Flipping through my closet the other day I realized I have a ton of shells. Specifically of the hardshell variety, but lately in inclement weather, I’ve been reaching for the Outdoor Research Aspire. The Outdoor Research Aspire Jacket is the affordable bombproof shell that I’ve been looking for all my life.
Available through Outdoor Research | Amazon | CampSaver | REI
Made of GORE-TEX®, 2.5L, 100% polyester, 50D with Paclite® Technology, this comes in at 13.7 oz and repels whatever the elements tosses at you. Rain, sleet, hail, snow—I’m assuming snow here, I don’t know what that is anymore—it’s got you covered.
Full length pit-zips means you can always ventilate when you get really hot on the go. Two zippered hand pockets and a zippered arm pocket keep all your things accessible and dry. A drawcord hem and fully adjustable hood lets you dial in the jacket fit to your liking. The left hand pocket doubles as a stuff sack.
This has a standard or pretty athletic fit. If you’re really slim, the drawcords are your best friend. With the full-length pit zips, it tends to flare out around your waist. If you’ve got wide, power hips, you’ll like the fit on this.
Unfortunately the placement of the hand pockets means this is not harness compatible, but it’s still a fantastic shell. I tend to take my Arc’teryx Alpha SL out with me into the backcountry. It cost a pretty penny so I’m always afraid of “hurting” it. This is the same bombproof quality at a fraction of the cost.
Buy the Aspire Jacket through Outdoor Research, Amazon, CampSaver, REI for $215.
This was sent to me for review as a part of Outdoor Research’s #ORInsightLab.
Last updated on December 15, 2017.