Top positive review
39 people found this helpful
Excellent rain shell for the price
on October 23, 2014
Hey all, I'm a fan of North Face products, have used them since about 2003, which is when I bought the Venture (and the Chilkat men's boots, which I JUST replaced last year with the same boot/different name). This jacket IS waterproof and breathable. There are many variations of these qualities in different jackets, if you research such things, you shall see. Everyone has their opinion, regardless of the technical qualities of a fabric or jacket. I like this one because the hood fits me the best of any rain jacket I have bought or tried on in the stores. I have a small head, and these jackets are made to cover a climbing helmet (all of 'em are). I like to wear a baseball cap, stocking cap or no hat at all. Most hoods have three-point cinches (either side of chin, and in the back) but that doesn't mean all the hoods will fit the same. So my recommendation is that if you have a smaller head size, like mine which is about 6 7/8 hat size, this hood is much better than many. The jacket beads water, at first. As you wear it, or any rain shell, and it gets dirty from the environment and your sweat, etc. water will start to "soak in". This does NOT mean that water will soak through the coat. It won't. If you feel damp, it's because of your own sweat. The jacket is breathable but you still get a bit muggy in there depending on the outside temp and what you are doing, especially if wearing it bare-armed. It's kind of sticky, due to the inside waterproof coating. This occurs with almost all jackets in this price range and fabric type (not three layer fabric, like Event or Gore Tex). This jacket has zippers under the armpits which are quite long, so you can vent yourself. It's also good to unzip partially or all the way each pocket, which provides more air flow to you. This jacket could be a bit longer, for my taste, but none of them are. There are two zippered hand pockets, and a a large inside mesh pocket for something like a map, water bottle, gloves. I live in Seattle, where it rains 9 months out of the year, and I endorse this jacket! PS it's important to wash your jacket often if you use it a lot, and even if it's just sitting in a closet gathering dust. Dirt, sweat, oils all make the waterproofing not work. Wash on cold, gentle cycle, gentle detergent. Then treat while wet with something like Grangers or Nik Wax waterproofing sprays (follow the directions). Put in dryer for about 15 minutes to set the spray and your jacket will once again bead water.