Oct 12, 2020 at 2:37 pm #3679348
I will be doing some winter hiking for the first time this winter. This will be in the White Mountains of NH, possibly some 4K’s nothing crazy ,no overnights or epic mileage this year , but temps could range from 20’s to below zero.
I’m in the process of shopping for a decent hard shell and a insulated puffy to complete my gear needs. Questions are;
Could my Patagonia Micropuff Parka be sufficient as my outermost insulating piece (shell over it when needed)?
if not, I’m looking at the Montbell Superior Down parka. Would that be warm enough for my needs or should I buy once and cry once and get the Montbell Mirage Parka? I don’t want to spend more than I have to but could save up or wait till Christmas , thanks everyoneOct 12, 2020 at 3:49 pm #3679366JCHBPL Member
If you plan to go down to zero, or below, I’d def get the Mirage. It’ll last you forever.Oct 12, 2020 at 4:50 pm #3679375Paul SBPL Member
I used to live in Boston and do a lot of winter hiking in New Hampshire. Believe me, if you get benighted (stuck out for the night) you will want a puffy jacket warm enough to keep you alive. I would get something much warmer than the Montbell Superior Down Parka (which I have and love, but not for your intended application). I would even say that the Montbell Alpine Light Down Parka (which I also have and love) is not warm enough for an unplanned night out in the Whites.
The Mirage jacket (Montbell) isn’t a bad idea.
And I would also suggest some kind of insulated puffy pant as well. Not to hike in, but rather to keep you alive if you are stuck out (unplanned) for the night.Oct 12, 2020 at 5:03 pm #3679377
I might get both, lol…Oct 12, 2020 at 5:14 pm #3679380
Thanks for the input. I’m definitely going to get the Mirage and the Superior will be for three season use , love em both and had the superior few years ago.. I have outer shell pants in case and soft shell /merino wool legging baselayer. I see your point though but I also would have an emergency bivy or my quilt just in case.Oct 12, 2020 at 5:15 pm #3679381JCHBPL Member
LOVE my MB down pants :)Oct 12, 2020 at 5:16 pm #3679382
With you having a hard shell why not size the insulating piece to go over it?
Using a classic belay parka means you don’t have to take off your main weather protection to add insulation. Second the carrying of insulated pants and the normal overnite survival stuffOct 12, 2020 at 5:20 pm #3679383Brad WBPL Member
Are you hiking in it or to sit around camp?Oct 12, 2020 at 5:35 pm #3679384
I’m an XL so usually have room to layer all pieces accordingly..Oct 12, 2020 at 5:36 pm #3679385
this is for day hiking in the winter, eventually down the road might want to do an overnight in moderate or seasonably warm winter conditions but for now hard winter day hikes..Oct 12, 2020 at 6:52 pm #3679406
Kevin I am an XL but I don’t own a LW storm shell I can layer over 50mm thickness of insulation, I can fit about 20mm at most, I was thinking worst case change of conditions. My DAS layers over and gives me another inch of insulation plus the free dead air space, the old DAS not the new fashionable skinny cut. But I used to climb so I have a slightly different mind-set and I’ve been caught out a couple of times when skiing due to equipment failureOct 12, 2020 at 9:14 pm #3679432Serge GiachettiBPL Member
@giachettLocale: boulder, co
Yeah, I’d look for something at least as warm as the Mrage. Montbell has a new puffy called the alpine down parka, only 16oz with 7 oz of 800 fill and. 20 D shell for $300. I bought a used mirage a awhile back but if I were buying today, I’d get the alpine. My mirage has its share of duct tape. Great jacket though.Oct 12, 2020 at 9:32 pm #3679434
I’m sorry , was just confused on the climbing terminology , as I have no experience with it.Oct 12, 2020 at 9:35 pm #3679436
That looks like a great option, thanksOct 13, 2020 at 10:21 am #3679498Scott SmithBPL Member
@mrmuddyLocale: Idaho Panhandle
Talk with Ben at Goosefeet. He will make u a custom…exact to what u want ..and, his prices are very competitive
top shelf quality..and a jacket that u will loveOct 13, 2020 at 7:00 pm #3679575J RBPL Member
Nothing against MB, but +1 to GFG.Oct 13, 2020 at 11:25 pm #3679610Bruce TolleyBPL Member
@btolleyLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
These would be day hikes, yes? Why not start with what you have then start adjusting the kit. It was not that long ago when a wool sweater was the go to midlayer. :-))
I run rather hot and personally find the Patagonia MicroPuff OK for rest stops but does not breath enough under a pack to wear as insulation in the 10 to 30 degree temp range. But it might work for you. I eventually switched to a Arcteryx Atom LT which vents out the sides but it spends most of the time in the pack.
