Winter climbing partners never move fast enough!
From my perspective I have just completed a lightning fast accent on a thin runout smear of ice then undertook the cleaning of iced up cracks with poise and precision to build a structurally satisfying anchor. All this done in record breaking time. Why then, is my partner taking so long?
But as the sweat cools and the core begins to chill I have an ace in my rucksack.
Before the call of ‘On Belay’ – I take a selfish extra 27 seconds to don my one luxury item, the Patagonia DAS Parka.
Thrown over my hardshell and helmet it makes even the longest spells on an icy ledge almost enjoyable. With the zip pulled high over my face I’m cocooned from the spindrift, buffeting winds and expletives from below. There is nothing I would rather be wearing and as a result, nowhere I would rather be.
Patagonia has put some serious work into this belay jacket. Its weight to warmth ratio is impressive. This comfort comes from using PrimaLoft® Gold Insulation Eco with Cross Core® technology. The quest for a synthetic version of down is almost at an end with this stuff. The fact that Patagonia has also endeavoured to use as much recycled plastic in its fabrics as possible adds to the warm cosy feeling you get by putting it on.
From Scottish winters, Norwegian cascades and Alpine bivvys, all winter clothing and equipment gets tested to near destruction. My DAS parka regularly passes these tests – It doesn’t matter how wet it gets from the build up of rime and slush that my hardshell may have accumulated, it stays just as warm. The zips, pockets and other features all work with winter gloves on. The hood even hugs my helmet perfectly. As an added extra the capacious internal poachers pockets are ideal for storing my belay gloves during pitches.
It’s like a hug from an over-doting Grandmother. It envelopes you, it protects you from the elements and makes you feel warm and just a little bit special.
In short when I’m wearing it I’m warm, happy and above all ready to weather the barrage of abuse for ‘apparently’ taking too long!
If you would like some winter training delivered by friendly, highly qualified and experienced instructors then have a look at our winter courses here https://www.beyondtheedge.co.uk/winter-walking-skills/
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.