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Looking for a rain gear compromise
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Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Looking for a rain gear compromise on 12/27/2007 09:49:20 MST Print View

Okay, this is the last question for awhile. I was wondering what there might be out there for rain gear that is both somewhat light and yet durable. I like my Marmot Oracle Rain Jacket and Pants (heavy and durable) and also my DriDucks rain suit (light and thin) but I would love to get something that lays more in the middle of the extremes if possible. And don't even suggest anything over $200 because it will not happen. Thanks everyone for their help so far.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Ahhh DriDucks on 12/27/2007 10:02:48 MST Print View

I tell you, I've had my Driducks for four years now -- and these fragile-looking, fragile-feeling tops and bottoms still look like new! I bet yours are holding up well too?

But yeah, psychologically, we want something more "solid". I have a MontBell Peak Shell jacket which is extremely breathable ($198). But the jacket I think you should look at is the MontBell Particle jacket -- at just half the price. Looking at the specs, this jacket features a very highly breathable wp/b coating. MontBell makes good products.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
DriDucks on 12/27/2007 10:35:30 MST Print View

You don't need to tell me about DriDucks, I am up to 3 different suits. Just trying to have the color match the environment I am in some.

Mike W
(skopeo) - F

Locale: British Columbia
Looking for a rain gear compromise on 12/27/2007 10:52:15 MST Print View


Edited by skopeo on 04/24/2015 23:05:46 MDT.

Roger B
(rogerb) - MLife

Locale: Here and there
Rain Gear Compromise on 12/27/2007 12:34:00 MST Print View

for me it would be the OR Zealot, if I am not wearing my Montane Litespeed

Edited by rogerb on 12/27/2007 12:34:51 MST.

Dave Heiss

Locale: Pacific Northwest
O2 Rainwear on 12/27/2007 14:22:40 MST Print View

I use a pair of O2 Rainwear (yes, the screaming yellow color) that's held up very well for 4 hiking seasons now. I did get a minor tear in the jacket last year from scrambling under some downed trees, but it was an easy fix with seamsealer. If you want some raingear that's really light (11oz for the large jacket and pants), can double as a windproof layer AND emergency signaling device, it'll do the job nicely.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Rain Gear on 12/27/2007 14:42:31 MST Print View

The Montbell is too short.
The O2 is basically DiDucks.
The Zealot and the Virga look promising but can people vouch for the durability?
Thanks everyone.

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Rainwear on 12/27/2007 15:23:48 MST Print View

The North Face Diad might fit the bill. It is light, and havn't heard anyone complain about the durability of it. I think it was discontinued as it seems hard to find, but if you wear a XL here it is on sale

The Golite Virga would probably be a good choice too, but it seems it has too been discontinued.

The Sierra Designs Isotope might be a third option, but I know that early versions were not very breathable or even waterproof. They may have improved on it by now.

Edited by Mocs123 on 12/27/2007 15:36:48 MST.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Process of Elimination on 12/27/2007 16:07:07 MST Print View

Golite stuff is either Goretex -- which is "highly breathable" in Goretex market literature but not in reality -- or Golite's own Alchemy -- which is even less breathable than Goretex.

I too have the SD Isotope. Nice cut and color, light as heck. I had the 2006 version which was a disaster. After complaining to SD's Warranty Dept., I got a 2007 replacement. It's more or less waterproof (much better than 2006 anyway) but just barely breathable. If you buy it, hike as slow as you can -- and don't hike uphill.

Some figures for comapison:

MontBell Particle - 15,000 g / m2 / 24 hrs
Goretex XCR - 13,000
Marmot Precip - 8,000 or 10,000
Alchemy - 8,000 or 10,000
SD Isotope - 3,000

What do those numbers really mean in real life? Beats me. But they at least serve an illustrative purpose when compared together.

Finally, my understanding is that eVENT -- being air permeable -- tends to be the most breathable, followed by MontBell Breeze Dry Tec, which is also air permeable. After that comes MontBell's wp/b coating, the various versions of Goretex, and then the various proprietary wp/b coatings in some descending order.

eVENT and Montbell Breeze Dry Tec lead the pack because they've managed to be rainproof without the need of a PU layer or coating, unlike all the rest.

