Allegory rain jacket is made of DuPont Tactel nylon
and a rip-stop nylon taffeta material that has a durable
water repellent (DWR) finish. It uses a T-Core waterproof/breathable
coating. The coating is fluid applied and has multiple
coatings on the inside layers of the Tactel nylon. The
hang tag on the jacket indicates that the T-Core coating
allows vaporous perspiration, driven by body heat, to
escape to the outside of the jacket. This is achieved
because the micro-pores in the polyurethane membrane
are halfway between the size of a gaseous water vapor
molecule and a liquid water molecule.
The jacket lining is made from a polyester
mesh and a grey nylon taffeta material. The manufacturer
indicates on their website that the lining is breathable.
Down in the lower taffeta section is a built in stuff
pocket with a double sided zipper. The jacket stuffs
into the pocket from the outside in once it is all packed
the pocket is inside out and the opposite side zipper
pull is available to close it for storage. There is
a small hang loop measuring 1.75 in (4 cm), exposed
when the jacket is stuffed in the pocket. Only one of
zipper ends has a knotted nylon cord pull. When the
jacket is stuffed in the pocket it measures approximately
10 x 8 in (25 x 20 cm).
There is another pocket where the label
is located near the neck of the jacket. This pocket
holds a flap of Tactel nylon and micro-fleece fabric
that has two pieces of loop fasteners stitched to it.
This flap can be removed from the pocket and can attach
to a piece of hook on the rear of the hood to form the
hood into a collar shape. The micro-fleece on the flap
protects my neck from the hood cord lock when the hood
is placed in this position. Located on the inside base
of the hood is a hang loop.
The seams of the jacket are fully taped.
This is a good thing because this jacket has an abundance
The jacket has waterproof pit zips.
These pit zips can be used to increase ventilation and
to better help regulate body temperature by allowing
cooler air to enter the jacket. The pit zips have one
double ended waterproof zipper measuring 11 in (28 cm)
in length. There is a knotted nylon cord zipper pull
on only one of the zipper ends on each side.
There are two waterproof side zip pockets
measuring 9.5 in (24 cm) in length on the front of the
jacket. The pockets are lined with grey taffeta and
grey micro-fleece. The micro-fleece is soft and is used
to create hand warmer pockets. The zippers on the pockets
tuck into a flap of Tactel nylon. This serves as a protector
for the zipper to prevent water entering in the top.
The jacket closes with a light blue
nylon zipper that is backed by a 1.25 in (3 cm) interior
draft stop and a 2 in (5 cm) outer storm flap. Four
sections of hook and loop closures and a snap are located
at the bottom of the jacket. These help keep the storm
flap closed when the jacket is zipped up. The top 4
in (10 cm) of the draft stop are covered with a micro-fleece
lining at the top of the flap to help prevent the material
rubbing against my face. The jacket zips up very high,
covering my entire neck and the lower portion of my
The arm cuffs of the Allegory are constructed
of elastic and have hook and look closures to adjust
the tightness of the cuffs.
The jacket has a long tail length to
help water roll off and allows me to be partially covered
when sitting down. There is a cord on the bottom of
the jacket to cinch it in place especially to prevent
wind from blowing up in the jacket and to eliminate
drafts. There is also a waist draw cord which is adjusted
from inside the side pockets. Both draw cords use tethered
cord locks to allow me to use one hand to tighten them.
The hood has a stiff bill to prevent
water from rolling down into my eyes and there is a
toggle in the rear of the hood to form the hood into
various shapes to help with water run off. This draw
cord is tethered and is designed for one handed use.
The hood also can be adjusted around my face by pulling
the draw cords on either side. The cords tighten without
the use of a cord lock, they use a neoprene as a friction
The manufacturer's website has general
product information and where the rain jacket can be
purchased from an on-line retailer. I could not find
any garment measurements on the site and I had to the
contact the manufacturer for the sizing measurements
prior to beginning this test. I also contacted the listed
on-line store and they were unable to provide me with
any garment measurements.
