The Speed Ascent jacket is definitely one of those odd bits of kit that you don't immediately think of buying, says Jon Griffith.
In fact till I first saw it I hadn't even thought of it as a design for a jacket. OK, it's nothing revolutionary. Buffalo have been pioneering the fleece inner idea for years, but Patagonia have taken the idea and transformed it into a technical cut and high end materials jacket that is ideal for climbing in really cold temperatures.
In reply to UKC Gear: I bought a Speed Ascent this winter and have been using it for ice cragging in relatively cold conditions. A couple of points I'd add: despite it being called a 'slim fit' rather than 'regular', medium fitted me just fine like all Patagonia mediums. I was quite surprised that it is still relatively roomy despite the slim fit label as I am by no means slim!
I think anyone who has been using a Buffalo or Montane smock will feel at home with the Speed Ascent, and I would happily use it as a Scottish jacket in the same way that I used to a Buffalo Big Face shirt. For stop-start of pitched climbing, especially with long waits on the belays of mixed routes, I would be a good jacket, and its warmth means you could take a lighter belay jacket in your pack.