Light has always been right, or at least really, really handy.
New in February is this downright gossamer piece by Mountain Hardwear. A superlight (4.9 ounces for men’s, 3.4 for women’s), breathable jacket, it is a combo wind shell and soft shell intended to prevent overheating during sustained exertion, i.e. for you to put on and keep on. It packs down into its own pocket and can be hung from a harness for multi-pitch or big-wall routes.
The jacket is constructed of Pertex® Quantum AirTM 20D Stretch Ripstop nylon, with a full hood and a zipper that comes about halfway up to your nose. It is not waterproof but DWR (durable water repellent).
I had intended to wear the shell, available for both men and women, as a midlayer or, in warmer weather, an outer layer, but have found it especially useful for gym use. You wear it to warm up, and maybe even the whole session, because is stretchy and comfortable and doesn’t bug you. I have several airy items like these and use all of them an absolute ton.
Mountain Hardwear must like this shell, too—they’ve made it in eight colors.
Rock and Ice vigorously tests all gear it reviews for either 50 days or 50 pitches. This is a time-consuming process and limits the amount of new equipment we can present to our readers. Every year hundreds of new products hit store shelves, and most of these aren’t reviewed due to our stringent selection and review process. To better keep you more up to date on what is new, we present First Look. Gear in First Look has not always been field tested, but is gear we think you’d like to know about as soon as it is available. Some of the gear will be reviewed using our 50 days/50 pitches criteria, in future print and online editions of Rock and Ice. We have opted to use affiliate links in our gear reviews. Every time you buy something after clicking on links in our gear articles you’re helping support our magazine.