As I have mentioned previously, I’m not much for foul-weather outdoorsmanship. I know there are people who love to hike and camp and fish and what-have-you in the cold rain. I am not one of those people. It’s part of why a rim-to-rim trek in the summer appealed to me. I have an unusual affinity and tolerance to heat (according to my sweetie, who emphatically does not) and tend to feel chilly if I get wet even in quite hot weather. For these reasons and others, I did not own a rainproof hiking jacket, the very first not-utterly-common-sense item on Wildland Trekking’s clothing and gear list.
I will be in the Grand Canyon during monsoon season, so a rain shell really is something I will need to have with me and will likely use. Since temperatures in the canyon routinely top 105°F (38°C) in July I intend to stay wet during the day anyway, so I’m less concerned about getting rained on than I am about, say, lighting strikes or flash floods. Still, something to protect me from the elements in the event of a storm was top of the list for gear I needed to acquire.
I limbered up my Google-Fu to search out my ideal rain jacket. My essential criteria were three: it had to be breathable, lightweight and $100 or less. It didn’t take me long to learn that the Women’s Marmot PreCip Jacket was the only quality product that could compete on all three points. Pit-zips, vented pockets and thinness make it nice and breathable; it weighs in at a not-too-shabby 11.4 oz (323 g); and it costs $100 on the nose. As far as quality goes, it was Outdoor Gear Lab’s “best buy” in in women’s rain jackets and garnered 4.4 stars on 240 reviews on Amazon. I’m a thrifty person who buys almost everything second hand. Dropping 100 bucks on a rain jacket is a bit outside my comfort zone. I decided to pull the trigger anyway because I had a feeling buying a used raincoat would be penny wise and pound foolish. I was sold.
I was also lucky. See that jacket in the picture? It’s magenta. I happen to like Magenta. More importantly, Marmot had just discontinued it when I was ready to buy. So I picked this baby up for about 55% off. How’s that for luck?
My Review So Far: 8.5/10
In the months that I’ve owned my Marmot PreCip I have had plenty of opportunity to deploy it in rainy conditions around town. It is wonderful. It’s cute, it fits great and it keeps me dry as toast. My only quibble is it’s not as windproof as I might prefer but breathability was one of my make-or-break criteria so that’s really only to be expected. Overall, the Marmot Precip is worth every penny I paid (and didn’t pay) for it. I hope I don’t have to use it on my rim-to-rim hike but if I do I expect it to perform beautifully. It folds into one of its pockets for easy packing and at three-quarters of a pound I’ve got some confidence it won’t break my back. I look forward to reporting on how it performed in reality after my trip.