Review: adidas Terrex Climaheat JacketGear
ITEM: adidas Terrex Climaheat Down Jacket
STYLE: Down jacket
WEIGHT: 484g (men’s large)
ACTIVITY: Trekking, mountaineering
WHAT THEY SAY: The Terrex Climaheat Down is our most innovative jacket to date, with incredible attention to detail going into every stage of the design process to deliver a piece that is packed with clever features.
Adventures aren’t just about the planning and setting off, the trudge and the danger – they are also about the bits in between when you stop and look, stop and eat, stop and sleep, stop and have a coffee. In fact, these are the parts of the journey that often linger long in the mind once you’ve got the feeling back in your fingers and your legs don’t ache quite as much.
The bits in between are the moments when luxuries, such as fresh coffee and chocolate, come out; those treats that do wonders for morale on long expeditions, that recharge and refuel. Another luxury is pulling on a cosy jacket when you stop, wrapping up against the elements when you reach camp. In fact, a warm coat is a necessity when you’re moving in the mountains. Your body is always generating heat and producing moisture while you’re moving. Once you stop, that sweat gets very cold very quickly. The first thing you need to do when you stop is to pull on a really warm jacket to maintain your body temperature. Then you make a cuppa.
The warm jacket of choice is the down jacket, and for two key reasons: it’s very warm, and it’s very light. There is nothing warmer for its weight than the downy feathers of a goose or duck. It traps warm air better than any other material and does an excellent job of keeping it there. Down jackets are also light and compressible, often packing down into tiny packages, and therefore perfect for throwing in an expedition pack. But not all are created equal.
The adidas Terrex Climaheat Down Jacket is one of this winter’s principal pieces from Terrex, the outdoor arm of the company, and it’s a fantastic garment, with adidas claiming it’s their most innovative jacket to date. So what makes it so compelling? The area of down has seen plenty of innovation over the last five years, with the introduction of hydrophobic down. Untreated down can clump and lose its warming properties when wet; hydrophobic treatment minimises this. The second key area is in ethical down sourcing.
In the Climaheat Down Jacket, the designers have used ethically sourced HyperDRY hydrophobic-treated down with a high ratio of 90 per cent down and 10 per cent feathers. The insulation is held within a very lightweight Pertex Quantum fabric that offers a significant amount of wind resistance. It also has a durable water-repellent (DWR) treatment to repel light rain. The intriguing baffles keep the down from moving too much around the jacket. Also intriguing are little patches of stretch material under the arms that help with temperature control and flexibility. The cuffs are elasticated and don’t let any cold or snow in. The hem can be drawn in.
Thought too has gone into the hood, often overlooked on down jackets. There’s a drawcord around the back of the head but, on my flapping ears at least, the cord pulled uncomfortably across the top of my ears. Finally, there are two big handwarmer pockets, and a chest pocket. The whole jacket folds into an interior mesh pocket too.
And then there are the little bits that aren’t so noticeable. The way the collar zips comfortably up under the chin, the pleasing length of it, the articulation of the arms, and a little piece of elasticated material that adds an extra seal around the back of the neck.
Those moments when the adventure slows, when the sun sets or the wind drops, benefit from jackets this comfortable and this warm. At 484g it is light, but not microlight – the perfect balance of warmth and weight. Time to stop and have a brew, I think.