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  1. #1
    Registered User foodbag's Avatar
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    Default For you minimalist gram counters - a truly no-frills lightweight rain jacket

    I recently purchased the Salomon Bonatti Race Water Proof Jacket to add to my backpacking gear ensemble. This jacket was designed for runners but was being offered by the local backpacking store. $150 was a reasonable price, I thought, for a hooded rain jacket that weighed 5.2 oz. in size Large (on the store scales) with the tags still attached.

    For people like me, who appreciate minimalist design with a minimum of things to break, this jacket was something that I have been looking for for a long time. There is only the front zipper - that's it. No pockets, no hood drawstrings, no pit zips, no buttons, snaps - no extra anything.

    This jacket purports to be waterproof and breathable. It does have a nice range of motion, with room underneath for layers, at least for my frame, in size large. The breathable technology is named AdvancedSkin Dry. I have not had an opportunity to test it yet, but being Florida, there will be plenty of opportunities to experience a downpour, so I am looking forward to putting it to the test.

    My Marmot Precip is hereby relegated to the car camping equipment stash....
    Long-distance aspirations with short-distance feet.... :jump

  2. #2
    Registered User ant's Avatar
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    I recommend a shower test. Everything I've read on this has people complaining that it's not very waterproof. The Precip is heavy, but it doesn't wet out super fast. I'm an Exponent user myself. ~10 oz

  3. #3

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    Frog toggs jackets have the same minimalist design and comes with (albeit crummy) rainpants for 12 bucks on amazon. I appreciate high end gear as much as the next guy but rain gear is going to wet out eventually so why dump the cash on it....I'd rather spend 12 bucks on a rain Jacket and put the leftover 138 towards a sleeping pad or quilt or something...

  4. #4

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    Nothing is breatheable enough to hike in

    It has to have ventillation, or its useless to me

    #1 reason i like umbrella, its much cooler and drier without a hood on head

  5. #5
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by C4web88 View Post
    Frog toggs jackets have the same minimalist design and comes with (albeit crummy) rainpants for 12 bucks on amazon. I appreciate high end gear as much as the next guy but rain gear is going to wet out eventually so why dump the cash on it....I'd rather spend 12 bucks on a rain Jacket and put the leftover 138 towards a sleeping pad or quilt or something...
    I agree, and usually use a Frogg Togg, but this spring I was heading out on a hike that I knew would be cold & wet, so I bought an EMS Thunderhead rain jacket - on sale, roughly $50, 10 ounces, and it worked super well. I also use an umbrella and a rain kilt - the combo kept me comfortable and dry in an all day 40 degree rain. I'll stick with my cheap Froggs in the summer, but for colder weather or if you want something more durable, fifty buck at EMS will get you a nice jacket.

  6. #6
    Registered User Hepcatt's Avatar
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    I absolutely agree with you. I've been using Frogg Toggs for over 20 years for hiking and fishing.
    It's lightweight inexpensive and works great.
    Stomped along the AT in '98
    Goin' back someday

  7. #7
    Registered User foodbag's Avatar
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    I had a couple of Frogg Togg jackets but they just weren't durable enough to suit me. I put the Salomon jacket to its first test in a nice downpour the other day and it seemed OK for that short duration. Of course it remains to be seen how it might hold up in the rain for hours. I'll report back when I have a chance to wear it during a long soaker.
    Long-distance aspirations with short-distance feet.... :jump

  8. #8
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    I think this is 2.5L Pertex Shield the same as OR's Helium II so it is WP. The Salomon Bonatti has a back vent and full chest zip. Not so sure if the back vent dumps much heat wearing a high fitting loaded larger backpack. With some of the very UL packs I could see it as having some back venting.

  9. #9
    Registered User Christoph's Avatar
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    I'll 2nd (or 3rd or whatever) the Frogg Toggs ultralight from Amazon for $14. At that price, you can't go wrong. It does seem a little thin though so we'll see how long it lasts on the trail. 1st trip out it rained and so far so good.
    - Trail name: Thumper

  10. #10
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    Everyone has the right to choose their gear so.... Frogg Toggs remind me of a hot baggy recycled garbage bag with worse aesthetics than the old ZP bunny suits.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dogwood View Post
    Everyone has the right to choose their gear so.... Frogg Toggs remind me of a hot baggy recycled garbage bag with worse aesthetics than the old ZP bunny suits.
    Well said sir

  12. #12

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    Just bought a Compass 360 ultra-pak rain jacket at (...of all places...) Dick's Sporting goods. Ridiculously light airy feel. Packs into the pocket. Fabric feels like Harry Potter's Cloak of Invisibilty. Haven't tested it yet. But wanted to share. Cant believe this crepe paper jacket is waterproof! Need to get it into some rain for a field test. I have Frogg Toggs and if this Compass proves to be waterproof, it's way WAY nicer. $34.

