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Short-Change-Hero
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So mother nature has been seriously off her rocker this year. Last couple weeks we have had constant wind in the afternoon/evening with gusts upwards of 20-30+mph. Usually we can get above this wind and be alright for a while but as of late, when this is happening there is a small cold front coming in.

It would be nice to have a small, packable lightweight windbreaker/rain jacket that could fit in my Evoc HipPack 3L but doesn't cost an arm and a leg.

Anyone got recommendations for something like this that is less than $100?
 

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I'd look at roadie gear, as they're design to go into a jersey pocket and have a longer drop tail coverage.

I'd recommend an ultralight wind vest instead of a jacket. Preferably with some kind of ventilation on the back or sides. Unless you need some rain protection (which for less than $100 is going to be crap anyway), a vest is going to give you the most versatility, as it doesn't overheat nearly as easily as a jacket, while keeping your core warm and blocking wind. If you need warmth for your arms, get a pair of arm warmer sleeves. Both are highly useful pieces of gear that I carry for much of the year. Probably could get both for under 100 with some searching.
 

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Short-Change-Hero
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Discussion Starter #3
I'd look at roadie gear, as they're design to go into a jersey pocket and have a longer drop tail coverage.

I'd recommend an ultralight wind vest instead of a jacket. Preferably with some kind of ventilation on the back or sides. Unless you need some rain protection (which for less than $100 is going to be crap anyway), a vest is going to give you the most versatility, as it doesn't overheat nearly as easily as a jacket, while keeping your core warm and blocking wind. If you need warmth for your arms, get a pair of arm warmer sleeves. Both are highly useful pieces of gear that I carry for much of the year. Probably could get both for under 100 with some searching.
That's actually a good point, never thought of that. I do have a pair of arm warmers that have been collecting dust in my sock drawer for a few years now but never thought of going the way of the vest. Really the main premise of this is to add a "slight" extra layer between me and the cold/cool wind on days like yesterday. We were riding and climbing for a good 45 minutes, started out ok but once we got to the top of our climb the sun had gone completely behind the clouds and the clouds had fully rolled in dropping the temp. Mind you we had also climbed from the city/town at 4500' to the top which is between 6000' and 6500' so the temp had dropped slightly just from the elevation gain. Then add in the temp drop from being in the trees and we probably saw a good 10-15* temp drop. Hence the need for something a little extra.

I will check out riding vests for sure. I realize that good rain jackets under $100 will more than likely not be lightweight, packable or good. But the rain portion is more for those odd occasions like last week were we got sprinkled on the last 30 minutes of our ride as we raced the storm front down the hill.

By the way I live in the Western Sierras in Carson City, NV so this time of year we normally get the afternoon thunderstorms that come through with lots of wind. But for some reason this year has been quite a bit cooler/colder than in previous years.
 

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Asked the same question a few months back in this form.

https://forums.mtbr.com/apparel-protection/packable-breathable-jacket-recommendations-1096064.html


A lot of people recommended the Patagonia Houdini but it was a no go for me due to lack of venting.
I ended up picking up the Patagonia rain shadow stretch jacket. Huge pit vents and soft stretchy material make it comfy to wear all day and just as important packs away into my Dakine 2L hip pack with the rest of my necessities. It retails for about $200 USD but you can find them on eBay or elsewhere for half that.
 

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As summer comes the prices should drop on these. US Army Goretex jackets. I've found them as cheap as $40 and they are great. Only 18 ounces, pack easy and are quite durable. Not the prettiest but I don't see the point of buying high priced stuff that might be crashed and will be treated rather poorly. Although I think the MSRP on these is around $280

https://www.ebay.com/itm/US-Militar...887324?hash=item4680ef749c:g:Q40AAOSwsh5bUKKN

Engineered for rain, high wind, and extreme cold conditions, the lightweight Gen III ECWCS Level 6 jacket made with GORE-TEX fabric deliver unsurpassed comfort in a broad range of weather conditions.

The durably waterproof, windproof, and breathable GORE-TEX fabric keeps you comfortable by allowing moisture vapor to escape from your garment, so you and your clothing stay drier. Increased breathability provides comfort keeping you drier longer further enhancing operational effectiveness. These lightweight garments are extremely packable, which allows you to move around and react to changing field conditions more quickly.

