in praise of the windshirt

Discussion in 'Clothing' started by mtwarden, Apr 8, 2018.

  1. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    ^ water, windshirt and a few emergency bits in the pockets of your canteen holder and you're ready to go :)
     
  2. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    Possibly a silly question, I've heard about windshirts in the past but did not find much searching for them. Are you using this as rain gear as well as a wind breaker/ shell?

    I currently carry a poncho and hike in shorts. We're at lower elevation here in Virginia so snow is generally not an issue. So I don't worry about my legs getting wet. Just curious if pairing a windshirt with a rain skirt would be a viable option or if you also bring along a separate rain jacket? We can get some downpours here in Virginia that will make you look like a drowned rat in about 10 seconds so I never hike without my poncho.
     
  3. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    may have to look into getting one. any recommendations for a true rain jacket? in your opinion are pit zips worth it?
     
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  4. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    @MJGEGB I usually bring a rain jacket, but rarely wear it

    the windshirt will repel light rain or even short heavier rains, sustained rains I want a rain jacket and thus will almost always bring one

    I can say that my windshirt sees 20 times (or more) the wear vs my rain jacket- it’s simply more versatile and much more effective (except for sustained rain).

    @UAHiker

    I have a lightweight Rab Flashpoint that I can recommend, I think it’s the lightest 3 layer rain jacket out there. I’ve also had good luck with Outdoor Research’s Helium- lightweight 2 layer rain jacket.

    Personally I haven’t found pitzips to be overly effective. If you’re moving along, a rain jacket just isn’t going to breathe very well regardless. I’m sure they help a little, but’s it’s very easy to overwhelm a rain jacket on the move.

    It’s one reason that a lot of folks go the poncho route, of course there are drawbacks to ponchos too. Always compromises with rain gear
     
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  5. MJGEGB

    MJGEGB Guide

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    Yeah that's sort of what I figured. I like the poncho because

    1. It's also an emergency shelter which is great for day hikes
    2. I can sit and wait out the rain inside basically a shelter on my person
    3. Ventilation
    4. Covers my pack
    5. Can be put on and taken off without taking off my pack
    6. It's light, 7oz compared to a jacket and pants or a skirt
    7. Doubles as a tarp if I find myself wanting to set one up
    I suppose I could see taking a wind shirt in place of my puffy on warmer outings. I might pick up a cheap one just to experiment with.
     
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  6. J. Pierce

    J. Pierce Perpetually Off Topic, Sorry. Supporter

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    I've been following along here, and I finally bought a cheapy wind shirt.
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B075W754FL/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    I don't have as much of a need for one where I roam as some of you do, high elevations are about 5 feet, and there is no above the tree line around here.
    I'm fairly protected from the wind most places already.
    But I wanted something that packed small to take fishing or on a day hike.
    I haven't wore it enough to comment on the breathability, and I'm much more inclined to leisurely saunter than run, but for 20 bucks I'm happy so far.
    It might not serve everyone's needs, but for my lazy, low activity lifestyle I think it will work fine.
     
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  7. Medic17

    Medic17 BCUSA Friend Bushcraft Friend Bushclass I

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    One of my favorite windshirts is a ORC Level 4.
    It goes everywhere with me.
     
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  8. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    @MJGEGB ponchos are definitely a multi-use piece :)

    @J. Pierce let us know how that works out, price is certainly attractive!

    @Medic17 I've heard that the ORC is a good one. I'm not 100% certain, but I think the military put out some rather strict specifications on their windshirts (Level 4) regarding breathability and water resistance, I'm also confident that they spec'd a material that was encapsulated, so you don't have to worry about reapplying a DWR- simply wash occasionally and a warm iron- Epic being the most common fabric, which I think the ORC has.
     
  9. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    After searching for a decent military version of the Patagonia Houdini I said the heck with it and bought a standard model Houdini from REI this morning.
    Ended up paying $70 and free shipping.
    Looking forward to getting it!
    Thanks for all the great info posted in this thread.
     
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  10. mcostas

    mcostas Tracker

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    I have some montbell windshirts that I love. They are over 15 years old. They maintain water repellency if you treat them.

    I like the first style I got that is a looser fit and has pockets. They redesigned it to fit closer and has a chest pocket instead of hand pockets.

    That's practically all I wear in the winter here. If it warms up they aren't too heavy and hot. There is a soft flannel like liner that makes them comfortable.
     
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  11. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    any one have experience with columbia's windshirts?
     
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  12. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    ^ I don’t, but if you can try to find out the breathablity in cfms and water resistance (HH) without that info you’re rolling the dice

    there are lots of windshirts that simply aren’t breathable enough
     
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  13. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Received the Houdini yesterday.
    First impressions:
    1. As "minimalist" as can be. My first thought was honestly "I paid how much for this??"
    2. It's very, very thin. Extremely packable, and seems well constructed.
    While I wouldn't go running through brush with it, it appears that it'll be excellent in it's intended use: as a wind blocking layer that has moderate water-shedding properties due to it's DWR coating.
    3. It's an "athletic" fit, so if you're on the fence about sizing I suggest you go one size bigger.
    4. I like it. Makes me want the Level 4 military version even more, lol.
     
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  14. UAHiker

    UAHiker Supporter Supporter

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    columbia's customer service won't release the tech specs or doesn't have access to them at least through email.... may call.... i do love their stuff and it hasn't let me down yet so for around $40-$80 might be worth the gamble....
     
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  15. Nemir

    Nemir Tracker

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    I use 4 windshirts:
    1. olive Mantis "Splav".
    2. Level 4 ECWCS Gen III UСP.
    3. Level 4 PKU gene II Patagonia. Alpha green.
    4. Level 4 Red-Cliff. AOR1.

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Ptpalpha

    Ptpalpha Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Great choices, Nemir!
     
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  17. Seacapt.

    Seacapt. Supporter Supporter

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    Always have one when on the water just in case. th7RVI6AFVshit sail.jpg
     
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  18. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    @Nemir

    do you have any that you feel perform better than the others?
     
  19. A Seedy Lot

    A Seedy Lot Scout

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    I have worn my Black Diamond wind shirt a few times now and I am very impressed with how well it functions. Both times i used the wind shirt I was riding mountain bikes in cold summer mountain rains. I would have over heated with a goretex jacket but with the wind shirt I was able to maintain an ideal core temperature for hours of exposure to the elements. My wife finally spied my wind shirt and has started to hint that she wants her own.
     
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  20. Nemir

    Nemir Tracker

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    My leader is definitely L4 PCU. Excellent weight, volume, availability of hood. He copes with the tasks. You can wear not only in the outdor, but also in the city does not attract attention.

    I want to find an ultra-light windbreaker made of silnylone (100% nylon rip-stop 15D×15D with double-sided silicone coating), but not in a parrot color (as in the photo).

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2018
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