“ Jackets „
When walking in the midst of rain falling down your neck or surrounded by wind so strong that you fear you`ll blow away, it`s of crucial importance to wear clothes that keep you warm and dry, and for me, the Berghaus jacket as seen on the picture above has done so perfectly, to this day my faithful companion when I feel like leaving the noises of the city and take a hike up some wild mountains or into the deep and wonderful forests...
This is a goretex fabric jacket, a jacket purposed for all variations of weather, as it breaths so well that you can absolutely wear it during warm and sunny weather, yet also keeping you warm and dry under more extreme and demanding weather conditions, as this jacket repels of water and wind without effort, which is the main reason why I bought this jacket. The design and straps of the jacket allows you to adjust the jacket to fit your body shape, whether you want it to hang loosely around your body or have a tighter fit, this securing warmth and protection from wind. The jacket did cost quite a lot, I believe I paid 119.99 for it, but it has without question been worth the money, I would do it again in a heartbeat! The jacket feels very light and comfortable on the body, and its design allows you to wear a lot of warm clothes underneath, a must if using the jacket during the coldest of winter.
The jacket has several handy pockets, allowing you to carry with maps, GPS and such, and the shape of the jacket can be adjusted to fit any bodyshape, tall or not...
This is a very good jacket to use during hiking or just a day outside, it offers the best of quality and will keep you warm, dry and very comfortable during all weather conditions. Five star, no doubt!
Although this is a little more expensive than I´d like for a jacket (over a hundred pounds), I was so impressed when I borrowed one off my dad when I went mountain walking that I´d consider buying one myself. I had assumed my own everyday coat would keep me warm enough, but I´d underestimated just how cold the wind would be on a Scottish mountain, and I was extremely glad for this product.
It´s made out of a lightweight Goretex fabric which does a brilliant job of stopping the wind - when it would just cut straight through you in other clothing, you barely feel a thing wearing this. Being quite a thin fabric, I didn´t find it was that warm itself, but with some layers beneath, it´s perfect for mountain walking. It´s very practical as well - there are a series of pockets inside and out for carrying your things, and I found I could stuff my hat in there easily when out of the wind, plus the inside pocket is useful for storing valuables, or a little cash if you´re passing through towns etc.
There´s a hood built into the neck of the jacket which can be unfolded or zipped up and rolled away as needed. It´s a thin fabric, but again it´s very tough and effective, and like the sleeves can be tightened for extra insulation. The jacket´s tough all-round, and doesn´t feel like it´d break easily - I wore it for a week, and never had any problems with it tearing or being damaged on rocks.
Overall, I think this is a fantastic product for mountain walkers - almost essential in fact, as it´s so important to be prepared for all types of weather, especially extreme cold and wind. I wouldn´t want to go without this or a similar product again, so even though the price is rather a lot, I would consider paying it, as you know you´re getting a top-quality product that´ll last you a long time and won´t let you down when it matters. I wouldn´t want to save money by buying a lesser product only to find it didn´t do the job when I needed it. Highly recommended.
Berghaus have been one of the most popular outdoor brands for as many years as I can remember, yet the company seems to provide kit that seems as functional on the High Street as well as up in the high country. Take their Men's Paclite Trek Jacket, for instance - ostensibly a lightweight, waterproof mountain walking jacket but which both looks and acts the part down the local shops.
The Paclite Trek is available in two colours: Mazzarine Blue and Black - both have large black panels across the top of the back and shoulders, plus along the bottom quarter length. Said panels are made from an abrasion-resistant material - you're more likely to wear the shoulders a bit because of rucksack or daysack straps. Logos are confined to the usual Berghaus label on the left-hand breast and a single "Gore-Tex Paclite Shell" logo on the right hand upper arm. Other than that, the style is subdued yet functional - but it does the job whether you are on the hills or down the High Street.
A mountain hood with a slightly stiffened/wired peak is contained within the collar - it rolls away very easily when not in use and is fastened via a flap with velcro fastening that folds over the collar. The hood itself is adjustable via drawstrings and the peak renders it very stable even in a strong wind - it won't blow off your head and doesn't have a tendency to move around a great deal when you turn your head. Unlike the older Cornice jacket, there's less risk of overheating when the hood is up - the Cornice hood tended to make people's glasses steam up during even minor exertion.
