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Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....


Postby weebirdie » Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:59 pm

So...we are walking the WHW in Early April (very early April) and I'm very aware that we could get any kind of weather thrown at us. I was looking (when we were thinking about May) initially at something like the Berghaus Paclite; but as the time of departure has moved forward I am wondering more and more. Obviously, we will be layering as appropriate; but does such a thing exist as a jacket that will deal well with rain, wind, possible snow? Whereas I imagine the greatest benefit of the Paclite is that it is really light when carried, I am figuring that the likelihood of the jacket actually being taken off at all is becoming increasingly slim?

I'm reticent to go into a shop and ask, knowing they'll push me towards the most expensive thing there. I am saving money for something decent, but I'm also aware that sometimes brand name, more than function, sells; so I would really love to hear some proper recommendations.

I'm very small, height-wise, so could probably look at children's (well, teenagers') jackets, and XS men's sizes as well as women's style.

Any help would be massively appreciated!
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby rabthecairnterrier » Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:49 am

Berghaus Paclite will be fine for WHW. Heavier jackets have a more robust face fabric so cope better with being scraped against rocks and so forth, but the Paclite is just as weatherproof. I've been using one as my spring to autumn waterproof for over 3 years now and it has coped with pretty much everything. The only problem I have with it is that the short length means I have to dig out the overtrousers at the first sign of rain. Paclite is actually more breathable than the old style 3 layer Taslan Goretex everyone used to wear, but beacuse it doesn't have a scrim lining any condensation - and you will get some - tends to be more visible.
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby weebirdie » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:50 pm

Brilliant, thank you so much!
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby Eskimo » Fri Aug 30, 2013 11:59 am

rabthecairnterrier wrote:Berghaus Paclite will be fine for WHW. Heavier jackets have a more robust face fabric so cope better with being scraped against rocks and so forth, but the Paclite is just as weatherproof. I've been using one as my spring to autumn waterproof for over 3 years now and it has coped with pretty much everything. The only problem I have with it is that the short length means I have to dig out the overtrousers at the first sign of rain. Paclite is actually more breathable than the old style 3 layer Taslan Goretex everyone used to wear, but beacuse it doesn't have a scrim lining any condensation - and you will get some - tends to be more visible.


Interesting. I also have a Berghaus Paclite and find the breathability very poor compared to my 3 layer Pro Shell Mountain Equipment jacket. Pretty much always find condensation in the Paclite and NEVER found this on the Pro Shell.

Also find the durability pretty poor to be honest. So much so I seldom use the jacket now. Decent for light rain and keeping the wind of you. Does pack down very well however!

If I was in the market for a lightweight jacket now I would be going for Gore's Active Shell. Check out the Firefox from Mountain Equipment. Not cheap though!
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby Holly » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:14 am

I have recently commented on my paramo aspira being the be all and end all of my journey through a self sufficient wild camp of 8 days through a high camp on Norway. I would add that I have a paramo ultralight lightweight smock which is also totally waterproof and exceptionally warm when used with proper base layers (I use icebreaker non smelly, efficient and warm underlayer base layers. ). I would say that it would have been less than sufficient in Norway BUT, has never been a problem in Scotland although not in Winter. I have previously had goretex stuff but it has never (to me) had the cosiness and coolness when needed that Paramo has had. Paramo is also light and well, soft?. Its no fashion statement but boy, in Norway in bad weather,, did I care!I was comfortable, dry and my gear dried out fast.
BUT,,, the Paramo lightweight smock, looked after, is a bit more fashion orientated looks good and works well.? A spring option? worth a look I would say.
PS I also have a Buffalo which is not totally waterproof and is different concept entirely BUT,,,, worth a look too!
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby rabthecairnterrier » Mon Sep 02, 2013 2:01 pm

Eskimo wrote:
rabthecairnterrier wrote:Berghaus Paclite will be fine for WHW. Heavier jackets have a more robust face fabric so cope better with being scraped against rocks and so forth, but the Paclite is just as weatherproof. I've been using one as my spring to autumn waterproof for over 3 years now and it has coped with pretty much everything. The only problem I have with it is that the short length means I have to dig out the overtrousers at the first sign of rain. Paclite is actually more breathable than the old style 3 layer Taslan Goretex everyone used to wear, but beacuse it doesn't have a scrim lining any condensation - and you will get some - tends to be more visible.


