10 Best Summer Rain Jackets For 2024

When you think of hiking in summer, your mind conjures up thoughts of warm sun-filled days extending long into the evening. We seem to forget the times when the air thickens and the unexpected summer storms roll in, drenching us from head to toe. And often, throwing on your heavy rain jacket, which will inevitably make you sweat in the steamy heat, isn’t worth the trouble. 

Luckily, there is a solution. Finding yourself a summer rain jacket that is super lightweight and breathable is key to enjoying those not so sunny summer days in the mountains. But how do you know whether your lightweight rain jacket of choice will hold up to a heavy summer downpour?

That’s where we come in. We’ve done the hard work for you, researching and comparing countless lightweight rain jackets to find the best summer rain jackets for 2024. In this post, you’ll not only find a list of the best lightweight rain jackets for your summer adventures, but we’ve also provided a quick rundown on what components to concentrate on in your search.

If you’re searching for more information on how to choose a rain jacket, read our detailed guide on finding the best rain jacket for all seasons next.

Hiking to the summit of Mt Townsend in my XTM summer rain jacket

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Crossing a tight swing bridge above the Franklin River on the Frenchmans Cap walk

The XTM Tarkine, Our Favourite Rain Jacket For Australia

  • Highly breathable
  • Impressive Performance
  • Super cheap
  • Awesome orange colour

A great all-round jacket, perfect for Australia! Plus all profits go directly to the Save The Tarkine Foundation 🙂

How To Find The Best Summer Rain Jacket For 2024

When you begin the hunt for the best summer rain jacket, the main two components to concentrate on are breathability and the level of waterproofing – lightweight and packability often come as a welcomed bonus for summer rain jackets but aren’t the most concerning factors.

There are a number of elements that contribute to creating a breathable and sufficiently waterproof rain jacket, which include the rain jacket’s rating, the waterproofing technology and the materials used. Let’s take a closer look at the components that assist in making the best summer rain jacket.

Rain Jacket Ratings

Arguably the most important factor to check when buying a new rain jacket is the ratings. Every rain jacket will have a rating, which looks like this – 10k/15k.

The first number on the rating refers to the level of water resistance – measured in millimetres, and the second illustrates the breathability – measured in grams. And if you haven’t guessed yet, the higher the number – the greater the water resistance and breathability.

Water Resistance

RatingRecommended Use
0-10KWithstand light drizzle for short periods of time
10-15KHandle moderate rain for a long period of time
15-20KDesigned for heavy downpours over a long period of time

Breathability

RatingRecommended Use
0-10KAdequate for everyday use with little to no exercise
10-15KSuited for moderate activity where sweat is common
15-20KHigh levels of breathability, designed for high stress activities in which sweat is unavoidable

For a summer rain jacket, it is important to have both numbers as high as possible. If you can, we would recommend going no lower than 15k/15k, but the best jackets will be upward of 15k/20k.

Unfortunately, finding the rating of a jacket can be difficult. Often, brands will use specific waterproofing technologies that are either outsourced or created within the company. These technologies will still have ratings, yet they require a little digging to uncover.

Waterproofing Technology

Hiking at night in a Tasmanian Rainforest in my best XTM rain jacket

There are various brands circling the outdoor world that are leading the charge in creating the best waterproofing technology for rain jackets. The most commonly known is Gore-Tex, which is a highly reputable option for most types of rain jackets.

However, the technology that dominates the highly breathable and ultra-lightweight scene is Pertex Shield and other variations such as Shield Air, Shield Pro, Shield Diamond Fuse and Shield +.

These waterproofing technologies – plus the in-house technologies such as Patagonia’s H2No and The North Face’s FutureLight – all refer to the waterproof, breathable, windproof and durable membrane that forms the main construction of a rain jacket. 

If you’re looking at a jacket that doesn’t have a well-known technology, the best way to determine whether the jacket will be worthy is to check the ratings, read reviews, and try to compare the jacket with a similar option that consists of a waterproofing technology you’re familiar with.

DWR (Durable Water Repellent Finish)

Hiking in the rain on the plateau between Barn Bluff and Cradle Mountain

In addition to the waterproof membrane within the rain jacket’s layers, most jackets will also have a DWR coating as their first line of defence. DWR stands for durable water repellent finish and is applied to the outer layer of a rain jacket to prevent moisture from absorbing into the fabric. 

