Spring may be just around the corner, but for me, it’s still solidly winter. Ideal for those outdoor adventure days when you may work up a sweat in the sun or those spring ski days where anything goes in terms of weather, the REI Talusphere jacket is lightweight, incredibly flexible, and well ventilated.

REI-rain-jacketMade for winter excursions in which you’ll be expending some serious energy, the Talusphere is my new go-to winter jacket for snowshoeing and nordic skiing. It packs down small, fitting into my weekender bag during my latest trip to Central Oregon, where it doubled as a trail running shell on a blustery day and a snowshoeing jacket on a warm spring day. It’s fully waterproof, but also the most breathable winter jacket in my closet.

The Talusphere is very soft and giving to the touch–no stiff rain jacket feel here–thanks to the stretchy REI Elements fabric. I almost doubted it was waterproof, it’s so soft and flexible. The two-layer stretch polyester shell allows for full motion, yet really does protect you from rain, sleet, and snow. The interior is almost felt-like, and didn’t feel clammy even after I was warmed up on the trail.

The seams are fully sealed, of course, and you get generous pit zips. The hand pockets are oversized, with water resistant zippers, and are mesh-lined. There’s also a zippered internal chest pocket, with media port. The cuffs are adjustable, which is nice since I wear different types of gloves depending on the activity. I had no problem fitting the cuffs over the wrist of my bulky ski gloves and my thin trail running gloves. There’s a hem drawcord to help you seal out the cold or wind, and a drop hood with internal collar. This too, is adjustable, so you can fit it over a helmet or beanie, depending on your snow sport of choice.


Because the Talusphere is so light and breathable, I’m planning to extend its usefulness into the late spring as a rain jacket when I travel. It may even see the summer months as I travel in the Pacific Northwest. It comes in a nice variety of colors for women, including brighter options like beet, sapphire purple, and Laguna blue, or more subtle picks, like army cot green and black. It comes in sizes XS-XL, and a men’s version is offered as well.

Pick up the Talusphere for $149 on REI, or on Cascade Climbers for the same price. Check Amazon this spring for deals.

Categorized in: