Windproof, waterproof, and breathable, the Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket is designed for those that like to bang out skin laps or boot packs before work.
Find out how this jacket performed in the Tetons after a long winter :
Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket Review
The Lithic Comp is perfect for backcountry touring especially for those that prefer to be fast and light on the way up. Simply put the Arc’teryx Lithic Comp is also a great looking jacket. While fashion obviously falls in favor of function on the mountain, style never hurts. With an alpine cut, the jacket features a “tighter” fit than many others on the market. It doesn’t have the relaxed “bro” fit of other snowboard jackets I tested this season. At the same time, it is roomy enough for layering and allows for great freedom of movement. Plus there’s nothing wrong with having a little style once your off the slopes.
The actual design of the Lithic Comp Jacket is unique. It was a little tough for me to get used to at first. For starters, the zippers on the front pockets open backward, up to open and down to close. While only a minor nuisance, I found that things have a tendency to fall out this way. Luckily, the jacket also has two inner mesh pockets. These are a great place to stash just about anything, especially touring skins. But back to the design flaw, maybe this was a marketing sample or a second I tested but having the pockets open they way they did essentially make them essentially useless aside from acting as vents.
Another note on the front pockets of the Arc’teryx Lithic Comp – they double as pit zips. At first, I actually thought they were only vents (instead of a vent/pocket combo) since they aren’t very deep. Combine the lack of depth with the backward zippers and they’re not the best place to store your gear. However, they do their job of keeping you cooled off on a tough trek quite well.
The Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket is loaded with key features without being bogged down by them. The Vancouver company’s Composite Mapping technology serves to merge windproof, breathable GORE Fabric Technology with their own Arc’teryx Trusaro softshell.
These fabrics as well as their construction optimize the jacket for the shifting conditions of backcountry use. For example, GORE-TEX is used on the front, shoulders, the hood, and the tops of the arms as these areas are most exposed to falling rain and snow. The Arc’teryx Trusaro softshell material is used on the back and under the arms, as these areas require breathability and increased stretchiness.
New for 2016 is the Rush jacket checkout my Arc’teryx Rush Jacket review to learn more.
The Lithic Comp Jacket also features a reinforced back and sides. These serve as an extra very minimal layer of padding to make carrying a backpack while touring a little bit more comfortable. Everything stays in place which is nice. I thought the jacket could have used some of this reinforcement material on the shoulders as well.
As I mentioned above, the Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket is perfect for splitboarding and ski touring. Even without layers underneath, the jacket can be used in cold winter temperatures, as long as you keep moving.
I toured about 2,000 feet in 30-degree temperatures in just the shell to test the breathability. I was able to use the pit zips/front pockets to give the jacket a little more breathability. And it’s nice to know that the Litchi Comp Jacket provides enough warmth to handle colder temperatures when layered properly.
There isn’t much that I’d change about the Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket. It’s a great snow jacket, for both alpine and touring, that features a unique blend of breathable, waterproof fabrics. The only thing I would like to see on the jacket is the addition of a powder skirt and slightly more technical front pockets!!
Overall, this is a great jacket for those who prefer to be light and fast on the way up (and equally light and fast on the way down). I reckon it would make a near perfect crossover piece for going from fishing to skiing, skiing to hiking, and so on.
The Arc’teryx Lithic Comp Jacket ($599) has a ton of uses and is designed for contrasting demands and changing temperatures. You should definitely take a peak at it in one of the online shops below if you’re in the market for a new jacket.