outdoor adventure, travel + healthy living


Outdoor Research Women’s Enchainment Jacket Review

November 21, 2013

Outdoor Research Women’s Enchainment Jacket Review

Run there, boulder up, yoga on top! Rocking out in the new #orinsightlab Enchainment jacketRun there, boulder up, yoga on top! Rocking out in the new #orinsightlab Enchainment jacket
Run there, boulder up, yoga on top! Rocking out in the new #orinsightlab Enchainment jacket

So, a while back, I got heavily into climbing. And you guys know how I feel about trail running. Any outdoor activity, really.

Well, that worked in my best interest a couple months ago when Outdoor Research asked me to be part of one of their #OEInsightLab groups. Basically, there are a few of us crazy adventuring/traveling types who are always looking for the best-made, most convenient gear for all of our various schemes and trips, and I was lucky enough to be asked to be part of the winter program, and just in time! I got my hands on the Enchainment jacket along with a couple others, and as fall started to make temperatures drop a bit while I was home in New Jersey, I got a chance to test out this windbreaker.

Outdoor Research Enchainment Jacket
Outdoor Research Enchainment Jacket

As a caveat, I have to admit I was seriously skeptical when I took a look at the jacket. I’m not going to lie: I hate windbreakers. They’re rarely stylish, rarely warm, and often, don’t block the wind very well either. Give me some of the Gore Windstopper stuff (like their baselayers, gloves and socks!) any day of the week. So to say that I was going to be a hard sell is, well, accurate.

And then, I tried it on. Right away, I was psyched. Unlike the windbreakers my mom sent me out to play in as a kid, this one actually was semi-fitted (it definitely has a lot of room if you’re wearing only a thin layer underneath, so there’s tons of space to add layers, like the Soleil fleece from Outdoor Research that I’m also testing!). The color is one of my favorites, in fact, I already had some technical running apparel in the same shade of turquoise, so I was stoked on that. Normally I prefer basic black, but this is one time I’m willing to make the exception.

Anyway, the Enchainment jacket is described as being “Breathable, versatile and offering shelter from everything but the burliest of downpours.” It’s made for “high-energy” adventures like climbing or hiking, so I took it out on a run/hike with my dog, with a little bit of bouldering and on-top-of-the-rock yoga thrown in.

What I liked best about it was that it wasn’t too hot while I ran and played on the rocks—but when I stopped to walk and the sun started dipping, I started really wishing I had that fleece with me. It does stop the wind, but don’t expect it to keep you warm if your heart rate starts dipping! But when it is higher and you are crushing your workout, this is an awesome piece to have. It started drizzling towards the end as well, and I’m happy to report that it was good for keeping out the raindrops.

This is my new go-to for quick bike rides into town to run errands, since then I can be less sweaty and more incognito, versus showing up in my full bike racer gear. My only fear is that my mom is going to steal it, I caught her eying it up when I was deciding to leave it home when I headed to the chillier temperatures of Canada!

Next up, the Soleil women’s fleece, which is perfect timing since I am north of Toronto for the week and frankly, it is fricking cold here!

See what others are saying about the Enchainment jacket and other Outdoor Research products by following #ORInsightLab.

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