The Rab Vapour Rise Flex Jacket is similar to the previous VR Lite Jacket but with the addition of Matrix SWS in the side panels and under the arms. The Matrix four-way stretch adds superior levels of flex to the jacket allowing for improved flexibility during activity. The Flex Jacket is a superb summer climbing or trekking jackets providing superb levels of comfort, especially if you're working hard on the mountain.
Vapour Rise fabric is a two layer softshell consisting of a Micro-Pile liner and Pertex Equilibrium outer. This combination is designed to provide body temperature equilibrium and wicks moisture away from your body fast to keep you dry. The Micro-Pile inner also provides a degree of warmth, whilst the outer is wind resistant and has a DWR coating. Vapour Rise is a really versatile system, able to be worn next-to-skin, on top of a base layer, or as part of a layering system. For more information on Rab Vapour Rise click here.
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I think this is a great lightweight jacket. First off, it has no hood and only a chest pocket and an inside chest pocket but this helps keep the jacket light. And it is LIGHT. Not sure what the actual weight is, but it effectively feels like next to nothing. I heard that it weighs less than a pound coin; I can believe it. The jacket has a really nice outer fabric that is soft and has a great feel. Same with the micro fleece liner inside, so it is really comfortable to wear with a short sleeve base layer, even when you start to sweat. It has two stretchy panels on each side which adds to the comfort. It has excellent wicking and drying properties. I sweat a lot when exerting myself and this jacket coped really well. This is a great jacket for hillwalking outside of winter. Wind blocking properties were excellent when I wore it recently up a [Scottish] mountain and I had room for a thin fleece underneath if required [I got a large, which seemed to be in line with what I was used too]. But I think it works best over a base layer and if you need to put something over it, it would also be a great mid-layer.
This is certainly going to be my go-to jacket for summer at least, it won't keep the rain out of course but it is a brilliant light weight and super-comfortable jacket. On thing though, it is seems quite a robust jacket but I am not sure I would risk it scrambling/climbing on rough rock. So I think it may stay at home â€“ or maybe get put in the rucksack, it is so light after all â€“ for my forthcoming trip to the Cuillin. Basically, if you can live without a hood, I would highly recommend it. Did I say it was light?
I mainly bought this jacket to take traveling as I only take carry on luggage. It is extremely lightweight and packs into its internal chest pocket, ideal for fitting in my daypack or squeezing into a tight spot in my carry on.
So far I have only used it for dog walking (usually around 4 miles at a decent pace through woods, fields and beaches). I tend to overheat but this jacket on top of a merino wool baselayer really does a good job of wicking away sweat and keeping me at a comfortable temperature, it also managed to keep a strong sea breeze at bay at the same time. I've not had a chance to wear it in the rain but I did pour some water on the sleeve and it beaded up and ran straight off. I'd confidently wear it in showers but I'd want to wear a waterproof shell/jacket on top if I was going to be out for a while in a torrential downpour.
Fit I would say is true to size and I can't get over how light and breathable this thing is. Back is a little longer than the front and the outer chest pocket is a decent size for a smartphone/wallet. The inner pocket is smaller but there's still easily enough space for a smartphone and a few energy bars. Only slight downside I can think of is it's lack of handwarmer pockets, however this would add considerable weight and is a function I can certainly live without in a jacket this competent.
All in all I would highly recommend this as a great flexible lightweight jacket for summer and a great mid (even base) layer for when it gets cooler.
Extremely light, rolls up very small and easily fits into a cargo pocket, keeps the wind at bay and fairly good in light drizzle at keeping dry. If you do get wet it drys off in no time. Extremely happy with this purchase.
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