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Cold weather jacket / smock

Discussion in 'Clothing & Footwear' started by Paul_B, Nov 12, 2017 at 8:52 PM.

  1. Paul_B

    Paul_B Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    It's coming up to the cold weather so I'm thinking a warm coat is needed for walking, possibly slow cycling (with family hence the slow speed) and generally out and about (including local towns = Kendal BTW). Any suggestions?

    A bit of relevant information about me, I'm tall and relatively slim (6'5") this means some makes fit me others don't. For example, whilst I've owned paramo I know they're one make that doesn't fit me.

    I used to think I wanted a Buffalo smock but never got one. Seen a guy wearing one today and up top it was bitter. Made me think about one again.

    My current top I've gone back to after a good few years not using it is my rab vapor rise jacket with hood. It's great but today the wind went through it too much for my liking. Never noticed that in the past but I used to move more back when I used to wear it. Various synthetic insulated tops too.

    I guess I'm slower these days so don't get warmed up by activity. That's due to walking at a young son's pace. So I'm looking for something that can cope with a wide range of temperatures from cold and bitter to better conditions strolling round town.

    What do you think? Buffalo, Montane extreme, a warmer primaloft jacket? Smocks or jackets?

    PS I'm in northwest England. Cold weather isn't the same as some posters experience in other countries. Please note this in any replies. Cold is zero degrees, very cold is - t°C for example.
     
  2. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Down to 0 C, I'd look first to windproof and damp/shower proof. Then insulation which you might wear as an inner layer.
    I'm absolutely sold on Carhartt coats. Heavy tight woven canvas and wind proof.
    Some designs are easily good to -20C. Above 0C, open the zipper.

    The Carhartt "Canyon" coat isn't imported into Canada for some reason. Take a look at it on line.
    Lots of pockets for my junk and probably nice from +15C down to -5C. Have family working south in California
    so will see if I can wangle the coat privately. My other 2 Carhartt coats will just have to do in the meantime.

    OH, BTW. They fit small. I'm maybe 72" tall x 200lbs and 2X Large just fits.
     
  3. MrEd

    MrEd Settler

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    I have always got on well with layering, I have a wind proof smock with a waterproof dropliner - on its own with just a t shirt it’s not warm but layered up with a woolly pully or a fleece and it’s great, if it’s really cold (uk cold lol) I put on a body warmer to. I also have a waxed jacket I do the same thing with depends on the outdoors ‘setting’ - ‘smart casual’ or ‘down the woods’ lol

    Windproof was the main thing for me though in terms of keeping the cold out
     
  4. Paul_B

    Paul_B Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Agree on the windproof side but prefer insulation and windproof. Layering isn't needed because I'll not overheat and need to shed any layer. It's a low energy use use in the UK colder months. Mostly indoor clothes plus one coat thrown over when going out. A mix of outdoors activity (low exertion) and leisure / town activity (small town UK as I don't get on with crowds in larger towns).
     
  5. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    I'm thinking what you're thinking!
    There's a branch-busting wind, dark/gloomy overcast, +2C and raining hard.
    What snow we had is gone but for a few piles. So must have rained most of the night.

    Raincoat with hood is also windproof, over a "wooly-pully" as you say.
     
  6. bobnewboy

    bobnewboy Settler

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    If you have a waterproofing shell already, or arent that worried about that aspect, then perhaps a Sarma heavy fleece jacket would be of interest? See here:

    https://www.varusteleka.com/en/product/sarma-hooded-fleece-jacket/29109

    https://www.varusteleka.com/en/product/sarma-hooded-fleece-jacket/29109

    I have one in OG, and its very warm and comfortable, with a lot of useful features. I havent been up any mountains in it, but it seems very snug and windproof to me. The hood could be seen as a little large, but it makes sense when you have a wooly hat on as well.
     
  7. Ed the Ted

    Ed the Ted Tenderfoot

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    I've got both a buffalo special 6 and a montane extreme. Used to wear the buffalo at work in the woods when it got really cold and wet and the montane over the top (baggier fit) for breaks! In the hills I'd often use the buffalo walking, but if you're working up a sweat it is only ideal if you're going through freezing level so will get wet first then down to colder. For those conditions (ie. munroing with freezing level at 700-900m) I found it perfect on its own. But if it was much warmer it would be too warm and too much colder vice versa. Perhaps that's a bit cryptic but the point is for me it had quite a specific range in which it was perfect. Outside that range prefered to wear more (and thinner) layers wth differnt shells that could be chopped and changed depending on the weather/activity.