January 7, 2009
Big Island, Hawaii:
We spent six days hiking to snorkeling or scenic spots
that are hard to get to without a boat. The hikes were
anything from 0.5 to 3 miles (1 to 5 km) each way. The
temperatures were between 76 and 82 F (24 to 28 C) and
terrain was dirt, (lots of) lava, and sand. We also
walked 2 to 3 miles (3 to 5 km) into town for dinner
each day. We saw rain just about every afternoon or
early evening. I also had the opportunity to wear the
jacket on a boat to and from a night snorkeling trip.
I wore the jacket to the snorkeling spot for warmth
and on the way back to land it started to rain. The
elevations recorded were at sea level or above to 100
ft (30 m).
Orange County, California:
The temperature was recorded at 61 F (16 C) with light
to heavy rain. I was walking in the neighborhood to
run some errands. The elevation here is just above sea
Denver, Colorado: The
temperatures ranged from 23 to 36 F (-5 to 2 C) over
the course of four days. There was a light drizzle that
turned to snow. I wore the jacket on a 4 mi (6 km) group
walk around historic Denver. The highest elevation was
at the mile high marker at 5,280 ft (1,609 m).
The temperature was recorded at 55 to 57 F (13 to 14
C) with heavy rain over a course of two days. During
these two days I wore the jacket on a day hike in the
Newport Beach area totaling 4 mi (6 km) and for an evening
walk in my local neighborhood, along with regular day-to-day
Orange County, California:
The temperature was recorded at 52 F (11 C) with misty
rain and fog. I wore the jacket on a 3 mi (5 km) morning
Mount San Jacinto State Park,
California: This was a 6 mi (10 km) two day
snowshoe/backpacking trip. We camped at an elevation
of 9100 ft (2775 m) on 5 ft (1.5 m) of snow pack. The
temps ran from 40 to 22 F (4 to -6 C).
in the Field
I did not know that it
could rain so much in Southern California. I wore the
Red Ledge Allegory every chance I got to run errands,
daily walks, backpacking, and on hiking trips. I wore
the jacket a total of 16 days as either an outer shell
or as a rain jacket. At no point in time did water penetrate
through the fabric of the jacket. So I would say this
jacket is indeed waterproof.
In the warmer climate
of Hawaii I found that the jacket did not breathe well
while I was sedentary or with activity. I felt like
there was steam in the inside of the jacket, and I felt
sticky. The temperatures were between 76 and 82 F (24
to 28 C) and I think the warmer temperatures and the
high humidity had a direct relationship of why the jacket
was not breathing. I had the pit zips open and even
the front zipper open using the hook and loop closures
during misting rain. I wore the jacket on a boat trip
to and from a snorkeling spot and on the way back it
began to rain steadily. I pulled the hood up and used
the draw cords to tighten it around my face. The hood
stayed in place for the boat ride. There were small
amounts of rain drops on my face just because we were
traveling into the wind.
I also wore the jacket
as a shell while climbing uphill on a backpacking trip
with a temperature around 40 F (4 C). Again I felt sticky
and it felt like there was steam inside the jacket.
I was sweating a great deal while climbing uphill while
carrying my winter backpack.
For the day hikes and
the walks around town there were no ventilation issues
encountered. Only in the two climates above did I run
into ventilation issues. In cold temperatures I have
worn the jacket as a shell with wool and fleece base
layers with no ventilation issues. With the base layers
underneath the jacket I was not restricted in any movement
or uncomfortable in any way.
I noticed something a
little bit odd with the light blue fabric of the jacket.
After drops of rain fall onto the jacket they are water
dropped shaped. But after about a minute or so the water
drops begin to shed off or disappear and there are dimples
in the fabric where the water drops were (this can be
seen in the pictures below). These dimples stay in the
fabric until the jacket dries. The first time I saw
the dimples I was alarmed as I thought I brushed the
jacket against something rough.
on the fabric
in the fabric
The Allegory jacket covers my behind
well when I am walking or hiking. However, when I sit
down my back is covered to the surface I am sitting
on and my bottom is only slightly covered. I can not
sit comfortably on the tail of the jacket, it just is
not long enough. In my initial report I thought the
tail would be long enough, but then when testing the
jacket I sat on a wet surface and my bottom became wet.
