/ Insulation Advice

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MtnGeekUK - on 21 Sep 2012
Hi.

Booked on to a winter skills course this coming Jan. Trying to decide if I should get:

- full on down jacket

- lightweight down jacket (which could go under a shell)

- synthetic layer

In particular, concerned about getting it wet while snowholing, but not sure how cold it'll be inside.

All views appreciated.
gethin_allen on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:
If you want to be sure, get a primaloft jacket with a hood. You can use it as a belay jacket when climbing and as a extra layer in the evening if needed. You shouldn't really need a big insulation layer when active.
andy_e on 21 Sep 2012
If you are meaning a winter skills course in Scotland (or other similar cold and wet environment), then I would avoid down because no matter how hard you try, it will get wet. If you're heading somewhere colder (and dry) then down can't be beaten.
MtnGeekUK - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to gethin_allen:

It's the "when not active and in a snowhole" I'm worried about.

Having never done it, I have no idea on how cold it gets.

What's the done thing?
MtnGeekUK - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to talon_guy:

Yep - scotland.
In reply to MtnGeekUK: I'd go for hooded midweight primaloft or similar jacket. RAB, Mountain Equipment, Marmot, TNF etc all do something along those lines. I guess you're likely to be using something like a goretex jacket with one or two midlayer (fleeces etc) under it. In which case, a midweight synthetic insulated jacket to go over all that will give you a lot of warmth. Scotland can be really cold (but at least it's dry then!), but more likely is a bit below freezing and damp and blowy.

Dan's review here: http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/review.php?id=4457 will give you some ideas.
gethin_allen on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:
i have an old rab belay jacket and a old photon hoody jacket, both are excellent for this sort of thing. The new versions of these jackets have more insulation, the new photon being comparable with the old belay jacket, so the new photon would probably be enough. You don't want too much as scotland probably won't be really cold and primaloft is heavier and doesn't pack as well as down.

for specs have a look at:-
http://www.upandunder.co.uk/Outdoor/Clothing/Synthetic-Filled-Clothing/P---photon-jacket---3675/
AlanLittle - on 21 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:
>
> It's the "when not active and in a snowhole" I'm worried about.
>
> Having never done it, I have no idea on how cold it gets.
>

Inside an inhabited snowhole it's not particularly cold, and even less so whist digging it. You will, however, get wet from sweat & snow whilst digging, and you need to change into dry stuff as soon as you've finished otherwise you will get very cold very quickly.

MtnGeekUK - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:

Thanks for all the advice.

Layers wise, this is what I'll have:

- Patagonia capilene 3 base layer or Smartwool Merino base layer
- Patagonia R1 1/4 zip
- Patagonia Araveto Hoody
- Everest Hardwear softshell vest (windproof with a little insulation)
- Mountain Equipment Tupillak ii

With an ME Fitzroy too, should be ok for standing around, right?
In reply to MtnGeekUK: Don't think you'd want to carry all of that stuff, but yeah - I think that will be plenty.

Walking in to climbs in Scotland I often just wear a base layer or that plus a superlight pertex windproof, so just remember all that other stuff is going to be in your rucksack. Not sure if you'll find much need for two fleeces.
Siward on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:
It gets cold because its so damp. Damp=increased perceived cold. Those lovely sunny thin dry days are nice but not all that common. I always carry my primaloft belay jacket in winter and find it just the thing. Very versatile.
george mc - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:

Wee video short that contrasts the wild outside with the deathly quiet inside...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sEISsMd9v6A
MtnGeekUK - on 22 Sep 2012
In reply to MtnGeekUK:

The R1 was only there for 'in extremis'. Think I will ditch that from the system.

While moving, usually just base layer, araveto and/or vest and shell in winter.

Thanks for all the advice - much appreciated.

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