    Aaaaanyway, for out and about and town use, I use the montane now a lot for that, it's warm and cosy, can take weather, good hood, and changing what you wear underneath can alter it for different temps. So I would recommend trying one, I'm sure up your way you'll be able to find one in a shop for fit? On the much-debated differences between the two, the buffalo is more simple and feels a bit tougher and the montane has more features but nothing major, though the fact that it comes with a hood probably tips the scales for many.
     
    MrEd likes this.
  8. Paul_B

    Paul_B Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    The extreme always felt warmer than the Buffalo to me. Only tried them in a shop that sold both though so perhaps different in real use.

    Went to a montane sample/and of line sale in Ambleside once saw their epic version of the extreme smock. Intended for arctic use. Very stiff and actually waterproof. Only trouble was medium only. I could get into it but jeez it didn't want to come off again. Only £70 too. The basic extreme was well over the hundred pounds mark at the time.

    Never understood why Buffalo never sold their smocks with the hood. Prices were similar to montane without their hoods so add in a Buffalo hood and they're more expensive. BTW I heard montane extreme hoods were better anyway. Think I heard ppl recommending getting the montane hoods for use with Buffalo. They either fit or it's an easy mod.

    Hmmmm! Montane extreme or Buffalo, should I get one? I think I will of we end up getting a dog.
     
  9. Old Bones

    Old Bones Settler

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    Something like a decent Goretex jacket would be fine (Berghaus do the very decent Cornice III, which I've got the Suilven variant of), plus the ability to layer with a down/synthetic layer underneath. Layering is really important, as is the need to vent - hence zips rather than pullovers. Having a really heavy all in one jacket works great for about 5 minutes, until you warm up. A flexible layering system just works better, even if its not 'interactive'.

    If you want warm, there are plenty of down/synthetic jackets around. I'm love my ME Lightline, which is down, but even though its a drightlite shell, cold is not always clear, so I'd look for shell, and then insulation. Montane,Rab, Berghaus, ME, MH, Jack Wolfskin will all do decent jackets to suit, and they will do lighter insulated jackets which will work very well under a shell layer, such as the ME Arrete.
     
  10. Paul_B

    Paul_B Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Seriously is about activities without the risk of properly essential /warming up. Strolling along with a 5 year old, walking around town, sitting at a beauty spot brewing up having walked slowly there with a young kid.

    Layering isn't a factor because I won't be changing the layers around. Coat on, coat off options needed. If I'm out coat is over indoor clothing, if I'm not out it's off anyway. No risk of overheating or having to adjust warmth other than undoing a front zip part way down your chest.

    I know from experience that the traditional 3 layer system doesn't work for me. That's base layer, fleece and waterproof. I boil in the bag with goretex event and pretty much all of them. The only way cycling I keep from being drenched in sweat is if all vents are open on my climbing jacket. I'm like a parachute almost fully open to the air (and rain) plus the drag is a killer. Walking less likely create those levels of sweat but I'm still not a 3 layer system fan for walking.

    My old system consisted of base layer and softshell layer with a belay jacket for stops only and a waterproof if I really must. Fast and light. The outer layer was not fully windproof about 98% IIRC, but certainly warm enough because I never stopped for long. 10 minute lunch at most in colder months.

    I think either primaloft jacket / smock in a heavier weight fill (100 not 60 fill weight layers possibly more) or a double P type.

    Smocks for me have always seemed more comfortable than full zip. I don't fully undo zips to cool anyway. Beyond half chester open I don't really do. The lack of lower zip makes the coat drape better IME.

    Paramo would be good if they every catered fit a slimmer fit. Quito etc also are still too baggy for the length that fits me. It's a good softshell option, if only a bit warmer. Driclime from marmot might be ok. Do they still do it. Possibly the earliest softshell garment was a driclime.

    I think I'm talking myself into a Buffalo type of jacket.
     
  11. MikeLA

    MikeLA Full Member

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    Without a doubt a prefera buffalo sp6 too a montane. Find buffalo more comfortable and a better fit and I prefer a hat to a hood
     

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