If you're interested in some hard breathability numbers, have a look here:http://phillipgibson.homestead.com/f...athability.pdf
You'll see that in their desire to build a 'hefty winter jacket', they actually mad the Schoeller WB-400 that Salomon uses MUCH LESS BREATHABLE than standard GoreTex!
I am a big fan of softshell jackets, but you do need to be careful with fabric selection. My favourite is the Schoeller Dryskin/wool blend that Ibex uses (www.ibexwear.com
). Their jackets are luxuriously comfortable compared to some of the others, and seem to have a wider comfortable temperature range. They are also much less technical looking than jackets like the Alchemy, so you don't have to look like a geek when wearing it apres ski. (It seems that their high end Neve jacket can be had right now directly from their website for super sale prices.)
The downside to the Ibex is that IF it does wet out, it must be the slowest drying jacket in existance. The Schoeller Dryskin with 3Xdry from Cloudveil dries much quicker. The Cloudveil jackets are also fairly attractive - I believe that Cloudveil was the first to bring the style/name to the US.
I ski in perma-drizzle Vancouver, and always use my Ibex softshell now, strapping a light Gore shell to my pack for use when the rain/snow/wind gets really nasty.
Cheers.[ September 28, 2003, 07:48 PM: Message edited by: TooSteep ]