How We Tested Wind Jacket for Women

How We Test
By:
Jean Tucky

Last Updated:
Tuesday

We field tested these seven wind breaker jackets hiking in the High Sierra mountains, rock climbing on Yosemite granite and biking around Bishop, CA. We evaluated each jacket for wind resistance when strong winds were gusting and breathability when exertion levels increased.

We tested these jackets in rocky terrain and stormy weather - Owen's River Gorge  Bishop  CA.
We tested these jackets in rocky terrain and stormy weather - Owen's River Gorge, Bishop, CA.

To test water resistance, we first stepped into a shower with them on, however, they all quickly drenched through, confirming that they are designed primarily to stop the wind and not the rain. While they won't keep you dry in a downpour, they do have some light water repellency engineered into them. To test this we misted them down with the same amount of water from a spray bottle and noted how well the water beaded up and whether the material became saturated or not. Then we hung them all up in the shade to evaluate how quickly they dried next to each other.

Our water testing involved spraying all the jackets with a misting water bottle to gauge water repellency and material saturation.
Our water testing involved spraying all the jackets with a misting water bottle to gauge water repellency and material saturation.

We also packed them all away in their pockets or stuff sack to compare compression sizes and weighed each of them at a Post Office scale to measure weight. We tried these different models on a variety of ladies to gauge arm length and fit. To test durability, we took them out on rugged terrain, climbed wide and sharp granite cracks in them and scrambled over rocky ridges to see how well the stitching held up and if any tears occurred.

All of the wind jackets stuffed in their pockets  whether they were meant to be stuffed or not. Top left to right: Sierra Designs Microlight 2 (comes with stuff sack)  TNF Flyweight  The Marmot Stride (not made to stow in pocket). Bottom left to right: TNF Cyclone  Arc'teryx Squamish Hoody  Patagonia Houdini  Columbia Flash Forward (does not adequately stow in pocket).
All of the wind jackets stuffed in their pockets, whether they were meant to be stuffed or not. Top left to right: Sierra Designs Microlight 2 (comes with stuff sack), TNF Flyweight, The Marmot Stride (not made to stow in pocket). Bottom left to right: TNF Cyclone, Arc'teryx Squamish Hoody, Patagonia Houdini, Columbia Flash Forward (does not adequately stow in pocket).

 

Unbiased.