Review of Endura Pakajak foldaway jacket

Post by Jude from Cycling with Heels.

Lightweight jacket

Autumn is a tricky time of year, at least when it comes to choosing what to wear to cycle in. It’s not yet cold enough for the heavy-duty winter gear, but you still need something to keep off the early morning chill.

Enter Endura’s Pakajak.

The Endura Pakajak likes to keep things light. Weighing a smidgen over 100g, it packs down in to the tiniest of spaces. The size is 13cm by 22cm around.

Fortunately, despite the use of low weight, packable material, the price is just £40 and comes in a wide choice of bright colours, all featuring reflective trim on the back, shoulder and sleeves.

The jacket is designed to be windproof, so will keep the chill off your back. It doesn’t come with rain protection, so if the rain is coming down fast, you’ll need to reach for something a little more hefty.

I took the jacket that was supplied to us by Endura on a couple of test rides.

The first of these was on my commute to work, on a dry morning when the temperature was barely touching double figures. I tend to feel the heat easily (and sweat just as easily), so I was wearing just a t-shirt underneath the jacket. Yet before I’d even reached Finsbury Park – a distance of about two miles from my house – I could feel myself starting to get too hot. The jacket is a close fit, particularly around my forearms, and this felt uncomfortably sticky. I adjusted the zip to let some air in, which improved things somewhat. Nonetheless, I arrived at work with a sweaty back and distinctly clammy arms.

Later that same day, the weather took a turn for the worse; with the rain pouring down.

Obviously the jacket isn’t designed for the rain, so I was quickly completely soaked.

Overall review

The Endura Pakajak impresses with its small size and packable material. It also looks really good. The jacket performs well when the temperatures are really low, but isn’t designed to keep you dry.

The one drawback to it is the fitting. Those sleeves were a real problem in both the wet and dry conditions. I was wearing the same size in the jacket as I wear in other Endura gear, which is also the same size as my Altura jacket – yet the Pakajak felt too small.

That all said, it’s a handy little jacket that I’ll keep in my bag in case of emergencies.

Pros

  • Handy size to carry around
  • Wide choice of colours
  • Good value
  • Stylish

Cons

  • On the small side – buy a size up
  • Uncomfortably sticky in anything but cold weather

The Endura Pakajak is available for £39.99 from Evans Cycles.

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5 Responses to Review of Endura Pakajak foldaway jacket

  1. JimF 23/10/2013 at 10:05 am #

    Good luck with your quest for the holy grail. Interesting bit on this on the vulpine blog

    >>>>>>>>
    No matter what the marketing tells you, here’s an industry secret (and I’ve no agenda here, because I could have chosen whatever fabric I wanted): There is NO ideal fabric that can be both perfectly waterproof and breathable. Its a two way system. You have a sliding scale between point A, where no rain gets in, and point Z, where no sweat builds up inside. Higher quality fabrics improve the compromise considerably, but lets be clear, its a compromise. The Perfect Waterproof and Breathable Fabric is a marketing lie.
    >>>>>>>>

    http://www.vulpine.cc/Blog/bikes-tech/choosing-the-best-possible-rain-fabric

    I haven’t tried Vulpine – my rapha softshell is the best thing I’ve found, but like you I get hot quickly and sweat so it works best when the temperature is less than 10degrees celsius.

    • Andreas 23/10/2013 at 2:25 pm #

      Thanks Jim for forwarding that quote. Definitely interesting to read and something I’ve found in my testing too of various products. Having zips beneath the arms is a great start but still doesn’t solve the issue. We have some Vulpine gear reviews coming up, so we’ll be testing out their comfort too.

  2. Phil 24/10/2013 at 2:45 pm #

    Buffalo Special 6 shirt is on from now until April. If it’s too warm, I open the side zips to suit; when it gets wet I’ll still stay warm, down to -18.

  3. John 25/10/2013 at 2:26 pm #

    For a thin jacket go to Aldi. they have some of a pertex type of material – a teener.
    they have a time of waterproofing spray in too – 1.50. spray the front and the arms and away you go.

  4. Vincent 27/10/2013 at 7:31 pm #

    In the city, I don’t see the point of waterproof jackets, since you also need waterproof pants and waterproof shoes.

    It’s just easier and cheaper to get a rain cape and wear regular clothes.

    http://jnyyz.wordpress.com/2012/10/24/in-praise-of-rain-capes/
    http://www.thirdwave-websites.com/bike/rain-capes.cfm

    Dorky-looking, yes, but anyway, when it starts raining, the fashion show is over.

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