The Microlight Alpine has long been the go-to choice for anyone needing lightweight, packable insulation in the mountains, but for this winter Rab have given it a complete overhall to celebrate its 10 year anniversary. You now get a jacket which includes every brilliant feature of the last generation, but with a completely new and improved fit, glove-friendly cuffs, a superior hood and a whole range of new colours.
Previously, the Microlight Alpine was made using two panels of fabric stitched together at the sides, however Rab have doubled that to feature a panel at the front, one at the back and two individual ones either side; this massively improves the fit and creates a body-hugging seal around you to ensure limited heat can escape (the more space inside a jacket which you aren't filling, the more your body has to heat up this space, therefore reducing efficiency). You can still move around and layer underneath easily, however it just makes it more efficient when you're in cold mountainous environments.
Insulation is provided by a high quality 750 fill power hydrophobic goose down (try saying that ten times). What's special about Rab's down is the treatment and the way it is sourced; Rab only use R.D.S (responsible down sourced) insulation, meaning birds aren't live plucked or mistreated before the down is collected. A hydrophobic treatment is then applied to all these little clusters of down to ensure they retain more heat, loft better and resist moisture if you happen to get caught out in a light shower. This does not make this a waterproof jacket, however it will perform better than untreated down. Providing additional warmth is a well-fitting hood which is fully insulated, adjustable and will, at a push, fit a helmet underneath if you're belaying.
Moving to the outer, Rab use a Pertex Quantum fabric to provide a lightweight barrier against the elements. This fabric is water resistant, wind resistant, breathable and will protect the down against general wear and tear. The nature of this fabric also allows it to slip easily over or under additional layers.
For storage options, you get two nicely sized hand warmer pockets and a chest pocket which contains a stuff sack, perfect for attaching onto a harness or to protect the jacket in a rucksack full of kit. Updated cuffs for this year allow you to fit bulky gloves comfortably underneath, whilst still remaining snug when it's not freezing.
With a clean, uncluttered and minimalist design, this lightweight insulating piece is the perfect winter midlayer/outer layer for all mountain activities. It also performs brilliantly as a piece to wear for everday duties and the occasional pub stop after a day in the hills!
Ideal as a mid or outer layer
Warm down insulation
Two hand pockets
One chest pocket
Included stuff sack
Upgraded fit, cuffs and hood
Insulation: 750FP Hydrophobic Goose Down
Outer fabric: 30D Nylon
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