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Marmot PreCip Full Zip Review

A fully featured rain and storm worthy pant for hiking and backpacking; it's tough to beat for the price.
Marmot PreCip Full Zip
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Price:  $100 List | $99.95 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Most breathable propriety fabric in our review, most breathable under $100, easy to pull on and remove over boots, full-length zippers
Cons:  Velcro flaps on waist occasionally come undone, average weight
Manufacturer:   Marmot
By Ian Nicholson ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Sep 30, 2019
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77
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#9 of 13
  • Water Resistance - 25% 8
  • Comfort and Mobility - 18% 8
  • Breathability & Venting - 18% 8
  • Features - 5% 9
  • Packed Size - 12% 7
  • Weight - 17% 7
  • Durability - 5% 7

Our Verdict

The Marmot PreCip offers a great overall balance of performance versus cost. The NanoPro fabric proved to be the most breathable of any pant in its price range and this contender was among the most breathable of fabrics we tested. The PreCip offers the full suite of features that most folks are looking for in rain pants for backpacking, hiking, mountaineering, or general outdoor use, yet keep a respectable weight and packed size, and are sold at a reasonable cost. At an even lighter and less expensive level, we also tested the 1/4 zip version of these. Check out our full assessment of the even more classically configured Marmot PreCip Pants.

New Eco Version Available

Read below to learn about the new environmentally-friendlier version of the PreCip.

September 2019


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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Star Rating
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Pros Most breathable propriety fabric in our review, most breathable under $100, easy to pull on and remove over boots, full-length zippersLightweight, excellent stormworthiness, packable, sweet 3/4 length side zips, impressive breathabilityLightweight, stormworthy, quiet fabric, good breathability, 3/4 length side zips, effective elastic cuffsMega stretchy fabric, best breathability in the review, built in belt is the bombBy far the lightest and most compact pant in our review, great mobility, elastic waist band is extremely comfortable and functional
Cons Velcro flaps on waist occasionally come undone, average weightNo pockets, waist band is not as nice as others, expensiveNo zip fly, one marginally useful pocket, DWR didn't last as long as other models and needed to be retreated more frequentlyNot quite as abrasion resistant as other models, so-so weather-resistanceLess durable than most, hard to pull on over boots
Bottom Line A fully featured rain and storm worthy pant for hiking and backpacking; it's tough to beat for the price.Lightweight, yet tough, comfortable, and articulated enough for a week long backpacking trips where it rains every day.Highly protective pants that are light and compact for tucking away in your backpack.A fantastic all-around pant with rad stretchy fabric, which offers exceptional freedom of movement and the best breathability.Hard to beat for any trip where weight and packed space are at a premium - as long as there isn't too much off-trail travel, where their lower than average durability could be an issue.
Rating Categories Marmot PreCip Full Zip Arc'teryx Zeta SL Pant Outdoor Research Foray Pants Stretch Ozonic Pants Outdoor Research Helium Pant
Water Resistance (25%)
10
0
8
10
0
10
10
0
10
10
0
7
10
0
8
Comfort And Mobility (18%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
10
10
0
10
10
0
9
Breathability & Venting (18%)
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
7
Features (5%)
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
6
10
0
8
10
0
5
Packed Size (12%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
10
Weight (17%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
10
Durability (5%)
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
7
10
0
6
Specs Marmot PreCip Full... Arc'teryx Zeta SL... Outdoor Research... Stretch Ozonic Pants Outdoor Research...
Measured Weight 14 oz / 396g 8.6 oz / 245g 10.2 oz / 289g 10 oz / 283g 6.5 oz / 184g
Waterproof Fabric Material 2.5 Layer PreCip NanoPro Gore-Tex Paclite Plus 2L Gore-Tex 2.5 Layer Dry Q Active Stretch 2.5 Layer Pertex Shield+
Face Fabric and Layer Construction 50D 100% Recycled Nylon w/ Proprietary NanoPro Waterproof Breathable Coated Insert 40-denier nylon ripstop 2L 100% Polyester 50D 40D Dry Q Active Stretch 30D 100 Nylon Ripstop w/ Pertex Shield+ Waterproof Breathable Insert
Pockets 3 pockets 0 pockets 1 pocket 1 pocket 1 pocket
Side Zips Length? Full Length Zippers 3/4 length side zips 3/4-Length Full Length Side Zips 1/4 Length Ankle Zips
Put on Over Hiking or Mountaineering Boots Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Inseam Length, Size Medium 30 or 32 in 30, 32, 34 in 30 in 30, 32, 34 in 31 in
Stows Into Pocket? No No Yes Yes Yes
Waist band Style Elastic + Shock Cord Nylon Belt + Elastic Band Elastic + shock cord Nylon Belt + Elastic Band Elastic + Shock Cord

Our Analysis and Test Results

Updated PreCip Pant


Marmot introduced the PreCip Eco Full Zip, mostly changing up the fabric to be more environmentally friendly. The recycled face fabric is Marmot's PFC-free NanoPro material, which features a microporous coating that is designed to be more durable than the previous version. Compare the two pants below, with the updated PreCip Eco shown first.

