Colder weather and scrub/bushwhacking rain gear?

Discussion in 'Clothing & Footwear' started by oreocereus, Apr 28, 2020.

  1. oreocereus

    oreocereus Section Hiker

    I liked my Columbia outdry a lot, but it eventually died a pretty nasty death after a couple of years. Quicker than expected, but it did all my everyday duties and I took it on my off trail adventures, and it had around 200 days use on it, sometimes in fairly rough conditions - so maybe it did as well as I could’ve expected.

    In future I’ll keep my lightweight just in case shells specifically for those purposes (summery trips, with not much rain forecast, not using as a daily jacket etc).

    So I’m looking for a jacket that’ll be my jacket on trips that I don’t really expect to take off the shell very often, so weight isn’t as important as durability and functionality. It’ll also be a day to day jacket + I’m working outside most of the next four months, so a work jacket as well likely..

    Still weight conscious-ish, as i don’t think I’ll ever shake that, but it’s not the priority.

    Any suggestions? Paramo maybe?

    I don’t really like jackets that rely on chemical dwr treatments, partially for the environmental impact (sure, it’s minor from one user, but in principle we’d all live in a better world without these things) and for the general hassle of reapplying and maintaining them. Though I believe paramos DWR is meant to be more durable and a bit more environmentally friendly..
  2. Shewie

    Shewie Administrator Staff Member

    Ventile? If you don't mind the cardboard effect that is

    I've done many bushwhacking trips with mine, can't fault it
    oreocereus and Chiseller like this.
  3. Mole

    Mole Thru Hiker

    Paramo soaks up water on contact pressure. Its comfortable, and the heavy version is durable though. But it's too warm for "the next few months" IMO.

    If you are wanting workwear, look at Brenig.

    Their working smock and trousers ar bombproof. Warm though, but that comes with the weight needed for that level of durability.
    http://brenig.co.uk/index.php?id_category=28&controller=category&id_lang=1
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  4. Shewie

    Shewie Administrator Staff Member

    Ridgeline stuff is decent but more hunter/country gent focused

    Swazi too for the Gucci options

    Maybe too bushcrafty and hefty though?
  5. Mole

    Mole Thru Hiker

    I guess it depends what you mean by work too.

    The Brenig stuff we and colleagues have is suitable for working in solid rain all day, and getting covered in mud or wrestling with brambles. A hose down at the end of the day, and good to go again. Anything not actually waterproof like wool and cotton isn't really going to keep you dry in that situation. (paramo not either really).

    I would be trying to cover too many bases with one jacket if it's for everyday use, hiking and much of the outdoor work I do.

    The latter, I have cheap "annually or biennially disposable because destroyed" jackets or the tough heavy Brenig one.

    There's always army Surplus. But camo:thumbsdown:, and hit and miss as to waterproofness if used.

    Anything I use for hiking is precious and treated nicely. If not in use its packed away clean. I'd never wear it constantly if not raining (except Paramo) like a lot of walkers seem to. That's the route to poor longevity.
    cathyjc likes this.
  6. Chiseller

    Chiseller Thru Hiker

    Ive had single and double ventile and highly rate it for active/working in. Like you say, it's when you come to stop... And the jacket and pants will stand up on their own (more so with single than double) it's when you stop working and if its cold enough and the underlayer isn't warm enough that problems may occur.
    I never had the Swazi or ridgeline jackets but everyone I knew with them, always said they were really poor on breathability but bomber for waterproofing.
    I had a fleece smock that was really good for torrential and breathed quite well even when wetted out. But when it was saturated... Boy was that a heavy weight on the shoulders. I can't remember the brand. Something like fieldpro?
    I had some hunting Bibs that were heavy but they could stand a day of solid rain and kneeling etc. Very tough fleece outer that could handle heavy Bush whacking. Again I can't remember the brand:banghead:
    Viking brand work waterproofs are very good... Either the full rubber top and bottoms... I used to wear them daily when I would be HP power washing from ladders or scaffolds.
    There's another work wear brand that uses a material called flex-o-thane iirc? That has a rubbery outer but is light and thin. Again I'd wear this at work when it was raining all day and working with water. It was what the job called for and had to be done.
  7. Shewie

    Shewie Administrator Staff Member

    My Swazi Tahr breathes really well but it’s the older model with a fleece type outer.
    I had a Ridgeline Monsoon? which didn’t breath as well, both ideal for cold west coast canoe bushcrafty trips though.



    Makes me want to get dressed in green again and strap leather dangly things to my belt
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  8. Mole

    Mole Thru Hiker

    Flexathane comes into the cheap "annually or biennially disposable because destroyed" for me.
    But its probably a type I'd consider for hiking and muddy working due to comfort.
    Chiseller likes this.
  9. Chiseller

    Chiseller Thru Hiker

    Steady on :whistling::D
    I've some harkila goretex trousers... Very old and full of holes on the outer... But surprising light, very comfy and do the job very well.... Being Harkila... Not surprisingly expensive :thumbsdown:
  10. Chiseller

    Chiseller Thru Hiker

    Flexathane... That it.
    I never did any work in it that would involve high abrasion etc but some mild abrasion from climbing / leaning on ladders and climbing through scaffold levels, but it was very good at keeping me dry and comfortable with a great range of movement. I used the Bibs and long jacket. Ours would last around 3/4 of a year, but were exposed to Hydrofluoric acid and occasionally silica sand.
  11. Padstowe

    Padstowe Thru Hiker

    Whats the sizing like for their gear, looks good for winter outdoor event work.
  12. Mole

    Mole Thru Hiker

    Roomy volume wise, though might need to size up if broad or tall.

