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I need to get a new jacket.

I'm planning a nine week trip this spring with locations that will have temperature ranges from about 40 degrees F to about 85 degrees.

I need a new jacket for the cooler climates. I will be layering and would like the following:

Easily packable for the days I'll be in very warm climate.
Rainproof or at least water resistant
Black or Gray in color
Some inside pockets possibly with zippers to help with security. Able to hold a small, compact umbrella, Smartphone, some other smaller items (for the days I don't want a day bag.)
Wind resistant

Any suggestions?

Oh, I'm not talking a sports type jacket. More outerwear.

Posted by
1064 posts

Trust me on this, look at the Scottevest Tropiformer. I know you hate vests but this jacket has so many uses and has become a key part of my travel. I put a fleece under it and I'm fine down to 40 degrees. It has a hood, and is highly water resistant. The pockets come in handy on days that you travel.

Posted by
66 posts

Hi Frank,
Been using the following combination for a number of years: mid-weight fleece jacket covered by a high quality Marmot rain jacket, with hood. Rain jacket is long enough to keep your behind covered.
This works for me from your lower temperature range with both jackets up to about say 80deg with just the Marmot for rain protection.
Have used it on three trips to Italy in the spring. Use it extensively here at home.

Posted by
254 posts

I've found using thin multiple layers works well in Europe. I start with a very light, but waterPROOF rain shell by Columbia, under that goes a NorthFace Thermoball synthetic puffy jacket that rolls up into it's own pocket when not in use. Got by in both Ireland and Italy with just that combo. If I had needed more, I carry a light sweater that I usually use for nice evening wear. Finally I carry a very light, dark grey, long sleeve T shirt (synthetic-spandex) that rolls up to the size of a large apple. Think of it like a "base layer" from an outdoor store, but very light and looks just classy enough that I wear it over a polo shirt when the sun does down in warmer climes. Using one or more of those items has worked for me in temps ranging from 40F up, and in precip from 40 mph blowing mist to thunderstorm downpour. The only issue for you may be that my outer items have only 2-3 pockets each, but I suspect with carefully hunting you can find more pockets than I have. Happy travels.

Posted by
526 posts

My husband bought a rainproof Bass Pro shell several trips ago. Way less expensive than "name brand" ones. It has served him well and still looks as good and when it was first purchased. It is just a shell, so therefore light weight and easy to fold and put in daybag, but it does have a lining. This keeps it from sticking to his arms when he wears short sleeves. It has a hood and its length is such that it extends past his hips. It has roomy pockets and has an inside pocket for phone and such. He doesn't carry an umbrella, he feels they are a nuisance. If, we are going to a cooler/colder climate, he layers a fleece jacket underneath. Since the rain jacket is wind resistant this has provided adequate warmth.

By the way, I have a shorter Columbia rain shell, easy to pack and stuff in a daybag. It, too, has a hood and inside pockets. I layer a fleece for colder temps. It is several years old and still in good shape. I will be using it for years to come.

Posted by
1193 posts

I've had great experiences with Marmot and REI rain shells. My new fave under layer purchase was the Patagonia Nano Puff jacket. It is water resistant, machine washable, thin, warm, stylish. It stuffs into its own pocket. This is an inside pocket that you could use for your stuff. It would hold a micro umbrella if placed diagonally.
I used mine on a 5 week one bag trip to Ecuador and Peru. The trip went from mountaineering to jungle trek to ocean cruise to city. I found the jacket warm enough in cold mountains and soaking rain (with my rain shell and long johns) and also was complimented many times in the city for my "cute" jacket. The jacket is surprisingly warm for how thin it is. It also seems to adjust for trmperature - it does breathe. The jacket is expensive and worth every penny. They are also on sale on EBay.

The El Misti rain coat by North Face looks elegant.

Updated with info on SA trip