As part of of The Great Outdoors’ November 2020 review of women’s waterproof jackets, Judy Armstrong reviews the Marmot Women’s Keele Peak Jacket.
The lightest jacket in the test by a whisker (6g lighter than Outdoor Research’s jacket despite feeling slightly denser), the Marmot Women’s Keele Peak Jacket uses 3L Pertex Shield Pro, a lightweight, supple, soft fabric. It is highly breathable, with a microporous membrane that allows water vapour to pass through more freely than with regular Pertex Shield. To boost airflow further, two zipped vents at the chest gape effectively past a rucksack chest strap; unlike Páramo’s arm vents they’re easy to open and close one-handed. Because of those vents the side pockets are placed low and are completely blocked by a hipbelt or harness, which is disappointing.
It’s one of the shorter jackets in the test, yet the laminated front zip is two-way, with a wide rear stormflap. The hood has single pull-cord adjustment that snugs the volume well, with an unusual amount of space allowed in front of the mouth and chin. I didn’t manage to adjust it close enough to keep driving rain at bay although it did allow extra airflow if I kept my head down so the peak gave shelter. In honesty, it’s a bonus to not have a zipped collar pressing on my mouth when I’m puffing! I prefer to use lightweight, flexible garments like this in less severe conditions because cold rain hammering on fine fabric always feels a bit too close to the skin, but for three-season use it’s ideal. It’s just a shame about the (seemingly unavoidable) pocket placement.
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