GoLite is no longer in business, and the Virga Jacket has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best waterproof jackets for 2020.
Historic Range: $47.97-$80.00
Reviewers Paid: $80.00
Historic Range: $39.98-$79.95
I have recently made the effort to go light with my gear. So I researched and studied to get the best equipment. I soon found the GoLite Virga rain jacket and hastily made the purchase, finding much confidence with gear bearing the GoLite name.
I just completed a 55 mile Appalachian Trail hike in Nantahala NF. It began to rain steadily the fourth day so I eagerly put on my new jacket. For the first 30 minutes I felt like the smartest guy in my group, having the ultimate in lightweight gear. But after that half hour I began to be disappointed, because as I perspired, the jacket would not breathe. It was more convenient to go without a jacket and allow my clothes to dry out when the rain stopped.
Maybe I am wrong but based on the situation I experienced I have decided to return the jacket and continue searching. Please don't get me wrong, I still respect GoLite and consider light gear to be the way to go, but this jacket failed when I needed it.
Price Paid: $80
Very good jacket! Good for rain protection or as a wind jacket. Lightweight and easy to pack down small.
This jacket can get a little damp on the inside if you are hiking as all waterproof jacket can. Adjust ventilation with the zipper if it is not raining.
Update: September 10, 2011
Follow up to 10-07-07 review
I have found that in a heavy rain I get completely soaked on my chest. It is because of the tiny piece of fabric covering the zipper up front. I never thought about it until I got soaked but now I think it is strange flaw from a garment maker.
I have to buy something else now as I won't be carrying a jacket that doesn't do its job, no matter how light weight.
Just completed a 113 mile trip on the Continental Divide Trail in Colorado in 4 1/2 days. The Virga was worn every evening in camp as a windshell and during the rainstorms. I was impressed with its breathability and packability.
On day 4 I got caught on an exposed pass by a driving rain storm. The Virga kept me dry from the cold rain. There was only a slight amount of condensation inside due to no pit zips and the fact I had to keep the zipper zipped all the way up... and I was hiking pretty dang fast. But, the amount of condensation was very negligible.
For those folks looking to save weight on their rain gear, the Virga is the way to go.