Rain jacket paralysis

Bushwalking gear and paraphernalia. Electronic gadget topics (inc. GPS, PLB, chargers) belong in the 'Techno Babble' sub-forum.
Forum rules
TIP: The online Bushwalk Inventory System can help bushwalkers with a variety of bushwalk planning tasks, including: Manage which items they take bushwalking so that they do not forget anything they might need, plan meals for their walks, and automatically compile food/fuel shopping lists (lists of consumables) required to make and cook the meals for each walk. It is particularly useful for planning for groups who share food or other items, but is also useful for individual walkers.

Rain jacket paralysis

Postby WestcoastPete » Thu 12 May, 2022 2:13 pm

I loaned my lightweight Macpac rain coat to my brother-in-law and he lost it. It wasn't too special. I bought it in NZ when I needed one and didn't do any research prior. It was quite a few years ago now, at least 5 or more. It was lightweight, had one breast pocket only, was quite short, had a hood that tucked into the collar. I wore it with some 3/4 rain pants on an overnight trip to Scott Kilvert Memorial Hut in cold constant rain and I was warm and not soaked.

I never loved it though and always thought I'd replace it with a longer jacket one day. Now I have that opportunity though, I don't know what to do. I thought the One Planet Cats and Dogs sounded great but when I tried it on it didn't sing to me. The sleeves were too short and the velcro storm flap and zip were annoyingly fidgety. The Mont Odyssey felt really great and has great specs (apart from weight), but it's incredibly expensive, and far heavier than my old Macpac. The ultralight version wouldn't last long enough for the price. Now I've been reading about that Lightheart Gear silpoly rain coat and have been sucked in to the spin of it.

I don't know what to do. My BIL will replace my jacket which is about $300 worth so an Odyssey is in reach if I want it. I'll be multiday hiking in Tassie, so comfy in all day rain is the goal.

Do any of you have feedback on the silpoly non-breathable coat idea? Is the Odyssey really the greatest jacket out? Should I just go back to something like what I had and save on weight?
WestcoastPete
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu 25 Apr, 2013 10:35 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Lamont » Thu 12 May, 2022 3:34 pm

Just had a squiz at the Mont to compare. Looks like you could not get two more different jackets than that and the LHG.
Own a LHG. Any specific questions?
Last edited by Lamont on Thu 12 May, 2022 6:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Lamont
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1883
Joined: Sun 21 Feb, 2016 1:27 pm
Location: Upper Kumbukta West
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: https://www.againstmalaria.com/
Region: Other Country

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby WestcoastPete » Thu 12 May, 2022 3:40 pm

Is it really that good in cold rain all day?
WestcoastPete
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu 25 Apr, 2013 10:35 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Lamont » Thu 12 May, 2022 4:00 pm

No water soaks into or has permeated the Poly. None has come through the bound seams.
Last edited by Lamont on Thu 19 May, 2022 8:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Lamont
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1883
Joined: Sun 21 Feb, 2016 1:27 pm
Location: Upper Kumbukta West
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: https://www.againstmalaria.com/
Region: Other Country

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby WestcoastPete » Thu 12 May, 2022 4:16 pm

And you haven't steamed up inside? And have you worn a pack plenty with it?
WestcoastPete
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu 25 Apr, 2013 10:35 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby johnrs » Thu 12 May, 2022 6:31 pm

Hi WCP
on the cheap and cheerful full length jacketfor hard use have a look at this Snowgum item
https://snowgum.com.au/products/snowgum ... axon_id=75
or midprice but not superlite this macpac jacket also gave honourable service
https://www.macpac.com.au/macpac-mens-c ... RANCE.html
Best wishes
John
johnrs
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
Phyllocladus aspleniifolius
 
Posts: 555
Joined: Mon 09 Aug, 2010 6:09 pm
Region: New South Wales

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby slparker » Fri 13 May, 2022 10:38 am

My opinion is that reviews ought to be taken with a grain of salt. This forum is one of the best sources of information on the planet, as well as NZ/british forums.

