Rab’s newest version of the perennially popular Microlight jacket is enveloping, soft and super comfortable – a pleasure to wear.
There are men’s and women’s versions, both relatively close-fitting; here is the women’s…
The extra insulating power means that it’s well adapted to walks around freezing point… and the breathability of the fabric helps avoid humidity inside the jacket, keeping your temperature relatively even.
But it’s also useful all year round, when it turns chilly – making it a great lightweight back-up to keep in your backpack, for layering up when you stop for a break; or for camping on cool summer evenings, or really any other pastime that involves hanging around outdoors.
The outer fabric, Infinium Windstopper – one of Gore-Tex’s much-trumpeted new fabrics – is soft, tough, ultralight, windproof and breathable. It’s treated with a durable water repellent, which will keep off a light shower, but in steady rain you’ll need to pull on a waterproof hard-shell over it. The jacket’s slim fit makes that easy enough.
The hood has a stiffened and wired peak and a single adjustment to cinch it around your face, which keeps icy drafts from creeping in. Like the Haglofs, the hood doesn’t real turn with your head, but the more open-faced design of the Rab means your view out is less affected.
The chest pocket has a handy exterior zip, pictured, and there are two side pockets; all are fairly roomy but none are big enough for an OS map.
Facts at a glance:
- Weight: 452 g (men’s medium)
- Fabric: 13-denier Gore-Tex Infinium Windstopper; windproof,
- Insulation: 700 fill-power recycled down, treated with Nikwax hydrophobic finish. Down weight 146 g (men’s medium).
Helly Hansen Odin Stretch Hooded Insulator (RRP £200)
This jacket feels instantly comfortable – cosy and cushioned. It delivers real warmth but breathable, thanks to the Primaloft Gold Active insulation, which unlike down insulation will continue to work even when wet. The stretch four-way stretch fabric panels under the pits allow unrestrained movement. The women’s version is cut slightly longer. TB]
• Read more about these jackets – and a bunch of other ideas for midlayers