I am in the market for a new water-proof hiking/outdoor activities jacket and I am looking for recommendations. I have not bought a jacket in years and I currently have/use a North Face light weight shell (similar to the North Face Womens Resolve Jacket I think). This jacket has done me well and I have no complaints - it has lived its useful life tho.
I am looking for a jacket with the following features:
- some kind of Gore-Tex (or Gore-Tex like) finish - lots of "new" finishes now-a-days info about these would also be helpful
- a shell only (I have all the base layers - fleece, puffy jacket, sweaters etc.)
- front hand packets (I get cold hands)
- A hood that is well formed or can be cinched (I have a small head so most hoods just blow off)
- Slim fit (I am petite so no bulky jackets please)
- a waist/bottom cinch would be a bonus
- no crazy expensive jackets please, I would ideally like to be under $400.00
My current jacket has been great, like I said, but I am looking for something that could handle some more rough wear (starting to do more scrambling and snowshoeing). The thing I like the most about my current jacket is it still looks brand new! It is a bright color and it has not faded, zippers have never broken, etc. It is not longer really water proof ie I need to spray it with a coasting after every really rainy day outside, hence the need for a new jacket! lol
Any suggestions are welcome, thanks in advance.