/ Going Paramo for winter...which jacket?
I like both the Velez Adventure Smock and the Aspira. Would the Aspira be too warm for British winter? It looks like it's a high altitude jacket. That would make my decision easier (and cheaper!).
Also, why do they only make a womens one with a zip from stomach to chin? The mens smocks have a much smaller chest zip and I prefer the option to vent off a lot. For this reason I'd probably go for the Aspira jacket, rather than the smock.
Basically I'm thinking either the Velez Adventure Smock or the Aspira jacket with full length zip. Any thoughts/recommendations/suggestions?
I have one of their Glamaig jackets, and its a really nice piece of work and (unlike Paramo) fits me perfectly. They could easily make a long-zip smock version, for example.
As always, personal choice. I'm replacing my aspira smock with another one
The Aspira smock is excellent and I've been using mine in Scottish winter for years. It's not too hot though you rarely need more than a base layer under it even in a blizzard. As someone else has commented the smock gives you loads of venting options with the side zips on the front.
AFAIK there's no difference between the Aspiro or the Velez for warmth apart from the extra length, protection and weight of the Aspiro.
As for the woman's version, my partner uses the men's smock as it's more practical compared to the woman's! We both don't really understand the logic behind the woman's design!
Couple of new Paramo jackets in the offing - one's due out in Oct, the other around Christmas. Might be worth having a look at them as well?
I really can't fault the Aspira smock for Scottish winter. I run quite cold and depending on the temp I wear a Merino wool baselayer or if really cold an r1 underneath the smock.
I must be one of the lucky ones as my smock fits me great. Plus can I also add that a zip broke after 5 years of winter usage. I sent it back to paramo to fix and they are fixing it free of charge under the lifetime warranty.
Good luck with your choice.
You actually get more vents in the smock than the jacket not to mention the massive kangaroo pocket. It is surprisingly durable as well, mine looks like new despite having been pretty abused in the mountains.
Be aware that the sizing of the aspiras are pretty baggy.
As for it being a high altitude jacket, well last time I went a weekend to Wales in February I had far more severe weather than I experienced in a month in Tien Shan
I went from a jacket to a smock and agree with everyone else on this thread: they are more flexible.
I used to use one in the alps in summer but on balance I think there are lighter, cooler and more flexible systems.
My Aspira smock has been brilliant in wet and cold weather in the Lakes and Scotland, winter and summer. If you're worried about overheating, wear fewer layers underneath. Great pockets for maps, specs, compass, gloves...
Look for deals - mine was reduced at Mountain Factor http://www.themountainfactor.com prob due to its vile colour (but who cares)
I do have a velez adventure light smock as well, for summer use. But I donít like it half as much in the mountains (better for cycling) Ė the reason being the pockets. The Jackets just seem to have much better pockets Ė especially for map and compass. The Aspira smock may have more pockets than the Velez, but Iím not keen on the layout of the central pouch, which does not seem half as useful.
I use an Aspira jacket for Scottish winter. I cannot see the advantage of a smock; the jacket is much more versatile IMHO. If you run incredibly hot, as some seem to do, then maybe Paramo is not for you, but otherwise for any medium to cold to freezing conditions it should be fine, either wear with just a base layer or mid layers too if properly cold.
I have the Aspira for winter and loved it, until I was given a Quito for summer. I think I may be climbing in my Quito and seeing how I get on because it is much nicer than the Aspira and a lot lighter...
I have an Aspira that is a great jacket but i prefer to layer up as i find it more flexible. Medium, yellow and silver.
Could be pursuaded to part with it for £70 if you fancy?
I'll buck the trend and say I prefer the Velez smock. The Aspira is too warm to wear on the walk in ( a problem if its raining) and is pretty heavy to carry. Also too warm for climbing on those rare days when there is no wind. I got rid of mine and now use the velez with a decent mid layer ( old style rab softshell which is quite thin). I find this system much more versatile.
Whichever you decide on go for a smock if its for climbing. The jackets I had was too long at the front and I found mine rode up above harness whilst climbing so you end up with a big baggy area at your chest and you cant see your feet. Like trying to climb with a huge belly. Mind you this was 10 years ago so maybe new jackets are different?
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