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Reviews > Rain Gear > Jackets and Pants > L. L. Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket > Owner Review by Aaron Kehrer

L. L. Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket
Owner Review
April 26, 2007

Reviewer Information
  • Name: Aaron Kehrer
  • Age: 30
  • Gender: Male
  • Height: 6' 2" (1.88 Meters)
  • Weight: 160 Pounds (73 Kilograms)
  • Email address: aaron AT akehrer DOT com
  • City: Ypsilanti
  • State: Michigan
  • Country: USA
Backpacking Background

I have just begun backpacking in the last year in my native state of Michigan. I usually spend at least one to two nights out every couple of months including during the winter. I currently have my first full camping kit (tent, bag, pack) and am interested more in getting out there than counting ounces.

Product Information
  • Manufacturer: L. L. Bean
  • Year of manufacture: 2006
  • Web site: www.llbean.com
  • Manufacturer's Weight: none given
  • Actual Weight: 12 oz. (340 g)
  • Size: Men's Large
  • MSRP: $59.00
Features Listed on Manufacturer's Website
  • Made from TEK2.5 waterproof, breathable nylon fabric
  • Taped seams
  • Adjustable hood
L.L.Bean Trail Model Jacket - Provided by llbean.com
Image Courtesy L. L. Bean
Product Description

I received a bright yellow L. L. Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket for a birthday present last year paired with a pair of their Trail Model Rain Pants. The jacket is a size large and is quite roomy on my frame, enough that I can easily fit a medium weight fleece and a down vest underneath. The cut is long enough that the bottom sits below my waist, and the back is longer than the front to help keep things dry when I bend over. The material is rip-stop nylon with a waterproof/breathable material laminated to the inside. There is no liner to protect the material, but I tried scratching it with my fingernail and didn't leave any marks.

Water does bead up and shed off so there probably is a DWR coating on the outside even though I could find no information about the TEK2.5 material on the website. There is a two-way zipper with a piece of webbing sewn on the inside storm flap to prevent snagging. The outer storm flap and elastic cuffs are held closed with Velcro and there are snaps at the base of the zipper and the part of the storm flap on the collar. The inside of the collar has a microfleece layer to go against my chin. The arms are built such that there is a good range of motion without the bottom of the jacket riding up and there is no seam along the shoulder where a pack's straps could cause irritation. There are elastic draw cords at the bottom and hood with cord locks to keep things snugged tight and two mesh pockets high on either side of the chest with storm flaps over the zippers. The pockets are large and cover about a third of each side of the front of the jacket which make them good for storing quite a bit, but they are set a little too high for me to use them as a place to warm my hands or keep them dry. Having the pockets made out of a mesh material does help with ventilation since there are no pit-zips.


Review

I had opportunities to wear this jacket the past fall, winter, and spring. The weather in Southeast Michigan is known for being more wet and slushy than cold and snowy and so I've had the jacket out in downpours and sleet. At all times it kept me dry and the slightly oversize fit allowed me to extend its wear into some of the winter season by wearing warm layers underneath.

I have packed the jacket with me on all my backpacking trips since I received it, but I have only had to use it once to keep me dry in a light rain. It works well as a wind breaker and being able to layer under it makes it a good hardshell in a layering system. Most of my experience with it has been on the short hikes I take to exercise my dog Zeke and I believe these have been varied enough to give me a pretty good indication of how the jacket is going to perform in the long run.

I was worried at first that the material was going to be easily ripped or punctured by the tree branches and thorn bushes that line the trails Zeke and I like to hike. My previous experience with rain gear has been an Army PVC parka, which while being quite durable is an absolute sweat box. I am happy to say the material has held up to all the wood's abuses in addition to dog claws and the friction of a long piece of static rope that I use for a dog lead. Also the breathability has been great with no accumulated sweat on the inside of the jacket even after strenuous hill climbing. The inside does stick to exposed areas of skin when they have a sheen of sweat on them like on hot, humid days. This can be annoying when I move my arm and it drags along the inside of the sleeve. It does not inhibit motion though.

The one true test of the jacket's waterproofness came when Zeke and I were caught in an open field as a thunderstorm with torrential rain came through. We had a good 20 minutes of solid rain where we just hunkered down and tried to keep as dry as possible. The temperatures were in the mid 40s F (~7 C) and I was glad only to a get part my jeans soaked through. The jacket shed water like a champ and everything I could keep underneath it stayed bone dry.


Summary

The Trail Model Rain Jacket has become a great all around outer layer to have.


Likes
1. Waterproof and breathable (no surprises)
2. Durable
3. Roomy cut for added layers, but not baggy
Dislikes
1. Pockets a little too high to hold my hands
2. Inside can get sticky when hot and humid


Read more reviews of L. L. Bean gear
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Reviews > Rain Gear > Jackets and Pants > L. L. Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket > Owner Review by Aaron Kehrer



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