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Scott Trail Storm Jacket and Pants review: eye-catching kit for wet weather trail riding

The new Scott Trail Storm Jacket and Pants certainly stand out aesthetically but how do they cope with the worst weather?

Scott Trail Storm Jacket and Pants review
(Image: © Guy Kesteven)

Bike Perfect Verdict

Impressively breathable and reliably waterproof kit that I come back to again and again when riding in foul weather.

Pros

  • +

    Impressively breathable

  • +

    Actually reliably waterproof

  • +

    Decent DWR and durability overall

  • +

    Massive pit zips in the jacket

  • +

    Full coverage hood on the jacket

  • +

    Well-placed phone pocket in the jacket

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    Great pre-articulated fit in the pants

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    Two color options

Cons

  • -

    No hood stash

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    Just one pocket in the jacket and small pockets in the pants

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    Slim cut needs a sizing check

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    Tight ankles can be a fight

Launched at the start of last winter, Scott Trail Storm Jacket and Pants – the Swiss brand claims – provide advanced weather protection and the best possible comfort while riding. Having put them through their paces for the past few months, they’ve since become my go-to trail set for really bad conditions. So what’s so good about them, and how do they compare to the best MTB jackets and best MTB pants? Read on to find out.

Scott Trail Storm Jacket

At a time when I’m constantly hugely disappointed with how long “Durable” Water Repellent (DWR) coatings actually last (we’re talking minutes, not even hours in some cases) the Scott Trail Storm jacket got off to a great start. While it would wet out in some frequent-contact or flex areas in the second hour of a ride, for the most part the water still kept rolling off. Not just on the first ride either, but for weeks and now months it’s still doing a good job of working almost as well as when new. The DWR isn’t an eco-unfriendly, baby seal-butchering, old-school coating either – it’s fully PFC free. 

The three-layer DRYOsphere material features in Scott’s winter sports and motorsports ranges as well, and impressed everyone who tried it with its balance of proper weather-beating rain protection and decent breathability. That meant while I started getting damp from inside or out in similar-priced jackets from other brands, the Storm Jacket consistently kept me bone dry in the same weather at a similar work intensity. If it does start steaming up then you can open the massive pit zips that run from elbow to mid body with pullers for easy operation when you need to dump some heat on climbs or close up for a descent.

Subtly pre-shaped paneling on the shoulders and lower sleeves meant the Storm Jacket also fitted really well. The Medium doesn’t feel massive in the body but gives plenty of backside coverage and the arms are generously long too. The cuffs get a thin velcro strip and partial elastication to keep things snug, and the hem has single hand-pull drawcords coming out of fancy-looking square plastic ports. 

There’s a rear “volume adjust” drawstring on the peaked over-helmet hood too, which, combined with the tall collar, gives excellent protection when the weather is really getting grim. There’s nothing to stop it billowing up behind your head at speed though, which is annoying. While the single chest pocket for a big phone is well placed for convenience and means no interference with waist belts or backpacks, some riders might want more built-in storage. There’s only one small strip of reflective trim if you’re riding in traffic too. The two-tone sublimated colors with chunky contrast zips got a lot of compliments though, and the fabric itself is relatively quiet and soft to further the stealthy vibe.

Scott Trail Storm Pants

Scott Trail Storm Jacket and Pants review

The Scott Trail Storm Pants have become my go-to in foul weather (Image credit: Guy Kesteven)

While I’ve mentioned it last on the jacket, that relative quietness and softness of fabric is an even bigger bonus on the pants which are obviously in constant potentially crunchy, plasticky motion. The same three-layer DRYOsphere material keeps the Scott pants aurally unobtrusive and a clever pre-shaped, multi-panel diamond cut around the knees and lower legs means fit is excellent over knee pads even without any stretch in the material. 

The lack of ankle zips can make them a bit of a wrestle-off, particularly over my fatter didn’t-quite-heal-right-when-I-broke-it right ankle. There’s just enough stretch in the elastic rear section to get you in and out while making sure there’s no excess material to get caught in chains or rub paint off cranks / chainstays. It’s even snug enough to seal the top of boots against a quick accidental puddle dab, although they’re not going to protect you against prolonged immersion.

The DRYOsphere fabric proved very effective in terms of durable waterproofing without excessive sweating. In fact, given the extra wear and tear, mud and wheel spray that pants have to put up with the Trail Storm Pants left us even more impressed with Scott’s fabric. The seat seams are still wear-free and the pants look basically unworn inside even though they’ve actually replaced the awesome (but noisy and nearly triple the price) 7-Mesh Thunderpants as my go-to “might be damp” leg wear. They’ve never let me down in terms of water getting in either and it’s rare I end up with a sweat-soaked shorts pad even if I’ve put several hard hours in.

Crucially – while it’s still listed as being there in the website copy – the mesh panels behind the knees that rushed water off the rear wheels and down inside your legs on the previous pants have been removed too.

A full fly fastening makes nature breaks easy and the metal side hook and webbing ladder waist-gathering system is great for getting an accurate fit without cutting into your gut. While the rear isn’t raised or fleeced I didn’t notice any draughts or water ingress in the lumbar area even when wearing them with shorter jackets than the Trail Storm. Two zippered hand pockets are too small and positioned wrongly to take a phone, but handy for small valuables like car keys as long as you don’t overfill them. 

The only thing I would say is that the leg cut is definitely slim and riders with meaty thighs in particular would be advised to try before they buy and potentially go up a size. The single orange lower leg might not be to everyone’s tastes either.

Tech Specs: Scott Trail Storm Jacket

  • Price: £207.99 (UK) / $TBC (US)
  • Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL 
  • Colors: Tree green & frost green; Black & storm blue

Tech Specs: Scott Trail Storm Pants

  • Price: £135.99 (UK) / $TBC (US)
  • Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL 
  • Colors: Tree green & frost green; Black & storm blue

Guy Kesteven is Bike Perfect and Cyclingnews’ contributing tech editor. Hatched in Yorkshire he's been hardened by riding round it in all weathers since he was a kid. He spent a few years working in bike shops and warehouses before starting writing and testing for bike mags in 1996. Since then he’s written several million words about several thousand test bikes and a ridiculous amount of riding gear. To make sure he rarely sleeps and to fund his custom tandem habit, he’s also penned a handful of bike-related books and talks to a GoPro for YouTube, too.


Rides: Pace RC295, Cotic FlareMax, Specialized Chisel, Vielo V+1 gravel bike, Nicolai FS Enduro, Landescape custom gravel tandem

Height: 180cm

Weight: 69kg