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Topic: Down puffy+Rainshell, or waterproof jacket?, Winter options< Next Oldest | Next Newest >
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 04 2012, 10:20 pm  Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm currently making a decision on some new cold weather gear.
I am thinking, either packing a puffy down jacket, and a hard rain shell, or:
A waterproof snowboard style jacket.
In my area, it often starts out rain and turns to snow, so waterproofing is a necessity for winter hiking.
Any thoughts?
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 04 2012, 10:27 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I'm a firm believer in the hard shell vs. a "do it all". I can't tell you how many times I have run into different conditions which warrant a different combo. This is mainly when hiking. Strong winds but temps above freezing equals hiking in hard shell with a base layer for wicking only (don't want extra insulation). Blizzard conditions around 0 equals, mid fleece plus base layer. Around camp, add down jacket underneath but no fleece. Night time sitting around outside, everything gets thrown on. In the morning when we first take off, I'll often have base layer, another base layer, and a mid layer under my jacket and then shed them as I warm up. Downhill doesn't exactly warm me up very fast so sometimes can take a mile before I'm down to my base layer but I don't want to take off my shell unless I know I'm going to be dry that day. Pitzips open and just my glove shells with a wicking base underneath means hiking in comfort and yet no freezing when we stop for a break. I just simply zip up the pitzips and I'm good to go.

What happens if you dampen your all-in-one jacket? You're screwed. It will ice up and be useless so you'll have to be extra cautious with temperature management. If I dampen something, I can always throw on a different mid-layer underneath my hard shell and be back in business.

Also, I like that conditions can shift from rain to snow and I can adapt easily.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 4:07 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Sweating into a down jacket sucks.  It renders it heavy and useless.  At least fleece is hydrophobic.  As Tigger says, a hard shell over a wicking base layer is pretty effective when you're active in low-ish temps.  Excessive sweating from the inside is just as bad as soaking from the outside.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 7:17 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Layers.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 8:34 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Ski and snowboard jackets are just that. They don't work well for true winter backpacking. For that you want a good shell, with fleece to put under it if needed. Fleece will transfer sweat which you will be making no matter how cold it is.

Down is for in camp. Put your down on over a damp base layer or fleece and your body heat will dry it. (Fleece glove or glove liners go in the inside chest pocket of the down to dry them too.)


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 10:22 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Yes, layers for everything, including gloves, liners, and hats.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 10:54 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 05 2012, 7:17 am)
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Layers.

Ditto.  Only way to go.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 11:13 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Based on your description, I'm assuming that you're mostly concerned about temperatures in the 30-40 degree range (during the day)?

If it's warm enough to be rain, once I start moving, I'm pretty quickly down to a mid-weight baselayer and a shell.  I would roast in a ski jacket.  I've been wearing 200-230 weight merino baselayers in winter.   The puffy/insulation layer goes on in camp.

On cold but dry days, I prefer the baselayer plus a fleece like an R1.  But that plus a shell isn't warm enough for me in camp when it's around freezing.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 11:56 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Thanks for the feedback.
I've always used a layering system, usually a thermal, synthetic t-shirt, outer layer (usually fleece or a long synthetic t-shirt) and an outer layer (usually a rain shell)
I was looking into other options, but it seems like I'm doing the best thing I can.
I've never used a down, so I was pretty curious as to what people experienced with those.
Yeah, usually winter hiking is 30-45 during the day. It easily hits 15-30 at night though, hence the curiousness about the down.  

Thanks much. :)
I think the only change I'm going to make is picking up a down jacket for camp. That's usually where I break out the snowboard jacket, but down is so much lighter.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 1:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(treelinebackpacker @ Oct. 05 2012, 11:56 am)
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but down is so much lighter.

And more compressible, durable and comfortable not to mention its high weight to warmth ratio.  Great stuff if you use and treat it correctly.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 2:38 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(Montanalonewolf @ Oct. 05 2012, 4:17 am)
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Layers.

^this^

Flexibility for changing conditions is a must.