Traditionally, DWR uses perfluorocarbons which have been linked to environmental and health problems, but most brands have now switched to PFC-free DWR coatings. However,  the PFC-free DWR is less efficient which does cause the jacket’s life span to be compromised. You can read more about this issue in this article by Patagonia.

Breathability

As I’ve mentioned a few times, breathability is the ultimate factor to consider for a summer rain jacket as overheating is the biggest concern. For the best breathability, choose a 3-layer design with at least a 15k rating. 

Fabrics

A rain jacket is most commonly constructed with nylon or polyester in a 2, 2.5 or 3-layer design. As a general rule, nylon is stronger, packs down smaller and is more comfortable – making it the preferred choice. 

However, polyester is often cheaper, has better longevity and is slightly more breathable. A rain jacket with a nylon outer and polyester inner liner provides the best of both worlds, but most commonly you’ll simply find one or the other.

Fabric Layers

Osprey Mira 32 hydration magnet on chest strap wearing the XTM Kimberly Rain Jacket

Rain jackets are generally designed with layers that bind together to create a breathable and comfortable shell. These are divided into three categories – 2-layer, 2.5-layer and 3-layer. Basically, the more layers, the more breathable and comfortable the jacket will be. 

2-layer: A rain jacket constructed with two layers consists of a waterproof membrane that’s bound to an outer layer. It is often the least breathable, yet cheapest option and suitable for urban and non-technical wear.

2.5-layer: The 2.5-layer design is a popular option for summer rain jackets as they offer good breathability and an extra layer to protect the waterproof membrane from abrasion, sweat and dirt – which can lower the performance of the jacket.

3-layer: A 3-layer rain jacket is quite similar to the 2.5, however, the inner coating has superior moisture-wicking capabilities and better durability. This is the ultimate choice for a summer rain jacket but of course, it also comes with a higher price tag.

Durability

Passing packs through a rock cave on the Western Arthurs Traverse

Durability is the main component that will be compromised when choosing a lightweight and breathable summer rain jacket. This is because in order to make a lightweight rain jacket, a lower denier count is often used which reduces the durability.

Denier refers to the density of the nylon or polyester used and basically, the higher the number the stronger and more durable a jacket will be. Unfortunately, not all jackets will express the denier count but if you can find it, it’s ideal to go higher than 40D unless durability really isn’t an issue.

The best way to avoid choosing a lightweight rain jacket that will rip if you cross paths with any branch or rock is to find one that has nylon or polyester ripstop fabric.

Weight

Hiking to the summit of Frenchmans Cap Tasmania in my summer rain jacket

The weight of a rain jacket can sometimes be a great indicator of the levels of waterproofing, breathability and durability. A lightweight jacket can indicate better breathability and a heavier rain jacket will generally mean more durability and better waterproofing technologies.

However, this isn’t always the case. You also need to look at the price tag and the type of waterproofing technology that is incorporated into the jacket. Many high-end options are extremely breathable and lightweight while providing substantial durability and protection from heavy downpours. Whereas a cheap lightweight jacket could produce an unwanted plastic feel that becomes clammy against the skin.

But as a general rule of thumb, look for a weight between 200 g and 350 g for a great all-rounder summer jacket. 

Packability

Hiking along the board walks on the Enchanted Forest trail, one of the best walks in Cradle Mountain

Luckily, a lightweight rain jacket will consequently pack down small and easily fit into your pack. Most lightweight options will also have the ability to stuff the jacket into one of the pockets for ease of storage but if not, you can always roll it into the hood.

Features

There are many features that can enhance a rain jacket’s efficiency, some will be at the top of the priority list and others will be less important for a summer rain jacket.

Vents

Arguably the most important feature of a summer rain jacket, and one you wouldn’t want to do without, is zippered vents under the arms (commonly called pit zips). These will provide increased breathability while continuing to keep you dry.

The only times you’ll be happy to forego pit zips is when the jacket in question has superior breathability qualities (which often comes with a high price tag).

