Gear Roundup: 12 shells fit for Spring
Thanks to the concept of layering, shells can be a good outerwear choice across the seasons. But if you enjoy Spring riding, a shell is basically a necessity. We’ve found some shells we like, in different styles, from different brands, and in different price ranges, so there’s something for everyone.
Analog may be phasing out of their streetwear line, but this shell is as easily wearable off the hill as it is on. At only a buck sixty, you get classic Analog styling and 10,000mm waterproofing, with very light insulation and kangaroo pockets.
I spent most of last season riding in a rain jacket made by a company that has no relation to snowboarding; I just layered different articles under it depending on the weather. My point is, breathable rain jackets can make great snowboard jackets, and the Holden 2.5L is what you get when a company well-versed in snowboard outerwear design, makes a rain jacket. Holden calls it “minimal and classic.” What’s great is that it packs itself into its own pocket, making it perfect for traveling light.
Patagucci, I mean, Patagonia makes really nice shit. The Troposhere jacket was designed with alpine climbing in mind. Bummed it wasn’t designed specifically for snowboarding? Well, get over it, because this means the jacket is constructed from highly flexible materials. It also utilizes Patagonia’s Deluge DWR finish to shed moisture and block wind. All the seams and zippers are sealed, it’s helmet-compatible, and even has two handwarmer pockets.
Coalatree is a small company that strives to make stylish garments and make a small environmental impact. The Ranger features a zipper and bamboo button closure, plaid lining along placket, corduroy collar, dual front chest and hand pockets all topped off with a waxed poly/cotton shell.
The Sonora jacket is a classic looking jacket, with all the tech you need to stay dry and warm if you layer with it. It has a 10K twill waterproof shell with zip mesh vents and wrist and waist gaiters to block the snow on the deeper days.
The Brighton Jacket might be the most reasonable 20K jacket you can find. It has a clean aesthetic and a soft, stretch twill fabric that’s comfortable, as well as backcountry durable. The Brighton is also one of Bonfire’s greenest pieces to date, with 60g Thermore Rinnova insulation (a recycled alternative to classic Polyfil) and a PFOA-Free DWR coating. This is the jacket I’ve worn almost everyday this season.
The Broma Jacket offers lightweight protection against the wet and wind, with a hood and half-zip closure, all for as much as an overpriced cotton hoodie. It even has a back vent so you can wear this snowboarding or at the beach on a summer evening. Plus, who doesn’t love the familiar feel of a pouch pocket?
What Airblaster stands for, is awesome. If you don’t think so, start skiing or competitive snowshoeing or something. Airblaster calls the Javier Jacket a “workhorse that never complains about the conditions.” The Javier is a 10K waterproof, fully seam sealed shell. And it’s been tested on the sloppy slopes of Mt. Hood, so you know it stands up to nasty conditions. The big Airblaster pill on the side lets you represent an awesome brand too.
O’Neill’s Reverb Jacket is your go-to shell for Spring and Summer. The lightweight hooded zip-up can be rolled up into the detachable neck pillow when not in use. Perfect for that flight to Hood to shred this Spring/Summer. Once there, the water-resistant coating will keep you dry while the jersey lining keeps you warm when the clouds roll in. Featuring front pouch pockets, chest welt pockets, eyelit ventilation and a rib bottom, the Reverb is a must have for those in-between days and cool summer breezes.
Contrary to popular belief, the Metal Jacket isn’t actually made out of metal, but it might as well be. The DRYRIDE 2L fabric repels water like it’s made of metal but the AirTech® fabric helps it to breath better than a mesh tank top in the 80s.
If the Allagash Jacket were an animal it’d be a waterproof cheetah. Its slick look and weatherproof 2.5 layer shell repels any water attacks and the AirTech fabric keeps the breathability level at an all-time high. OK, so maybe it’s not really like a cheetah at all…
Crafted of waxed canvas, The North Face Sumnter Jacket will be the first layer you reach for on chilly springtime mornings. Durable cotton/polyester fabric creates the perfect balance of natural comfort, easy care and style; this waxed canvas gets better with washing and age. We like this piece because it’s so “tech” looking, but the fact that it’s made by The North Face means you can trust the quality.