On the item itself front: look at down vests perhaps?  If nothing else since they're simpler construction they can be cheaper even within a moderately expensive line like Feathered Friends or Western Mountaineering. Both of whom make high end down outdoor products.

http://www.featheredfriends.com/Picasso....st.html

Get that insulation over your core for maximum effect.

ETA: They've got a big sale right now:
http://www.featheredfriendsretail.com/japaandac.html
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 3:39 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

How do you guys feel about this as an outer layer?
Columbia, Freefall II jacket
I found one local for just 70 bucks.
I also snagged a nice fleece puffy for 36 bucks. No joke.
Feathered friends makes some ace stuff, but I'm on a tight budget right now, at least until the first of the year.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 3:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(treelinebackpacker @ Oct. 05 2012, 2:39 pm)
QUOTE
How do you guys feel about this as an outer layer?
Columbia, Freefall II jacket
I found one local for just 70 bucks.
I also snagged a nice fleece puffy for 36 bucks. No joke.
Feathered friends makes some ace stuff, but I'm on a tight budget right now, at least until the first of the year.

ugh, that's a heavy shell jacket.

When people here are talking about layering hardshells, they're talking about uninsulated ones.

Like this (at the same retailer)
http://www.nevisport.com/pr/7081/epic-jacket-mens-

Its' only purpose it to block rain or wind.  Insulating duties are taken by your other layers.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 3:58 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Well $79 bucks for a FF vest is pretty good.

In general a ski jacket isn't going to be the best design for backcountry use. Different design goals which is why it's got built-in insulation: i.e. NOT flexible to differing conditions. Columbia probably makes back country usage items as well.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 4:28 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Here is a cheap down insulation layer - http://www.landsend.com/pp/mens-down-jacket~228895_59.html

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 5:10 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(treelinebackpacker @ Oct. 05 2012, 3:39 pm)
QUOTE
How do you guys feel about this as an outer layer?
Columbia, Freefall II jacket
I found one local for just 70 bucks.
I also snagged a nice fleece puffy for 36 bucks. No joke.
Feathered friends makes some ace stuff, but I'm on a tight budget right now, at least until the first of the year.

Umm, I think a "fleece puffy" is an oxymoron.  ???

OK, on a budget, consider:
DriDucks for rain:
http://www.froggtoggs.com/#outerwear/driducks/DS1204/

For the insulation, you're going to have to get lucky for down under $100.  Lands End sales are good.  Also, if you have a Costco near you, they currently have UL down jackets for under $100.  They're styled like the Patagonia down sweater.  Find someone who's a member to take you.

Otherwise, backcountry.com can be a good source.  Check for Stoic down (it's their own brand).  They recently had some down anoraks that were a good deal.  Promo code 'TAKE20' for 20% off non-sale items.

GoLite also has very reasonably priced high-quality outerwear, imo.  A few shells under $100 and down layers just above.

If down proves to be too expensive, consider a jacket with Primoloft One or Climashield insulation.  They perform really well in the mildly cold temps that you're talking about.

Oh, and you should seriously consider browsing the Gear Swap forum on backpackinglight.com for something used.  A lot of people will be "reviewing" their winter gear right about now and replacing items.  You can get a much higher qualify used jacket.


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 5:34 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE


(TigerFan @ Oct. 05 2012, 5:10 pm)
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Oh, and you should seriously consider browsing the Gear Swap forum on backpackinglight.com for something used.  A lot of people will be "reviewing" their winter gear right about now and replacing items.  You can get a much higher qualify used jacket.

+1 on Gear Swap, I've seen some good jackets go fairly cheap over the past couple weeks.  backcountry.com has a size large, dark navy Montbell Ultralight Down Jacket on clearance right now for $123.71 with free 2 day shipping.  I have the hooded version and it has served me well in low temps hanging around camp.  And if anyone notices I've made a couple posts recently for backcountry.com, no I do not work there, I am simply a supporter.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 5:53 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

For kinda cold:
REI Sahara Long-Sleeve T-Shirt
Mountain Hardwear Monkey Man Lite fleece hoodie
Montbell Thermawrap Pro jacket
Westcomb Cruiser LT eVent jacket

Will have packed a mid-weight or expedition weight base layer depending on how cold I think it will get.

