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Montane Minimus 777 Jacket Review: Stock Photo.
The truly ultralight Montane Minimus 777 Jacket (stock photo from Manufacturer).

Introduction

This review investigates the performance, manufacturing quality, function, and value of the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket. We evaluated these attributes on several trips in sustained wet and cold conditions while trekking in Canada. Thus, this¬†Montane Minimus 777 Jacket Review is what we call a “performance” review – it’s based on field use in a variety of conditions. Consequently, we assign a “performance rating” to this product, which we only do when we are confident about how a product performs in the backcountry. Read on to see if the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket earns a Recommended or Highly Recommended¬†Gear Review Rating, or falls short from being recommended by our editorial team.

The Montane Minimus 777 Jacket gets its name from the technical specifications of its 3-layer construction: a 7-denier nylon face and a 7-denier tricot backing sandwiching a 7 micron laminate moisture barrier. It weighs about 5 oz Рdid you get that? That makes it one of, if not the, lightest 3-layer full-zip waterproof breathable rain jacket ever made.

Key Features

  • Chest pocket / stuff sack;
  • Pre-elasticized, non-adjustable hem;
  • Semi-elasticized, non-adjustable cuffs;
  • Micro-taped seams throughout to increase breathable surface area and reduce bulk;
  • Pre-elasticized under-helmet hood, non-adjustable;
  • Zipped external chest pocket with¬†YKK AquaGuard zipper, sized to fit GPS or mobile phone with minimal movement;
  • Internal D-ring inside chest pocket for secure key storage;
  • Center full-length YKK AquaGuard¬†weather-resistant front zipper with internal storm flap and rain drain;
  • Articulated arms for high reach movement and tailored specifically to reduce hem lift.

Specifications

  • 46 gsm Pertex Shield Plus (3-layer) fabric
    • Face: 7 denier 100% nylon face
    • Laminate film: 7 microns
    • Backing: 7 denier tricot backing
    • Hydrostatic Head: 20,000 mm hydrostatic head
    • MVTR: > 30,000g/m2/24hrs
  • Men’s style is available in sizes XS-XXL¬†in two color options;
  • Manufacturer’s Claimed Weight: 140 g / 4.9 oz (Men’s Size M)

Field Testing

Throughout the 2016 backpacking season, the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket was tested in the following locales:

  • In the boreal forest and subalpine plains of Mount Assiniboine, British Columbia, Canada – heavy rains and high winds.
  • On a high alpine route near Jasper, Alberta, Canada – snow, moderate rainfall, high winds and cool summer alpine temperatures.
  • In the rainforest of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada – high humidity, heavy rainfall and warm coastal temperatures.

Testing included high humidity and rainy conditions (e.g., 0.5 in./9.7 mm in four hours) Рchallenging conditions for a rain jacket. Of note, the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket is lighter, more breathable, and more water-repellent than an MEC Hydrofoil Jacket in the same conditions (we happened to compare these side by side). The Montane Minimus Jacket beaded water and resisted leakage during sustained rain and moderate to high levels of activity.

Montane Minimus Jacket
After 10 hours of high exertion hiking in the rain through Marvel Pass in British Columbia, Canada, the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket proved its worth. The tester found this rain jacket to be the among the most breathable and storm-worthy jackets he’s used over the course of 18 years of backpacking.

Our primary tester concluded that the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket performed “as well as a rain jacket should,” shedding rain and preventing overheating in most conditions.

The Montane Minimus 777 Jacket compresses to a tiny volume – one of our tester’s favorite features. This is primarily a result of Pertex Shield being highly compressible, as well as the jacket’s minimalist feature set and micro-taped seams. The shell can fit almost anywhere –¬†including the already overstuffed exterior pockets of our backpacks. Its compressibility reminds me of the Patagonia Houdini.

In high alpine conditions, the Montane Minimus 777 Jacket is an acceptable wind shell, albeit not quite as breathable as something like a Patagonia Houdini. It maintained the tester’s comfort by not causing excessive perspiration in moderately cool to moderately warm (37 ¬ļF – 54¬ļF /3¬ļC – 12¬ļC) conditions.

Montane Minimus 777 Jacket Review: Performance Summary

  • Verified Weight: 160 g (5.6 oz) – Men’s Size M;
  • Well made, lightweight shell;
  • Taped seams;
  • Waterproofed zippers;
  • Consistent, tight stitching;
  • Compresses into the chest pocket.
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