I've owned plenty of Arc'teryx (personal disclosure: I have worked for them), Patagonia, MEC (back in the day) and even Taiga (way, way back in the day). Like Banff mountain guide Reudi Kranabitter once said, "I don't want to know what kind of gear you've got, I want to know where you've been with it." I think fit, first and foremost, is the most important - and there are nuances between various manufacturers (and please, if you go around to the stores, yes, even the branded shops since there really AREN'T any independent stores left any more), buy the item at the store and keep the receipt. Even keep the hangtags. For dirtbags, of course price is important. A saving of $300 is a week or two of climbing. But those guys usually utilize the jungle telegraph to cadge some kind of pro deal. If you're a weekend warrior, go for fit and pay the price - you won't be disappointed. Arc'teryx, of course, are good, but so too are Patagonia, Peak Performance, Mountain Hardwear, and if you want to be a really cool dude you can seek out a Euro brand like Haglofs, Noronna, or Halti. Now, if you've stuck with me this far, I will have to say that the Westcomb APOC NeoShell is THE best shell piece I've ever tried. It's very light so I don't know how durable it will be, but the membrane and the slightly stretchy face fabric is real secret sauce stuff. It has kept me dry in pounding North Shore rain (though I haven't worn it for more than a couple of hours at a time) and the DWR/fabric beaded moisture away. Having said that, it IS lightweight fabric. You don't get that crumply hard-shell feel (which a lot of people like). I have heard great things about their eVent fabric jackets, too. The fit is simply outstanding, and so is the workmanship. They are definitely worth seeking out as well, echoing what earlier posters said (Valhalla Pure is the primary outfitter, again, they have outlet sales as well).