Mountain Equipment Waterproof Jackets
Mountain Equipment was founded in 1961 by two climbing friends, John Barnett and Harry Taylor. Based in London's West End, their modest premises focused on manufacturing robust climbing apparel and sturdy rucksacks. In 1965, Mountain Equipment began using Gore-Tex fabrics in their waterproof clothing. This innovative new material, with its patented membrane construction, was perfectly suited to breathable and waterproof mountaineering wear. Mountain Equipment became one of the first UK brands to utilise Gore-Tex technology. In the 1980s and 90s, Mountain Equipment opened additional stores across the UK. They also acquired further brands like RAB and Lowe Alpine. International expansion followed in the 2000s, with Mountain Equipment stores opening globally. Now based in Sheffield, Mountain Equipment continues to be an industry leader in outdoor apparel and equipment. They offer an extensive range of waterproof jackets for hiking, climbing and mountaineering.
Mountain Equipment Waterproof Jackets’ Fabrics
Renowned for its technical outdoor apparel, Mountain Equipment utilises advanced fabric technologies to create waterproof jackets capable of withstanding the most extreme environments. By carefully selecting and engineering membrane and face textile materials, Mountain Equipment waterproof jackets are optimised with the highest levels of waterproofing, breathability, durability and weight.
Gore-Tex membranes and fabrics have been the foundation of Mountain Equipment's waterproof technologies for over 50 years. With continual innovation and enhancement, Gore-Tex has cemented itself as the market leader in waterproof/breathable fabrics. All Gore-Tex fabrics use an extremely thin expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) membrane containing over 1.4 billion pores per square inch. These pores are smaller than a water droplet but around 700 times larger than a water vapour molecule. This microstructure allows perspiration vapour to pass through the fabric while blocking larger liquid water droplets. The membrane is then bonded to outer and inner face textiles to create a laminate.
Mountain Equipment waterproof jacket ranges utilise several different types of Gore-Tex fabrics. Gore-Tex Active uses an extremely thin and breathable Gore-Tex membrane optimised for aerobic pursuits like trail running where moisture buildup is a concern. Gore-Tex Active is 30% more breathable than standard Gore-Tex. Gore-Tex Paclite is a lightweight 2.5-layer laminate that leaves out the inner hanging liner for reduced weight and pack size. It folds down into its pocket despite the durable waterproofing. Gore-Tex Pro Most Rugged is built around a durable 70D face textile with a beefed-up membrane layer which provides the highest levels of weatherproofing and breathability and resists abrasion across rough terrain. It is Mountain Equipment's most protective Gore-Tex fabric. As pioneers of Gore-Tex use since the 1960s, Mountain Equipment continues to utilise these industry-leading membranes due to the guaranteed waterproofing from the permanent beading water repellency provided by the DWR treatment during manufacturing. This ensures long-lasting wet weather protection. Mountain Equipment also values the optimised breathability of Gore-Tex's microporous structure, which facilitates two-way moisture vapour transfer and prevents the buildup of condensation inside the jacket. The proven durability of robust face textiles and the bonding of the membrane provide good tear and abrasion resistance during active use across mountain environments. Innovations like Paclite enable thin yet fully waterproof laminates perfect for lightweight shells and layering systems. For guaranteed wet weather protection and next-to-skin comfort, Mountain Equipment trusts Gore-Tex technology across all their hardshell hiking and mountaineering jacket ranges.
Mountain Equipment incorporates Paramo Fabrics, a distinguished British brand, into some of their jackets. This integration showcases Paramo's proprietary waterproof fabric constructions as a compelling alternative to Gore-Tex. Notable fabric options within this collaboration include Parameta G Fabrics, crafted from polyester or nylon, featuring a robust Nikwax hydrophobic coating and a PU waterproof layering system that ensures exceptional protection in wet conditions, albeit with slightly reduced breathability when compared to Gore-Tex. Additionally, Mountain Equipment waterproof jackets can also incorporate Parameta S Fabrics, a lighter iteration of Parameta G, specially designed for high-intensity activities where breathability takes precedence. These fabrics employ a bi-component PU membrane and directional wicking linings to enhance comfort, making them a superb alternative to Gore-Tex for those who value breathability during their adventures.