Edited by ben2world on 12/27/2007 16:12:19 MST.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
eVent and montbell on 12/27/2007 17:16:37 MST Print View

I too would possibly like an eVent jacket someday but I think the only thing that will come close is the ID Thru Hiker, possibly. And I am just not going to spend $260 on one of the XLs in green. Montbell doesn't make anything that fits me. Thats why I like using the DriDucks and modifying them.

Edited by bpeugh on 12/27/2007 17:17:20 MST.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Modifying Your Ducks on 12/27/2007 18:05:31 MST Print View


Too bad about the MontBell. Maybe Ebay is a good place for lightly-used ID eVENT jackets?

Curious, what kinds of mods do you do with your Driducks? I am thinking of adding a removable visor -- with velcros.

Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
Looking for a rain gear compromise on 12/27/2007 18:54:20 MST Print View

Brett, another vote for TheNorthFace Diad (Hyvent). My Diad works for me in all four seasons. The Hyvent fabric is a good compromise of light weight, durability, and breathability. Rolls up smaller than a soda can.
I got matching full-zip pants for winter use, also Hyvent.

Jacket about $140 in all sizes,12628.html

Hyvent pants around $70+ but shop around for your size

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
TNF Hyvent DT on 12/27/2007 19:14:12 MST Print View


I've no direct experience with the TNF DIAD, but have been interested in its very light weight -- just 8 oz. However, I can no longer find any info about it on TNF's website. Interestingly, the home page shows a picture of one, but the link is dead. Maybe TNF has discontinued it?

But googling the jacket gotTNF's Asia Pacific page. In any case, Hyvent DT wp/b PU coating has a very low breathability number -- just 877 g / m2 / 24 hrs. (compared to 13,000 for Goretex) I got this number from this TNF page. Very intriguing -- and confusing.

Edited by ben2world on 12/27/2007 19:33:09 MST.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Re: Modifying Your Ducks on 12/27/2007 21:24:20 MST Print View

You could do that but mine doesn't bother me too much. I usually replace the drawstring with a lighter version and a toggle. I will usually stretch the material on the arms an extra inch to help me out. I usually cut the elastic cord on the wrists because it always rides up on me. I then just usually put two small pieces of velcro on the ends so I can cinch it or leave it open for venting. I have played around with putting an elastic cinch or drawstring on the bottom but it just never works out that good because to get a good fit you would have to retailor the cut. I usually try to redo the collar a bit so it closes better using two small pieces of velcro again.

I swear the new green color looks and feels like those old vinyl kitchen table cloths.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
eVent on 12/27/2007 21:31:04 MST Print View

The guy that you are supposed to talk to about eVent at the company will not be back until next Wed and I am just going to give him a piece of my mind about the fabric and what it is being used for. The guy I talked to yesterday pretty much summed it up by saying that they are keeping a lid on the usage just for marketing purposes. When I asked a lower guy how much was on a usual 20x20 roll and how much it costs to figure out how much these companies are gouging, he was unable to tell me so I am hoping the big chief will be able to. It would just be nice to get made items from a custom worker without it being astronomical or not possible.

Maybe on my next road trip I will stop by KC when I know these guys will be there just so I can give them a piece face to face.

Edited by bpeugh on 12/27/2007 21:35:22 MST.

Roleigh Martin
(marti124) - MLife

Locale: Moderator-JohnMuirTrail Yahoo Group
Re: Looking for a rain gear compromise on 12/27/2007 22:40:14 MST Print View

Brett, the North Face Hyvent Diad jacket in XL size is only $119, with free shipping, at

I just bought this -- thanks for your referral. I looked around to get the weight, it is only 8.5 oz, definitely in the range I like, better than the SD Thru Hiker which at XL is around 11 oz and a lot more expensive.

Edited by marti124 on 12/27/2007 22:41:36 MST.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Zealot on 12/28/2007 12:04:06 MST Print View

The zealot is looking like it is the only one that will fit but how well does PacLite breathe?

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Zealot on 12/28/2007 12:55:53 MST Print View

Goretex Paclite -- mediocre. Should be better than Golite Alchemy, but not nearly as breathable as eVENT.

Not that you asked, but I'd rather wait for something with eVENT to go on sale -- or look around Ebay.