This really has not caused me too much grief as I avoided
sitting on wet surfaces. I would like to see the tail
of the jacket slightly longer so my bottom does not
have to get wet when sitting on wet surfaces.
At first I was not too fond of the
location of the front hand pockets. I found them to
be a bit too high. But, while wearing a backpack or
a day pack they are in the perfect location. On some
of my jackets the pockets are set low so that they can
be used comfortably without a pack on, and then when
wearing a pack they are just non-functional. The pockets
are large enough that I can fit may items inside of
them (a hat, gloves, mittens, tissues, treats, and lip
balm). I love the softness of the micro-fleece lining
inside the pockets. The lining has definitely increased
my hand warmth.
I love the hood of the jacket with
the small bill. The hood draw cords are easy to use
with or without gloves on (I can not manipulate them
with mittens on, but there is not much I can do with
mittens on) and with one-handed functionality. They
enable the hood to be cinched down around my face. The
friction stops stay in place. While wearing the jacket
on a boat and in gusty wind during a rain storm the
hood stayed on my head. The small bill on the hood prevents
the rain from rolling off the hood and landing right
smack on my face. The small tether cord on the back
of the hood also helped me better position the hood
to help the rain roll off the hood correctly. I like
that the hood can roll up and be placed inside the jacket
using the hook and loop fastener to keep it in place.
When the jacket is zipped up my mouth
is covered and the soft fabric inside the collar feels
comfortable against my face. The soft fabric does become
slightly damp from condensation after wearing the jacket
for a few hours with it zipped up.
At this point in time I have not used
the draw cords on the body of the jacket. Even in strong
winds no rain or precipitation has blown up the bottom
of the jacket.
The sleeves of the Allegory fit nicely
over gloves and mittens and can be adjusted appropriately
with the hook and loop closures. There have not been
any issues with the sleeves riding up or the sleeve
closures becoming undone.
There is a plethora of hook and loop
closures running down the main zipper flap (outer draft
stop) of the jacket. If I am not careful the hook fastener
part has a tendency to latch onto all fabrics in contact
with it. It seems to really like to adhere to fleece
and wool fabrics. The outer draft flap stays nicely
in place when fastened with its hook and loop closure
and sometimes I just fastened the jacket with these
closures when it was too warm to zip up the Allegory.
All the zippers work well on the Allegory.
I am able to zip and unzip the pit zippers one handed
which I find to be a plus. I can also zip and unzip
the hand pockets one handed. There have not been any
instances of water leaking into the zippers.
I have yet to wash the Allegory. The
fabric had some dirt smudges on it that I wiped away
with a wet cloth. The jacket is not odorous at this
point. I plan to wash the jacket during the long term
March 5, 2009
During the field reporting
phase of this test series I wore the jacket on two day
hikes, to and from work while it was raining, and on
two morning walks. I carried it in my pack during one
day hike and one overnight backpacking trip.
Crystal Cove State
Park, California: This was a day hike for a
total of 5 mi (8 km). The temperature was recorded at
53 F (12 C) with light rain in the early morning. The
elevation here is just above sea level. I wore the jacket
in the morning while it was raining.
Forest, California (San Mateo Wilderness): This
was a two day backpacking trip on the Tenaja Trail to
Fisherman's Camp then to Tenaja Falls. From Tenaja Falls
we went back to Fisherman's Camp to spend the night.
We hiked 9 mi (14 km) on the first day and 3.5 mi (6
km) on the second day, all up-hill. It hit 75 F (24
C) for a high and got down to 28 F (-2 C) at night.
The high elevation was 2,000 ft (610 m) with a total
of 1,300 ft (396 m) of elevation gain and loss. I carried
the jacket in my pack just in case of rain. I did not
wear the jacket on this trip as I needed warmth in the
evening from my down jacket and I was not cold enough
to use the Allegory as a shell on this trip.