    Reported weight: 7 oz. I can weigh it when I get home. Feel preposterously light.

    https://m.dickssportinggoods.com/p/c...ltrpkjcktblapo



    Sent from my SM-N960U using Tapatalk

  13. #13
    Registered User foodbag's Avatar
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    Well, I promised that I would report back on the Salomon jacket (better late than never), and as it turns out, it gets pretty clammy when wearing it in a rainstorm and it has a kind of a sticky feeling when wearing short sleeves. So much for using it for any trails or camping trips. Fortunately, it packs down so small that I can stash it in my car, so that's where it is going.

    I hope that I have the rain jacket situation dialed in with the purchase of a Mont Bell Torrent Flier jacket. It was pretty pricey, but it was my retirement gift to myself - finally done working after 50 years! I'll be headed out for a section hike on the AT in September.
    Long-distance aspirations with short-distance feet.... :jump

  14. #14

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    One can choose two of the following; better performance, lighter weight, cheaper cost. For me, frogg toggs have never made it far before tearing on side trail brush or inability to keep body warmth regulated as more expensive gear can do, which for me is the primary purpose of rain gear. I have renewed the DWR on my rain jacket and pants several times over many years, which when averaged out over their current lifespan is about the same as purchasing a new set of Frogg Toggs annually.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by MuddyWaters View Post
    Nothing is breatheable enough to hike in
    Mr. Poncho disagrees with you.

  16. #16
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    Frogg Toggs all the way for me, sure I've had a few rips here and there but nothing a tiny piece of repair tape doesn't fix. I also get the extra large Frogg Toggs, and I'm a pretty skinny guy. All that extra slack allows more movement then I'm flexible enough for - so I never get any rips that way. I have an extra ultra light belt to hold up the rain pants and on the bottom I use a hair band that acts like an umbrella over my shoes but holds them just high enough so I don't step on them.

    This system has worked incredibly well for me, but at the same time I tend to do things a little different then most people would.
    NoDoz
    nobo 2018 March 10th - October 19th
    -
    I'm just one too many mornings and 1,000 miles behind

  17. #17
    Registered User hobbs's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ant View Post
    I recommend a shower test. Everything I've read on this has people complaining that it's not very waterproof. The Precip is heavy, but it doesn't wet out super fast. I'm an Exponent user myself. ~10 oz
    Exactly findout what the issues are prior to a down pour on trail
    My love for life is quit simple .i get uo in the moring and then i go to bed at night. What I do inbween is to occupy my time. Cary Grant

  18. #18

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    Holy smokes! That's nuts.

    $150 was a reasonable price,

  19. #19
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    The Frogg Toggs work. I’ve used them on many trips. But I now have zPacks rain pants and a replacement OR Helium II that was provided under warranty after my first one failed.

    If you can live with the fragility and lack of aesthetics of the FT suit, it will work and it is cheap and light. You’ll wNt to get a new one before any longer hike because they are so fragile (of carry lots of duct tape). I prefer the aesthetics (feel and look) of my current gear but it’s a lot more expensive.

  20. #20
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    I had an interesting experience last month with both a FT poncho and a traditional waterproof rain jacket. I was outside for a college graduation in Ohio, on a day with a cold snap, high winds, and heavy rains. The school was determined to have its first in-person graduation since Dec 2019, so they did. By cold I mean low 50s for a high, the 2nd week in May. Umbrellas frowned upon, I wore the rain jacket under the poncho to provide arm coverage. Water beaded up on the FT poncho and fell off. The rain jacket did wet out. Later, I had to give up the poncho to Time Zone Junior, whose rain solution was failing. So my rain jacket was really tested, and continued to wet out.

    I assumed it failed, but there may be another possibility - that moisture from the humid air condensed on the inside of the jacket. Seems possible, though maybe not probable. I was significantly damp on my shoulders.

    I like the FT, and while light, it does not pack that small for what it is.

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