A Breathable Bargain: REI Shuksan Jacket with eVent Fabric
Nov 13, 2008 · 04:53 PM · permalink
The Shuksan Jacket with eVent Fabric is REI's hardworking mountaineering shell. I've been chomping at the bit to try an eVent jacket for a couple of years, but the Shuksan is one of the first I'm aware of that is widely available--and at $289.00 it's certainly accessible.
If you haven't heard, eVent is the waterproof, breathable fabric that has been touted for some time as a GoreTex killer. It hasn't been fast to reach the market in consumer products, though, so it's been hard to judge for yourself. But if promo videos like the one below are any measure, Gore will have its work cut out.
I've been wearing the Shuksan around for a couple of weeks now, in all types of weather and so far I really like it. The weather in Boulder hasn't been particularly cool yet the Shuksan has never felt the least bit stuffy or clammy. With a light sweater underneath, it's very comfortable when it cools off and provides a nice wind barrier. It also feels comfy when working up a sweat with the dog or riding to get coffee.
The Shuksan's design is fairly minimalist with a breast pocket and two side pockets, two internal mesh pockets (for skins or whatnot), a bottom hem cinch, and full hood adjustments. It does not have a powder skirt, which is a problem for my purposes, but it is really well-constructed with a durable feel, fully-taped seams, and sealed zippers. The breast pocket has a cool three-way pouch presumably designed to hold a range of electronics, but since they are mesh-backed (i.e., open to the inside of the jacket) they will allow your cellphone or iPod to stay warm.
The small fits me nicely and feels true to size. I'll be trying this on the slopes, but whether I or not I like it there, I'll be keeping it as a replacement for my Marmot rain jacket. I think the Shuksan will be really nice for drizzly conditions whether it's warm or cold and not get all clammy like the Marmot.
|Specs: REI Shuksan Jacket with eVent Fabric|
|Price as tested||$289.00|
|Sizes||S, M, L, XL, XXL|
|Colors||Amber, Graphite, Timber|