Interesting. I also have a Berghaus Paclite and find the breathability very poor compared to my 3 layer Pro Shell Mountain Equipment jacket. Pretty much always find condensation in the Paclite and NEVER found this on the Pro Shell.

Also find the durability pretty poor to be honest. So much so I seldom use the jacket now. Decent for light rain and keeping the wind of you. Does pack down very well however!

If I was in the market for a lightweight jacket now I would be going for Gore's Active Shell. Check out the Firefox from Mountain Equipment. Not cheap though!


The original query was will Paclite be OK for the WHW in April, which it will be. Being designed for high-end mountaineering ProShell is indeed more breathable and durable but not as packable and much more expensive. Active, being designed for high-energy activity (which walking the WHW is not) is more breathable and more expensive still and is - according to Gore themselves - less durable than Paclite. As ever, it is a case of horses for courses.
At 15000 mvg Paclite is more breathable than the old 3 layer Taslan Goretex (ubiquitous in the 80's and 90's) at 10000 mvg but the scrim lining absorbed some of the condensation to start with so it wasn't always as obvious as in Paclite. All Gore products have to pass their "rain test" and all are equally good at keeping the weather out for most practical purposes. The "perfect" fabric for all circumstances doesn't yet exist.
At the weekend I was out assessing a DoEA group in the area S of An Teallach near Shenavall, which involved several hours alternately walking and hanging about in wind-driven rain; with a Paclite jacket and ProShell overtrousers both halves of me were equally dry.
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Re: Probably a daft question - jackets for early April....

Postby Eskimo » Mon Sep 02, 2013 2:25 pm

rabthecairnterrier wrote:
Eskimo wrote:
rabthecairnterrier wrote:Berghaus Paclite will be fine for WHW. Heavier jackets have a more robust face fabric so cope better with being scraped against rocks and so forth, but the Paclite is just as weatherproof. I've been using one as my spring to autumn waterproof for over 3 years now and it has coped with pretty much everything. The only problem I have with it is that the short length means I have to dig out the overtrousers at the first sign of rain. Paclite is actually more breathable than the old style 3 layer Taslan Goretex everyone used to wear, but beacuse it doesn't have a scrim lining any condensation - and you will get some - tends to be more visible.


Interesting. I also have a Berghaus Paclite and find the breathability very poor compared to my 3 layer Pro Shell Mountain Equipment jacket. Pretty much always find condensation in the Paclite and NEVER found this on the Pro Shell.

Also find the durability pretty poor to be honest. So much so I seldom use the jacket now. Decent for light rain and keeping the wind of you. Does pack down very well however!

If I was in the market for a lightweight jacket now I would be going for Gore's Active Shell. Check out the Firefox from Mountain Equipment. Not cheap though!


The original query was will Paclite be OK for the WHW in April, which it will be. Being designed for high-end mountaineering ProShell is indeed more breathable and durable but not as packable and much more expensive. Active, being designed for high-energy activity (which walking the WHW is not) is more breathable and more expensive still and is - according to Gore themselves - less durable than Paclite. As ever, it is a case of horses for courses.
At 15000 mvg Paclite is more breathable than the old 3 layer Taslan Goretex (ubiquitous in the 80's and 90's) at 10000 mvg but the scrim lining absorbed some of the condensation to start with so it wasn't always as obvious as in Paclite. All Gore products have to pass their "rain test" and all are equally good at keeping the weather out for most practical purposes. The "perfect" fabric for all circumstances doesn't yet exist.
At the weekend I was out assessing a DoEA group in the area S of An Teallach near Shenavall, which involved several hours alternately walking and hanging about in wind-driven rain; with a Paclite jacket and ProShell overtrousers both halves of me were equally dry.


Nice one chief. Point well and truly rammed home.
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