Drilite Loft Fabric
Drilite Loft fabric stands as a pinnacle achievement within Mountain Equipment's lineup, representing their proprietary 2.5-layer creation. This cutting-edge fabric integrates advanced ePTFE membranes to yield an impressive waterproofness and windproofness rating of 20,000mm, while simultaneously excelling in breathability. Found across a range of versatile hiking and mountaineering jackets, it is the backbone of their all-around outdoor gear. For those who value lightweight gear, Mountain Equipment has even crafted an ultralight variant of Drilite Loft, expertly optimised for minimalist lightweight shells. Remarkably, this fabric tips the scales at a mere 110g/m2 while maintaining the formidable 20,000mm waterproofing standard. In essence, it's a testament to Mountain Equipment's commitment to innovation and performance. Mountain Equipment's expertise in crafting hardshell jackets comes to the forefront with Drilite Loft Fabric. By meticulously selecting and combining the most innovative waterproof membranes and face textiles, they produce hardshell jackets that are truly industry-leading, and designed to safeguard adventurers against the harshest of mountain storms.
Choosing The Right Mountain Equipment Waterproof Jacket
When selecting a Mountain Equipment waterproof jacket, it's important to consider what features and fabric technologies will match your intended use. Some jackets prioritise lightweight packability for summer showers, while others use heavyweight constructions to withstand brutal mountaineering conditions.
Mountain Equipment Lightweight Rain Jackets for Hiking
When every gram counts and pack space is limited, Mountain Equipment's lightweight waterproof jackets provide a barrier against the elements without burdening the wearer. Let's look at two advancements that enable minimalist weather protection. By eliminating a hanging liner and bonding the protective membrane directly to the inner surface of the face fabric, 2.5-layer construction significantly reduces weight and pack size. Mountain Equipment's Drilite Loft II fabric exemplifies this, creating durable shells under 200g. The use of high thread count fabric with a tighter weave increases hydrostatic resistance while applying a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) treatment causes water to bead on the surface rather than absorb into the material. Fully taping the seams with waterproof tape prevents leakage through needle holes. The Drilite membrane itself uses advanced microstructures and polymer engineering to achieve a pore size that blocks larger liquid water droplets while still allowing smaller water vapour molecules to pass through. This facilitates internal moisture transfer and breathability. Jackets like the Westwind use these advanced 2.5-layer fabrics to create super lightweight waterproof shells perfect for aerobic activities where keeping weight and bulk down is crucial. For improved ventilation and breathability, Mountain Equipment employs cutting-edge air-permeable membranes like eVent in models like the Fang Jacket. With a pore structure optimised for maximum airflow, these membranes facilitate one-way moisture transfer and actively vent water vapour buildup inside the jacket. This is achieved through a special membrane structure with large macro pores that allow unimpeded transmission of moisture vapour, aided by an air-permeable ePTFE protective layer with billions of micropores too small for liquid water droplets to pass through. The result is a fabric that is both highly waterproof and extremely breathable, making it ideal for high-exertion hiking and climbing where humidity inside non-breathable shells can rapidly build up and compromise comfort.
Mountain Equipment All-Round Hiking Jackets
To achieve all-weather protection and breathability without a stripped-down minimalist construction, Mountain Equipment deploys carefully engineered 3-layer fabrics and clever functional design. Mountain Equipment's 3-layer shells bond an additional protective membrane to a separate micro-porous hanging liner, with a third abrasion-resistant face fabric added. This creates a tougher external layer which better withstands scrapes and friction while moving fast over rock and vegetation. The Rupal Jacket is an example, utilising Mountain Equipment's Drilite HT fabric which sandwiches an ePTFE membrane between a 20D nylon outer and brushed tricot backer. The Drilite membrane prevents liquid water from seeping through while enabling water vapour transfer to the outside. By combining advanced material science with decades of field testing experience, Mountain Equipment has developed 3-layer fabrics which provide an ideal balance of waterproofing, breathability, weight and durability for all conditions of hillwalking and mountaineering. Mountain Equipment hiking jackets use ergonomic patterning refined over years of owner feedback to enhance freedom of movement and weather protection. The Fracture Jacket demonstrates these design optimisations. An Active-Fit reduces flapping fabric by shaping the jacket to the wearer's stance with a slightly dropped tail and sleeves. Articulated elbows and body-mapped panelling employ stretchier fabrics which add give and mobility. Dual-adjustment hem cords and Velcro cuff tabs let you fine-tune protection from spindrift ingress when exposed to ridges. A helmet-compatible StormHoodTM can be cinched with one-handed drawcords while a mixed zipper approach balances weather sealing with venting options. Through advanced patterning and storm-proofing features, Mountain Equipment waterproof jackets are ready for whatever the elements throw their way.