Hood

Sliding the hood of a rain jacket on while getting sprayed with water at Halls Falls Tasmania

A hood should have full coverage of your head without falling in front of your face. Most hoods will have cinch cords at the back and/or on the collar to create a closer fit. Additionally, most rain jackets will also have a built-in peak made of a hard self-supporting fabric that keeps the rain off your face.

Pockets

The factors to consider in relation to pockets are the placement, whether the zippers are water-resistant, and the number of pockets.

Pockets located at the waist or higher are beneficial for climbers and hikers as they will sit above a harness or waist belt of a pack. A chest pocket is also a great feature to store items such as your phone – but just ensure the zippers are water-resistant before trusting the pocket with your valuables.

Some ultra-lightweight rain jackets have no pockets at all, which can be a negative. However, the necessity of pockets to protect your hands from the cold is less so in summer.

Hiking along the King Billy Walk in Cradle Mountain National Park wearing my summer rain jacket

Sustainability

Sustainability is one of the most important factors in our opinion and is something we thoroughly assess before buying anything. In regard to the sustainability of a rain jacket, we need to consider the longevity, the construction and the company’s commitment to creating a more sustainable brand.

It’s difficult to sustainably create such a technical piece of equipment but there are things that companies are doing to produce the most sustainable option possible. These include:

  • Using recycled material
  • Opting for a PFC-free DWR coating
  • Using Bluesign Approved fabrics
  • Creating an ethically made product

But don’t forget to also consider the longevity of a jacket. Replacing your rain jacket every year could be just as bad as buying one that wasn’t sustainably made yet will last a lifetime.

Read this guide next to gain more information on finding the best sustainable outdoor brands.

10 Best Summer Rain Jackets In Australia For 2024

Quick Buyers Guide For Summer Rain Jackets

  • Choose a rating of at least 15K/15K
  • Pick a Pertex Sheild or equivalent membrane
  • Pick a jacket with a DWR coating or sustainable equivalent
  • Choose a 2.5 or 3-layer design
  • Find a jacket that weighs between 200 and 350 grams
  • A loose fit is desirable to allow for layering underneath
  • Pick a jacket with a self-supported hood
  • If you’re a hiker or climber, choose a jacket with pockets cleverly positioned to avoid impeding your hiking pack waist straps
  • Ensure the jacket has a high level of ventilation and breathability
  • Choose sustainably made where you can, where you can’t choose one with great reviews on longevity

Summer Rain Jacket Comparison Table

Rain JacketPriceDWRConstructionWaterproof RatingVentsWeightSustainable
Marmot Precip Eco$1802.5L NanoPro10K/17KPit Zips247gYES
XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket$190Yes2.5L Nylon Ripstop15K/10KPit ZipsYES
The North Face Venture 2$220Yes2.5L DryventPit Zips330gYES
Macpac Traverse$530Yes3L Pertex Shield Pro20K/20KNone330gNO
Patagonia Storm 10$330Yes3L H2No10-20K/12-15KNone235gYES
Outdoor Research Helium$260Yes2.5L Pertex Shield Diamond Fuse20K/20KNone179gYES
The North Face Flight Lightriser Futurelight$500Yes3L FutureLightNone200gYES
Mountain Designs Stratus$350Yes2.5L Pertex Shield20K/20KPit ZipsYES
Macpac Tempo$500Yes3L Pertex Shield Air10K/40KNone220gNO
Kathmandu Storm Chaser$4503L Pertex Shield20K/20KPit Zips280gNO

1. Marmot PreCip Eco Rain Jacket

Ticking almost all the boxes, the Marmot PreCip Eco rain jacket is a budget-friendly and environmentally conscious jacket that will keep you dry in a sudden downpour. While it does lack a few features and only has a waterproof rating of 10k, the PreCip Eco jacket is the perfect option for lightweight and superior breathability without breaking the bank.

What it’s good for:

The Marmot PreCip Eco Rain Jacket is the perfect companion for lightweight hikers that need a packable and breathable option for those unpredictable storms.

