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Jim

Lightweight hardshell

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My ten year old hard shells just are not cutting it anymore and I need a suggestions. Looking for a lightweight hardshell I can use in a variety of condiitons from cragging to a week in the Pickets this summer. Looked at the Microburst (16 oz) and the Specter (9 oz) by Patagucci. Others? I have a thin softshell windshirt thing that is good for being spit on but need something I can put over it when it turns nasty (like half of my trips!). Don't want to get wet, don't want to get exhaused carrying that 4 extra ounces either. Help!!

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Marmot Precip.

 

There are others like it made from the new generation of "lightweight" gore-tex. It will keep you dry in snow and all rain conditions except a noreaster deluge. I've tried several (got 2 stolen!) and I like Marmot's the best. They have a few different styles. You can find them for $70-80 new if you look around.

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Marmot Precip.

 

 

Ditto. I keep it stuffed in the bottom of my pack and only pull it out when things really require waterproofness, then turn around and walk back to the car.

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I put enough wear on my shells that I decided to spend an extra four ounces and got the Microburst. And I'm quite happy with it. thumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gif

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It's as breathable as any of these things. What I like are the pit zips, the simple design, and the AWESOME hood. The hood is why I bought it.

 

Oh, and it comes in orange. thumbs_up.gif

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Just a warning, those 2.5 layer thingies like the Precip and others work really well if you are not being too active, but don't breathe as well as good ol' Gore-tex.

 

Still, they don't cost or weigh a lot, and work pretty good.

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The Arcteryx Sirrus SL is *the* lightweight hardshell. I have been totally impressed wtih this thing. I got rid of my precip because it didn't breath well enough at all.

 

Also, Pro Mountain Sports has a very nice montbell hardshell. It's worth a look. Very high on features and low on weight. It looked like a very quality piece. thumbs_up.gif

Edited by JoshK

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I'd agree on the Sirrus SL. I've heard that, from many people, that I shouldn't expect it to last long with harness wear and the such, but I've had no problems. It is a bit short, though. I've considered, if I were to wear this one out, that I might replace it with a Theta SL; same jacket, but a bit longer, and a couple more pockets. Only two more ounces, to boot.

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Wow, that Theta SL is a sweet looking coat. I dont think they made that when I got my cirrus.

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That Theta tips the scales at 24 oz. Will check out the Sirus and the Microburst - thanks for all the advice. From the forecast I could give it a try this weekdend. cry.gif

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Go Lite makes some disgustingly light hardshells. Don't know how well they'll stand up to serious abuse though.

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I have a golite Reach jacket (currently on www.sierratradingpost.com for $79) that weights 10 oz. Very lightweight and compact which is all I wanted. It rides the bottom of the pack just fine. I finally wore the dang thing last weekend as I left my softshell in the truck and we were getting some heavy wet snow. I paid $29 for mine on some clearance internet sale.

 

I'd be wary of this one if you actually intend to wear it much, the fabric doesen't seem to be ready for much abuse. I take it only as insurance incase my softshell gets wetted out, which hasn't happend yet. If you're planning to actually depend on the raincoat, you might look at something built a little beefier. Oh yeah, the Reach has a funky cut, long arms so when you "reach" over your head, your wrists don't pop out. The rest of the time, you have this bunch of fabric at your wrist which is not noticable if you're wearing a glove with a gauntlet but anoying otherwise. The hood is big and floppy, fits good with a helmet, irritating without one you almost need to wear a baseball cap to keep the hood from flopping down over your eyes. Big vent across the back and 2 tiny napoleon pockets, big enough for a set of keys or pack of gu.

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That Theta tips the scales at 24 oz. Will check out the Sirus and the Microburst - thanks for all the advice. From the forecast I could give it a try this weekdend. cry.gif

 

All the info I found on it says 14 to 15oz. Where did you see 24oz??

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Thanks for the correction - I was looking at the wrong jacket - Theta AR. The SL is around 14.5 oz. Nice looking but pricey.

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I used to have the Arc'teryx minuteman SL it was a sweet jacket. Nice thing was the stowable hood. the length was perfect and it was very light. MEC has some very nice shells. I think they are comparable to Arc'teryx. I have the zenith (26oz, less if the hood is taken off, even less if you cut the arms off!)a little heavier but it does it all. So yeah....not sure what my point was.....its not light, nevermind cantfocus.gif

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PreCip - I'm on my second one... For occasion use - they rock. And at $99 or so - you don't sweat kicking them around like you would the Arc'tryx stuff. PreCip is my choice for everything you just described. Light, h2o proof for when things turn nasty and the soft shell doesn't cut it anymore.

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Also, Pro Mountain Sports has a very nice montbell hardshell. It's worth a look. Very high on features and low on weight. It looked like a very quality piece. thumbs_up.gif

 

I had one of these for testing for a few months. It's the real deal (Gore-Tex XCR) with a super duper light shell fabric. Hood, big chest vents, no handwarmer pockets, 11.8 ounces for a Mens M. Very nice piece. I don't ice climb, but I think the cut would be nice for that. Wore it in lots of diff weather. Unfortunately MB only has it in Mens, and it is cut for the athletic male body, so, well, it didn't fit me very well. If they ever make a Wns version of that jacket, I'd buy one for sure. thumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gif

 

One Caveat on the jacket, which BTW is called the Torrent Flier. It's $289. hellno3d.gif

 

EDIT: I thought PMS had this one, but I don't see it on the website.

Edited by marylou

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PreCip - I'm on my second one... For occasion use - they rock. And at $99 or so - you don't sweat kicking them around like you would the Arc'tryx stuff. PreCip is my choice for everything you just described. Light, h2o proof for when things turn nasty and the soft shell doesn't cut it anymore.

 

Especially since it's under $110 I will check this out.

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Jim, I tried on a THETA SL a few months ago at REI and it throughly impressed me. Arc' Teryx's WP rubber zippers are absolutely thee best in the biz. They did not jam once (unlike the Versalite Montbell's did) and ran as smooth as if they were greased. Ditto for the pit-zips too. The chest pockets and particulary the Hood design is superb.

 

My buddy & I asked the kind REI gal, to remove all the paper info. and security tags for us and it weighed 16-ounces on the nose for a size L. Impressive indeed.

 

www.hiltonstentcity.com has been quietly advertising in the the classified section of Backpacker mag for about a decade now and they are selling THETA SL Jkts for $265.00. That's their 'standard' price, which is $60.00 less than the retail price!

 

This one is on to to-buy-list for sure.

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