By Jon Gaffney
on 4.27.09

rab_micolight_4

It’s not often I find myself very surprised by a product. Well before my review of any product is published on Gear Patrol, I have researched it extensively, read other people’s comments and reviews on it, and tested it myself. So, when the Rab Microlight came my way unexpectedly, I had no idea what to expect. What I got was an awesome jacket, which my wife keeps trying to steal. You probably haven’t heard of Rab, but they’re sort of a big deal in England (like me in Japan), on par with North Face here. They’ve been supplying mountaineering outerwear to the UK for 30 yrs and they are just starting to move into the US market. If the Microlight is any indication of the rest of their line, I’m sure they’ll do fine.

rab_micro_light

The Microlight is a down jacket made for super-light camping/mountaineering. It lives up to it’s name so well that I feel like calling it a jacket is akin to calling Kate Moss obese. My fleece jacket wears like a flak jacket in comparison. The key to the whole jacket is the fabric, and Rab’s explanation says it better than I can: “The Microlight Jacket is made with Pertex® Microlight which is composed of tightly woven micro-fiber yarns to prevent excess heat loss. This composition makes the garment warmer without adding weight. Using 30 denier yarns the Pertex® Microlight fabric creates a lightweight, downproof, windproof, water resistant, breathable fabric with incredible durability for its weight.” I would also add that it’s super soft (why I keep catching my wife watching Lost whilst wearing it like a sweatshirt). So, if you own a fleece jacket or need a new light jacket, it’s time to upgrade.

Editor’s Note: I know spring is right around the corner, but I had to mention this after my winter testing because I was simply blown away. It literally wears like a shirt. It makes me wish that I still had the Maine winters to do it justice…enough said. Oh, and one more thing, I take no responsibility for any Michelin Man jokes.

Cost: $150