The Arc’teryx Zeta SL Jacket is an amazing shell for dedicated hikers and climbers who spend countless days outdoors. It’s a brand new, lighter model than the previous, a minimalist piece for going faster and lighter.

Arc’teryx says, “Superlight, packable and waterproof GORE-TEX emergency shell for hiking. Zeta Series: Hiking and trekking apparel. SL: Superlight.”

Simply put, the Zeta SL is amazing and a more streamlined version of the Zeta AR. After taking it through forest and across a few glaciers, we didn’t see any tears or abrasion points.

It was fully waterproof and very light and packable and you can add a few different layers during chillier weather.

The main zip is a delight to use, simple and free-flowing and waterproof. Like all shells, if you use a pack often then the DWR will need refreshing on the shoulders.

While it’s designed for hikers, we love it for climbing, but the hiker design means no foam hemlocks like in the Alpha FL, which means it rides up a bit under a harness. Just give it a tug down and problem solved.

The new Zeta line uses Arc’teryx’s new Paclite, whic is a waterproof fabric made by Gore-Tex aimed at weight-conscious adventurers. It helps performance rain clothes protect against the worst conditions while keeping weight a top priority.

Paclite has long been in Arc’teryx’s jacket line. But the Zeta jackets and pants are made with Paclite Plus, Gore-Tex’s latest fabric. This waterproof membrane keeps outerwear light and breathable enough to move fast through the backcountry.

The Zeta FL jacket tips the scales at just 7.8 ounces for men and 6.9 ounces for women. And the Zeta SL comes in at 10.9 ounces for men and 9.5 ounces for women.

If you want something a little cheaper than the Alpha AR or Beta AR that works really well for a wide range of things, then we recommend the Zeta SL as for your spring shell or as an emergency backup.

The men’s and women’s Arc’teryx Zeta SL jackets retail for $380 while the Zeta SL rain pants are $300, with short and tall options.

Arc’teryx Zeta SL

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