I’m ready to pay the price and get some decent rain gear. I’ve been looking at LLBean, REI and Campmor. From everything I’ve read I want a light weight Gore-Tex Jacket and pants. The use would be for fishing in a kayak, bank fishing, camping in the rain and day hiking, Anyone out there whose been dry and comfortable in these conditions? Thanks.
actually you have so many other options besides Gore-tex these days the only other thing you will be getting by buying Gore-tex is a thinner wallet. Check out something like The North Face rainwear that lists for $100 bucks a jacket (can’t think of the name) or Patagonias H2no+ or like jackets. I admit I own both Gore-tex and some Patagucci rainwear and I can’t tell a bit of diference. I’ve been wearing a ‘Skanorak’ from Patagonia (non-Goretex) for years and it functions equally as well as any Gore-tex I’ve ever owned, as far as breathability and waterproofness goes. Take a good look around at some of the other options before spending the big bucks on the Gore-tex, you could save a bundle as well as get an equally functional piece of gear.
Try Cabela’s. I’ve got some great rainwear in the past from them. Rain Parka’s made it about 15 years now - it needs replacement. But the matching Goretex pants are still good. They don’t get worn nearly as much.
I own Gore-tex, but I do agree with Stickman, that there seems to be many cheaper alternatives out there today. The hard part is deciphering which really work and which don;t because it seems like every brand has it's own version of Gore-tex, each called something different. It is largely because of this uncertainty as to what I am buying that I have chosen Gore-tex. Then your next question is insulated Gore-tex versus uninsulated, and many use Thinsulate insulation which, if I am not mistaken, comes in various thicknesses itself. I have a Gore-tex anorak made by Columbia (with authentic Gore-tex tags) and it is a shell, I use it in wamr weather and it is really waterproof. But this has a polyester (not moisture retaining cotton, but you could choose wool) liner jacket that I wear when I need warmth, ie. layers. I can wear the inner jacket alone too.
If you ever plan to resell the outfit on eBay, you might get Gore-tex as it sells better and people know what they're getting. If you want a relative deal, search Gore-tex and Goretex on eBay.
What they said
Cabela’s has some nice-looking rain gear both in Gore-tex and alternative breathable fabrics.
Land’s End also offers rain gear in Gore and alternates.
If you don’t mind being a year out of style:
has been rated very high marks for waterproofness and breathability by Backpacker magazine and others. From my experience handling it in a shop, it’s lightweight, packable, and inexpensive. I just saw the jacket for $59.98 and the pants for $41.98 at Mountain Gear (mgear.com). For about $100 you got your suit.
More on Marmot Precip
One more thing; the stuff is not going to be bombproof, so if you’re busting brush or are generally hard on your gear, you might look elsewhere. In this case, military surplus comes to mind for super durability–check out cheaperthandirt.com or sportsmansguide.com).
Just remember this, though (my mantra):
Light; cheap; strong; pick any two.
Thanks folks, some really good advice here. I ran out yesterday and got the Marmot Precip which fits well and looks like a very good design. Now I just can’t wait to go out fishing and watch for the weather to turn bad. Will post a review after that.
It’s not magic
While I love my Gore-Tex gear and wouldn’t give it up for any reason, you have to understand its limitations. It will keep water off you under all conditions, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be dry. In order for it to breathe, there needs to be a temperature and/or humidity difference between the inside and the outside of the fabric. Specifically, it must be cooler and/or dryer on the outside than on the inside. If it’s 80+ degrees and raining, you’re going to sweat and get damp in your Gore-Tex. It’s unavoidable. Use the same gear when it’s 30 degrees and snow is falling, and you’ll stay pretty dry.
After hunting season
I went into the L.L.Bean factory outlet store in Freeport,Maine last year and got a killer deal on some “Tall” sized camo gore-tex raingear. Because I saved the receipt it has a lifetime guarantee. They ARE camo which some people might not like. The coat with a zipout liner is a Columbia brand and the pants are LL Bean brand. $100 for both of them.