Price: $180 $162 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – 2XL | Men’s: S – 2XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 10K/17K
Material: 2.5-layer NanoPro, 100% Recycled Nylon ripstop, 78g/sqm
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 247 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets
Colours: Women’s: dark blue, forest green, light purple, white, navy, black, dark pink and light pink | Men’s: light green, black, blue, navy and brown
Sustainability: Recycled materials

Marmot Precip Eco the best Summer Rain Jacket

Features

  • Pit zips for increased ventilation
  • Stashable hood with 2-way adjustment
  • Storm flap over the front zipper
  • Complete seam-sealed design
  • Articulated elbows for added mobility
  • Velcro cuff adjustment for extra protection against rain
  • An adjustable hem with a drawcord
  • Two waist pockets with water-resistant zips
  • Stuffs into its own pocket

Positives

  • Budget Friendly
  • Recycled material
  • Lightweight
  • High breathability

Negatives

  • Lower durability in comparison to others listed
  • Lower waterproofing compared to others listed
  • No chest pocket

2. XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket

Although there are plenty of reasons to love the XTM Tarkine rain jacket, our favourite thing about this jacket is the fact that all proceeds go to saving the Tarkine Rainforest in Tasmania’s northwest. 

We’ve had this jacket for over a year now and it’s come on every technical hike with Dylan. The Tarkine jacket is sufficiently breathable, lightweight and can hold up to the sometimes constant rainfall in Tasmania.

Read our full review of the XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket here.

What it’s good for:

The XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket is a versatile option that will keep you dry in sudden downpours while also keeping you cool with long pit zips and a breathable membrane.

Price: $190 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 18 | Men’s: S – 3XL
Denier Count:
Unknown
Waterproof / Breathability Rating:
20K/15K
Material:
2.5 layer Nylon Ripstop
DWR:
PFC-Free DWR
Weight:
Not specified
Vents:
Pit zips
Pockets:
Two waist pockets
Colours:
Burnt orange and granite
Sustainability:
PFC-Free DWR, All proceeds go to saving the Tarkine

XTM Tarkine Rain Jacket, a great summer rain jacket

Features

  • YKK vislon front zipper with storm flap
  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • Foldable 2-way adjustable hood with self-supporting peak
  • Velcro cuffs for increased water resistance
  • Articulated Elbows
  • Full-length pit zippers with mesh lining
  • Two waist pockets
  • All profits will be donated to the save the Tarkine foundation

Positives

  • Budget-friendly
  • Proceeds go to saving the Tarkine Forests in Tasmania
  • Great waterproofing abilities

Negatives

  • No chest pockets
  • Short length on women’s jackets
  • Tighter fit for women’s jacket – go up a size

3. The North Face Venture 2 Jacket

Doing good for your pocket and the planet, The North Face Venture 2 rain jacket is made of 100% recycled nylon ripstop and comes in at a relatively budget-friendly price. This rain jacket is one of TNF’s most popular as it packs down small and can take a fair bit of abuse.

However, the downside to the Venture 2 is the fact it doesn’t hold up as well in heavy rainfall and some reviews complain of an uncomfortable plastic feel once the water seeps through. But this problem isn’t reserved for this jacket only, it’s a common issue with 2 to 2.5-layer designs.

What it’s good for:

While The North Face Venture 2 Rain Jacket won’t keep you dry in heavy rainfall, its lightweight and durable design is a great choice for mild weather hikes where a drizzle is often on the radar. 

Price: $220 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – 2XL | Men’s: XS – 3XL
Denier Count: 40D/70D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: Dryvent
Material: 2.5-layer Dryvent, 100% Recycled Nylon ripstop, 86g/sqm
DWR: PFC-free
Weight: 330 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets
Colours: Women’s: lavender, rose, black, dark green | Men’s: olive, black, black/grey, navy blue
Sustainability: Recycled material, PFC-free DWR

The North Face Venture 2 Rain Jacket

Features

  • Fully adjustable hood
  • Storm flap over front zipper
  • Two waist pockets 
  • Stashes into the hand pocket
  • Long meshed pit zips
  • Adjustable hook-and-loop cuffs for increased waterproofing abilities
  • Cinch cord at the hem

Positives

  • Affordable
  • Good features for a budget-friendly option
  • Durable

Negatives

  • Doesn’t hold up well in heavy rain
  • Not as breathable as others on this list

4. Macpac Traverse Rain Jacket

If you want a rain jacket that will keep you dry in the heaviest of downpours without causing you to overheat, then the Macpac Traverse could be the one for you. This 3-layer jacket has superior breathability while staying at a relatively light weight. The only downside is the high price tag – but it could be worth it!

