Pearl Izumi WRX Jacket

Words Jon Harris
Photos Kaz Yamamura
Date Feb 22, 2015

For days when you need an extra layer to keep off the wind – or you think that inclement weather may head your way, Pearl Izumi’s solution is the WRX Jacket. This easily-packable jacket is made of PI’s ‘Barrier’ fabric which is nice to the touch and moves well with the body.

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“..and when the wind blows like this you don’t feel it.” The WRX Jacket is a soft shell material that feels good to the touch and is windproof and water resistant.

It is water resistant to the point that on a warm drizzly day on the North Shore it was the perfect companion, balancing adequate protection and good ventilation.

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Sometimes you just need to have a good scratch and the open pit vents on the WRX jacket facilitate that. Seriously you have to be on your game when Kaz has an itchy trigger finger on the shutter button.

Big, open armpit ventilation prevents that boil in the bag feeling and the jacket is a good option for  spring and fall days when the temperature drops quickly in late afternoon. It wouldn’t be the jacket that I reach for on a heinously wet ride in the depths of winter (if we ever have that again in Cascadia), but for the weather we’ve have recently it’s been ideal.

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Testing the WRX on a moody west coast day.

The cut of the arms is quite generous and is designed to fit over elbow pads. This isn’t a feature that I look for typically but what I can’t argue with the WRX jacket’s ability to survive contact with the ground, having tested that feature a few times recently.

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The cut of the jacket is designed to provide room in the forearms to wear armour. This is backed up with a more abrasion resistant material.

The WRX jacket is quite simple compared to most with no draw string to tighten the waist and just simple elastic for the cuffs – and no pockets at all. The jacket fits well without those though and it  doesn’t ride up or get in the way of your riding. The WRX features a hood that fits over a helmet easily and doesn’t restrict your ability to articulate your neck. A downside is that you can’t use the hood without a helmet – unless you have an enormous cranium. The hood is large and it tends to flap around, and really is a hood necessary on a jacket that isn’t completely waterproof?

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The hood is a legitimate over the helmet fitting hood. It even still lets you turn your head side to side without riding up. It would be nice to be able to tuck the hood away when not in use as it does tend to turn into a parachute when riding along.

The WRX Jacket is available in the safety oriented Citronelle colour shown here or a totally under the radar black version. Retail price is $175 USD.


Would this make sense as a first position jacket for you or do you need something fully waterproof?

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Comments

AlmostThere
Almostthere
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Any hints as to what pack the rider is using in the 3rd picture?

Reply

jonathan-harris
Jonathan Harris
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Yeah, it's a Dakine AMP pack in the 2015 colour option. Kaz recently reviewed the Drafter pack which is very similar.

Reply

AlmostThere
Almostthere
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Thanks

Reply

Jerry-Rig
Jerry Willows
7 years, 5 months ago
0

I'm not sure why anyone would or should be riding in a "heinous wet ride". Better to bring out the shovel than a riding jacket. The trails will thank you.

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Jay, there are sometimes weeks at a time of heinous conditions here. We also have some trails that are built to withstand being ridden when it is raining out - unlike some other areas where it rains infrequently enough that it's not a big deal to just wait it out.

Reply

Jerry-Rig
Jerry Willows
7 years, 5 months ago
0

I think Neds is the only trail you should ride when it pours. Anything with dirt/gold, you aren't doing any favors to it. I live in NV and give it around 12 hours after a good rain to ride and it's usually not a problem to ride 3 or 4 times a week even in winter. If people get in a habit of maintaining trails when it's raining than riding, the trails will be far better off in the short and long term. If your not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem (not directed at you PP).

Reply

cam@nsmb.com
Cam McRae
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Sometimes the heinous wet starts midway through your ride Jay. I would also add several trails to your list like Pipeline, Seventh Secret, Upper Oilcan, TNT, Cabin Trail, Pingu, Ladies - to name a few.

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craw
Cr4w
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Were those first two photos taken right after a crash?

Reply

jonathan-harris
Jonathan Harris
7 years, 5 months ago
0

Looking at them now it does look like it, embarrassingly it wasn't though and are just some of the facial expressions that come naturally when I'm not posing for the lens.

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