/ I'm Looking for a Paramo Jacket

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mypyrex - on 09 Aug 2017
I bought some Paramo trousers earlier this year and I'm now thinking of getting a jacket. Can anyone advise what their best(not too expensive) waterproof/windproof ones are please. Anything suitable for summer alps/Pyrenees/UK winter.

greg_may_ - on 09 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

I've been happy with my Velez jacket. Works well in the wonderful weather we get here.
Crevisking - on 09 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

Look on eBay I got a few things from their 'seconds' outlet that were good as new. Including the enduro jacket. Highly recommend.

doc_h on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:
I have loads of Paramo gear, (jackets, trousers, even underwear and a balaclava!) as I find it ideal for Scottish winter and Alpine use as well as for dismal days wandering the hills of North Wales. Their gear is very warm, tough and easy to keep in condition by washing it every so often and treating with Nikwax.

Two Jackets I own that I would recommend for Alpine / UK winter are 1) The Aspira (which I think is now called the Enduro). This is a somewhat heavyweight jacket that is extremely tough, warm and completely wind and waterproof. I've used this climbing out of season in the Alps at 4000m in very strong, cold winds with nothing but a grid (paramo again) base layer underneath, so you don't feel too stuffed also wearing a harness, coils of rope, slings etc. In Scotland it is good protection from lashing rain/hail/snow. It takes a harness well and doesn't ride up at the back under the rucksack. I did Tower Ridge in winter wearing it and was warm all the way. The downside is that its a bit heavy and the newer version, the Enduro, is rather expensive.

2) Another jacket I use is the Alta. This is lighter weight than the Aspira and not as tough or warm as the Aspira but packs down much smaller. Although having said that toughness doesn't matter so much with Paramo. If you rip it you simply sew the rip up (or in the field simply tie a bit of cord around the rip) and the jacket is waterproof again. The Alta is however just as windproof and waterproof as the heavier weight jackets. I used the Alta jacket last month in the French alps, once again with just a base layer underneath. On the walk in over the glacier in the dark I had the jacket on for warmth but once the sun came out I took it off and just used the paramo grid base. Then when a biting wind developed the jacket went on again, hood up over my helmet and I was toasty.

The Alta is good for UK mountains as it packs very small and is not as warm as the Aspira so you don't overheat.

A very good combination I would recommend, bearing in mind the cost of paramo gear, is to get an Alta jacket and a Torres Gilet. The gilet packs down to the size of an orange and can be worn either under or over the jacket. This is handy in cold UK rain when you can put the gilet on over the jacket without having to get wet taking the jacket off. The rain won't bother the gilet and you will get instant warmth.

(While I'm at it I'd also recommend the Torres Jacket. This is Paramo's version of a down type duvet jacket. very soft and light yet incredibly and instantly warm, great for using at a high bivi but also lovely on cold evenings at camp. Its warmth is also unaffected by rain so can be put on over a waterproof jacket if necessary, although I've never had to do this when actually climbing as it would be too warm.)

The downsides of Paramo that I've found is that their zips are not always too good. They often seem to me to be too small and they sometimes jam - although when that happened with my Torres jacket Paramo simply replaced the whole jacket under guarantee. Also their sizing is rather odd. You usually need to take a size smaller than you expect. (In fact, when I buy their stuff online I usually buy two items of different sizes and then send one of them back)

Don't forget to register your paramo gear with them. This is the one company when I've found it a good idea. Once registered their gear is guaranteed for life.

I don't have any association with Paramo, although given how much of their gear my wife and I have bought between us they ought to be paying me!
Post edited at 09:35
greg_may_ - on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

Velez here, gets my vote as my go to jacket for the UK. Not too heavy by Paramo standards, closer fitting, easy to vent. Works well with a harness too.
mypyrex - on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to thread:
Thanks for the responses. Cost wise it looks like the Velez to take over from my separate curren waterproof and windproof garments. Get it in time for the TMB.
Ridge - on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

I'll just sound a note of caution re: the velez. I have one and consider it as a warm windproof that's fairly water resistant.

The neck and side zips aren't waterproof and don't have storm flaps, (ok they do, but on the inside which isn't a great deal of use).

For autumn to spring use in intermittent rain it's fine. I would not want to be relying on it in constant heavy rain. Also if your main use will be for walking, the Velez is cut very short.
danm on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to Ridge:

I tend to agree.

I used some of the first Paramo garments in the UK more than 25 years ago - the centre I worked at got a staff deal in return for product feedback. I loved my smock, which was basically a Velez Smock, but hated the salopettes. You do a lot of kneeling and sitting on wet ground when working, and water would come through the fabric under pressure.

This leads to the main weakness - if it really hoons it down, you'll overpower the ability of the fabric to pump out water. In anything less than torrential rain though, it was easily the most breathable, wearable and comfortable waterproof I've used. I'd almost be tempted to use one these days as a softshell and carry a superlight rainshell as back-up. The other weakness was warmth - it was often too warm even when worn just over a wicking top, but I do tend to run fairly hot.
mypyrex - on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to Ridge and danm: Interested to read your comments about the Velez. Mention was made by danm of the smock. Can either of your say how it compare with the jacket in terms of performance. At the moment I'm a bit restricted budget wise.


Ridge - on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to danm:

You've pretty much summed it up. Paramo won't resist any real hydrostatic head, it's reliant on the DWR shedding the worst of the rain and the rate of wicking water away exceeding the rate of water ingress.

In uk weather it's a really good balance between breathability and weather resistance, (although too hot for summer). However in harsh conditions it can fail.

I have an old Cascada that must be pushing 20 years old, and that's a good, if heavy, walking jacket that's too warm between May-Septemberish.

I also have a maybe 10 year old Velez. I treat that as a softshell, warm and windproof but certainly not as a waterproof.
danm on 10 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

I couldn't say really, my comments were more orientated at the benefits/con's of the fabric system.
starbug - on 11 Aug 2017
In reply to Ridge:

A further note of caution if you intend using it any where near rock don't buy a Velez light. A more durable alternative for climbing or scrambling would be to go down to WH Smiths and buy some tissue paper and glue that together.
Tim Davies - on 12 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

I think paramo is either loved or hated. I bought the expensive enduro jacket on a friend's recommendation.

Never been so cold or wet. I now wear it with a hard shell over the top to keep the wind and rain out. Which kind of defeats the whole idea.

Hood is good.
davidvilla001 - on 12 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

Im not sure which jacket you are actually looking for but i have bought couple of touring / textile jackets which might be suitable to your category as well. And believe me i have bought them approx. on 40% discount on this Maximo-Moto website . You should try them
mypyrex - on 12 Aug 2017
In reply to thread:
Just bought an Alta III. Time will tell

hbeevers on 12 Aug 2017
In reply to mypyrex:

I've used the Velez in the past and have an Alta II now. Paramo stuff is really breathable and has never let me down for waterproofing.

Caveats; I re-proof religiously and I wear just a baselayer underneath all year round, adding a synthetic warm outer layer in really cold weather. If you keep moving and run hot then you'd really struggle to wet out the material however, if stood in torrential rain all day you will run the risk.

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