Marmot PreCip Full Zip

We're linking to the PreCip Eco now, but the review to follow only tells our account of the original PreCip pant we tested previously.

Hands-On Review of the PreCip Full Zip


If you don't want to spend a lot of money but want a fully-featured, reliable and highly functional rain pant for trekking, backpacking, and mountaineering, we'd recommend the Marmot PreCip full zip; we believe it's the best option with full zips in its price range. The PreCip strikes a nice balance of storm worthiness, weight, and functional features - all while featuring a $100 price tag.

The Marmot PreCip Full Zip Pant offered very good weather resistance  especially considering its price. After extensive testing we actually found that the PreCip Pants offered better overall weather resistance than some more expensive models in both real world use and our shower and garden hose comparisons.
The Marmot PreCip Full Zip Pant offered very good weather resistance, especially considering its price. After extensive testing we actually found that the PreCip Pants offered better overall weather resistance than some more expensive models in both real world use and our shower and garden hose comparisons.

Weather Resistance


The PreCip offers excellent weather resistance, especially considering its $100 price tag and comparable weather resistance to several more expensive models.


After extensive use in both real-world and side-by-side tests, our entire testing team was impressed with the storm worthiness, securing an 8 out of 10 in this metric. Our testing revealed that the PreCip Pant trailed closely behind the award-winning Marmot Minimalist Pant, and the Outdoor Research Foray. However, the Minimalist, Stretch Ozonic, and Alpha all earned higher scores and had a much higher price tag.

The DWR on the PreCip proved to be more long-lasting than many pants in its price range. It kept these pants from feeling damp or clammy  meaning they weren't as heavy (or wet) when the sky cleared. We were quickly ready to put them back in our packs.
The DWR on the PreCip proved to be more long-lasting than many pants in its price range. It kept these pants from feeling damp or clammy, meaning they weren't as heavy (or wet) when the sky cleared. We were quickly ready to put them back in our packs.

Comfort and Mobility


The PreCip offers a slightly looser than average fit, which increased mobility.


The articulation was above average, especially compared to other pants in its price range, in which case the PreCip offered a superior range of motion. When it came to stepping over high logs or jumping over creeks, the PreCip Pant offered better mobility than the Columbia Rebel Roamer or The North Face Venture Half Zip. It didn't perform as well as the stretchy REI Talusphere Full Zip, or Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic.

Our testers did appreciate the very classically located hand-warmer style pockets on the PreCip. While most of our testers preferred to carry most small items in our jacket pockets  these pockets were comfortable enough to store items and were a convenient place to put your hands when it was cold.
Our testers did appreciate the very classically located hand-warmer style pockets on the PreCip. While most of our testers preferred to carry most small items in our jacket pockets, these pockets were comfortable enough to store items and were a convenient place to put your hands when it was cold.

Breathability & Ventilation


This competitor's breathability is above average among contenders in our fleet and features the best breathability of any pant we've tried in the $100 or less price range - including many pants not featured in this review.


While we think Marmot NanoPro fabric performed well, it wasn't quite as breathable as the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic, which uses its own Dry Q Active Stretch proprietary material. The Marmot Minimalist Pant features Gore-Tex also outperforms the PreCip. We thought the PreCip Pant was comparable to the REI Talusphere Full Zip and was offered a higher level of breathability than The North Face Venture Half-Zip.

The PreCip Full Zip feature two full-length side zippers that allow as much ventilation as you can ask for from a rain pant. If venting from the top  the only downside is that the Velcro flaps can occasionally come undone  particularly if wearing a pack with a more robust hip belt.
The PreCip Full Zip feature two full-length side zippers that allow as much ventilation as you can ask for from a rain pant. If venting from the top, the only downside is that the Velcro flaps can occasionally come undone, particularly if wearing a pack with a more robust hip belt.

Ventilation

The PreCip Pant offers top-notch ventilation, which performs as well as you could hope for. As the name PreCip Full Zip Pant would imply, this contender features two full-length zippers which allow for plenty of ventilation from the top and bottom. We mention more in our in-depth in our buying advice article; side zips are nice for venting - however, if it's pouring, or you're hiking on a wet overgrown trail, using the side zips for ventilation isn't truly an option, as they will likely funnel water down the insides of your pants and your boots (try it sometime…). It's worth noting that the PreCip's mesh-lined pockets can pull double duty by offering some (though obviously limited) ventilation.

Looking to save some money without compromising functionality?
Marmot's Marmot PreCip Pant Version is nearly identical to the PreCip Full Zip we tested, but without the side zippers and for a significantly reduced $80. While full-length side zippers are great for ventilation, they're not a practical tool for hiking or exploring during active precipitation events. Because this version of the PreCip has fewer features, it will also save you 4.5 ounces, a nice bonus for the weight-conscious traveler. If you're planning on only using your rain pants as an emergency shell or for brief periods of especially wet weather, the PreCip Pant might meet all your needs at a nicer price tag.

