Sep 22, 2013 at 3:47 pm #1307929
@iancraeLocale: North Cascades
In search of a light women's rain jacket for my wife. I have an OR zealot, and that works great for the trips we tend to do the most (two little kids, so we're not going out in horrible weather these days, and need to keep the gear light to allow us to carry 55lbs of children!)
Any suggestions for something similar would be great. Thanks!Sep 22, 2013 at 7:27 pm #2027159
There's the mid-price, Gore-Tex Paclite or proprietary jackets that wet out after 10-20 minutes of rain, but serve well for setting up a tent in the rain and getting through a squall.
Then you've got your 3-layer and eVent raincoats for sustained rain, so you can hike while it rains or stand for an hour in a storm.
Which one is closer to the mark for you?Sep 22, 2013 at 7:55 pm #2027170
@iancraeLocale: North Cascades
Max, I'm assuming the former(2.5layer) will work fine for these conditions, weigh less and cost less.
If there's a really light 3 layer jacket out there, it might be worth looking at, but is probably overkill.
Thanks!Sep 23, 2013 at 6:21 am #2027243
@mocs123Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Max what makes you say that Gore Tex Packlite wets out after 10 to 15 minutes? I have hiked for for well over 1000 miles with Packlite and as long as the dwr is still ok (as with any rain shell) it doesn't wet out. I know a little something about hiking in the rain, and was out a few years ago when it rained 7 inches on me in 24 hours and didn't have my jacket wet out.
Now I will agree that all rain gear sucks and it will not keep you dry while hiking. I am yet to find a shell, including eVent, that can not be easily overwhelmed when hiking uphill even in moderate tempretures. You get wet from sweat, but the jacket doesn't soak through.Sep 23, 2013 at 7:19 am #2027256
@sckuhnLocale: Mountainous Ohio
You might want to consider this purchase as a long term investment. If you have 2 small children, the days of standing outside at various sporting events in foul weather will SOON be upon you!! I spent the extra money several years ago and invested in a good, lighterweight jacket with all the features I wanted (pit zips, breathable, etc) My rain jacket has seen more time on the sidelines of a soccer or football field than it has been actually used on a hiking trip (usually I get lucky on the weather when hiking so it just hangs out in my pack when I hike).
The mind set of items being exclusive for hiking/backpacking usage can get rather expensive and redundant. I tend to invest in clothing items that can be used for more than just hiking…. but HYOH!
SarahSep 23, 2013 at 5:42 pm #2027487
"There's the mid-price, Gore-Tex Paclite or proprietary jackets that wet out after 10-20 minutes of rain, but serve well for setting up a tent in the rain and getting through a squall.
Then you've got your 3-layer and eVent raincoats for sustained rain, so you can hike while it rains or stand for an hour in a storm."
There's not much I agree with in this post. It doesn't sound like you understand what "wetting out" is because it has nothing to do with the membrane. How fast a jacket wets out is determined by the quality/durability of the DWR (durable water repellant) treatment on the outside of the nylon. Membrane and internal layers have nothing to do with this.
Once a coat "wets out" (which is water soaking into the external nylon) then the water has arrived at the membrane and it should still keep you dry unless the membrane is damaged or sucks. The reason you don't want a coat to "wet out" is because the breathability goes way down when you're got saturated material on the outside of it (there's no capacity to accept moisture coming through the membrane).
Some crappy PU coats are great for standing in the rain for hours, they just don't breath as well. The main difference between 2.5 and 3 layer jackets is that 2.5 is lighter, while 3 layer coats are heavier but last longer because there's protective fabric inside the membrane.
OP: If you're looking for a really light rain jacket, look at the offerings by Marmot, Haglofs and Montane but skip anything with Pertex Shield+ because that membrane falls apart fast. They've all got women's coats in the 5-7oz range in their summer lines.
If you're looking for something light but longer lasting, I'd recommend a 3-layer shell like the Mountain Hardware Quasar Pullover. They make a women's version that is 7.8oz and for that you get it all: 3 layer, eVent. The non-pull over version is a lot heavier as there are other differences.
I'm sure there are other nice women's jackets as well. As usual with rain jackets, most of them are darn short which sucks when you're bending over setting up a tent. It's tough being a women because a lot of companies only make their nice coats in mens versions. If you're looking in the 9-10oz range, Haglofs Gram Q and Lim II are darn nice 3-layer womens jackets.Sep 23, 2013 at 5:46 pm #2027488
get something with a no questions asked unlimited warranty
delamination of the rain jacket is probably the most common gear failure people will experience
;)Sep 24, 2013 at 8:54 pm #2027909
If she likes her Zealot, she might like OR's Helium 2 as well. I switched from the Zealot to the Helium 2 and am happy. It arrived as light as advertised, and I lightened it a little further with some alterations. Have tested it in heavy rain. Heads-up, the Helium 2 runs smaller than the generously-sized Zealot, so I wished I'd sized up. OR's lifetime guarantee is terrific!
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