Great Weather Beater
Arrived just in time for some 10 degree weather and high winds. Took that weather down. No problem. The Mantra stuck to me, and kept the wind at bay. It should be noted, it's just a jacket, not a parka. So you'll have to pair it with a warm soft shell underneath or layer up for the really cold days. But that is why I purchased the jacket in the first place. Versatile. You have lots of options with this jacket. Can be worn on its own in fall or spring, and, again combined with a warm soft shell, great for winter as well. In this regard, the price becomes much more reasonable. You won't be wearing it only 2 or 3 months a year, more like 6 or 7. The thing has got more pockets and storage than some of my luggage. No kidding. I swear, I could go for a weekend trip, and pack everything I need in the jacket alone. Don't know about durability yet, because the jacket is so new, but it looks great and you can tell it's quality built.
Nice light, weatherproof jacket - runs large
When deciding upon a jacket to buy, I showed this picture to a buddy of mine who told me it looked like something Bruce Wayne would wear spelunking. I completely agree. The coat looks as good in person as it does on the site. I was worried that with the waterproof membrane material, it would be loud or super stiff, but it's not. It's actually just a slight step up over my softshell in feel. The zippers feel rugged and close nicely. The pockets are we obviously given thought, and their placement feels natural. The only possible exception would be the chest pocked that has the flap, but I let it slide, since it just looks good. I was definitely surprised by how thin and light the jacket is - not light in a flimsy way, and given that, how warm it was. Immediately, my body heat was radiating back to me - so the pit zips are a necessity. That said, you'd definitely need a base layer if you were out below freezing. I wish it had a zip-in liner, or the ability to add one so it could function as my primary coat. The one con that needs addressing is the sizing. I'm 5'8" on a good day and an athletic, broad-shouldered 150lbs (chest is 39"). For comparison I also own Marmot's Super Hero jacket (size small), and that fits perfectly. The Mantra, however, made me feel like I was 13 again, wearing my dad's old coat, even though it was also a small. The Super Hero's arms stop right at my wrists, but the Mantra hung a good six inches lower to the last knuckle in my fingers. It was cut proportionately slim in the waist - i.e. I could have used about 2 inches taken out of the sides. Length-wise, I know it's supposed to be longer than a soft-shell, but this hung below my butt. I think it's a great jacket, and if it ages like my other Marmot products, it'll last forever and still look new. If I were taller or if they made a smaller size, I'd still own mine.