Reviewed: Sitka Vapor SD Jacket

Best known for its hunting gear, Sitka knows a ton about staying warm in the outdoors. Sitka’s latest Shakedry jacket is a great crazy-light, packable emergency layer for changing conditions.

Review Rating


Some great materials at work in this lightweight emergency piece


Lightness, water-repellency, packability


Gore-Tex ShakeDry only comes in black and visibility isn’t high in winter’s low-light conditions. A draw for the hem would be a nice addition.




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Though Sitka makes a lot of hunting gear, much like Craft’s nordic skiing origins, there’s something to be said for a brand that knows how to keep you warm—regardless of their origins. With the Vapor SD, Sitka has made a jacket that’s not only superlight and packable, but also uses GoreTex’s unique ShakeDry material to repel water and keep it from soaking you through as you move.

Related: Triathlete’s 2020 Winter Running Gear Guide

Although only a shell, the amount of protection from precipitation and wind that this ShakeDry piece, given its lack of heft, is stellar. The permanent beading of the Gore-Tex material helps in the weight-loss and bulk-free realms, and you won’t hesitate to bring this along for a training run or winter adventure because it will really get you out of a bind when or if you need it. Call it your security blanket. Safety first. 

The zippered pockets are a welcome creature comfort because most other ShakeDry running-compatible jackets are minimal enough that they only feature a skimpy chest pocket. But it is the three-panel, adjustable hood that really shines in the Vapor SD, especially if you are running in blasting polar winds and need head protection to make it home without frosted eyebrows. The ability to look sideways when dodging ice or crossing roads is always appreciated. The Lycra cuffs help to keep frigid air or snow from creeping into your sleeves and yet, at the hem the Lycra didn’t quite do the trick and a drawcord would have provided a more secure synch at the waist.

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