I have had this jacket for some time now, so I thought it was about time I got it out there. For all intents and purposes this is a belay jacket. It has however proved to be very versatile and a popular choice.
First thing that stands out on mine is that it stands out. On Mammut's website there are an array of colours but this yellow one is pretty special. Not everyone likes the colour but I do.
That sunshine fabric is Pertex Endurance on the shoulders, arms and hood which has a higher water repellency to the Pertex Quantum on the main body. As you would expect the outer material is hard wearing, although there is a little bobbling around the hem at a gathered up area at the pull cord stopper. This is nothing though, this jacket has had a lot of use under packs and harnesses so I can live with a little scuff.
The cut is designed to be worn under or over a shell, handy on food stops whilst wandering in the cold. When on a belay stance waiting for my lead to get their ass to the top its normally under my hardshell. This though presents a problem, I then start to get sweaty from hauling my own ass up an icy climb. Actually though it's not really a problem. The Ajungilak insulation has apparently been designed for this very purpose and I'd say they got it pretty spot on. There hasn't been one time I've felt the cold when the Rime Pro has been used in anger.
There are a lot of really nice features on this jacket. There is fleece lining on the inside of the 2 side pockets, it's like a bit of heaven when you stick cold hands in there.
Something I see more and more is the reinforced fabric on the zip baffle, preventing the zip snagging on the finer material. Stopping frustration and cursing when trying to keep the heat in.
The 2 inner mesh pockets, which are massive, are excellent to stow bulky gloves when not required for short periods. I read somewhere they can be used for holding large water bottles, they definitely could but its not something I have needed them for. It would probably be uncomfortable I'd imagine.
The hood is a work of art. The face drawcords and the cinch cord to the rear pulls it right in to the head allowing a full range of movement. Even when wearing a helmut it comfortably covers the head and allows the same freedom of movement. My Petzl Elios isn't the most head hugging helmut and the hood has no issues providing shelter.
The only thing I would change about this jacket is the cuff. I would opt for an elastic cuff instead of the velcro adjustment. It can cause a bit of messing around when its cold. I try to set the adjustment at a happy medium so I don't need to keep ripping and sticking it. This is purely a personal preference though.
It packs down pretty well into a small dry bag and will normally be found at the bottom of my pack on most days out. I am definitely in the "you never know when you might need it" style of packing.
I suppose the biggest recommendation I can make for this jacket is I lent it to one of my mates. He ended up "borrowing" it for a while. He used it on the mountain, in fact he walked into Corrie an t'Sneachda wearing it and had no problems staying warm after he stopped to prep for climbing. When I went to pick it up his 3 year old daughter nearly didn't let me leave the house with it.
There is no doubt this jacket will be used frequently, all year round it will be on hand. There is a hood-less version, the Rime, which could add another aspect to my insulation choices but that's probably pure gear greed.
I have no problem highly recommending this jacket to anyone. As synthetic insulation jackets go this is first class.