Rab Microlight Alpine - Review by Emily Like
Likeys' Emily has had the chance to test out the Microlight Alpine during a hiking trip to Scotland and has in fact worn it pretty much everyday since she got it. She gives us all the stats and facts and lets us known what she thinks of it...
Materials: Pertex® Quantum, 750FP Ethically-Sourced European Goose Down
Features: Micro stitch-through baffle construction, Adjustable hood with laminated brim and flexible polymer peak, YKK® reverse coil front zip with insulated zip baffle and chin guard, 2 YKK® reverse coil harness compatible hand pockets, YKK® reverse coil chest pocket
Activities: Mountaineering, Climbing, Hiking
“The Women's Microlight Alpine is the lightweight down jacket you can take anywhere, designed for use in situations where warmth, weight and packability are prime concerns.” - Rab
When Rab offered me the opportunity to test the Microlight Alpine down jacket I was delighted to do so. I have been in the market for a lightweight down jacket having come back from a backpacking trip in Norway in August. The weather was as expected, dry and warm most days with the occasional shower but after a long days hiking and a temperature drop in the evening I really felt the cold. I had my synthetic insulated jacket which was good but bulky to carry with me on overnight hikes. I needed something that was lightweight, could pack down into my rucksack and was warm…. hello Microlight!
Constructed with Pertex® Quantum outer fabric, the Women's Microlight Alpine is windproof and breathable. The jacket is also made from a DWR+ fabric which means the water will bead up on the surface and run off, this doesn’t make it a fully waterproof jacket but it will repel a light shower.
The jacket uses 750 fill power ethically-sourced hydrophobic down to provide exceptional warmth without compromising on weight. This means it packs down into the small stuff sack provided, great for going in your rucksack and is a perfect warm layer for chucking on on those colder evenings or as part of a layering system.
Narrow baffle structure means the down won’t gather at the bottom of the jacket. They are built to hold the down in place for an even distribution throughout the jacket.
Fit: Slim – I found the fit to come up true to size. I’m usually a 12 and a 12 fitted me perfectly with room for a base and midlayer underneath.
I took the Microlight Jacket on a recent trip to Scotland and very rarely was I seen without it on. I found it to be a great jacket walking around town or down the pub in the evening. Not only does it look good but it kept me warm with just a baselayer underneath. Of course I didn’t just want the jacket to show off whilst walking around town so we headed for the mountains and it definitely came in useful on the summit of Ben Nevis. I used it as part of my layering system once reaching the top and on the decent back down. The weather was pretty horrendous with high winds and a wind chill of -7. I had hiked up with just a baselayer and hardshell but on reaching the summit and waiting for that all important summit picture the microlight was the perfect layer to sandwich in the middle. The fixed insulated hood came into play staying in place whilst providing great warmth and protection from the wind and was big enough to go over the top of my beanie. On the descent back down when I was having to work a lot less hard it kept me comfortably warm to finally enjoy some views as the clouds lifted. I had my phone in the chest pocket which was easy to access for a quick photo and the two lower pockets were big enough to store my gloves and snacks. The Rab Microlight Alpine jacket has fast become one of my favourite pieces of clothing, I use it for day to day commutes to work but it’s also top of my list when heading for the mountains. Its excellent warmth to weight ratio along with the showerproof outer makes it a really versatile piece of kit which can be used anywhere. It will certainly be coming on my next big trip to the Canadian Arctic for the 6633 Ultra as part of my layer system.