I say this because the overwhelming quantity of rainwear reviews comes from North America. From what I read, most hikers in the USA (or at leasy most that write reviews) don't encounter heavy, sustained, windblown rain and don't ever walk consistently above the tree line. Nor do they seem to walk in thick scrub or on overgrown tracks but on groomed trails - so lightweight jackets or ponchos seem to be the norm. (I can't imagine what it be like trying to wear a 'gatewood cape' whilst pushing through thick scoparia - but maybe i underestimate them...).

Design

Australian bushwalking is often Alpine areas and often in a maritime climate. Both these geographies have variable, unpredictable weather and so a raincoat that is less likely to leak in and less likely to have a hood that blows off and a 'skirt' that covers the *&%$#!, and will not balloon around your armpits when you are scrambling up a rock gully may be an essential item of safety, not just comfort.

US reviewers prize lightweight emergency garments and often describe not taking a rain jacket because the forecast doesn't require it (!!). I have owned a couple of US garments and they were good as emergency garments but their hoods were poorly adjustable, they blew off easily, they allowed rain to blow in around the hem and were really short in the body (designed more for mountaineering than walking). All US manufacturers (that i have seen) design jackets with the assumption that you have a baseball cap on and they design their hoods accordingly - i.e. without a wired peak and with limited adjustability.

Contrast this to jackets designed in the UK, that has a cold maritime climate, or 'traditional' Australian/NZ jackets. They usually have great hoods with wired peaks and often have other features such as storm flaps over zips and pockets etc. so designed for penetrating windblown rain when you are wearing a beanie. Obviously this style of jacket is not going to be super lightweight. usually in really sustained wet conditions over days you are going to get damp eventually, whatever you wear, but ideally you aren't going to have a trickle of cold water entering your jacket but rather a slow wicking, which is safer to deal with.

Material

The vast majority of manufacturers use 'breathable' membrane technology (GTX etc). The limitations of this technology is that it always wets out and then (in cold climates) condensation from the body condenses on the inside of the jacket and this leads to conduction of heat away from the body raising the risk of hypothermia at worst, and comfort at best. Ventilation of the jacket assists with delaying condensation (so a voluminous cut, stiffer fabric and venting) as well as selecting the best insulating midlayer. A $1000 Arcteryx jacket will wet out in prolonged rain whilst pushing though svcrub as will a $250 jacket made of some proprietary textile.
There is no secret sauce to this - all jackets wet out as the DWR fails if you are in sustained rain and especially in scrub, Except:

1. External membrane jackets: Columbia outdry and GTX shakedry - these jackets dont wet out as the outer layer of the jacket is the membrane - water will always bead off them. Limitations: columbia is rare as hen's teeth, on the heavy side, poor hoods, moderately 'breathable' and variable QC. Shakedry: highly 'breathable', lightweight, allegedly fragile (i don't own one but this is what is reported) in scrub under packstraps etc.

2. Non-breathable textiles: often found in ponchos but also some US manufacturers. can't wet out because they are made of silnylon. Downside is they also do not transfer water vapour through the textile so rely completely on venting to remove water vapour. I have no experience of these jackets in Australian conditions but I am cynical about how they would perform whilst 'battened down' in torrential rain and the quality of the hood. Happy to be proven wrong.

TL;DR Some jackets are less *&%$#! than others but all are better than having no rain layer at all. For bushwalking in SE Australia get a garment that doesn't allow windblown rain to trickle in.
slparker
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1388
Joined: Fri 25 Apr, 2008 10:59 pm

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby crollsurf » Fri 13 May, 2022 11:11 am

Nice overview slparker.
Just to be clear for those who don't know the term wetting out. It refers to the outer layer, not the waterproof membrane (GorTex et al). The jacket should still remain waterproof, but the outer layer gets soaked which stops/impedes the jackets breathability. Worth noting that when its raining, humidity is ~100%, which means breathability is zero anyways. It's only when it's not raining that the material can breath. If the jacket has wetted out, that may not start to happen until the outside layer has dried some what. If it's not wetted out and beading well, breathability should return once is stops raining or being misty.

The reason I'll go for a jacket with a waterproof membrane for breathability is because rain jackets can do triple duty. Not just as a rain jacket, but also a wind proofing layer and as a thermal layer. My precious ATM is the Enlightened Equipment Visp. UL weight and waterproof but trust me, it is precious and wouldn't last 10 minutes scrub bashing. I've also got an Arc'tyrex jacket for cold off track walks. Pit zips are also a must have for me.