What it’s good for:

The Macpac Traverse Rain Jacket is the ideal choice for multi-day hikes where you need a durable and reliable jacket that won’t weigh you down. Its high breathability will also allow you to wear it comfortably in warmer conditions.

Price: $530 $320 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 20 | Men’s: S – 3XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20K/20K
Material: 3-layer Pertex Shield Pro 100% nylon outer, 100% Polyester inner, 110g/sqm
DWR: DWR (C6)
Weight: 330 g
Vents: None
Pockets: Two waist pockets, outer chest pocket for the men’s
Colours: Women’s: black | Men’s: blue and black
Sustainability:C6 DWR instead of C8

Macpac Traverse Rain Jacket

Features

  • An air-permeable, microporous PU membrane increases breathability
  • Large hood with cinch cords at the collar and an adjustable velcro flap at the back
  • The hood folds away into a zippered collar
  • Tricot-lined chin for increased comfort
  • YKK AquaGuard water-resistant centre front and pocket zips
  • Two waist pockets
  • The men’s version has an outer chest pocket
  • Velcro cuffs for increased water resistance

Positives

  • Great waterproofing abilities
  • Highly breathable
  • High durability

Negatives

  • The women’s version doesn’t have a chest pocket
  • Expensive
  • Not sustainably made

5. Patagonia Storm 10

It’s hard to find a lightweight and durable 3-layer rain jacket without a high price tag, but Patagonia has nailed it with their Storm 10 Rain Jacket. The Storm 10 is an ultra-light jacket that doesn’t compromise on comfort or weather resistance. You’ll also find plenty of well-positioned pockets and features to keep the wind and rain away. 

What it’s good for:

The Patagonia Storm 10 will be your favourite rain jacket for alpine adventures where weight is of high concern. The jacket will keep you dry in a heavy downpour and relatively sweat-free in mild to warm conditions – but perhaps leave it at home on the hottest days.

Price: $330 AUD
Size: Women’s: 2XS – XL | Men’s: XS – 2XL
Denier Count: 20D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 10-20K/12-15K
Material: 3-layer H2No, 100% Recycled Nylon ripstop
DWR: Yes
Weight: 235 g
Vents: None
Pockets: Two waist pockets, outer chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: teal, navy blue, forest green | Men’s: grey, dark blue, orange
Sustainability: Recycled materials

Patagonia Storm 10, Patagonia's best summer rain jacket

Features

  • Alpine helmet compatible hood with rear and side adjustments
  • Self-supporting peak on the hood
  • Waterproof centre-front zipper with coated storm flap for extra comfort
  • External left chest pocket with water-tight zipper
  • Two waist pockets sit above a hiking backpack’s hip belt
  • Cuffs tighten with tab hook-and-loop closure for increased waterproofing abilities
  • Concealed RECCO reflector
  • Next to skin comfort with a tricot backer layer

Positives

  • Sustainably and ethically made
  • High durability and waterproofing abilities compared to the weight
  • Comfortable and lightweight

Negatives

  • No pit zips
  • Breathability could be better

6. Outdoor Research Helium Rain Jacket

If breathability is second to weight in your summer rain jacket search, the Outdoor Research Helium Rain Jacket will be the winner for you. Easily the lightest jacket on this list, the OR Helium is a no-frills jacket that will stuff away in even the smallest day packs and work wonders in a quick downpour.

What it’s good for: The Outdoor Research Helium Rain Jacket is a great option for those that are concerned about weight and need a jacket that will hold off a sudden storm as they trudge through the mountains. However, you won’t want to wear it for too long as the breathability is lacking compared to other options on this list.

