Patagonia Das Light Hoody Review
Every year as the wet and chilly British winter weather approaches I find myself reaching for one of my insulated jackets. But what insulation type is best for British winter conditions? Down or synthetic? What shall I pick for drizzly days work up the Kinder plateau?
I do really love down as an insulator. There is something very comforting about slipping on a down jacket; the warmth it provides is unparalleled but unfortunately it’s useless when it gets wet. In the UK weather there just aren’t really that many days that are dry and frosty enough for down to excel. Down is perfect for the Alps and the Himalaya but for use in British drizzle and dreich it’s not so good.
So for UK use I’m a big fan of synthetically insulated jackets. They are light, robust, dry quickly, versatile and cheaper to buy than down equivalents.
Over the years I’ve had a variety of different brands and designs. A Mountain Equipment Fitzroy, a Rab Generator Alpine, a North Face Thermoball and a great Rab Cirrus Pro which has lived in my pack for 3/4 years as the outer layer I’ll pick for those cold and windy days teaching rock climbing on the Peak District eastern edges.
Patagonia have been making synthetically insulated jackets for decades including the DAS parka; a burly belay type jacket that’s been used on high mountains all over the world and is a favourite of Beyond the Edge instructor Oli who reviews the DAS Parka here.
More recently the innovative Patagonia Micro Puff and Nano Puff jackets have become extremely popular. I never bought one as I felt that they weren’t very technically designed when compared with the Rab or Mountain Equipment equivalents (in particular the hoods haven’t been as good). However Patagonia have now released the DAS Light Hoody (Dead Air Space). It uses the same excellent PlumaFill insulation as the Micro Puff jackets but it is designed with more mountaineering friendly features.
The hood in particular is excellent, it’s big and is helmet compatible but it also clinches down nicely when just wearing a beanie. The cut is long, I’m 6,4 and the hem covers my bum. A two way zip allows access to a belay loop. The whole jacket is simply designed with just three pockets and this allows a very light (320g) jacket.
The lining is 0.8-oz Pertex Quantum and as a result the jacket slides on easily over med layers. The outer is 0.8-oz Pertex Quantum Pro with a PU dry coating and a PFC-free DWR finish. The outer is described by Pertex as water resistant rather than waterproof but it will resist our typical UK drizzle and light rain very well. The whole combination of PlumaFill insulation and the Pertex inner and outer drys very quickly. The jacket washes really well with Nikwax Tech Wash.
Another massive advantage with this jacket is that the insulation, the inner and outer fabric are all made with recycled materials. Also Patagonia are founder members of 1% for the Planet.
The Patagonia DAS Light Hoody is an excellent, well fitting, lightweight and well made synthetic belay jacket. This jacket is perfect for popping on over other layers when stopping for a break or as a lightweight belay jacket for Alpine or Scottish mountaineering. Also the DAS Light makes an ideal emergency extra layer to stash in the bottom of your pack.
I’ll be using this for climbing, mountaineering, Scottish winter, hill walking, wild camping and shopping.
Or support our local outdoor shop and buy here https://www.outside.co.uk/patagonia-das-light-hoody-mens-67968.html
The women’s version is here https://www.outside.co.uk/patagonia-das-light-hoody-womens.html
Beyond the Edge Ltd is based in the Peak District, easily reached by train from London and within easy travelling distance from Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham and other Northern towns and cities.
We are one of the UKs most experienced providers of climbing, walking, scrambling, mountaineering and navigation training courses.
Most of our courses are run in the Peak District National Park which has some of the finest rock climbing, bouldering, walking and hiking in the world.