Houdini reviews
C-9 Jacket
Rab reviews
Strata Hoodie
Sprayway reviews
Grendal jacket
Keela reviews
Ladies' Belay Pro, Rainlife 5000, ADS base layer
Mammut Reviews
Aconcagua Light Jacket
Columbia Reviews
Omni freeze T Shirt
Berghaus Reviews
Explorer Eco Woven Pant
Ovik trousers
Rab reviews
Strata Hoodie wind test
Rab reviews
Strata Hoodie waterproof test

outdoor clothing apparel reviews

Reviews of outdoor clothing apparel including base layers mid layers and shells


Rab Strata Hoodie product review

Rab Strata Hoodie 

Purpose of the garment

Cold weather active use as a mid or outer layer. The shell should provide protection from light showers and snow and contain the insulation within the garment. The insulation should help move moisture away from the body, be windproof and dry quickly.

Our test

First of all we've been a little naughty and took the jacket to West Burton waterfall in the Yorkshire Dales. It was just after a few days of heavy rain so the fall was in full force!

Bearing in mind this jacket is designed for light showers walking under a waterfall to test it's resistance to water was a little unfair! 


Unfair or not this jacket was superb and shed the water almost instantaneously on departure from the flow of the fall.

More than satisfied with the water test we then sent the jacket north to the northernmost inhabitable island in the UK, Unst!


The jacket was worn on a daily basis for 6 weeks in June 2015, enduring showers, heavy rain, 60mph winds and temperatures never above 11°C! 

Polartec Alpha insulation

Pertex Microlight shell fabric

Having spent 6 weeks on Unst, in Northern Shetland, having the Rab Strata was somewhat of a requirement. Its light weight, heat retention and waterproof attributes allowed me to experience a more comfortable environment in what were some not to comfortable types of weather.

These are some of the positive features I found the Rab Strata Hoodie to possess

·         Waterproof- Atlantic storms didn’t manage to penetrate the Pertex and Polartec fabrics

·         Warmth – with just a simple cotton T shirt underneath, the Rab kept me warm in an average temperature of 7 degrees with wind chill

·         Windproof- whilst testing the Rab Strata Hoodie on Unst, gale force winds were a daily ordeal, although again the high tech fabrics allowed me to stay warm

·         Zip- the fact that the zip can be zipped up to just under the nose made walking into an oncoming wind just that bit easier, as it prevented wind entering the upper body

·         Hood size- a fairly large hood size, which allowed headwear to be worn as well as the hood when required, the elasticated rims of the hood allowed for a snug fit, which kept out the worst of the elements.

·         Pockets - the breast pocket on the Rab was surprisingly large, and I kept my notebook in there throughout my stay on Unst, having paper in there allowed me to also test how waterproof the pockets were, and I can conclude that my paper remained bone dry.

·         Style-  being a student I like to think of myself as somewhat style conscious, and the Rab Strata Hoodie jacket is a great addition to my clothing collection. Its functions are impeccable and the fact that the styling is very classic and clean means I can wear the Rab in many different situations.

One potential improvement

·         I found that on warmer days, the Rab became quite sweaty inside, it didn’t seem as breathable as other products I have tested. Taking the Rab off was not an issue, obviously, but on warmer days the wind chill would make you feel it was colder outside, but because the Rab doesn’t let any wind in, it sometimes became a bit humid inside the jacket.

To conclude, I would recommend the Rab Strata Hoodie as an edition to a variety of people’s outdoor equipment collection, its versatility and overall fluency in many of its functions makes it a worthwhile investment, and I’m glad I had the jacket with me in my time spent in Shetland. 

Please note

The garment was supplied free of charge for the purpose of testing and reviewing

Keela Rainlife 5000 over trouser review

The first thing the we noticed about these over trousers was the feel of the materials used. Both the outer shell and inner lining have a reassuring quality about them. 

Keela Rainlife Trousers 

We're told by Keela that the outer shell has a  texturised waterproof hydrophilic coating! What we know is that they are definitely waterproof having suffered a battering in the South West of the UK throughout last winter.

They are definitely breathable with no condensation build up on the inner layer at any time that we have had occasion to wear them.

And they are definitely windproof having worn them with both walking trousers and shorts we have remained comfortable and protected at all times.

waterproof windproof breathable 

The button studs, plastic cord lock and zips are again reassuringly positive in their action and robust.

solid stud buttons and cord lock 

The 360mm / 14" long YKK zips ensure that these over trousers open up more than sufficiently to allow you to quickly put them on and take them off with ease. The button stud at the bottom of the zip then keeps the zips' storm flap in place.

strong 360mm YKK zips 

Movement whilst wearing them with either walking trousers or shorts was unrestricted and the button stud side pockets give quick and easy access.

The quality of the materials used by Keela has shown little sign of wear during the 9 months we have been testing this product. They still look like new!

You might have guessed by now that we think these over trousers are great and when you consider the £39.95 price tag we think they are great value for money!

Further information

Keela website

Please note these over trousers were supplied to us by Keela with no obligations attached other than write a review

Keela ADS base layer

We've just took it our of the wrapper ready to start the review

Read more: Keela ADS base layer

Pinewood Lappland extreme trousers

not having worn such a garment before I was sceptical about their use walking in the UK!

I've changed my mind!

These trousers are very robust, very comfortable, warm and very practical. I've worn them through the winter with a Woolpower base layer and without a base layer.

Read more: pinewood lappland extreme trousers

Icebreaker Oasis Crewe Baselayer review

Apparently guaranteed to be the most comfortable, best performing base layer system in the world!

and no stink! 

We are wearing it continually, apart from having a shower or two, until it does stink! 

Well we're heading for Horton in Ribblesdale to test them out in the Easter cold and snow!

Read more: icebreaker oasis crewe baselayer review

Trekmates merino long johns review

Very light weight material, hardly feel you have them on.

First time out worn under a pair of lightweight Craghopper Trousers and a pair of Trekmates Soft Cell gaiters.

-4°C overnight rising to around 0°C during the day. Kept lower body comfortably warm and combined with a Trekmates upper body base layer with amble length led to a very pleasant days walking in the Pennines.

A subsequent test has revealed that wearing them with the gaiters stopped them from riding up the leg. Without the gaiters they tend to rise above the ankle giving cold spots on the sensitive areas of the lower leg / ankle

UPC 5 055053 230749 505505320749

Trekmates Soft Shell Gaiters review

Together with the Long John's came two pairs of gaiter from Trekmates for us to review. They too are going with us to the Pennines for their first review.

Trekmates Soft Shell Gaiters review

Our first test of the Trekmates Dry SoftShell gaiters took place on the 14th January 2012 on a route incorporating peat bog and heather in the South Pennines of northern England.

Read more: Trekmates Soft Shell Gaiters review