The Gen III ECWCS Level 6 jacket and trouser is 50 percent lighter than the previous version and can be worn individually or in combination with other levels of Gen III ECWCS. GORE-TEX fabric maintains its outstanding protection over time, even after exposure to JP-8, DEET, petroleum, oils, and lubricants. The jacket and trouser also include n-IR signature reduction technology that is durable for the life of the product.
 

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I use a vest that's windproof in the front and has a mesh back. It doesn't trap sweat and doesn't inflate when you partially open the zipper. Easily fits in a jersey pocket. I'll pair it with arm warmers if needed, which fit in another jersey pocket.
 

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Short-Change-Hero
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Discussion Starter #7
I think the answer for me is actually going to be the acquiring of a vest to the pack. I have a Sierra Trading Post nearby so I may stop and check them out to see what I can come up with. In this instance the usage of the vest plus/minus the arm covers is probably the direction and answer I am looking for. Stuff that is light and easily packable but still will provide adequate protection for when Mother Nature is off her meds.
 

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So your question just made me laugh.... because I have an evoc 3L hip pack and just got this:
https://www.amazon.com/Endura-Xtrac...=1558045845&s=gateway&sr=8-1-spons&th=1&psc=1

Fits in the pack great! It fits perfectly in one of the bottle pockets on the side. You can also stuff it in with the bladder pretty easily if you take it out of the little stuff sack.

And I really dig the jacket. Cheap so I can tear it up mountain biking. Good cycling cut, and I like wearing it. Already served me well on a big ride in the middle of the mountains when storms rolled in and the temps dropped.
 

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Short-Change-Hero
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Discussion Starter #9
So your question just made me laugh.... because I have an evoc 3L hip pack and just got this:
https://www.amazon.com/Endura-Xtrac...=1558045845&s=gateway&sr=8-1-spons&th=1&psc=1

Fits in the pack great! It fits perfectly in one of the bottle pockets on the side. You can also stuff it in with the bladder pretty easily if you take it out of the little stuff sack.

And I really dig the jacket. Cheap so I can tear it up mountain biking. Good cycling cut, and I like wearing it. Already served me well on a big ride in the middle of the mountains when storms rolled in and the temps dropped.
Nice find! How's the fit? Normally hate buying stuff like that online since I have a long torso and arms.
 

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Nice find! How's the fit? Normally hate buying stuff like that online since I have a long torso and arms.
Yeah it's pretty solid! I'm a little over 5'9" with average length arms, and ordered a medium. I do have big fore arms though, and that is the tightest part of the jacket! haha. It's no problem when riding though. I'd say the torso of the jacket is long, and the entire jacket is a semi slim fit.
 

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L1MEY
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I bought a Patagonia Houdini a few days ago for exactly the same reason... the Tuesday night ladies rides start out warm ish while climbing, then by the time I get to the top the sun has gone, the wind has picked up, and I'm cold. Tested it out on Kings to Ash on Friday and it was the perfect weight layer for the conditions. On the sections where I was working hard I just unzipped the front a bit and pushed the sleeves up to keep from getting too sweaty. For the downhill sections I zipped it back up again and was comfortable. I'm actually fairly amazed at how well it worked for something that only weighs as much as a cereal bar! I got mine at the Reno Patagonia outlet for $60. They had a fair few left at that price in the women's section, not sure about men's though.
 

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The Houdini is so easy to carry in a pocket that I frequently have it with me. It hits the just right level of wind protection for mountain biking IME.
 

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Short-Change-Hero
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Discussion Starter #13
I bought a Patagonia Houdini a few days ago for exactly the same reason... the Tuesday night ladies rides start out warm ish while climbing, then by the time I get to the top the sun has gone, the wind has picked up, and I'm cold. Tested it out on Kings to Ash on Friday and it was the perfect weight layer for the conditions. On the sections where I was working hard I just unzipped the front a bit and pushed the sleeves up to keep from getting too sweaty. For the downhill sections I zipped it back up again and was comfortable. I'm actually fairly amazed at how well it worked for something that only weighs as much as a cereal bar! I got mine at the Reno Patagonia outlet for $60. They had a fair few left at that price in the women's section, not sure about men's though.
Thanks Jen.. Keep forgetting we still have the outlet in Reno. Hopefully you were not one of the ladies that I was barreling down on Friday. Took a mental health day and rode early afternoon (2ish) and while hitting the downhill from Dog bowl and then Vicee I think I scared the crap outta two female riders.
 