Mountain Equipment Softshell Hybrids
Softshell jackets have surged in popularity among mountaineers for their breathability, stretch and warmth. But they lack waterproofing, which is where Mountain Equipment's softshell/hardshell hybrids come in. By combining these technologies, you get the best of both worlds - a jacket which provides weather protection yet remains highly breathable and comfortable for active cold weather pursuits. Mountain Equipment uses robust softshell face fabrics engineered to withstand scuffs, friction and tears when worn over rock or through dense vegetation. Dynaweave NuYarn is an example, which interweaves multiple yarns for enhanced abrasion resistance. The use of high-stretch elastane boosts mobility, allowing the jacket to move with the wearer when scrambling and reaching. Durable water repellency (DWR) treatments cause moisture to bead up rather than absorbing into the fabric. For Ultimate all-weather durability, Mountain Equipment pairs these rugged softshell exteriors with a waterproof/breathable membrane like AquaDry which has triple the moisture permeability of a hardshell while still providing 20,000mm waterproofing. To prevent overheating and aid breathability, Mountain Equipment adds ventilation features to their softshell/hardshell hybrids informed by mountain activity heat zoning maps. The Ibex Jacket demonstrates this, using highly breathable Pontetorto mesh and microporous membranes under the arms. Chest pockets are backed with moisture-wicking microfleece in areas which contact a climbing harness. Strategically placed micro-seam tape reduces bulk and Improves fit while sealing out moisture ingress through needle holes. An adjustable helmet-compatible hood, Velcro storm cuffs and drawcord hem provide customisable weather protection. Through the fusion of softshell flexibility and hardshell waterproofing, Mountain Equipment's hybrids offer the ideal synthesis for active cold and wet weather pursuits.
Mountain Equipment Insulated Jackets
While Mountain Equipment's range focuses predominantly on weather protection in the form of hardshell and softshell jackets, some designs integrate insulation for cold weather warmth without compromising on waterproofness. The Ice Pack Jacket showcases Mountain Equipment's expertise, sandwiching a warm yet highly compressible trace-down filling between a water-resistant Pertex outer shell and moisture-wicking mesh lining. Siliconised synthetic fibres enhance the natural warmth of the premium goose down while an AquaDry membrane provides weatherproofing if caught out in rain or snow showers. Optimised for winter aerobic activities, the form-fitting jacket uses strategically placed synthetic insulation in high sweat zones for breathability. Elasticated cuffs, a helmet-compatible hood and a drawcord hem seal in warmth. Weighing just 453g with 750 fill goose down insulation, the Ice Pack offers impressive heat-to-weight for cold but active pursuits like winter hiking, climbing and mountaineering. The Ogre Jacket provides an even warmer winter insulation option by using thicker 100g Supreme Micro down paired with Drilite water-resistant outer fabric. With hand-warmer pockets, internal stash pockets and a fixed hood for additional coverage, the Ogre is built to deal with frigid temperatures while still protecting against freezing winds and snow. The perfect belay jacket for sedentary use in savage conditions.
Mountain Equipment Hard Shell Mountaineering Jackets
When climbers and mountaineers are planning high-altitude ascents or expeditions that involve tackling extreme environments, Mountain Equipment's range of hardcore hard shells offers the weather protection and features required. Built without compromise for the most demanding mountain conditions, the Ifgiru Jacket uses rugged 3-layer Gore-Tex Pro Ascent fabric designed specifically with elite mountaineering and ice climbing in mind. Fully adjustable Velcro/elastic cuffs create an impermeable seal around gloves while the insulated, helmet-compatible hood has multiple volume adjustment points for a dialled fit. Underarm zip vents provide ventilation, backed by a three-way adjustable hem that can be tweaked to prevent spindrift ingress. Six exterior and interior pockets offer abundant storage for essentials like climbing gear. Weighing 705g, the Ifgiru sits at the pinnacle of Mountain Equipment's mountaineering apparel offering, with every design detail focused on enabling peak performance in the most hostile environments. The Dhaulagiri Jacket provides another Gore-Tex Pro Ascent shell option, with recessed seams and armour textiles reinforcing high-wear areas prone to abrasion and snagging during climbing. PrimaLoft Thermo insulation adds warmth without compromising ease of movement. Anatomical pre-shaping enhances the range of motion with articulated sleeves and body shaping. Ready for the harshest weather, the Dhaulagiri delivers expedition-level protection. When you demand the most advanced and protective waterproof jacket for climbing into the abyss, Mountain Equipment's mountaineering gear is engineered without compromise to help you push boundaries in the vertical world.