Mountain Hardwear Chillwave Down Parka if it is really going to get cold.  Never tried to fit it under the Westcomb jacket.  I suspect it won’t fit very well without compressing the heck out of the down rendering it much less effective.  

None of the above is remotely budget minded.  But it is warm.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 6:01 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

here's LLBean's 650 fill for $99:
http://www.llbean.com/llb....ubrnd=0


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 7:04 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Someone on BPL posted about this $60 down jacket at PC Penny.  I haven't seen it but it's interesting enough to investigate:
http://www.jcpenney.com/dotcom....al=null


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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 7:11 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

"fleece puffy"
Oh, ha ha. I meant down puffy. I had fleece on the mind, as REI has one I was looking at.
The Columbia felt pretty thin when I saw it in a local store, but I didn't really pay too much attention. I also snowboard, so it was a tempting offer. I'll probably still grab it for that purpose.  
I have an quality Outer shell now, Columbia, pretty breathable and all, but I'm not impressed by it's ability to stop wind is the thing. I'm a slim guy, and wind cuts right through me.
The Mountain Hardware jacket might fit the bill nicely. About what I was looking for.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 7:23 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

The link I sent you was a for a down jacket rated at 0 for $49.99 (marked down from $99.99) and there's a code "Leaves" with pin "9876" for 40% off your highest price item that looks like it also works in combo. If you throw in something else to make your purchase $50 or more, you'll also get free shipping. The average rating on that jacket is extraordinary 4.5 with 51 reviews. Impressive for a "cheap" jacket. The only "Meh" is that it is only 600 fill.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 8:42 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I was taking a look at that one, it almost seems too warm for the area. 0-25 degrees? I suppose if you were just hanging around camp (likely scenario) that would probably work out pretty well.
That's a pretty slick deal.  
Also notable is the water resistant finish.
Top of my list for down right now.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 05 2012, 9:49 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I would not be concerned about it being "too warm". Down regulates temperature like the insulation in your house. Your house doesn't get too warm in winter. You just hold in the heat better.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 07 2012, 8:18 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

I dont know if anyone is interested, but I went to JCP last night to look at that Down Puffer Jacket. They come in five colors, have 650 fill, and come with a stuff sack made from the same nylon as the jacket. There pretty light, would work good as a liner or on there own when its dry.

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(rorak @ Oct. 07 2012, 5:18 pm)
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I dont know if anyone is interested, but I went to JCP last night to look at that Down Puffer Jacket. They come in five colors, have 650 fill, and come with a stuff sack made from the same nylon as the jacket. There pretty light, would work good as a liner or on there own when its dry.

Nice...It even looks like it has decent loft.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 07 2012, 9:07 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

^Thanks for that, I saw TigerFan's link to it and went to the page but does not give the fill power (usually a red flag). 650 fill is decent.

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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 08 2012, 1:04 am Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Also look at First Ascent Serrano Primaloft synthetic jacket.
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PostIcon Posted on: Oct. 08 2012, 2:14 pm Skip to the previous post in this topic. Skip to the next post in this topic. Ignore posts   QUOTE

Layers like everyone else has suggested.

I generally always carry a hardshell with me when hiking.

Depending on the temps/weather,  I usually layer with a down sweater or patagonia nano puff and then have a capilene or marino wool shirt under that.

If it gets really cold, that when I breakout the midweight down parka that has an eVent shell.

So if I were you I'd save up and buy a top of the line (non insulated) hardshell that will last. Or as other people have said, look for something secondhand. (I have several jackets that were second hand that you couldn't tell they have even been used. In full disclosure, I'm a bit of a jacket slut/collector. Have more hardshells than I need)

Just a note on the second hand jackets, there is a ton of knock off gear out there, so buyer beware.
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(JRinGeorgia @ Oct. 07 2012, 9:07 pm)
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^Thanks for that, I saw TigerFan's link to it and went to the page but does not give the fill power (usually a red flag). 650 fill is decent.

I dont know why JCP doesnt have any info on the web, maybe there trying to get people to go into there stores.
Im not to familiar with puffers, are they normally really thin? I guess its about an inch thick, maybe a little less.


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