UKC

/ Fjallraven Bergtagen Parka

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mrjamesdawson on 13 Feb 2018

So been digging through the piles on piles of big lofty down and synthetic jackets on the market as looking for something beefy to replace my Atom AR. Stumbled on the Bergtagen collection from Fjallraven which 'claims' to be designed for high alpine use, with a very confident social media person claiming it's 'perfect for Denali'. Wondering if anyone has any experience with the kit or more knowledge on the mysterious G-Loft Supreme insulation? Also like the idea of picking up the Mummyfoot which is just half a sleeping bag that synches around the parka for a really compact unheated hut setup (like the old Patagonia Ascensionist setup).

 

Atom AR is nice but was up in the Lyngen Alps and Lofoten recently, with temps around -10C and major windchill and the Atom AR was OK during the day with a Delta LT fleece, lightweight base layer and Gore Pro shell. When skinning up I dropped it just for a shell and fleece else I'd drown in sweat but after sunset (around 3pm) it rapidly got colder over the next couple hours and standing still would get me feeling pretty chilly but bearable. Without a shell it wasn't bearable.

 

So now I'm heading to Dovrefjell in March which is known to fluctuate from -10C to -25C in a day with crazy high winds, surprise blizzards and being charged by Musk Oxen due to terrible visibility. The skinning is less strenuous as it's mostly flat/rolling ground at a slow pace, and the 'mountaineering' I'm doing is pretty much winter walking with a touch of scrambling. I will be hanging about not moving a fair bit as well when setting up tripod shots and messing about with cameras, and not feeling at all confident in relying on the Atom to keep me warm.

 

Aside from the Bergtagen I've been looking at the usual Arc faves like the Cerium and Thorium, Rab Resolution, Positron and Neutrino Endurance and Alpkit Phantac. Any recommendations would be much appreciated!

 

GarethSL on 13 Feb 2018
In reply to mrjamesdawson:

So you've been relying on what is essentially a high loft midlayer, specifically designed for active comfort...to keep you warm when you're not active?

You sir, need a belay jacket/ down parka. Nothing less than 850 fill. I wouldn't bother with synthetic insulation as Dovre is dry.

Keep the atom, as it's an excellent bit of kit for what it is designed for, I.e. Insulation whilst on the move, but don't expect it to suffice as a standalone piece when you aren't moving.

Plenty of options out there to chose from. Many far lighter than the bergtangen.

Personal favourites are the Ceres SV and even more fancy Firebee AR. The PhD crowd will be along soon no doubt. But really any down jacket, with a high fill power, good quality down and a decent length will be perfect for your needs.

mrjamesdawson on 13 Feb 2018
In reply to GarethSL:

Yeah pretty much! Previously I didn't mix active / non-active. I would either go downhill skiing OR go on a photography trip. I'd pack my shell, Atom and performance kit for skiing and for photography trips I'd just pack my big old Woolrich Arctic parka.

 

Tried on the Firebee the other day, that thing nearly overheated me in-store. A bit overkill for me right now, same goes for PHD. The Ceres looks good, lightweight but pricey. Any idea if the Black Diamond Cold Forge is burly enough? Also got Slovakia/Romania touring on the cards for the coming winter and a few weekends in Scotland planned. Aiming to take some winter climbing courses with Glenmore/PYB next year too just which will probably involve a lot of standing around in damp conditions!

wbo - on 13 Feb 2018
In reply to mrjamesdawson:the Cold Forge is similar to what you have now.  I'd take Gareth's advice - if you use that for a cold day on Dovre, expect to be miserable at best.  

 

mrjamesdawson on 13 Feb 2018
In reply to wbo:

Eeeesh, ok glad I asked here first else I’d be in an unpleasant situation in a few weeks.

 

Any experience with in-hut temps? I’ve got a Rab Ascent 700 that I often sleep with half open in huts in the Alps as I sleep pretty hot, and again gets way too hot for camping in UK winters. Staying in the Reinheim and Amotdalshytta huts.

TobyA on 13 Feb 2018
In reply to mrjamesdawson:

A couple of proper warm (but not particularly light!) options

https://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/reviews/clothing_-_mountain/men's_fjorm_down_jacket_from_jottnar-6208

Or

https://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/reviews/clothing_-_mountain/mountain_equipment_citadel_jacket-4444

(the new Citadels are said to be a simpler design and better for belaying due to that - hence some of my criticism in the article may not be relevant now.)

I've used both in temperatures below -20 including for belays. I would have said the Patagonia DAS parka is another obvious candidate but they're not making them currently. I've used all three jackets in Arctic Norway, ski touring or ice climbing a number of times.

Post edited at 23:56
mrjamesdawson on 15 Feb 2018

Got a sweet deal on a Ceres SV from some streetwear store - £400 shipped. Can't imagine who is wearing this around town as a fashion piece in the UK, but maybe that's why it was on sale!


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