The Marmot Precip is the most popular backpacking rain jacket today
The Marmot PreCip is the most popular backpacking rain jacket.

The Marmot PreCip Rain Jacket is the most popular rain jacket today with good reason: it’s a fully featured waterproof breathable rain jacket that provides excellent performance at a reasonable price, usually available under $100. (See: Top 10 Backpacker Rain Jackets)

Besides the price, one of PreCip’s best features is the fully adjustable hood, functionality which is increasingly left off rain jackets, but of vital important to keep rain off your face, glasses if you wear them, and protect your neck from cold drafts. The hood has three points of adjustment: a rear velcro strap to adjust the hood volume and two side toggles that let you adjust the size of the front opening. There’s also a front bill (without a shaping wire) on the hood to protect your face from blowing rain.

If you don’t need the hood, it can be rolled up and tucked into the back collar out-of-the-way. The front of the collar (see top photo) protects the upper chest when closed and has a soft chin guard over the front zipper to protect your face and provide additional comfort. This hood design makes the PreCip ideal for warm weather or winter use, since it provide so much protection and configurability.

The rest of the PreCip Jacket is also loaded with features including pit zips, velcro cuffs on the wrists, and a hem pull along the bottom to prevent cold wind from blowing up underneath. The jacket has two mesh lined front pockets access from the sides which are great to store gloves or a hat and provide additional ventilation. They are partially accessible when worn with a backpack hip belt.

The Marmot Precip Jacket is available in many colors including this high visibility two tone style.
The Marmot PreCip Jacket is available in many colors including this high visibility two tone style.

Being a waterproof breathable rain jacket, the Marmot PreCip is coated on the outside with a (DWR) water-repellent coating that makes water hitting the jacket bead up and roll off it, allowing the jacket to vent water vapor from your perspiration through the jacket’s proprietary membrane. The chemical coating wears off over time, particularly under high abrasion points, like under your shoulder straps. When the coating wears off, the jacket’s exterior fabric will become soaked and “wet out”, blocking the flow of water vapor through the membrane. All waterproof breathable jackets coated with an external DWR suffer from this problem eventually. You can correct it by reapplying the DWR coating (see How to Restore the DWR on a Waterproof Breathable Jacket.) But as long as this DWR coating is good — the PreCip jacket will remain waterproof and breathable.

The Marmot Precip Jacket is coated with an external durable water repellent that makes rain bead up on the jacket's surface and roll off.
The Marmot PreCip Jacket is coated with an external durable water-repellent that makes rain bead up on the jacket’s surface and roll off.

As waterproof breathable jackets go, the Marmot PreCip is on the warm side, in part because the interior has a printed face fabric to protect the waterproof breathable membrane from wear and tear and help reduce internal “clamminess,” when you start to overheat. While jackets made with fewer layers or “thinner” fabrics will keep you cooler in summer, they’re often not warm enough in cooler weather, even when worn with a fleece.

The sizing of the PreCip runs large, so consider sizing down. The weight of a men’s XL is 11.4 ounces.

Recommendation

The Marmot PreCip in one of the most popular rain jackets ever made for backpacking, hiking, and outdoor recreation. A waterproof breathable rain jacket, the Marmot PreCip incorporates a proprietary membrane called NanoPro with pit-zips to help vent perspiration, an approach to breathability that combines the best of both worlds that produces the best user comfort when worn in challenging weather. A fully-featured hood rivaling ones found on far more expensive technical shells, large storage pockets, and a host of other features make this jacket suitable for four season conditions across a wide range of temperatures. The PreCip is really an excellent value for the money, one that is hard to beat for a rain jacket of this caliber.

Disclosure: The author purchased this jacket with his own funds.

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