Top Lightweight Walking Jackets 2015

To enable you to continue being active throughout the year but still maintain a level of protection against the elements garments like Softshell Jackets were created.  As the overall weight of outdoor gear is a crucial factor, especially on long distance hikes, high altitude trails and fast paced routes, yet obviously wind chill factor and moisture from rainfall can be an issue many brands have spent decades creating fabrics and fibres that stop or restrict those elements from getting through while being extremely lightweight and allowing for maximum possible freedom of movement.

At Webtogs we know that finding the right type of Soft Shell Jacket for specific requirements may be daunting, especially if you are unfamiliar with not only the brands that produce them but the numerous fabrics and technical features that determine how functional a softshell is and how they perform in certain conditions, so our Top 5 list of the overall Softshell Jackets for 2015 has been collated to help you find the right one.  We have looked at all kinds of factors to determine what we feel are the best 5 Softshell Jackets currently available, how well they perform functionally and in the weather conditions they are intended for.

The Webtogs Top 5 Softshell Jackets

Rab Ventus Softshell Jacket

Designed as an active mountain garment the Rab Ventus Softshell Jacket is an even lighter version of the Boreas Pull-On that gives plenty of protection, mobility and has a practical construction for active use in high altitudes.  The Rab Ventus is made from Matrix SWS stretch fabric which while having a nice, soft feel is durable enough to withstand plenty of use, flexible enough so that there is little in the way of movement restriction and has technical properties that make it versatile for multi-season use.  You get some protection against UV rays and a lot of wind resistance, both of which are likely conditions on mountain treks, plus dries quickly and has breathability as well whilst a Polygiene Star Fresh treatment stops any odour microbes from building up helping the Ventus Soft Shell stay fresher for longer.  The fit is fairly slim and the cuffs are Lycra bound with thumb loops which helps to retain warmth more effectively and the hood is fully helmet compatible so can be worn under it comfortably.  The Rab Ventus Softshell Jacket also has a YKK zip with internal storm flap which is proven to prevent wind chill and moisture getting through. MORE INFO

Jack Wolfskin Turbulence Soft Shell Jacket

75006-zoomThe Jack Wolfskin Turbulence Softshell Jacket is ideally suited to hiking, particularly if you find yourself in wetter weather even during the summer months.  A Flex Shield microfibre constructed fabric enables a number of qualities which consists of wind resistance, a permanent water repellent exterior so moisture from light showers beads up and rolls away, breathability so internal moisture can escape, plus is surprisingly stretchable so moves with you so there is no need to keep readjusting the fit.  Internally the JW Turbulence Soft Shell has loops which are designed to minimise the points of contact with the skin so that during times when you work up a sweat, the fabric is less likely to stick to the skin.  An ultra-light hood is integrated into the design and is fully adjustable for a comfortable and secure fit and also for vision as well, which is completely unobstructed. MORE INFO

The North Face Apex Bionic Soft Shell Jacket

64595-zoomPerfect for colder temperatures, The North Face Apex Bionic Softshell Jacket is built for higher altitude walks and even snow sports.  Apex ClimateBlock is a soft shell fabric that is entirely windproof so any wind chill factor is dramatically reduced to no effect, on the inside a fleece backing retains warmth which can be better secured with the hem cinch-chord and moulded cuff tabs to help trap more heat in, or alternatively the reverse if you need to cool down.  Both of those latter two features also gives greater control over the fit, which is ‘relaxed’so overall feels quite comfortable and gives you room to move inside the jacket.  The chest and hand pockets on the TNF Apex Bionic have secure zips to both keep the elements out and any essentials firmly inside.  The North Face Apex Bionic Soft Shell is also media compatible so you can easily listen to music, or use a mobile device with ease. MORE INFO

Montane Sabretooth Soft Shell Jacket

76519-zoomIf you are wanting a softshell that works well throughout the year the Montane Sabretooth Jacket is the one for you.  The Sabertooth is made primarily with Polartec Power Shield fabric which stops the majority of windy conditions getting through, is fully breathable and is resistant to abrasion, plus features a Durable Water Repellent coating (DWR) so keeps you dry in light rain showers.  A wired peak hood that is also fully adjustable keeps the weather away from your face while ensuring an excellent field of view, plus is fully helmet compatible.  The Montane Sabretooth Softshell Jacket like most does stretch for better movement which is helped greatly by the articulated arms so is ideal for activities like climbing.  Adjustable features include the hem to minimise loss of heat and around the cuffs for comfortable use with gloves, plus there are multiple pocket options and YKK baffled front zip that have been specifically designed to function while wearing a pack or harness, plus it has a soft fleece beard guard for further comfort as well.  It can be worn with other garments as part of a layering system also should you need better insulation when it is very cold. MORE INFO

Craghoppers WindShield Bear Survival Pro II Softshell Jacket

68489-zoomFor travels that are bound to be met by wind and rain, the Craghoppers WindShield Bear Survival Pro II Softshell is a jacket designed with input from Bear Grylls.  The brands’ own WindShield fabric gives complete windproofing and features an AquaDry membrane that makes it the most water resistant of our Top 5, plus works well with other layers when insulation is required as it fits comfortably over base and mid-layers.  Key features have been added to the design to make it more functional which includes strategically placed shoulder patches that are made to resist high-abrasion, utility cord pulls and besides the front zip pockets there is a rear survival one intended for emergency supplies you may need at hand quickly. MORE INFO