Price: $260 AUD
Size: Women’s: XS – XL | Men’s: S – 3XL
Denier Count: 30D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20K/20K
Material: 2.5-layer Pertex Shield Diamond Fuse, 100% Nylon ripstop
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 179 g
Vents: None
Pockets: One outer chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: yellow, pale blue, green, orange and maroon | Men’s: black, blue, brown, red, navy, grey and orange
Sustainability: Bluesign-approved materials

Outdoor Research Helium Summer Rain Jacket

Features

  • Large hood with a rear cinch cord to adjust sizing
  • Self-supporting peak to keep the rain off your face
  • Stuffs into the chest pocket and packs down to the size of your palm
  • The hem has an adjustable drawcord
  • YKK AquaGuard zippers
  • Elastic hem and cuffs create a closer fit for increased waterproofing

Positives

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Packs down very small
  • Great durability in comparison to the weight

Negatives

  • No waist pockets
  • No pit zips for ventilation
  • Doesn’t breathe well
  • Becomes clammy and absorbs water after a heavy downpour

7. The North Face Flight Lightriser FutureLight Jacket

The North Face Flight Lightriser FutureLight rain jacket excels in breathability and is the second lightest option we’ve found. You’ll be hard-pressed to find another jacket in its category that offers superior breathability qualities without compromising too much on waterproofing.

The only downside is the lack of pockets and other handy features, but what you get in return is a no-nonsense jacket that will fit anywhere. Plus, they don’t seem to be making this design for women anymore…

What it’s good for:

The North Face Flight Lightriser FutureLight Rain Jacket is the ultimate hot weather option as you’re not likely to find a more breathable and light jacket. Technically designed for trail running, this summer rain jacket will keep you dry in light rainfall – but leave it at home when the weather begins to get a little chilly.

Price: $500 AUD
Size: Men’s: XS – XL
Denier Count: 20D
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: FutureLight
Material: 3-Layer FutureLight, 100% recycled polyester, 23.5% recycled polyester 81 g/m²
DWR: non-PFC DWR
Weight: 200 g
Vents: None
Pockets: Internal mesh back pocket
Colours: Women’s: lavender | Men’s: black and blue
Sustainability: Recycled materials, PFC-free DWR

The North Face Flight Rightriser rain jacket

Features

  • Internal mesh back pocket where the jacket can stuff into
  • Adjustable cinch cord at the back of the hood
  • The hood has a self-supporting peak to keep the rain off your face
  • Reflective logo on the back and front for increased visibility 
  • Elastic hem and cuffs create a closer fit for increased waterproofing

Positives

  • Highly breathable
  • Super lightweight
  • Packs away small

Negatives

  • The women’s version isn’t available in Australia
  • No external pockets or vents
  • Doesn’t stay waterproof in an extended heavy downpour
  • Getting expensive

8. Mountain Designs Stratus Hooded Rain Jacket

The Mountain Designs Stratus Hooded rain jacket is a great all-rounder that will keep you dry on the inside and out with a good level of breathability and high waterproofing technologies.

Packed with ventilation options, you’ll easily manage your temperature with the Stratus jacket. However, with an unknown weight, this jacket could be quite heavy and bulky which is less than ideal for a summer rain jacket.

What it’s good for: The Mountain Designs Stratus Hooded Rain Jacket is an ideal option for long days in the alpine, where it can be cold and rainy one second and warm and drizzly the next. You’ll have ample protection from an unexpected storm with the Stratus jacket.

Price: $350 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 18 | Men’s: XS – 3XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20K/20K
Material: 2.5-layer Pertex Shield, 100% Recycled polyester
DWR: PFC-free DWR
Weight: Unknown
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets, outer chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: dark red  and black | Men’s: green and yellow
Sustainability: Recycled materials, PFC-free DWR

Mountain Designs Stratus Rain Jacket

Features

  • A large hood with a cinch cord at the back and on each side of the collar
  • The self-supporting peak on the hood keeps water off your face
  • Chin guard for increased comfort
  • Pit zips with mesh lining
  • Adjustable hem for a closer fit
  • Articulated elbows for increased mobility
  • Velcro cuffs increase water resistance
  • Two concealed zippered waist pockets
  • External chest pocket with waterproof zipper
  • Two-way front zip for increased ventilation

Positives

  • Great breathability
  • Good ventilation
  • High waterproofing abilities

Negatives

  • Unknown weight
  • Not many reviews

9. Macpac Tempo Rain Jacket

Another super lightweight option, The Macpac Tempo rain jacket will give The North Face Flight Lightriser a run for its money with its superior breathability and almost the same weight. The only downside is that this jacket isn’t made with recycled materials and comes at a pretty hefty price.

