In part one and two you can read about the fabric and the design of a hardshell jacket so you might have an idea what you want. The hard thing is to find the right jacket in your budget. First of all, be realistic. you can’t find a new Gore-Tex Pro jacket for 200 euro’s. But there is a decent jacket in every budget!
When you live in Europe, different brands will show up in your search as when you live in for example The States. It is simple to explain. In Europe you’ve got a number of brands that are reasonable big here, but they are not known in the States. When you look at YouTube reviews of gear, someone from the States will say something like “I’ve found an obscure brand that is making excellent outdoor pants and it’s called Fjallraven!”. Which is one of the biggest brands here.
As I said, there are a number of brands. One of the best known brands for hardshell jackets is Arc’Teryx. They produce in my opinion the best hardshell jackets. Arc is using Gore-Tex and their design of the jackets are awesome. As you might know, they are expensive. One of the most expensive jackets you can buy. My personal favorite from Arc is the Beta AR. It’s in my opinion everything you want from a hardshell jacket., but there is a price to pay.
Another personal favorite for me is The North Face, also a well known brand. They create very nice products and if you’re looking for a reasonable cheap, good jacket, I can recommend this brand. The other brands that I’ve looked at is Mammut, Marmot and Mountain Equipment. With Mountain Equipment I think you will get the best value for money, fabric wise and their design comes close to Arc’Teryx in my opinion.
These are just a small number of brands. I would recommend if you’re searching for a hardshell jacket, go online and search for real reviews and compare the different jackets at an online store.
In part 4 I will talk about the jacket that I’ve bought!