There is a full length zip which is hidden by an equal-sized storm flap, held in place by several patches of velcro and two push-fasteners at either end. Once fastened, it stays in place. On some jackets, moisture still gets in via the zip - not so on the Paclite Trek. Unfortunately it is not compatible with the Berghaus fleeces (i.e. it doesn't zip into them unlike the Cornice jacket) - e.g. the standard 200 weight full-zip Spectrum or the full-zip 100 weight micro-fleece but that's a small price to pay. In fact, in reasonable weather a Berghaus or North Face micro-fleece and a base layer is easily enough otherwise you'll start overheating and possibly sweating very quickly - and the same goes for moderate exertion on the hills. In winter, however, I can put my Berghaus Blast down jacket (which doesn't react to water well) over my layering system and the Paclite Trek fits on top - providing a waterproof layer when conditions get really, really cold and there's a risk of rain, sleet or snow - great for the high mountains or simply clearing snow from the car windscreen on a really chilly morning!
Pockets are generously sized on the Paclite Trek, and there are four in total. There's a large mesh lined interior pocket (open at the top), and opposite this on the exterior is a large zipped map pocket which, as its name suggests, will accommodate an Ordnance Survey Landranger map without much difficulty. Needless to say that your mobile phone and iPod will get swallowed up in its capacious volume! The zip on this pocket is weather resistant so you shouldn't have moisture getting in to spoil the contents. The last two pockets are again mesh lined for ventilation and are zip-fastened, storm flap covered hand pockets, sitting on the top of the hips - if I have a criticism here it's that they are slightly too high up for prolonged comfort, but seasoned walkers use gloves so they're not really necessary as hand-warmers. However, they are fairly deep and also house the drawstrings to adjust the waist line of the jacket. The Paclite's cut is described as "active" - you can achieve a really close fit by using the drawstrings here and along the base of the jacket, and using the tightener straps on the cuffs, thus obtaining real comfort and performance.
My Paclite Trek has been tested in gale force winds up in North West Scotland, Wales and the Lake District, in snow, wind, rain and ice in the same places and it performs to expectations and more. Apart from being a great waterproof outer shell, it works as a wind barrier too - and packs down into a very practical size.
As its name suggests, the Paclite packs down to an incredibly small size and fits into its own little mesh stuff sack. It only weighs something in the region of half a kilogram and when stuffed in its sack, takes up a little less space than a bag of sugar. This is actually a lot less than some of the shorter length competition! The stuff sack itself is closed up via a drawstring so that the jacket doesn't spill out. The original Paclite does not have the extra length that the Trek being reviewed here has - the Trek offers more in the way of protection both from the wind and the rain, as the Paclite always had something of a tendency to ride up a little during brisk walking or climbing. The Trek offers plenty of latitude regarding movement and doesn't ride up in length, nor do the sleeves ride up when you're scrambling or climbing a hill using walking poles.
Berghaus might have their gear manufactured in the Far East nowadays (the Paclite Trek is made in China), but the quality control is as high as ever - the Trek should last for years and your only worry is that you catch it on something sharp and rip it a little (and even then, the rip-stop weave on the outer surfaces should limit the damage). It can be expensive to repair any damage, unfortunately.
It's so light that you almost forget you're wearing it - a boon for walking up in the mountains when you want to limit the weight you're carrying. The Men's Paclite Trek comes in sizes from Small through to XXL although since it's such a popular jacket with walkers, depending on where you source one from, various sizes may be limited. RRP is a staggering £160 - you're often paying for the name with Berghaus although their quality is usually top-notch, but happily a quick look through some of the outdoor specialists on the Internet will chop £40 off that price - I got mine through a company based in Keswick and saved £55 off the RRP, and got free delivery. If you can get one for around the £105-£120 mark, it's a real investment and should last you for years.
The Paclite Trek is one of the best investments I've ever made in outdoor clothing - whilst it works great on the hills I feel just at home with it down the shops or putting it on to go to work in - wherever you need an extremely lightweight rain jacket, this should be at the top of your list. There are better products out there in terms of performance but for the £120 mark this is still one of the best there is.
(This review has also been posted to Ciao.)
The Paclite Trek Jacket from Berghaus is a serious mountain walking jacket constructed in exclusive GORETEX PACLITE Bassano fabric with panels cut in GORETEX PACLITE Cassis (Codura) for extra durability.