Crystal Cove State
Park, California: The jacket was worn at this
location on one day hike and carried in my pack on one
day hike during the testing period. The elevation was
from sea level to 60 ft (18 m). The one day hike completed
was on the beach mostly in wet sand as we followed the
coast in and out of the tide pools. It was raining right
before we left so it was a bit cool. The temperatures
were between 50 F to 68 F (10 C to 20 C). Both trips
were 5 mi (8 km) each. On one of the hikes in this location
there was a light misty rain.
California: I wore the jacket for eleven days
during the field reporting stage to work during rainy
and cooler days. I also wore the jacket on two morning
walks when it was drizzling. The temperatures ranged
from 48 F to 75 F (9 C to 24 C).
in the Field
I am very happy with the
performance of the Red Ledge Allegory Jacket. I have
washed the jacket and it has retained its waterproof
properties. At no point during this test did water penetrate
through the fabric. All the zippers and the hook and
loop closures are working as though they are new. The
hook sections on the jacket, mainly on the storm flap,
seem to adhere to my clothing, especially if I am wearing
wool or fleece garments or gloves.
As seen in the picture
below the inside mesh lining of the jacket has a large
amount of snags. Sometimes the hook of the storm flap
adhered to the inside lining of the jacket when I was
putting the jacket on or taking it off. This caused
some of the snags on the lining.
Inner lining snags.
I am happy with the large
pockets on the front of the jacket. At first I was not
happy with how high they are placed. But, I found this
location ideal when wearing a pack. If the pockets were
set lower I would not be able to access the entire pocket
while wearing a pack.
One of my favorite features of the
Allegory is the hood with the small bill. The hood draw
cords are still easy to use with a one-handed technique.
The bill on the hood is still effective in preventing
water from rolling down on to my face. I am very happy
that the hood does not obstruct my peripheral vision
when it is cinched into place.
I had the opportunity to use the draw
cords on the jacket. During one of my day hikes it was
very windy and I cinched up the draw cords so the misting
rain and wind did not blow up into my jacket. I was
able to cinch the cords easily one-handed.
In warmer temperatures with high humidity
I am still finding that the inside of the jacket becomes
steamy. I notice this most when I am wearing multiple
layers beneath the jacket, climbing uphill, or light
walking when the temperatures climb up above 60 F (16
C). Even with the pit zips open I feel sticky inside
I have received many compliments on
the style and design of the jacket. I was on a day hike
and a woman asked me about the jacket and where she
could purchase one.
I would like to see the jacket just
a tad bit longer so that when I sit down on a wet surface
my bottom is fully covered. Right now when I sit down
the jacket does not cover my bottom completely. But,
if I am sitting down and rain drops are rolling down
by back they roll of the jacket and my bottom does not
get wet in that case.
The jacket easily stuffs inside the
storage pocket. On my backpacking trip I never removed
the jacket from the storage pocket. The zipper to close
the storage pocket when the jacket is stuffed inside
is large enough that I do not need a pull tab to help
with opening or closing the zipper.
The jacket had some black markings
and dirt on the outside material and these washed away
using a mild detergent. Spot cleaning with just water
was also effective in removing some stains and markings.
I dried the jacket in my home drier with no heat as
indicated on the care tag.
- The bill on the hood of the
- Placement of the hand pockets
- The jacket is stylish
That Are So-So
- The jacket can be a tad bit longer
in the back
I am very happy with the
performance of the Red Ledge Allegory jacket. The fabric
is very waterproof, but has breathability issues in
temperatures above 76 F (24 C) or when I am sweating
inside the jacket while climbing uphill. I love the
bill on the hood, especially that it helps the water
roll off properly and not into my face. The pockets
and the pit zips can be open and closed with one hand
and with or without gloves on. I wish the jacket was
slightly longer in the tail so that when I sit down
on a wet surface my bottom does not get soaked.
concludes my long term reporting on the Red Ledge Allegory
rain jacket. Thank you Red Ledge and backpackgeartest.org
for providing me with the opportunity to test the women's
Allegory rain jacket.