REI OXT Airflyte Running Jacket
This jacket is an excellent insurance policy for those…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $120
This jacket is an excellent insurance policy for those wet days on the trail. Lightweight and breathable, there's no reason to leave it at home.
- Very breathable
- Great looking
- Mesh venting prone to slight leaking in downpour
I've tried so many waterproof/breathable jackets over the years, and have just gotten frustrated. I sweat a LOT when hiking hard, and am still waiting to find that jacket that is really "breathable." And I'm just not willing to spend $300-500 for a jacket, no matter how hyped the xxxx-xxx pro-shell laminate is.
The Airflyte eVent jacket turned out to the just the ticket for me. The fit of the jacket is great, with lots of room for flexibility, without feeling baggy. There is plenty of room to layer underneath if needed. I opted for XXL, but in hindsight probably should've gotten the XL.
The eVent laminate is by far, the most breathable I've ever tried. Waterproofing is excellent, and I didn't get any wetter than I would have without it, in dry and warm conditions. The inside of the jacket is comfortable in wet conditions, even when wearing a short sleeve shirt... none of that sticky feeling here.
Being that this is designed primarily as a "running" jacket, it does not have a hood. This is fine for me, because I usually don't use a hood anyway, but prefer a hat to keep my neck cool and vented.
REI has foregone pitzips for mesh underarm panels, which stretch to the hem, which feel like the weakest part of the jacket. They really are longer than they need to be, and in a real downpour, some rain does get through. But it's not enough that I wouldn't buy the jacket.
I've had the jacket for a year now, and used it many times, and it still looks new. It has been on day hikes, backpack trips, and to the grocery store. I anticipate many years of good service from it, and highly recommend it if you can find one.