So it's good to have 2 jackets, one UL, one hard core, but if you can only afford one, go the hard core jacket.
User avatar
crollsurf
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1841
Joined: Tue 07 Mar, 2017 10:07 am
Location: Sydney
Region: New South Wales
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby WestcoastPete » Sun 15 May, 2022 3:51 pm

Ok I think I've decided what to do and it's not what I was originally thinking. I'm going to get a Patagonia Torrentshell for hiking. It's not long but it has pit zips and is apparently pretty hardy. I'll also get some sort of long jacket to spend wet Saturday mornings at the kids soccer games. Like a Rainbird or an oilskin or something.

Thanks for your input!

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
WestcoastPete
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu 25 Apr, 2013 10:35 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Dave95 » Sun 15 May, 2022 10:41 pm

I have a Patagonia Torrentshell (two and a half payer). I use it when I go for short walks and don't expect heavy rain. I find that it steams up easily, if I have to do even a short climb, notwithstanding the pit zips.

I also own a Mont Austral three layer jacket. This jacket seems to steam up less even though it doesn't have pit zips. I wash the jacket in sports wash periodically to keep to maintain the breathability of the fabric.
Dave95
Nothofagus cunninghamii
Nothofagus cunninghamii
 
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat 16 Jan, 2021 9:58 am
Region: Victoria
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby wayno » Mon 16 May, 2022 4:56 pm

deleted, wrong thread
Last edited by wayno on Mon 16 May, 2022 6:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
from the land of the long white clouds...
User avatar
wayno
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8746
Joined: Sun 19 Jun, 2011 7:26 am
Location: NZ
Region: New Zealand
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Lamont » Mon 16 May, 2022 5:45 pm

Good call Wayno. I reckon it might be a good idea as well to avoid using monkfruit extract in a raincoat.
User avatar
Lamont
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1883
Joined: Sun 21 Feb, 2016 1:27 pm
Location: Upper Kumbukta West
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: https://www.againstmalaria.com/
Region: Other Country

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby wayno » Mon 16 May, 2022 6:02 pm

Lamont wrote:Good call Wayno. I reckon it might be a good idea as well to avoid using monkfruit extract in a raincoat.

ha wrong thread
from the land of the long white clouds...
User avatar
wayno
Lagarostrobos franklinii
Lagarostrobos franklinii
 
Posts: 8746
Joined: Sun 19 Jun, 2011 7:26 am
Location: NZ
Region: New Zealand
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby gisborne612 » Tue 21 Jun, 2022 8:55 pm

I'm a bit old school with rain coats and agree with the above re American designs. Unfortunately today, a lot is about marketing and fassion as opposed to functionality.
A good 3/4 length 3 layer goretex, hydronaute or similar is the go.
Currently have a Mont Tempest. Yes it costs a bit more, but "Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten".
If I had any influence over designers, I would get them to make a 3/4 "Japara" style jacket out of a 3 layer modern material like I mentioned. Double layer around the shoulders, pit zips for ventilation, built in hood with visor and a draw cord to cinch the waist. It would tick all my boxes, but is probably not "cool/trendy" enough for the modern hiker.
Amen
gisborne612
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 65
Joined: Sat 29 May, 2010 8:56 pm
Region: Victoria
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Lamont » Wed 22 Jun, 2022 8:45 am

WestcoastPete wrote:... I'm going to get a Patagonia Torrentshell for hiking. It's not long but it has pit zips and is apparently pretty hardy.

Thanks for your input!

Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk


Did you got the newer version-3 layer Torrentshell Pete?

Had it in any consistent rain as yet?
User avatar
Lamont
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1883
Joined: Sun 21 Feb, 2016 1:27 pm
Location: Upper Kumbukta West
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: https://www.againstmalaria.com/
Region: Other Country

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby WestcoastPete » Wed 22 Jun, 2022 2:09 pm

Yep 3 layer version. That's one of the reasons I bought it.

