Patagonia Direct-X Jacket
Fabric: H2No HB (or something like that...)
Price Paid: $350 or so
Well, if was finally time to replace the Lowe Alping Flash Jacket I've used for climbing, hiking, raincoat, etc. for almost 10 years. The thing wets out hopelessly now even after washing in that Nikwax stuff that's supposed to reapply a DWR. And, it's pretty dinged up with small tears, scrapes etc. It's been a good jacket; but it's time for something new.
After much research, I've purchased a Patagonia Direct-X Jacket. I've only used it on one trip since I bought it, and so far, I think I've hit the bull's eye.
It uses Patagonia's own waterproof/breathable fabric (similar to Gore-tex). I believe it may not be as breathable as Gore-tex, but in my experience the difference is negligible. It is completely waterproof, and the DWR is great. Not even the slightest trace of wetting-through. The fabric has a nice soft feel to it -- when you're climbing, it never feels stiff or feels like it's in the way.
However, it's the cut and the details that really make this jacket. It's designed for climbers -- it has a shorter length down to the waist that works better tucked into a climbing harness. The sleeves are long and don't ride up when you extend your hands in the air. The one-pull adjustable hood is really nicely designed - although I don't like the way it rolls down into a collar.
It's light, comfortable, weather-proof, breathable. Two big thumbs up.
Fabric: h2no storm hb
Price Paid: $595 cdn
Have had this jacket for only a few months but here are my initial impressions.
love the short cut
keeps rain out
seems to breath as well as my old 3-ply gore-tex (although Patagonia itself claims that the h2no storm hb doesn't breath as well as even "classic gore-tex")
easy to use zippers (even with mittens)
i don't like the hood very much. doesn't turn with your head as well as i would have thought -- single drawcord only seems to pull hood away from the eyes and increase periferal vision, but it doesn't feel expecially snugged down so as not to blow off.
fortunately I was never a huge hood fan, however it is worth noting.
I do also wish the jacket came with an internal water bottle pocket holder.
Overall I am happy with the jacket and would buy it again.
Price Paid: around 200 EUR
I bought the jacket last year (it was a sale price) and I tested it this winter. It does the job well it is completely wind- and water- proof and very tear resistant. The shape is the thing I love the most because it is makes possible to climb without any obstructions and it is long enaugh to put it under the climbing belt. It looks good. In combination with the hood it makes a real bomb shell all-weather protection for upper body.
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