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Sprayway Men’s Vihar jacket – review

Looking for a reliable and affordable waterproof jacket? Sprayway's Vihar jacket for men comes up trumps

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
Navy blue waterproof jacket

Our review

This brilliant jacket won’t win style awards, but for value it’s a steal – reliably waterproof.
Pros: Excellent waterproofing
Recycled materials
Competitive price
Cons: Lacks style
Pockets are slightly awkwardly angled
Stiff main zip

This brilliant lightweight jacket performs better than quite a few more expensive waterproofs. It must be one of the most affordable jackets to boast waterproofing from one of the market leading brands, Gore-Tex, and the two-layer fabric really works. After long periods in heavy rain there was no water ingress at all. It even stayed dry on the shoulders, despite wearing a backpack.

The shell fabric is made from recycled polyester, and treated with a durable water repellent (DWR) that, unlike some, does not include environmentally harmful PFC chemicals. (Like other waterproof jackets, it will need occasional re-proofing.) It’s windproof, yet breathable enough not to feel uncomfortably sweaty when hiking up hills on warm days. The mesh and taffeta lining feels pleasant, too.

The hood has a slightly stiffened peak and a pair of elasticated cinches, with additional rear hook-and-loop volume reducer. This gives a fairly close fit, allowing free vision when you turn your head.An internal chest pocket with hook-and-loop closure is just big enough for an OS map.

A couple of small downsides: two external zipped hip pockets are positioned at a slightly awkward angle, if you want to walk with hands-in-pockets. The main zip is a good quality YKK, but the one fitted on my sample can be a bit stiff.

The fit is slightly close to allow for winter layering, so – depending on your physique –  you might consider going up a size.

Ok, it has zero style – my daughter would never borrow it. But it does the job – it’s really functional.

Review by Robert Brock

Also consider… Montane Pac Plus Waterproof Jacket

The Pac Plus Waterproof Jacket is, at just 285g, about half the weight of many hardshells, thanks partly to Gore Tex Paclite Plus fabric.I found it stood up extremely well to driving rain in gusty wind during a lengthy ridge walk in the Highlands, and subsequently with a couple of hours of steady lowland rain. The excellent hood is easily adjustable to make a close fit around the face, and has a firm peak to keep rain out of your eyes.
The fabric is also every  breathable, so while it doesn’t have underarm vents to let in cool air, the jacket kept me feeling remarkably comfortable, even as the effort levels – and body temperature – soared with the rising contours.
Montane’s minimal design omits a breast pocket, but includes hip pockets that are well placed to remain accessible when you are wearing a backpack with belt harness.

• Read more in our full-length review

Review by Joe Pontin

For more waterproof jacket options…

Read our lightweight waterproof jacket reviews  


• Read our waterproof winter jacket reviews