walkhighlands


Gear review – Alpkit Definition Jacket

Usual Price: £229 (currently on sale)
Weight: 545g (men’s large)

The Definition is Alpkit’s top of the range mountaineering jacket. On handling, you can immediately tell this is a serious hardshell; the fabric feels quite stiff and very robust and the fit is quite generous. The Definition feels like a waterproof built to inspire confidence that it will cope with the toughest conditions Scotland can offer.

The fabric is a 3 layer laminate, with a nylon inner and outer, enclosing unbranded waterproof membrane. It may be the latter that is key to the very competitive pricing, but the specs show high performance. The Defintion can withstand a hydrostatic head of 30,000mm – which is top end – and I’ve found the breathability to be pretty competitive with more expensive jackets.

There are two large outer pockets and two side vents (much easier to use than ‘pit ones), all with waterproof YKK zips, together with a smaller internal Napolean pocket. The main zip is a top of the range 2-way YKK Vislon, which is reassuringly chunky and slides easily compared to cheaper waterproof zips; it’s backed by a good-sized storm-flap. The fully adjustable hood has a good wired brim that retains shape, and it’s plenty large enough for a helmet. The cuffs are velcro-adjustable too.

The cut is quite generous, good for putting on over winter insulating layers, though it seems a little over generous in the stomach area (I don’t think I’ve lost weight!) The jacket is slightly longer than the average modern hardshell, but given that the Defintion feels like it’s built so much for winter, I’d personally appreciate it being a fraction longer still.

Whilst this certainly isn’t the lightest jacket in the world, given the robustness and cut the weight is actually pretty reasonable. With the very functional but unfussy design – offering maximum protection from the elements, with all the features you want, and none you don’t – the Definition is a great value choice for a hardshell built to withstand a Scottish winter, and a very practical jacket you could use all year round.

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Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.