/ PRODUCT NEWS: What's Available: Lightweight Wind-Proof Jackets

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Windproof Jackets, 4 kbLightweight wind-proof jackets are an essential part of the modern British climber's gear list.

Here we give a selection of what is available, with weights and prices so that you can compare the products and find the right jacket for you.

Read more at http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/news.php?id=6398

tony on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:

But are any of them any good?
Darren Jackson - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to tony:

Wot no Montane Featherlite?
galpinos - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to galpinos:

Agreed. Am mulling over getting a Houdini and was hoping this review would help.
dereke12000 - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:
No Rab Vapour Rise?
Post edited at 18:02
captain paranoia - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to dereke12000:

Well, there is a DriClime.

But neither the DriClime nor the Vapour Rise count as pure wind resistant layers in my book; they're both shelled micropile soft shells...

Oh, and none of the featured garments are windproof; they're wind resistant to various degrees...

I'll get my [wind resistant] coat...

Finally. HOW MUCH?
BnB - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:

I have a Squamish and love it. For three seasons it's the perfect layering piece. The breathabilty and windproofing seem entirely at odds with eachother. And so easy (non-bulky and featherlight) to clip to the harness for that windy belay. Rab Boreas will do a half decent job for only 40, mind, so I often climb in that, not caring if I tear it!!
Darren Jackson - on 07 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:

Wot no Pac-a-Mac?
lummox - on 08 Jul 2014
In reply to galpinos:

I can defo recommend a Houdini- very breathable, with a quite serviceable hood and offering a surprising amount of protection from the rain and not much heavier than a Montane Featherlite..
Dorq on 08 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:
"What's Available..." !? And the technical name for these technical wind jammers is WINDCHEATER!

For the adventurous gentleman-photographer: The Rohan Windshadow. Four pockets, slight stretch to the fabric which has a matt finish, roll away hood, very durable though heavier than most.

Similar fabric on the Salomon Fastwing Hoodie, which has armpit vents and reflectors, lightweight.

Norrona have one of these windbreakers in either shinny fabric or the matt stuff, cuffs are usually serious on their gear.

Edit: 'Shinny' fabric is new. It was developed with child ice hockey players and is only made by one mill in Sarnia, Canada.
Post edited at 09:44
SteveSBlake - on 08 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:

Hmm,

I got a windshirt with front zip from Aldi on Saturday for 2:99. It compares well with my elderly Montane windshirt....

Steve
In reply to SteveSBlake:

Good post.

Brings us back to reality.
neilus - on 11 Jul 2014
I got a Montane LiteSpeed jacket which would appear to belong in this category...and im struggling to imagine what conditions it would be useful?I can only imagine some wierd weather that is somehow dry, warm and with a cold wind? How/when do you use your windshirt?
Ramblin dave - on 11 Jul 2014
In reply to neilus:
I've got a Rab Cirrus and I use it all the time. It's great any time it's not warm but not raining too much - I layer it over a varying thickness of cheapo fleeces and baselayers depending on how cold it is.

Edit: situations where I've had good use out of it include (but aren't limited to) climbing Cornish sea cliffs in spring, gritstone cragging in winter, Welsh mountain rock on breezy summer days, cold dry winter days walking in Scotland, biking in cold weather...
Post edited at 10:34
captain paranoia - on 11 Jul 2014
In reply to neilus:

A windshirt makes for a versatile layering system, since it stops the warm air in your insulation layer being blown away by the wind, so you can get away with a lighter insulation layer for active use.

They are generally much more breathable than waterproof fabrics, so less sweaty. A waterproof will stop the wind, but I find a windshirt preferable for that purpose, and wear a waterproof only when it's actually raining heavily.

That's assuming your insulation layer is fleece; plenty of shelled synthetic mid layers around these days.

My thoughts on layering can be found here:

http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=377801#x5471096
neilus - on 11 Jul 2014
Ok thats some good info there...but it seems that using a windshirt requires one to be able to predict how much/heavy any rain will be...? Im inclined to agree with your last statement, namely that a softshell equally provides wind resistance, with I would imagine more water repellancy, insulation when its cooler, and breathability when its warmer...
In reply to neilus: Not really. Softshell is almost meaningless being such a vague term but most thing called that are much heavier than windshield.

Sports Pursuit currently has loads of Marmot windshells on sale. They're good!
Ramblin dave - on 11 Jul 2014
In reply to neilus:
> Ok thats some good info there...but it seems that using a windshirt requires one to be able to predict how much/heavy any rain will be...?

I carry a waterproof to put on if it starts raining. Unless I'm at a roadside crag in which case I'll just make a run for it (and generally if I'm climbing I'll have checked the forecast and not be expecting rain anyway).

The advantage over a softshell, as far as I can tell, is flexibility - because it has no insulation of its own, I can wear it over anything from a lightweight baselayer to a couple of fleeces depending on how cold I'm expecting to get. It's also probably cheaper, unless you're a true softshell devotee who doesn't even own a hardshell or any fleeces.
Post edited at 14:22
captain paranoia - on 12 Jul 2014
In reply to neilus:
> but it seems that using a windshirt requires one to be able to predict how much/heavy any rain will be...?

Unless you're obsessed with carrying minimal gear, or never want to change your layers once you've started whatever it is you're doing, then a windshirt, weighing less than 150g and packing to the size of an apple is hardly a burden. It's not a choice of taking a windshell instead of a waterproof; it's the choice of taking a windshirt as well as a waterproof, and only wearing the waterproof when it's actually raining.

Softshells, IME, are rather tightly coupled to particular climatic and activity conditions, and aren't as versatile as a layering system including a windshirt. You can't, for instance, remove the wind resistant layer, or the insulation layer, as they're fixed parts of the garment. You can only wear or not wear the softshell, with its properties of wind resistance, water resistance, insulation and breathability. That's why there is such a huge range of things called 'softshells', each addressing a narrow range of climate & and activity, trying to find the 'perfect sweet spot'.
Post edited at 21:37
SFM - on 20 Jul 2014
In reply to UKC Gear:

Two others that I would add are:

The paramo wind shirt(forget it's name) as it's far more robust and bridges a gap between wind shirt and soft shell. Sort of thing that you can wear all day comfortably.

The OMM sonic smock. It sounds like a crisp packet but is only 60g, rolls into it's own collar, has thumb loops(hurrah!) and is fitted enough so that you don't feel like a kite.

Hoods are useful but only if they can be tabbed down or held in check while you are not using it. Can be an effing pain otherwise.

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