As we all know, when it comes to packing for a road trip on our motorcycles, storage space is a big concern. So imagine my excitement when I came across the JakPak ($249.99), a waterproof jacket that can also be turned into a sleeping bag and then into a pop-up tent/shelter—essentially possibly helping me eliminate several bulky and space-consuming items from my packing list.
According to the website, the JakPak is comprised of a patent-pending design that features a waterproof, breathable jacket with an integrated shelter, mosquito netting, and sleeping bag. Made of urethane-coated rip-stop nylon and polyester body fabric, the JakPak is available in sizes small to extra large in two-tone green or most Harley fans’ colors of choice: black and grey.
I ordered the XL which weighs in at about 3 pounds. To help assist with the heft of the jacket/sleeping bag/tent combo the JakPak has suspenders built in that easily clip to your pants and do help take up some of the weight load when walking around. Wearing the jacket with the sleeping bag and tent stuffed in their respective pouches is a little awkward as the sleeping bag portion is like a pillow hanging around your butt and the frame of the tent is curled up in a circle in the middle of your back; not really uncomfortable, just weird at first. However, if you don’t think you need the sleeping bag or tent portion, both can be quickly unzipped and removed from the jacket. The jacket has a drawstring hood, Velcro cuffs, three pockets (two exterior, one interior), armpit zips, storm flaps over the pockets and zippers to keep the water out, and a dual main zipper for added ventilation.
Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/user/hotbikemagazine?feature=mhee
Deploying the sleeping bag and tent can be a little tricky the first time, but you quickly figure it out. I actually found it a little easier to lay the jacket on the ground, pull the sleeping bag and tent out of their pouches, then climb in. The sleeping bag also has dual zippers that make it easy to get your feet out if you need to walk around. The tent portion pops up above your head and has netting connected to it which allows you to cover your face and most of your lower body. While I will agree that the JakPak is breathable and you won’t suffocate in it, I did find it to be a little stuffy at times and caused me to sweat (you are basically enveloped in waterproof material) however, I do sweat pretty easily. It’s actually kind of tricky because it also states that it’s a three-season design (spring, summer, fall) but there’s no insulation to the sleeping bag or jacket, so if the temps drop, you could be shivering unless you’re layered up in clothing or stuff the bag with a blanket or extra clothes, which it’s roomy enough to do.
While I really do like the idea and concept of the JakPak, I haven’t fully convinced myself that this will be my end-all-be-all solution for saving space on road trips. It can be a little confining and I had a hard time lying comfortably in any other position than on my back. It did have good quality construction and provided decent protection from the rain (I got a little wet where the netting covered my head), and the netting did keep bugs and critters out. It can be folded up and stuffed into a saddlebag, so it might work as a backup or to keep on hand for those occasions when you get stuck in a rain storm or broke down for the night. To see a video showing how the JakPak works, log on to hotbikeweb.com.
Rain Jacket/Sleeping Bag/Tent Combo
Quality of Product ****
Jakpak.com | (800) 373-5593