I have a very simple rule for impulse buys: if I’m on the fence about buying something I can afford and think about it two weeks later, then I go for it. The Houdini jacket is an exception – I’ve been eyeing it since the downpour at North Face Endurance Challenge in December 2012, and finally caved during a recent rainstorm. I’ve read countless glowing reviews that cite its packability, weight, warmth, and running fit, but I didn’t appreciate it until I tried it on, and didn’t fully appreciate it until I took it for a 10 mile test drive.
Despite heavy wind and cold rain by San Francisco standards, the Houdini kept me dry and comfortable – I barely noticed that I was wearing a jacket. The hood is unobtrusive, the inside of the zipper is smooth, and it’s extremely breathable – slightly unzipping the jacket cooled me down very quickly. After I arrived back home, I hung it up to dry for no more than 20 minutes until it was good as new.
Overall, the Houdini far exceeded my expectations, and I think every runner should have a similar jacket in their closet. It’s extremely easy to stash in a pack or even the back of a bike jersey – it even stuffs into its front pocket! At $99, it’s not cheap, but considering it’s backed by Patagonia’s lifetime warranty, I’m more than happy with my purchase and highly recommend it.
2 Cups 'N Run said:
Sounds like a great product, enjoy!
Great review- might look into this.
I have those same socks. Just in case you were wondering.
CA Running said:
The last two years that has been the finisher’s jacket for AR50, I love that thing!
Single-Tracked Mind said:
Jesse loves it too (and wants to do AR50)!
Girl Runs Wild said:
Sounds like the ultimate running jacket – lightweight, keeps you dry, and is breathable! Personally, I find that there are some bits of kit where quality doesn’t make much of a difference to me, and as long as it fits and looks ok, I’ll wear it happily. However, there are other items (such a shoes, socks, jackets, etc), where a good product can make all the difference. 🙂