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L1MEY
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Thanks Jen.. Keep forgetting we still have the outlet in Reno. Hopefully you were not one of the ladies that I was barreling down on Friday. Took a mental health day and rode early afternoon (2ish) and while hitting the downhill from Dog bowl and then Vicee I think I scared the crap outta two female riders.
Wasn't me! :)
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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Asked the same question a few months back in this form.

https://forums.mtbr.com/apparel-protection/packable-breathable-jacket-recommendations-1096064.html


A lot of people recommended the Patagonia Houdini but it was a no go for me due to lack of venting.
I ended up picking up the Patagonia rain shadow stretch jacket. Huge pit vents and soft stretchy material make it comfy to wear all day and just as important packs away into my Dakine 2L hip pack with the rest of my necessities. It retails for about $200 USD but you can find them on eBay or elsewhere for half that.
I generally don't like taking my rain shadow unless it's actually going to rain OR I need significantly more wind-blocking (being waterproof raises the wind-blocking ability significantly). I like the non-vented lighter jackets though because when I'm cold or expecting a cold descent, keeping that heat in is exactly why I want to put the jacket on. Many of the lighter ones breath much better because the fabric is not waterproof or even very water-resistant. It's a balance between what you want to carry, those waterproof jackets are a good 2x the size of the more minimalist ones. My fav extreme-packable was a Marmot, but I lost it when it rolled down 4000 vertical feet. It was not that breathable, so it was perfect for emergency use and to keep heat in, for an extended descent.

95% of the time for me, the rainshadow is too warm/hot unless it's actually raining at the time. Then you get cooled down enough IME to be able to ride it indefinitely. The vents work for a little while, but I quickly overheat due to the lack of breathability. Breathable waterproof and mountain biking don't really go together IME. You generate too much heat and moisture while riding and it overwhelms all but the most breathable material. As suggested, a vest can be a good compromise for this, allowing your pits and arms to act as radiators. But then if it's really raining, you are going to get soaked and cold much faster.
 

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high pivot witchcraft
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The Houdini and the Rainshadow don't even seem to be in the same category. Not sure how small the Rainshadow packs down but judging from what I see online, compared to the Houdini (which I own), the Rain Shadow looks to be SIGNIFICANTLY more substantial in bulk. In terms of weight, the Rainshadow is roughly 3 times as heavy, weighing 306g, while the Houdini is 105g. The Houdini is as minimalist as they come.
 

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The Houdini and the Rainshadow don't even seem to be in the same category. Not sure how small the Rainshadow packs down but judging from what I see online, compared to the Houdini (which I own), the Rain Shadow looks to be SIGNIFICANTLY more substantial in bulk. In terms of weight, the Rainshadow is roughly 3 times as heavy, weighing 306g, while the Houdini is 105g. The Houdini is as minimalist as they come.
You’re absolutely right, the rainshadow is a bit more substantial than the Houdini but for me that is a +. I own a Endura pac-a-jak which is very similar to the Houdini and unfortunately uncomfortable for me to wear for more than a few minutes and impossible while climbing due to being a sweaty fool. Pit vents are a must for me and the material seems much more resistant to tearing from branches. It’s nice enough to wear daily and it’s no Houdini for sure but on the bike 300g is still light enough. Fits in my Dakine 2L with all my other essentials no problem.



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high pivot witchcraft
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You’re absolutely right, the rainshadow is a bit more substantial than the Houdini but for me that is a +. I own a Endura pac-a-jak which is very similar to the Houdini and unfortunately uncomfortable for me to wear for more than a few minutes and impossible while climbing due to being a sweaty fool. Pit vents are a must for me and the material seems much more resistant to tearing from branches. It’s nice enough to wear daily and it’s no Houdini for sure but on the bike 300g is still light enough. Fits in my Dakine 2L with all my other essentials no problem.



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I picked up a light and cheap windbreaker/rain shell from Costco for ~$20. It packs small. I've worn it in light rain and 20 mph winds and been happy with it. It lives in my commuter bag. If you have a membership take a look next time you're there.
 
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