It's pretty good! I haven't had it out in the bush yet but just around town in the rain it's been fine. I get a feeling of confidence in it. It feels pretty inorganic. Stiffish maybe, plasticky, but most of these jackets do. I know it doesn't matter much but I also love the orange colour.

I'll keep my eye out for a good value/used longer heavier jacket to have for kids soccer and stuff, and maybe for the bush. I couldn't justify the cost of the Odyssey despite it seeming to be such a good jacket. I picked up some Cactus Supertrousers that I might turn into shorts around the time I was thinking about this. They're waterproof and I reckon them with this Patagucci jacket would be a pretty good long distance combo. Otherwise I've been wearing my Ground Effect Helter Skelter 3/4 rain pants with these shorter jackets and it works pretty well
WestcoastPete
Atherosperma moschatum
Atherosperma moschatum
 
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu 25 Apr, 2013 10:35 pm
Region: Tasmania

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Lamont » Thu 23 Jun, 2022 11:13 am

WestcoastPete wrote:Yep 3 layer version. That's one of the reasons I bought it.

It's pretty good! I haven't had it out in the bush yet but just around town in the rain it's been fine.
I know it doesn't matter much but I also love the orange colour.


May it keep you warm and dry.
User avatar
Lamont
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1883
Joined: Sun 21 Feb, 2016 1:27 pm
Location: Upper Kumbukta West
ASSOCIATED ORGANISATIONS: https://www.againstmalaria.com/
Region: Other Country

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Dexter » Fri 24 Jun, 2022 3:12 pm

slparker wrote:1. External membrane jackets: Columbia outdry and GTX shakedry - these jackets dont wet out as the outer layer of the jacket is the membrane - water will always bead off them. Limitations: columbia is rare as hen's teeth, on the heavy side, poor hoods, moderately 'breathable' and variable QC. Shakedry: highly 'breathable', lightweight, allegedly fragile (i don't own one but this is what is reported) in scrub under packstraps etc.


I own a Shakedry. I did a lot of reading to find one using the heavier weight fabric used with the Gore Wear R7 Trail. Finding one of those in Australia (along with OutDry) was near impossible at the time. At least at a reasonable price. I'm not sure they even make the R7 trail anymore. What I found was that the Kathmandu Zeolite Shakedry jacket has a noticeably similar jacket weight. Most the other options around using Shakedry were approx 110g (Arc'tyrex Norvan) to around 165g. All I have seen are mostly featureless in regards to pockets and pitzips etc. The R7 Trail is known to use thicker Shakedry material and the only one I've seen that ever suggested you could use it with a pack. That sits at around 184g. The Kathmandu is listed at 220g, and does suggest a light weight pack is okay. What their idea of light weight is, is anyones guess... how long is a piece of string. Still, I know at least in the US, that reviewers have used the R7 Trail under a pack for a couple of years without it failing.

I don't think it would do well off track going through scrub / bush. But if you don't do a lot of that type of walking, I'm fairly convinced it's one of the best bits of rainwear going around at the moment. If I had to chose that jacket, or my ~$1000 Arc'tyrex Beta AR for the Overland track, I'd be taking the Kathmandu jacket. I just wish it had some pitzips. It's also not a long jacket. Meant to be for running. I'm not sure why there's really no uptake with this tech in the bushwalking / hiking space. It must be all a conspiracy. Those DWR manufacturers must run the show or something.
User avatar
Dexter
Athrotaxis cupressoides
Athrotaxis cupressoides
 
Posts: 368
Joined: Mon 28 Aug, 2017 5:06 pm
Region: Victoria
Gender: Male

Re: Rain jacket paralysis

Postby Neo » Fri 24 Jun, 2022 10:31 pm

My recommendation is a Mont 3/4 jacket as well as an ultralight jacket (OR etc).

Then pick the rain jacket you need to pack for the trip and forecast.

Total outlay about six hundred buckaroos, sorted! (insert face slap omg icon here). Both should last years and years.

Pair with rain pants, or rain kilt in summer, as required.
Neo
Athrotaxis selaginoides
Athrotaxis selaginoides
 
Posts: 1766
Joined: Wed 31 Aug, 2016 4:53 pm
Location: Port Macquarie NSW
Region: New South Wales
Gender: Male


Return to Equipment

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 8 guests