Spring is here, and we can still get outside for a daily walk, in the midst of the lockdown. With the weather changing, and the daffodils out by the dozen, we bring you jackets that you can take with you on your dog walk on the beach, or in the woods, that will keep you protected from the wind, or a downpour, but will pack away should the sun decide to shine. Words: Leona Gerrard.
Berghaus Women’s Changtse Waterproof Gore-Tex Jacket
This is the ultimate spring-summer jacket, lightweight enough to pack away, if you needed to, waterproof to the max – we took it out in a spring downpour – and with enough insulation and warmth to withstand early spring mornings yet breathable in hotter summer temperatures. There’s a handy single external water-resistant zipped chest pocket for stowing away essentials, and two underarm zips for ventilation. We loved the helmet-compatible sizeable hood, which kept the downpour and wind at bay, and the Topo stretch fabric around the cuffs and hem, made the fit secure yet comfortable around the wrists and body. Topping off its features is the Bluesign-approved main fabric, which is kinder to environment.
Patagonia Torrentshell 3L Jacket
Very similar to the Berghaus in terms of its construction, the Patagonia lacks an internal pocket but features a strengthened peak to its hood, ventilation zips under the arms, elastic cords to adjust the hood from the rear and on both sides of the neck, and adjustable Velcro cuffs. True to Patagonia’s environmental credentials, the Torrentshell is made from 100 per cent recycled nylon and should do a great job of shielding you from any summer rain shower that comes your way. We were also a fan of the relatively subtle ‘Andes Blue’ colour, although the men’s L and women’s S came up a bit big.
Fjällräven Women’s High Coast Light Jacket
This a lighter, more packable version of the High Coast jacket – and it sure is light! Weighing just 205g, this 100 per cent partly recycled polyester jacket easily packs away into the right-hand pocket. On rainy dog walks, we found this offered excellent water-resistance, and we made use of the integrated hood during a shower, which was quite a snug fit around the head. When the wind picked up on the coast, we felt well protected despite it being ultra-lightweight. When temperatures rose, the pockets with mesh lining could be zipped down for ventilation.
Föhn Polartec Alpha Direct Hybrid Jacket
Föhn’s Polartec Alpha jacket is an interesting combination of a super-lightweight polyester shell, combined with a polyester lining covering the back, shoulders and chest. We’ve already encountered the Polartec lining in some of Wiggle’s dhb cyclewear and it does a surprisingly good job of keeping you warm, even in thinner garments like this one, and as such this is another option for slightly chillier and unpredictable summer weather. The very lightweight hood isn’t strengthened on its peak and dropped into eye level slightly. It also sized up quite small in the body in our standard size large.