Set yourself up for success.


Don't head out on a mission in the mountains without your Outdoor Research Women's Optimizer Jacket in tow. This lightweight rain jacket packs a mean punch for a mere 11 ounces, with a three-layer Gore-Tex Active shell that repels the wrath of Mother Nature so you can get after it. Fully taped seams prevent moisture from sneaking in and the helmet-compatible hood adds extra protection when the winds pick up. The zippered pockets are easy to access with a harness on and the carabiner loop lets you clip your jacket to your harness when the sun starts to shine.

  • A tough rain jacket for light and fast mountain missions
  • 3-layer Gore-Tex Active repels rain and wind
  • Durable ripstop nylon withstands wear and tear
  • Fully taped seams seal out moisture
  • Helmet-compatible hood is easily adjustable
  • Zippered pockets are easy to access with a harness
  • Carabiner loop for easy hauling
  • Reviews
  • Q & A

Waterhouse Peak

Waterhouse Peak

Great shot!

Leta
OR Rep

Very lightweight and very waterproof

  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
  • Fit: True to size
  • Size Bought: Medium

I was given this product by Backcountry, but this review is my personal opinion.

I use a lightweight, uninsulated GoreTex shell like this for skiing, both in-bounds (in warm and sunny Tahoe) and backcountry, and for bike commuting. The Optimizer jacket was a lot lighter than I expected and lighter than my boyfriend's or my old 2L GoreTex layer. It packed down really small in my pack when I was skinning and felt lightweight when I was wearing it. And of course, it is completely waterproof. I biked in the rain and stayed dry. I have only had it a few weeks and can't speak to durability very much, but it has seams where other jackets have tape, such as the pockets, and it is 3L, so I expect it to last for a while.

I am 5'5", 127 lbs and I'm a climber so my shoulders are a bit bigger and a lot of jackets are too tight there. The Optimizer fits well alone or over a fleece or lightweight down layer. It did not restrict my arm motion and more than should be expected from a well-fitting jacket. The hood has a cinch-pull so you can expand it if you're wearing a helmet or cinch it down if not. It fits over my bike and ski helmets, but is a bit tricky to adjust when the jacket is on.

The biggest downside to the Optimizer is that there are no underarm vents. The GoreTex is supposed to be "breathable" and I think it is a little more breathable than some GoreTex. Also, the front zipper zips up from the bottom so you can vent a little bit that way. I am guessing OR skipped the zippers to save weight, but personally I think they would have been worth it.

Very lightweight and very waterproof

Hey Maria, thank you for the feedback. Actually, about the pit zips, Gore "dictates" feature sets to vendors like OR who use their laminate called "Active". Because Gore Active is so light and breathable, Gore does not want a feature set that contradicts this. So no pit zips. Not needed and adds weight. That is their stance.

I know that so many of us are used to that feature, and perhaps in some circumstances, it might be nice to have, but the MVTR (moisture vapor transfer rate, ie, breathability) is the best they have ever done, so they want customers to experience the jacket in its purest form.

I hope that makes sense! Enjoy your Optimizer!

Leta
OR Rep