    But Graham who owns it is pretty helpful, a gardener friend who has long legs sent her sizes to him and they made to fit
    Padstowe likes this.
  13. Enzo

    Enzo Thru Hiker

    Fxleofane I used to use at work, not sure about bushwhacking in it, but it's light, stretchy and 100% waterproof. Not breathable if i remember right.
    The army gortex stuff is good. I'd avoid the
    Packlite versions though, you can find them new on e bay and they are light and durable. Hoods a pain without modding as made for helmets.

    I really like my old paramo Velez smock, but a full day of heavy rain as Mole said is probably beyond it.
    BUT if you are concerned by wast, chemicals etc then the paramo can be kept going for many years, easily repaired etc and reproofing actually works

    A gortex jacket imho used for work daily is reliability waterproof for no longer than a year. Reproofing helps them bead for 20mins in my experience, your better off spending the money on a new jacket.
  14. Lemming

    Lemming Trekker

    My XL working smock is 26" across the body, 37" from the centre of the neck to the cuff and 32" from the hood seam to the back hem (the back has a 2 1/2" drop from the front).

    Not light at all - 692g, but most certainly durable.
    Padstowe likes this.
  15. oreocereus

    oreocereus Section Hiker

    Paramo or the Ventile stuff looks like it might be suitable for my needs. Generally nothing tooooo intensive working outside, but reasonably durable and at least somewhat environmentally conscious?

    The Bretig stuff looks interesting, though I’m not doing anything too intensive. Working largely on my own schedule, and there isn’t anything too intense that’s outside (mostly gardening work, of course there is some bramble fighting and general maintenence work, but it’s probably 10% of the work). If it’s truly lashing I mostly work inside the greenhouse etc.

    So days working in hard rain all day will be reasonably minimal. Most of the outside work will be in outdoors gardens, so usually nothing too intensive to build up lots of heat.

    you may be right in trying to cover too many bases with one jacket. You know I try to keep things minimal (currently all fits in one bag, minute the bike) :rolleyes:


    The ventile stuff sounds interesting. Their marketing spiel superficially appeals at least. What’s the “cardboard effect” you speak of?
    Brief reading and it looks somewhat similar to the NZ farmer/hunter Swandri stereotype (basically a heavy fabric - wool based from memory - that absorbs a lot of water but is tough comfortable and warm until it gets fully drenched).
  16. Shewie

    Shewie Administrator Staff Member

    Ventile cotton fibres expand when wet which gives the weatherproofing characteristics, it’s old tech but still reliable.

    The cardboard effect just refers to it stiffening up when wet, as Chis mentions you can literally take them off and they’ll stand up on their own, my Kestrel smock was prone to it.

    I would usually have decent Woolpower merino layers under mine so didn’t really suffer with a chill

    One of my instructor mates would wear leather chaps when teaching tracking courses, they were indestructible things in thick brambles
    oreocereus likes this.
  17. Rog Tallbloke

    Rog Tallbloke Thru Hiker

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  18. oreocereus

    oreocereus Section Hiker

    That brasher stuff is very well priced (need to check they have small person sizes), thanks

    Gotcha. From memory that does sound a lot like the Swandri principle. Cheers
  19. Enzo

    Enzo Thru Hiker

    From your description I'd happily recommend a paramo Velez smock, got mine from eBay £50, older model with pop on good, I epoxy'd all the poppers, never wanted them unpopped.
    oreocereus likes this.
  20. Rog Tallbloke

    Rog Tallbloke Thru Hiker

    The hood is non-adjustable and a bit high on the forehead. Works best over a peaked cap. Apart from that, I can't fault it.
    oreocereus likes this.
  21. cathyjc

    cathyjc Thru Hiker

    Yes - very like Swandri.
    oreocereus likes this.
  22. oreocereus

    oreocereus Section Hiker

    Maybe I should just get mam to send one over. Every charity shop in nz has a a few dozen :rolleyes:
    cathyjc likes this.
  23. lentenrose

    lentenrose Trail Blazer

    got an old paramo cascada---don t like the colour----don t like the fit-- use it for work when its wet or cold--------can t justify buying another jacket until this one wears out and the damn thing seems to be lasting forever--- and it keeps me dry------my son uses decathlon jackets and pants for work seem tough--waterproof and smart----however if buying be careful with sizes ----can be erratic
    oreocereus likes this.
  24. Davy

    Davy Thru Hiker

    another Paramo user here - Velez Light (it isn't) smock. Bought second hand, used mainly for canoeing. I like it when conditions suit, its been reliably dry and warm in horrendous weather and is pretty much bulletproof.
    oreocereus likes this.
  25. oreocereus

    oreocereus Section Hiker

    What ventile do you use Stewie?

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