Last spring, we got an early preview of Columbia’s OutDry Extreme technology during a gear testing trip to Colombia. An innovative approach to waterproof jacket construction, OutDry Extreme basically turns the rain jacket inside out, placing the waterproof breathable membrane on the outside of the jacket. Now, Gore has come out with their own membrane-on-the-outside technology dubbed Gore-Tex Active with Permanent Beading Surface. Intended for high-aerobic activities in wet weather such as running, hiking, and cycling, the new textile ditches the face fabric that is prone to wet out. The result is Gore’s lightest and most breathable Gore-Tex product to date according to the company, and one with quick drying times. Basically all you have to do is shake it off.
The new Gore-Tex Active with Permanent Beading Surface (they need a shorter name) is made from a Gore-Tex membrane on the outside (no face fabric) with a very lightweight Gore micro grid backer on the inside. Products using this material can be machine-washed and do not require tumble-drying in order to reactivate the water repellency–it will remain windproof and waterproof for the lifetime of the garment.
You will find products using Gore-Tex Active with Permanent Beading Surface from Castelli, Gore Bike Wear, Gore Running Wear, Arc’teryx and The North Face available this month. I imagine Gore pushed to get products out ahead of the spring release of Columbia’s OutDry Extreme products in a few months.
The Arc’teryx Norvan SL Hoody ($299) weighs only 107 grams and is designed for mountain running. Not much in terms of superfluous features apart from a full waterproof zipper and elastic hood with high neck.
Most likely in response to the Gore release late last week, Columbia announced their Fall ’16 apparel lineup that includes OutDry Extreme used in winter styles–we will post more on this tomorrow.