Macpac Traverse $529.99
Used by: Deputy editor Matthew ‘pretty colours’ Cattin
Used for: One year
Rain jackets are frustrating. You wouldn’t tramp without one, but on most trips, they’re dead weight in the pack.
That being the case, I wanted a jacket to keep me dry when I needed it, without weighing me down for the majority of the time it stays in my pack, unused.
The Traverse is a happy medium of performance, weight and price. At 340g, it’s less than half the weight of my previous rain jacket, but with a 20,000mm water-resistance rating, it’s just as waterproof – on paper anyway.
I thought I would miss the pit zips of my old jacket, but the lightweight, breathable fabric keeps me from getting too hot while tramping.
The hip pockets are sizable, but inconveniently placed at hipbelt height, making them awkward to access when you’re carrying a pack. It’s not the end of the world though, as a sizeable chest pocket should hold most essentials.
Being so light, the jacket’s durability could be its downfall in the long term, but after a year of use, it’s showing no signs of wear.
Being an advocate of wearing bright colours on tramps – for visibility and photography – I was also stoked to pick one up in sunflower yellow.
Verdict: A high performance jacket that won’t weigh you down.