Showers Pass Century CC Jacket: At The Finish – by Guitar Ted
I’ve spent a lot of time in the Showers Pass Century CC Jacket of late. I wish that hadn’t been the case, but for the purposes of this review, it is a good thing. I got the equivalent of an entire Spring season packed into a little more than three weeks thanks to an April that has been the wettest, coldest, and windiest one here since the mid-1990’s.
So, this affords me the opportunity to share my findings regarding this jacket, and it also has given me opportunities to answer the questions I asked in the introduction to this review. There is one minor thing I haven’t found out yet concerning the Century CC Jacket, but I’ll get around to that later.
Ride Performance: First I want to share how this jacket works on the bike. In my experience, a jacket that looks ‘right‘ on a person off the bike isn’t so great while used for riding, and vice versa. The Showers Pass Century CC Jacket looks a bit goofy worn as a civvie jacket. But it is darn near perfection while riding, with one exception, which I’ll get around to. The jacket has a cut which fits in the riding position, and with the Century CC’s generous cut and arm length, you have no restrictions to movement. Bar controls are reached without exposing wrists to the elements. The hem doesn’t bunch up around the belt-line, and your rear end stays covered. Bent over the drop bars, you’ll find that this jacket allows for comfortable reach which does not tug at the neck or shoulder areas. It just feels as though I have total freedom of movement while wearing this jacket.
But that comes at a price. The generous cut I mentioned? That leaves a bit more material flapping in the wind than you may want in the open areas while riding gravel. That may be the only negative to using the jacket from an aerodynamic standpoint. But keep in mind- This is Showers Pass’ entry-level commuter jacket, and not a ‘race-fit’ jacket. I’m okay with that, and here is why- The Century CC is a versatile jacket because of its design.
I found that I could layer underneath the Century CC Jacket without worry, and that was a good thing too! It has been, as I stated, very windy here, and with gusts of over 40mph often this month, and high temperatures hovering only into the 40’s, I was glad that I could layer up to keep warm. Oh, yeah…..this makes for a great windbreaker jacket as well.
Of course, what good is a rain jacket if it doesn’t keep the rain out? Well, I am happy to report that this jacket does that quite nicely. The collar doesn’t chafe the neck when the jacket is zipped all the way up to keep that rain and wind out, which was nice to find. I also did not have any issues with my beard getting caught in the zipper or what have you, which is not the case with some other jackets I have worn for cycling.
The chest pocket was great in terms of size and use during riding. My iPhone fit in there great, and the waterproof zipper kept moisture at bay. The rear pocket was a bit of a mixed bag. There were times I could not pull the zipper shut, and that happened at an event where I got a bit frustrated by that. However; other times I was able to pull it shut just fine, but I was not riding my bike either. So, that may have had something to do with it.
Speaking of that event, it was the only ride all month where temperature became an issue while riding with this jacket on. I found the nice sized ‘pit-zips’ to help a lot with venting, and since the cuffs have Velcro closures, I could open them up to get even more air flow. Something an elasticized cuff cannot allow for. Overall, it wasn’t the sweaty, “garbage bag-like” experience I’ve had with some other rain jackets, and I chalk that up to the looser fit of the Century CC jacket.
This jacket did also do okay as a pack-able jacket. It did not go down to the ‘soda can’ sized package some other jackets can compress down to, but I found that I could roll it up in a jiffy and stick it into a top tube bag quite easily. I don’t doubt that a compression sack could make this jacket pack even smaller. Okay, so it was good for bringing along in case of inclement weather. I like that aspect of this jacket.
At The Finish: This Century CC Jacket is a pretty solid choice for anyone who is looking for an affordable option for foul weather gear that could cover a lot of ground. It has the versatility to be a commute jacket, a bike-packing jacket, or that jacket you pull out for a cold descent or that freak pop-up shower. It packs down okay- it isn’t the best at that– but it will do for most applications here, and still be a fully waterproof, windproof option.
I loved the freedom of movement and comfortable fit on the bike. Yes- it isn’t that racy, trim cut for those who must have the most aero looking jacket, but this jacket is far more versatile than any of those choices I am aware of. I think for the price asked here, ($139.00 USD) the value you get is really pretty impressive.
My only concern about this jacket is the slightly finicky rear zipper which didn’t want to work smoothly for me while riding. There is also the question of breathabilty. I think the jacket is okay in that regard, but I didn’t get enough weather which tested that theory to my satisfaction to say anything definitively. Of course, “breathable” and “rain jacket” can be terms which are most often thought of as being mutually exclusive to each other in most cases, so I wouldn’t be surprised if this jacket was what I might expect in that area. But again- I only had the one experience on a ride, and I thought it did better than expected.
That said, I am thoroughly impressed with Showers Pass’ newest offering. I wouldn’t go looking for anything better at this price point in rain gear. In fact, this out-performs jackets I’ve tried which cost a lot more than the Century CC does. It’s a definite keeper.
More about this jacket and other Showers Pass offerings can be found at the Showers Pass website; https://www.showerspass.com/
Note: Showers Pass sent over the Century CC Jacket for test and review at no charge to Riding Gravel. We were not bribed nor paid for this review and we always strive to give our honest thoughts and views throughout.