What it’s good for: The Macpac Tempo Rain Jacket is a great option for warm and hot weather hiking where you need the best breathability without compromising too much on waterproofness. The Tempo jacket also works wonders for strenuous hikes where working up a sweat is inevitable.

Price: $500 $275 AUD
Size: Women’s: 8 – 16 | Men’s: S – 2XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 10K/40K
Material: 3-layer Pertex Shield Air, 100% Nylon, 83g/sqm
DWR: DWR (C6)
Weight: 220 g
Vents: None
Pockets: External chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: grey and blue | Men’s: blue and pale blue
Sustainability:C6 DWR instead of C8

Macpac Tempo summer rain jacket

Features

  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • The hood rolls away into the collar
  • Rear adjustment for the hood
  • Self-supporting peak on the hood to keep water off your face
  • Internal storm flap for increased comfort
  • Two-way front zip for extra ventilation
  • Drawcord at the hem for a closer fit

Positives

  • Highly breathable
  • Very lightweight
  • Good waterproofing in comparison to the weight

Negatives

  • Not sustainably made
  • Expensive
  • No waist pockets

10. Kathmandu Storm Chaser 3L Rain Jacket

The Kathmandu Storm Chaser rain jacket is a worthy opponent in your search for the best summer rain jackets. It’s relatively lightweight, super breathable and packed full of great features – including accessible pockets while wearing a backpack.

The only downside to the Storm Chaser jacket is the fact it isn’t sustainably made. However, at least Kathmandu is a B-corp certified company so you can feel a little better about buying a jacket without recycled materials if this one truly speaks to you.

What it’s good for: Due to its high breathability rating and great ventilation, the Kathmandu Storm Chaser Rain Jacket will keep you dry on the inside and out during a heavy spring storm, making it the ideal choice for warm-weather hiking. 

Price: $450 AUD
Size: Women’s: 2XS – 2XL | Men’s: XS – 2XL
Denier Count: Not specified
Waterproof / Breathability Rating: 20K/20K
Material: 3-layer Pertex Shield, 100% Nylon ripstop
DWR: Not specified
Weight: 280 g
Vents: Pit zips
Pockets: Two waist pockets, one outer chest pocket
Colours: Women’s: pink and navy blue/dark green | Men’s: mustard and navy blue/dark green
Sustainability: None

Kathmandu Storm Chaser rain Jacker

Features

  • Fully seam-sealed design
  • Rear cinch cord on the hood for a better fit
  • The self-supporting peak on the hood keeps water off your face
  • Storm flap with a chin guard for extra comfort
  • Pit zips with a mesh liner
  • Cinch cord on hem for increased waterproofing abilities
  • Adjustable velcro on cuffs to avoid water seeping in
  • Articulated sleeves for better movement
  • Two waist pockets that are accessible with a backpack on
  • Outer chest pocket
  • YKK Vislon zippers

Positives

  • Highly breathable
  • Good placement of pockets
  • Great waterproofing abilities compared to the weight of the jacket
  • Lightweight

Negatives

  • Not sustainably made
  • Quite expensive

Final Thoughts

Finding a jacket that will keep you dry on the inside and out while you’re trudging through the mountains on a hot summer’s day is not an easy task. And while you’ll most likely sacrifice something in order to find the most breathable jacket, it is possible to find a good all-rounder.

Just remember to understand what factors you can compromise on and ensure you pick the best performing jacket for the qualities that are most important to you. For example, jackets that are designed for trail running (such as The North Face Flight Lightriser and the Macpac Tempo) will likely fall short on the durability factor but will be the best for breathability.

Is your favourite summer rain jacket missing from this list? We’d love to hear about your favourite option or if you have one of the jackets on this list, we’d also be stoked to read your review in the comments below. And as always, feel free to ask any questions regarding this topic and we will endeavour to respond as quickly as possible.

Happy Adventuring 🙂

Last Updated: 31/12/2023