By Brandon Bilyeu
- 100% waterproof with excellent breathability
- Zippered vents for top notch climate control without flapping
- Two bright colors and reflective accents for better visibility
- Durable design stands up to daily use
- Stretch incorporated for a close fit
- Fits into a jersey pocket
- Size chart seems off
How obtained: review sample from company
Available: online, retail
Colors: Cayenne (red), Goldenrod (yellow)
Website: Spring Classic Jacket
RBR Sponsor: no
Tested: 30+ hours
Reviewer Measurements and Fit Comments: 5’10” (178cm), 150 lbs (68 kgs), 33″ (84cm) waist, 38” (96.5cm) hips, 33″ (84cm) inseam, 37″ (94cm) chest. I tested size Medium and it was at least one, if not two sizes too big for me. The size chart seems off, so best to test in person or be prepared to exchange.
Showers Pass Spring Classic Jacket – Suitable for Bike Commuting and Racing
Showers Pass is probably best known as an excellent source of waterproof cycling kit for bike commuters. Based in Portland, Oregon they have access to plenty of wet weather to test and perfect their products. I should know as I lived in Portland for 10 years and bike commuted year-round, often in Showers Pass clothing on soggy wet days. They also make rain jackets for those that like to go fast. Back at the 2014 Milan-Sanremo race the Showers Pass Elite 2.1 jacket could be seen on the shoulders of Alexander Kristoff who went on to win the race. Fast forward to 2022 and now Showers Pass’ latest and greatest go-fast rain shell is the Spring Classic Jacket.
The Spring Classic combines the durability of a commuter jacket with a tighter fit and improved breathability / venting for intense efforts. The front and rear of the jacket is made with Elites’ waterproof-breathable 3-layer hardshell fabric. The side panels use a new eliteAir fabric that adds more breathability and ample stretch for a snugger fit. Two large zippered core vents sit to either side of the chest and at the upper back is an ‘exhaust pipe’ vent.
My current favorite rain jacket uses Gore’s excellent single layer Shakedry fabric that is amazingly breathable and 100% waterproof. I did some comparison rides and was impressed to find that the Spring Classic combo of the Elite 3-layer and eliteAir fabrics was almost as breathable as the Shakedry. The added vents in the Spring Classic meant I could dump massive amounts of heat without the jacket flapping in the wind like the Shakedry with its front zipper open. The vents create a cooling flow around the core and up the back. And the core vents allowed easy access to my rear jersey pockets.
In the rain the Spring Classic kept me 100% dry thanks to the waterproof membrane and fully seam sealed construction. The Durable Water Repellant (DWR) finish has proven very hardwearing and has not wetted out after 30+ hours of use. At some point, the DWR will have to be replenished and Showers Pass has detailed care instructions on their website to get the most performance and life out of their jackets. In addition to normal rides, I also used this jacket bike commuting with a backpack and both the fabric and DWR show no signs of degradation from the constant rubbing of the backpack.
While the Spring Classic’s 3-layer construction and extra vent zippers make for a bulkier jacket than Shakedry, it can still be rolled up small enough to fit snuggly in a jersey pocket. The jacket has a back pocket to store items and doubles as a storage pouch for the jacket when not in use. It’s not the lightest or smallest rain jacket available, but still qualifies as a packable jacket.
My only complaint is that the Showers Pass size chart seems off. Each of my measurements gave me conflicting sizes and the Medium I ended up with was too big. Even with the oversized jacket I can tell you that Showers Pass has the cut of the jacket well sorted. Long sleeves and a high cut front waist work great in a more forward leaning road bike position while a generous drop tail at the rear provides full rear end coverage for those riding without fenders. Two drawstrings at the waist create a perfect fit and stretchy cuffs work well over or under gloves. The offset front zipper with garage avoids neck irritation, but the zipper pull can be a little hard to find if you forget that it is not centered. The front zipper pull is quite small which is harder to grasp with gloves. Thankfully the vent and pocket zippers have extended pulls for easy grip.
The Showers Pass Spring Classic Jacket checks all the boxes. It is 100% waterproof / windproof, the fabric has very impressive breathability, vents ensure you can always control the temperature, small enough to pack in a jersey pocket, and it is durable enough for daily use including commuting with a backpack. This really might be the one jacket to rule them all — just be careful with the sizing.
Brandon Bilyeu is an avid recreational roadie who lives in Regensburg, Germany. He’s a year-round bike commuter and is a mechanical design engineer by trade. Click to read Brandon’s full bio.
Richard Goldfinger says
I have over 30 years experience riding in hot and cold dry and wet weather. All my rain jacket types now have hoods. These are probably more backing type lightweight jackets rather than cycling specific. (But ensure they have adequate length in back) . Does this look “cool”, is it optimally aerodynamic – probably not. But boy, is it functional. When it’s dry but cold putting the hood up under the helmet adds a significant amount of heat retention. Also keeps the rain off your head. I used to use a helmet cover but this is an improvement on that.