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help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket
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Lorcar lorcar
(lorcar) - F
help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket on 07/19/2013 07:20:53 MDT Print View

hi guys
i had a Marmot Mica size M which I was pretty happy about: i used it for summer trips in Indonesia, where it was very useful for motorbiking early in the morning or sudden rain.
Previously I had a North Face which was also very light and waterproof, which i used a lot in a 3 month trip to Brazil, trekking in the Amazon etc. Then it delaminated, and TNF gave me a credit for it and got something else.

The Marmot Mica got stolen, and I am now after a light light light waterproof jacket which I could use both here in the city and traveling around.
My desiderata (dreaming of)
- packable
- foldable hood
- waterproof
- armpit zip
- somehow durable

I cannot find the Mica anymore here where I live in Italy. Today I tried the Patagonia Torrentshell, which it seems it has ALL my desiderata.
Then I read some review and people complain its not really waterproof... it's also cheaper than Marmot, but I feel it a bit "noisy"...
I tried the Marmot Essence as well, and oh lord how light it is! like the Mica. Once you go so light, it's hard to get back.

Point is I am going to California in August, and I know there are many nice stores like REI or others, and MICA store in San Francisco as well. But I go to SF after touring Yosemite/Bryce/etc,
so maybe I'd need the jckt before that.

Would you buy the Torrentshell? or wait to be in the US and get a better wider choice?
any suggestion is highly appreciated

thanks a lot in advance

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket on 07/19/2013 07:48:07 MDT Print View

Perhaps buy a DriDucks jacket until you can find what you want?

Josh Brock

Locale: Outside
Re: help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket on 07/19/2013 09:04:42 MDT Print View

I place more stock in durability for my rain shell. but I like my Arctyrex Alpha sv...

I dont know what your definition of durable is but the Mica and essence In my opinion are not durable nor do they have the feature you wanted. I think the paty is the closet, out of what you presented, to you criteria.

I think those are laminates right???? not sure. But I know that durability of laminates when used with a pack over long periods of time has been brought into question.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket on 07/19/2013 09:31:12 MDT Print View

If you liked the Mica, you will probably like the Essence. Very similar jackets.

Max Dilthey
(mdilthey) - M

Mica Not Durable on 07/19/2013 09:43:33 MDT Print View

My Marmot Super Mica tore along the shoulder seam in the middle of a deep-winter camping trip. It was my hiking wind shell.

I replaced it with a Patagonia Super Cell, worked great.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: help choosing a light waterproof summer jacket on 07/19/2013 09:57:20 MDT Print View

Remember the OP is looking for a lightweight summer jacket. My Essence is a couple years old and has been on backpacking trips, urban use, and packed on many business trips. Still in good shape.

Charlie Murphy
(baltocharlie) - F

Locale: MAryland
Mica, meh! on 07/19/2013 11:19:07 MDT Print View

I use a Mica. Lightweight, packs small but eventually wets through. During a deluge it can wet through quickly. I'm surprised so many like it. I carry it for daily bike commutes when cycling for 10 miles one can survive a 'wet-through'. I take it on summer bike tours and summer backpacking when hypothermia is not a real threat. Other seasons I get a beefier jacket.

Lorcar lorcar
(lorcar) - F
thanks on 07/22/2013 04:16:52 MDT Print View

thanks everyone
at the end I foudn the Torrentshell at 98euro, and bought it.
But the day after I saw the SuperCell (Patagonia) and The North Face Leonidas: the latter blew my mind, superlight and stretchy, and not as clammy as Torrentshell

The only problem is that they are both around 100 euro more than the Torrentshell, thus I think I will stick with it...

Lorcar lorcar
(lorcar) - F
Leonidas on 07/24/2013 09:18:14 MDT Print View

do you guys have any direct experience with TNF Leonidas jacket? i read some reviews not so great to say the least

Brian Lewis
(brianle) - F

Locale: Pacific NW
How light? How waterproof? on 07/24/2013 10:59:45 MDT Print View

Such a variety of jacket options. My OR Helium lasted, I thought, surprisingly well on a thru-hike in 2011. Fabric is still in fine shape; it's a good idea to reapply the DWR after a lot of use if you want to retain a decent percentage of "waterproofness". If you're talking hydrostatic head details, I'm sure there are better choices, but it served me as well as I think much else would have in wind driven rain and snow, hailstorms, etc.

However, the zipper got wonky after my trip was over. I worked on the zipper, just could never get it to close reliably again. I finally contacted them yesterday and they (Outdoor Research) are replacing this "retails for $150" jacket for free under what they called something like their "infinity guarantee" program. I just clean and ship the jacket to them, which I'll do today, and they're sending me a brand new OR Helium II for free --- I just pay for shipping my old jacket back to them. The only possible downside is that the color choices available just now don't include the ones I would prefer. Oh well! (function over fashion)

So, while I wish they sold these with somewhat more durable zippers, I did hike for months in this and on a tough trail. It's lighter than the other options I think that have been mentioned on this thread, and packs very small.

Just use the zipper with care.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: How light? How waterproof? on 07/24/2013 11:25:51 MDT Print View

Zipper Drift -

Replacements are the best way to go. But...

Often the zipper slider becomes worn internally from abrasion, with the "tunnel height" becoming to high to do its job.

If you want to attempt a quick fix try squeezing the slider with a pair of plyers. This fix is much more applicable to a large zipper like on a sleeping bag than on the "micro" on the Helium.

....end drift