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Mountain Hardwear Quark Jacket

rated 4.5 of 5 stars

The Quark Jacket has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best waterproof jackets for 2023.

photo: Mountain Hardwear Quark Jacket waterproof jacket

This jacket is a full feature ultralight shell. At 10 oz it has pit zips, breathable waterproof membrane, laminated seams (MH calls "zweld"), a waterproof breathable membrane (conduit), and pockets in the right places.

What you should know -

At 10oz it's obviously not woven out of steel. It's not Bomb Proof as people like to say It's a thin material. Strong and very stretchy, but thin. The Quark is a hardshell, but the material feels kind of like silk. It's made out of a laminated nylon webbing material. If you need it for constant rugged thistle coated off trail hardcore backcountry hiking, (wow that's a mouthful) the Quark probably isn't right for the job. If you're like me, and you already have the right soft shell base layer mix well you don't need it for that.

It comes out on occasion when the sh*t hits the fan - Bingo Bango time to set up camp and haul ass you have a full feature shell. Packs to the size of a grapefruit. Those cubic inches are in short supply! If you do the math and rain or sleet is worth 10 oz, well it's well spent on the Quark.

Also I wear it around town - it looks kick ass. In spring or summer over a cotton tee shirt, in fall over a synthetic shirt, heck maybe towards winter over a fleece - perfect! Oh what's that, it's going to drop into the 30's tonight with sleet! - not a prob just add a pair of thermals (silk or synthetic hmm).

It's a great jacket.

Now onto the hood - there are complaints about it being overbearing if you don't have a helmet on. It can be fixed.

With the cinch cord it snags on a baseball hat perfectly so if you wear a hat not a problem. If you aren't wearing a hat simply fold the bill under towards your forehead cinch and bingo bango the hood is snug and your peripheral vision is great.

Order up a size unless you only wish to wear in summer over a t shirt, or you think you're a hot tight cloths fitting euro fashion freak show. Seriously if you are a medium get a large and so on. With the right clothes this jacket is like a cherry on a Sunday.

You can go lighter if you want to lose features like pits zips, check out Outdoor Research Zealot at 7.7 oz. You can even go down to 4 oz if you want breathable water resistant. Heck for 19 oz you can have an Arcterx Theta AR and jump out a plane into a war zone, during the dead of winter, in a blizzard, take out the enemy, and set up camp without leaving a scratch on it. However it'll take up at least twice the space and weighs twice as much, and trust me it's serious overkill in weather above 40 - 45 degrees.

Point is for my three season needs it's perfect. Figure out what your needs are, and if you have room for 10 oz in three seasons, the Quark Jacket may be the way to go.

Fabric: tricot laminated in Conduit (laminated webbing)
Fill: NA
Price Paid: $140

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Price Historic Range: $79.98-$224.95
Reviewers Paid: $140.00
Price Historic Range: $69.95-$225.00

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