I’m looking at getting a new rain jacket. I’m currently looking at Montbell and Arc’teryx. What do you all recommend. I want something light but also durable!
I love my arcteryx rain jacket, a little on the pricey side but they are great quality and they repair anything that needs doing at no cost! Mountain equipment also do great rain coats 😊
Get a lightheart gear silpoly rain jacket. It will stay waterproof permanently and has pitzips. Waterproof breathable jackets suck because the DWR coating wears off....this happens especially fast if you wear a backpack with them.
I have an Arc’teryx Norvan and it’s amazing. I was skeptical at the durability and the breathability, but I’m incredibly impressed with it. I have it with me on the CDT right now, had a downpour here in Colorado recently and the Norvan kept my Senchi layer underneath completely dry. Rumor is they discontinued it, but you might be able to post a WTB on Reddit’s UL Gear Trade?
I have an Arcteryx Alpha FL, and I love it.
With that said, I have been really getting into clothing gear from Fjallraven and have loved their pants, and am now looking at some of their shells.
Environmentally Fjallraven uses fluorocarbon-free chemicals, and a lot of their gear you can use all natural wax to add waterproofness. Not for everyone but super cool environmental thoughts in their gear.
For UL backpacking I recommend the Outdoor Research Helium Rain Jacket, super light and packs into it's pocket. If you want gore-tex, also OR, the men's foray and women's aspire are the best and also light for gore-tex.
I faced a similar dilemma and finally settled on the Arcteryx Alpha SL anorak. When it comes to quality and durability you can’t beat Arcteryx (you really do get what you pay for, IMO). And the Alpha SL weighs in at 209g-pretty hard to beat. I’ve worn mine this spring training for the CT; I guess the true test is about to happen, but so far it’s been just what I need in a rain shell. I also have the OR Helium which is great for wind, but wets thru in a sustained rain. Good luck!
What's your budget I think is more to the question...
I personally can't recommend the Montbell Versatile enough. I put a good 2500 miles on one (that I bought second-hand) before it developed a small hole near the cuff. The DWR did start to go (as one would expect) but I re-treated it with Tech Wash and that seemed to work well enough for me.
I personally don't know of another fully-featured rain jacket thats sub 7 ounces for ~$220.
If you're trying to go lighter and are interested in new/different tech, Yamatomichi makes a UL All-Weather Hoody. I've been using one since the spring for most trips and love the breathability of it, despite it being a zipper less hoody. It's a niche piece of gear, but I'm a huge fan. Only problem is trying to get your hands on one.
Get what you can afford. When super wet, so are you; when humid, well, so are you.
Absolutely nothing is 100%. Gore-tex comes close, but it's super expensive and leaves your body clammy and your skin wrinkly.
Whether you throw on a trash bag or try a pricey jacket, everything has limits.
Just do the best you can.
I have a rain jacket from the brand STIO. I really love it, and it’s worked great so far. I’m excited to continue using it this fall/winter.
I used my Alpha SL Anorak on the GDT last year with OR Helium Pants. The jacket is sick, it's super light, breathes great but even after a couple days it did start to leak through on my left shoulder (this was a serious downpour, but still). The OR helium pants were nice but I found anytime I even gently brushed against a plant water pushed right through the membrane. Long story short, I was totally soaked by the end of the day. The jacket may have been faulty (I eventually got a warranty credit after a few back and forth emails with pictures) but I do think the pants are only rated to 10k which isn't much depending on where you live. If it's just sprinkles and not Northern BC storms it would probably be awesome.
Thirded the Arc Alpha SL Anorak for conditions where you need a rugged rain jacket. Mine weighs about 6 oz. Otherwise, it's the Arc Norvan all of the way. Single-layer Goretex Shakedry is the most interesting material I've ever seen. It literally .. shakes dry. Mine is sub 4 oz and it's been on a PCT thru-hike (2600 miles) as well as a Florida Trail thru-hike (1200 miles) and is on its way to the Arizona Trail (800 miles). Hasn't ripped yet, but it feels paper thin. I'd buy another one in a heartbeat.
Agreed. I'm on my third Versalite... Each one going a little over 2000 miles. Best combination of durability and features I've ever found.
Recently purchased the coveted Montbell Versalite and I'm pretty happy with it. I upgraded from an OR Helium that was on its last leg and wetted out after less than an hour of light rain. The Versalite has many more features and adjustment points than the OR Helium that I appreciate (pockets, pit zips, hood and cuff adjustments). Like others have said- you get what you pay for. It really depends on what kind of conditions you'll find yourself in most often. I used the Versalite on the Collegiate Loop end of August- it rained 8/9 days and I stayed happy and dry.