Features


This contender is packed full of features that most backpackers and hikers commonly look for. It uses a higher gauge YKK zipper than most models, making the side zippers more durable and less prone to getting jammed when dirt or mud works its way into the zipper.


Velcro closures at tops of the zippers (on the waist of the pant) help keep the pants from sliding down, though these would occasionally come undone when wearing a heavier pack; the waist belt would also slowly open the zippers, causing the pants to start to slip down. This was a minor annoyance but certainly wasn't a dealbreaker. Several day-hikers on our review team liked the two hand pockets featured on the front of the pant and thought it was nice to have an additional zippered pocket on the back. The PreCip features an elastic shock cord with a toggle that helps cinch pant cuffs, keeping debris out of the wearer's shoes. We felt this design worked okay; however, when used on snow, we'd recommend bringing gaiters, though these pants were highly functional when used for some off-trail travel.

Packed Size


The PreCip Pants are average as far as their packed volume goes, scoring a 7 out of 10. They are almost twice the size as the Outdoor Research Helium, and a quarter larger than the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic Pants. They are roughly the same size as the Columbia Rebel Roamer ($50) and are smaller than the REI Talusphere Full Zip ($109) or The North Face Venture Half-Zip ($80).


Weight


Just under 14 ounces (OutdoorGearLab weight), the PreCip Pants are lighter than many rain pants on the market, especially ones with full-length zippers; they are somewhat heavier than average among options we tested. They are five ounces lighter than the REI Talusphere Full Zip (which feature full side zips) and weigh slightly less than the The North Face Venture Half-Zip. They aren't nearly as light as the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic (10 ounces) - though this pair is at least $50 more expensive. If you are truly prioritizing weight, make sure to consider the less featured Outdoor Research Helium which weigh in at 6.5 ounces.


Durability


The PreCip Pants are tougher than we first expected; we found them to be average among other contenders in our fleet. The DWR held up longer than most of the other options in a similar price range, and we found that the PreCip did not need to be re-treated as frequently. As far as puncture and abrasion resistance go, the PreCip Pants feature a 100% nylon rip-stop exterior that was more durable than some. They were was not quite as tough as The North Face Venture Pants, which were similar to the Columbia Rebel Roamer and more durable than the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Ozonic.


Ease of Use


With their full-length zippers and slick internal fabric, the PreCip Pants were among the easiest to quickly don and remove. This feature allowed for quick deployment or removal over any boots; it also enabled the user to completely unzip the pant into two pieces, which helped with pulling over crampons, snowshoes, or skis (though the boot cuffs are a little on the narrow side for skis).

The PreCip pant's full-length zippers made donning these pants over any footwear (or skis  snowshoes  Nodric skis  crampons  etc.) a breeze. This was something our testing team appreciated  particularly when surprise thunder storms arrived  instantly soaking the ground.
The PreCip pant's full-length zippers made donning these pants over any footwear (or skis, snowshoes, Nodric skis, crampons, etc.) a breeze. This was something our testing team appreciated, particularly when surprise thunder storms arrived, instantly soaking the ground.

Best Applications


The PreCip Pant is a great all-around option for those who want a fully featured rain pant, but don't want to throw down $150-$200 on something that lives in their pack 95% of the time. The PreCip's weight, weather resistance, and packed size make it a perfect choice for backpacking or day hiking, as well as at home mountaineering, snowshoeing, or cross-country skiing. It is durable enough for occasional downhill skiing, but its slimmer pant cuffs (an advantage for most hikers and backpackers) don't fit that well over most ski boots.

Value


At $100, this contender isn't the cheapest pair of rain pants, but we think its the best rain pant you can buy with full-length side zippers for $100 or less. We think it offers the best balance of functionality, packability, weight, and weather resistance for the price. Our testing revealed that the PreCip is lighter, more packable, and offers a slightly better fit than The North Face Venture Half-Zip ($80), but isn't as small or light as the REI Co-Op Rain Pant but they are pretty equally storm proof.

Overall  the PreCip Pant was our Best Buy for the Best Value. For $100  it's hard to find a rain pant with a better combination of features  weather resistance  breathability  and weight.
Overall, the PreCip Pant was our Best Buy for the Best Value. For $100, it's hard to find a rain pant with a better combination of features, weather resistance, breathability, and weight.

Conclusion


The Marmot PreCip Full Zip is formerly our OutdoorGearLab Best Buy winner and remained a strong competitor for this award. We found it offered an excellent blend of features, functionally, and storm worthiness - for the price. While it wasn't as breathable as Gore-Tex models in the review, it likely presented the best breathability in its price range. It also comes loaded with features and offers comparable (or better) rain protection (the most important attribute of a rain pant) to several more expensive models.


Ian Nicholson