Outdoor Discoveries

What originally was a news section for the rest of the website soon became a place for me to write about human-powered wanderings in the countryside. Photography inspires me to get out there, mostly on foot these days, though cycling got me started. Musings on the wider context of outdoor activity complete the picture, so I hope that there is something of interest in all that you find here. Thank you for coming!

Good weather for trying out warm jackets

2nd February 2009

The snow has found its way across to Cheshire within the last 24 hours. Buses weren’t stopped up like in London, though things did feel a little “skiddy” on the way home. I pressed an old pair of Salomon boots into service for negotiating the snow-covered streets of Macclesfield, a job that they did well. Another item has that came in for a lot of use in the last few days has been a Mountain Equipment Lightline down jacket that I managed to find in the January sales for a third off the original price.

I haven’t had it long but it came in time for the current burst of cold weather. My initial impressions were that it wasn’t as warm as my TNF Nuptse, but there have been times when I overheated in that jacket and the Lightline did keep out that cutting south-easterly that visited us over the weekend. In fact, I now think that the generosity of the fit might have swayed my assessment. The pernickety might criticise a certain lack of finesse in the finish department but it’s good enough for me. The zip isn’t the smoothest of operators and has potential to be the greater irritant but I can overlook that given how well it works otherwise.

Otherwise, there’s a lot to like: generous pockets and an outer shell that keeps the down dry in most conditions are those that I find most useful. A detachable hood comes too, as does a stuff-sack. I can’t say that I have used either with my detaching the hood reflecting my preference for hats over hoods in all but driving rain. All in all, it does the job for which I bought it while the Nupste can be saved for much colder days.

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