The Marmot Spire general-purpose jacket is made from Gore-Tex Performance Shell, which saves a little in price without affecting performance too drastically, as while it is not quite as light or breathable as Pro Shell, it is plenty good enough and has the advantage of feeling a little tougher and stiffer, which some users may prefer. You get a superb hood with a stiff peak plus a stunning fit and fantastic movement, which makes this ideal for tackling mountains in wild weather. Also you have two huge chest pockets so you can stow gloves, maps, hats or hands on the move. Scramblers and climbers will love the movement in the sleeves, which means the cuffs don’t ride up. The pit zips are ideal for venting the jacket without removing it, while laser-drilled pockets further improve condensation control. For winter you get a zip-out snowskirt. But the Marmot Spire is heavier than the similar Marmot Troll Wall and not quite as good at handling condensation as Gore-Tex Pro Shell. There are only two external chest pockets, the body is relatively short, and a double front stormflap over the main zip plus external pocket stormflaps would be useful in really wet weather.
Outer Gore-Tex Performance Shell
Fabric waterproofness extremely waterproof
Fabric breathability very breathable
Sizes S-XL (men’s); XS-XL (women’s)
Weight 730g (men’s M)
Made in China
Stores in the UK 45Verdict: The Marmot Spire is deal for mountain walking, backpacking, scrambling and mountaineering if your budget won’t stretch to a Gore-Tex Pro Shell jacket.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine November 2008