Customer Reviews: Columbia Men's Watertight Packable Rain Jacket, Sage, X-Large
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on June 25, 2011
I bought this item for the initial purpose of spending a week in June in the northern wilderness areas of Boundary Waters/Quetico. I've been making an annual trek for over 10 years and have been getting by using inexpensive rain jackets in the $30 range (Stearns, Sierra Designs). They worked OK, but were never great. I like quality gear, though I could never really justify the cost of high end brands such as Gore-Tex. Then I saw this jacket in a local store and, for the price, figured I couldn't go wrong trying it. I knew Amazon's customer service would allow a return if it didn't perform as advertised.

After a straight week of battle testing it, I came away incredibly impressed. The timing couldn't have been better since, for the first time in my own experience, it rained every day of my June trip and never got above 65 degrees. I literally never took this off.

In summary, I was 100%, unequivocally:

**DRY** Despite pervasive rain, it never leaked or did anything but shed water the way it was supposed to. The hood design was excellent keeping rain off my face.
**COMFORTABLE** I sweat a lot while portaging. The lightweight material breathes so well. A mesh lining prevents the clammy feeling that other jackets create.
**WARM** The conditions were very windy and cool. Wearing this jacket, in combination with layers underneath, I couldn't have been happier.
**STYLISH** I don't much care how I look in the wilderness. I'm pleased that this jacket would fit right in with my normal clothing back home.
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on July 3, 2010
Just picked this up, under $50 is a great deal for a coat like this. No chance yet to test it, but this is basically the male version of the jacket I bought my wife 1 year ago with the "omnitech" fabric and sealed seams. It's actually not bad for cool spring/fall days and passable in cold winter months as long as you bulk up underneath. Wife took her jacket with her on cool/cold hiking trips and it has worked great. She loved hers so much, I jumped at the opportunity to purchase one for myself once I saw the prices drop.

It looks great on as well, which is important, as this will be my everyday jacket.

Very impressed with it's weight, and should be fairly packable. There is a description sewn in the jacket even stating specifically "PACKABLE", so this would be a pretty good option to take with you in your pack for wind/weather protection. I'm sure you will want to test it prior to doing this though to see if it fits in your outdoor system, I can't really vouch for how waterproof the omnitech fabric is in a very long-extended downpour (anyone who has been in this situation though knows you can't guarantee 100% dryness anyway, it's all about staying comfortable)

Purchased at a brick & mortar retailer so I had the opportunity to try it on and inspect the seams prior to purchasing.

I'm not sure this coat is worth full retail price, but if you find it on sale and you need a decent nylon-shell coat, give this one a good look.

I actually bought this coat as a every-day type use alternate to the rain-coat specific "Columbia Men's Shelter Cove Jacket", which served great as a raincoat, but that's basically it.

I will of course update my review once I actually get to put the jacket to some good use.

------------UPDATE 11-1-10-----------------

After using this jacket in several situations, it confirmed my previous beliefs for it's intended purpose.

The jacket performs excellent in the rain, it is surprisingly warm (I would wear this from anything over freezing temp as long as you are layered), it breathes well, light and easy to carry, and does pack well too.

I like the way it looks, and that also is important when making a selection.

Have not been in an EXTREME downpour, but I've been rained on heavily and the jacket kept me dry and the jacket dried fairly quickly (if you shake it around like an umbrella before hanging it up).

Will still keep it at 4/5 stars, I do think it could be cheaper, but only time will tell how much use I can get out of this.

------------UPDATE 10-23-12-----------------
OK... So I've now had this jacket for a few years. I'll admit I'm sort of a jacket hoarder. If I go shopping and see a cool looking jacket on sale, I'll end up buying it.

This jacket here still looks good, and I've actually strayed from buying any more nylon shell jackets because it still performs well.

One problem that will come up, and this is common with all breathable nylon fabrics....eventually that "coating" that gets sprayed on the fabric by the manufacturer starts to wear away and your coat will start to soak up that rain like a sponge. I still have been dry, but now you have to hang your coat and let it dry instead of shaking off the drops.

Up to you if you want to spray some 3M on it for a temporary fix, but I think that will void any warranty you may have with Columbia.
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on October 27, 2010
Just got back from a Kilimanjaro hike where we had rain and/or snow for half of our trip, and the jacket worked great--no seam problems, and repelled water as advertised. My hiking buddy spent ten times the price on his jacket from another company, but didn't get any real benenfit. Good buy.
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on May 21, 2011
With all the rain this spring I've worn this jacket a lot recently. I wouldn't characterize it as particularly stylish (the photos are accurate) and it doesn't breathe all that well, but it is surprisingly comfortable in spring weather. And it does a great job with the rain - really outstanding.

A pet peeve of mine is that manufacters rarely tell you what temps their clothes are meant to be worn in, so here's my two cents: I've worn this jacket from 45 to 70. Below 49 degrees, I really need to either add a layer or be very active. Above let's say 65 (or 60 if it's humid), its relatively poor breathability makes it a bit stifling. But in the 50s it's just about perfect.
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on November 4, 2010
Jacket is a very small form factor, with thin material, so that it can be easily folded or stuffed into a very small space. Great for backpacking or world travel.

The jacket material is very thin yet very water repellent. The hood is large and has a really good draw chord for tightening the inner hood around your face.

It's a fairly warm jacket.

The only minor complaints I'd have would be:
- no hand warmer pocket, you can put your hands into the zippered lower pockets.
- fit only half covers your bum, more like a jacket fit than a parka fit (also makes it smaller to pack away more easily)
- the buttons up the front are oddly spaced, the jacket is either tightly buttoned up to your neck, or if you open that button, open wide 3 or 4 inches down the chest.

Having said all the above, this is a great deal at $60 if you're looking for a waterproof, packable, light functional jacket / parka (half way between a jacket and a parka).
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on August 29, 2012
Columbia products just keep getting better. I have had this jacket for about a year now - using it primarily for backpacking. It is lightweight, breathable, blocks wind fairly well, and ultimately, keeps you dry. One might say an "Optimal" backpacking wet weather top.

Better yet though, I was just outside during Hurricane Issac (Live in South Louisiana) and got a chance to give it the ultimate beta test. In combination with my Lowe Alpine rain pants, I did not get wet. Exposure time was about 2 hours with wind gusts around 50 mph and steady, heavy rainfall. Breathability in the humid climate also exceeded expectations.

Added bonus was that 2 other guys were wearing "faddy" North Face gear and were pretty miserable by the end. My Colombia laughed in superiority!
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on June 21, 2010
Jacket fit my needs perfectly for one that is light, breathable, and waterproof. It protects even in heavy downpours and is not cumbersome to wear during warmer temperatures. My only gripe concerns the hood tensioners. They don't hold their position well. A spring mechanism like on other jackets would have been preferred. All told, I highly recommend this jacket.
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on February 16, 2013
Jacket kept me warm and dry while on a rainy dog walk but also breathed well while in a store. Only big issue is that it fits large. Bought a Medium originally and that was too large. Returned it for a small to find out that it wasn't much smaller. I need the jacket so, I kept it with the size that it is.
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on September 8, 2012
Usually wear an XL, but this L is plenty big with plenty of room to move freely. Was not expecting such a satin-y type shell material.
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on November 27, 2011
The Columbia Men's Watertight Jacket is a well made and well designed waterproof lightweight nylon jacket.

This is a Columbia Omni-Tech fully seam-sealed waterproof jacket. The jacket is not a cold weather parka. However, the jacket could be used in colder weather with the use of layered underjacket clothing. This would provide protection against moderate cool to cold weather.

The jacket fits true to size and is not too small or too large once you put in on. The jacket comes with a hood and three external pockets. One pocket on the front chest, two hand pockets, and a internal pocket.

Columbia has the internal pocket designated as "packable", which may allow the jacket to be packed in the pocket.

The jacket also has a mesh liner to keep air flowing and cold out, a very adequate internal chest flap and snap buttons that run the lenght of the flap to stop rain and wind.

The jacket zipper and the pocket zippers are well constructed and work smoothly.

The jacket is a excellent lightweight rain jacket for the price point. The jacket is very impressive, well designed, has many features and is made of quality construction materials.

Update: I have had this jacket for a year now and it had held up very well, no material defects or problems with the jacket.

This jacket is made in China.

Jon Green
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