert sun.
Interestingly eVent is actually not all THAT windproof compared to Gore-Tex.
I’ve given over to washing and re-DWRing my eVent & GTX gear after each trip of a week or more when it’s used a lot.
Guess I could call my LS shirt a “semi-windshirt”.Sep 18, 2016 at 6:43 pm #3426882James AugustineBPL Member
@chirodrLocale: Southern California
I’m obviously very late on this issue (just joined) but what about the Marmot Driclime hooded windshirt? It has a very microfine lining of fleece that’s my goto jacket during and after and in bed – while hiking on a cold day with wind – you stay warm, keeps the chill off, when stopping for a break, and in camp it’s really amazing for quite some time, even while sleeping.
JimFeb 3, 2017 at 2:07 pm #3448588Chad PBPL Member
I only bring a wind jacket or rain jacket, never both, and more often just a wind jacket. I’ll bring a “disposable poncho” sometimes if the forecast is iffy. I try to avoid hiking in the rain. When I do I get wet no matter what I’m wearing. Being wet is just a part of it.
If its almost a guarantee for prolonged rain I’ll ditch the wind jacket for a non breathable rain jacket. My event jacket does not breathe enough while hiking, standing around camp it’s great but that’s what my tarps for.
also wanted to add, in a perfect world I’d wear nothing but my base layer and a puffy if it weren’t to hot to hike in. My ONLY purpose for a wind jacket is the tiny bit of added warmth while hiking and the added protection on my puffy hauling wood or embers from a camp fire. Fleece would do this all better but can be too hot to hike in and not worth its weight in insulation though I do love my fleece.
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.
Our Community Posts are Moderated
Backpacking Light community posts are moderated and here to foster helpful and positive discussions about lightweight backpacking. Please be mindful of our values and boundaries and review our Community Guidelines prior to posting.