But if there is any chance you might be out when the weather turns quickly bad, what Edward John M said.
“With you having a hard shell why not size the insulating piece to go over it? Using a classic belay parka means you don’t have to take off your main weather protection to add insulation. Second the carrying of insulated pants and the normal overnite survival stuff. “Oct 14, 2020 at 4:41 am #3679619
My hardshell is a basic 4 season 3 layer Patagonia Torrentshell. I have a Nano Air and Micropuff too. I’m just looking for a heavy weight puffy as a last defense or emergency piece layer for summits or if we are immobilized for a while and we need to stay warm. Most of the time, it will remain in my pack. I guess I’m just confused on what a belay parka is versus a regular parka such as the Montbell Mirage , which is what I’m eyeing as my outermost insulating piece. This will be my first time winter hiking and snowshoeing and these are all the pieces of clothing and gear on the AMC and winter hiking list..Oct 14, 2020 at 5:24 am #3679624
A “Belay parka” is a climbers terminology for a static layering piece that is specifically cut to wear as an overgarment, in the same way the Scandinavians carry a “Big Mother overparka” in winter. Not too much insulation and large and loose. I run hot when ski touring and don’t normally wear the Goretex [ of similar cut and sizing to the Torrentshell] but mine fits over base layers and my Macpac Pisa and not much room for any other layers.
A DAS fits over the above ensemble with about an inch of dead air space trapped between the two garments, it simply reduces the amount of fiddle factor when it’s cold. In a Northern hemisphere winter I would dress the same but perhaps pack a warmer overparkaOct 14, 2020 at 10:36 am #3679663
would this be a good option?Oct 14, 2020 at 3:03 pm #3679734
I’ve not owned or used one but it is well thought of in the climbing community I believe tho that it runs a little small and most people size up. If you are on a tight budget look at US army surplus and the Gen 3 Hi-Loft L-7 ECWCS garment, basically the same thing but much cheaperOct 14, 2020 at 3:35 pm #3679744bradmacmtBPL Member
Decades ago I did a lot of winter climbing in the Presidentials. From my experience, I’d want a fully baffled down Parka like the Montbell Mirage (or Alpine) you mention. Personally, I’d probably get the Feathered Friends Volant Down Jacket.Oct 14, 2020 at 4:25 pm #3679748
Down is the LW answer naturally, but most of the current drop of down parkas seem to be cut fashionably skinny. I have nothing against form fitting down as a primary insulation but something cut larger and looser works better as a bivvy garment in my experience .Oct 15, 2020 at 6:11 pm #3679900
If you are going to carry a full bivvy and a down quilt you may not need a really warm parka as something for emergency use.
In which case; while I still think an insulation piece that goes over your Torrent shell is what I would do; it could be a lot lighter.
You would need to try on in store while wearing all of your layers including your existing hard shell to make sure it is big enough.
I usually carry an UL full bivvy sack but I swing between a DIY modified extra huge LW synthetic sleeping bag and the DAS parka and pantsOct 15, 2020 at 7:36 pm #3679908
I got a killer deal on the Black Diamond Belay Parka for dirt cheap so I went with that. I went with an XL which I sometimes am anyways. It got great reviews. I was looking at the Eddie Bauer Peak IV Down Parka as well and the Montbell Mirage. I still may get a down option as well. I won’t carry all of them all the time..
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