Last updated: 20-Feb-19
Whether it’s before a race or training, after a race or training, or when stopping at a checkpoint for a mid-run bite to eat, a down jacket will serve you well as an ultra runner.
In my opinion, there are a few requirements for a down jacket: It needs to be lightweight but warm; it should pack down into a small bag or pocket; it is useful if it has some kind of water repellency or offers insulation when it is wet.
On test is the new Mammut Broad Peak Hooded Down Jacket.
- Very good warmth to weight ratio
- Fabric: Pertex® Quantum, which is a tightly woven structure of fine yarns to provide a light and soft fabric allowing the insulation inside to fully loft.
- Pertex Y Fuse technology. Unique Y shaped yarn filaments create a tightly interlocking structure, which improves the downproof and water beading properties of the fabric.
- DWR (durable water repellent) treated to shed light rain and snow
- 800 fill down
- Responsibly sourced down and feather filling
- Jacket packs down into its own side pocket
- YKK Vision 2-way zip for smooth operation
- Drawstring hem can be adjusted with one hand using a chord that is stored on the inside
- Elastic cuffs and hood edge
- Chin protector (from zip)
- Male and female designs
- Men’s sizes: S – XXL,
- Women’s sizes: XS – XXL
- Men’s weight: 380g
- Women’s weight: 330g
- SRP: £269
Pros: What’s good about Mammut Broad Peak Hooded Down Jacket
The jacket feels very light and airy. It is almost floaty when you put it on. The fabric is also soft and silky, especially on the inside.
I have worn the jacket before a run, when warming up at the side of a very chilly and cold track and also after several long runs in the hills. Typically, I get very cold at this point and I tested the jacket when I am chilly and sweaty. It works very well to warm me up and maintain my core temperature. It feels rather like wearing a very lightweight sleeping bag.
I have also worn the jacket for hiking days in the mountains. I wanted to see how it performed at cold temperatures and when there is wind and moisture in the air. Again, it performed very well when considering the weight-to-warmth ratio.
Even when it is raining, the jacket is a great insulator. I would normally expect a jacket of this warmth to be much larger and puffier so it is a surprise to discover it is possible to have a lightweight jacket that is so highly insulted.
The fabric doesn’t look to be that durable because it is so lightweight but I have made sure I have run and hiked through forests and next to gorse bushes etc. and it still looks as good as new, which surprised me.
Responsibly sourced down is a plus-point too.
Other features that I like are the two-way zip. This is really useful if you are trying to access pockets and layers under the jacket.
The hood stays up when zipped to the top and there is a neat cover over the top of the zip to stop it rubbing against the skin of the chin.
The hand pockets are large and zipped. They are useful for carrying bits and pieces and one also doubles as a place to stash the jacket when it is not being worn. It has a two-way zip so you can use it as a pocket and as a stowing bag.
The jacket can be used for other activities, such as hiking, climbing and skiing so it is versatile for the price.
Cons: What’s not so good about Mammut Broad Peak Hooded Down Jacket
The jacket it expensive at £269. I expect it can be bought at a cheaper price online but I do think it is costly. In fact, Mammut themselves are currently selling the jacket for £215.
I have the silver coloured jacket to test and while it looks smart and sort of space-age, I do think it will end up looking dirty. There are other colours to choose from and I personally would buy a darker coloured jacket.
The shape of the jacket is quite square. I prefer a fitted jacket with a design to suit the female physique but I have not found the Mammut to be the most streamlined fit. Saying that, it’s possible to get a few layers under the jacket so that is useful if you want to wear it in very cold conditions.
Mammut states that the jacket packs down small. I don’t think it’s that small and have taken a photo of the packed down jacket next to a can of fizzy pop so that you can see for yourself. However, the jacket does offer a lot of warmth so I think the packed down size is reasonable, but it may be taking it a little too far to state it packs down “small”.
There are insulted jackets that pack into much smaller sized bags. The zip pulls look a bit flimsy. They are made of thin cord that is hopefully quite strong but I am not convinced. Only time will tell on this point but I do prefer a chunkier zip.
This is a fairly expensive down jacket but offers an excellent weight-to-warmth ratio and could easily become a “must pack” item when you want to be sure of staying warm, even in very cold conditions. It’s the sort of jacket that would be most useful for winter running/races.
Others to try
Inov-8 Thermoshell Pro jacket
Rab Micolight Summit jacket
Montane Icarus Jacket
About the writer: Fiona is a keen runner, preferring off-road and hilly to flat and road. She lives in Scotland where the weather is fickle so needs to be prepared for all conditions.
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