Berghaus Paclite Smock
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Similar to the Berghaus Paclite Jacket but without the full length zip, the Berghaus Paclite Smock has proved popular since being introduced in 2005. It's a lightweight shell featuring breathable goretex and taped seams.
Official Berghaus Paclite Smock specification from Berghaus
Berghaus Paclite Smock Reviews
Reviewed by Andy Rock (UK) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: The Berghaus Paclite Smock is a great lightweight jacket great for Spring to Autumn walking in the UK.
Pros: Very, very light indeed. excellent fabric; so breathable.
Cons: Would have scored higher on value for money but the stitching in places isn't as durable as i would expect from Berghaus, although it was sent back and repaired in pretty good time.
Reviewed by Dave Eaton (Barnstaple, Devon) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: Used the paclite smock on Offas Dyke walk at end of May and as we stayed in B&B's with sherpa service decided to try going light, so invested in Paclite smock and 64 zero sac, The smock performed well and it actually "does what is says on the tin" the hood is the best I've experienced on any waterproof, on wet mornings in the Clwyd Range some of my colleagues, were overdressed, overheating and visibly uncomfortable, The Paclite kept me dry and comfortable with little or no condensation, Highly recomended
Reviewed by Gordon (Glasgow) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: This is the best kag I have used. Superb as an extra to sling over a soft shell; weighs nothing, solid and not a bad fit... Good job!!
Reviewed by Gary Harris (UK) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: A great smock, one of the best I've had. Perfect for 80% of situations. I have worn it on long cycle tours and at the crag. I would recommend it to anyone (and have done). Everyone who is serious about being outside in Britain should have one!!
Pros: It weighs nothing and takes up no space!!!!!! Perfect. My v expensive full on Gore tex jacket has been gathering dust in the cupboard since I bought this smock!
Reviewed by stephen honisett (UK) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: You too can look fashionable AND keep dry from both perspiration and rain. The Berghaus Paclite smock is a fantastic bit of kit, it weighs next to nothing, keeps me bone dry and the wired visor is tops for keeping the driving rain out of one's face. The fit is near perfect, so when walking in the howling wind you're not blown away. Heartily recommended.
Reviewed by Paul Elston (UK) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: Excellent top, worn on a few downpours on the hills and kept me dry. Packs down quite small and is really light. I always carry mine with me.
Reviewed by Katy Cuckston (UK) on 2005-09-26:
General comments: The Berghaus Paclite Smock is a great jacket that I would recommend to anyone! I brought mine slightly larger than I normally would and can fit a fleece or body warmer underneath for a bit of added warmth on those days where its a bit more chilly!
Reviewed by Justin Maxwell (Edinburgh) on 2006-01-17:
General comments: I highly recommend this jacket for active use. I wear it hillwalking and running, and will never go back to a full length waterproof for 3 season use. The Paclite Smock has come with me on many multiday routes where I've gone further, and far faster, than I'd have been able to if wearing a traditional cagoule. It's fast and light by definition. And it holds up to hard use, better than expected. After 1 1/2 years and dozens of long days carrying 15-25kg, the shoulders and back show no signs of outside wear, though the inner layer has begun to delaminate as one would expect. That's after regular use in the city and many hill days with a light sack as well - 80 Munros, plus Tops, Corbetts, etc. It's not done yet.
The peaked hood is excellent, the volume reducer allowing full mobility and visibility as the hood moves with your head. It doesn't tie down or tuck away when not in use, a small downside, but it's light and not really noticeable. The storm flap gives adequate protection past the chin and keeps the weather out - I've been on ridges in high wind and hail and fared rather well. The chest pocket is small but fits a compass and chocolate, but a map and you're pushing it. There are no side pockets, leaving me with cold hands sometimes! The cut is short and not the best for snow, but ideal in most other situations. While it breathes well lack of lining means condensation can build up when going hard, and that's when I push up the sleeves, open the 1/2 zip, or maybe take it off and turn it inside out for 30 seconds - by then it's dry. The jacket is fully waterproof and windproof, being Goretex Paclite with taped seams. While the pullover takes some getting used to it's well worth it for the garment's versatility and low weight - 1/2 the Paclite Pro. My rather voluptuous wife is a convert as well.
I read a review in which it wasn't recommended for scrambling, but I've worn it on Liathach and via feratta in the Julian Alps without tearing it, sure it touched rock. Once I slipped on bouldery ground and tore the sleeve some - easily repaired. Another time I lost my grip scrambling and slid a couple feet face to rock until I stopped - heard the jacket scraping against the crag and was pleasantly surprised to see absolutely no damage to the material. So it's minimalist, it might tear, but that's unlikely in my experience.
When it's time to buy another light waterproof I'll probably get another Paclite Smock.
Pros: - extremely lightweight for full-spec 3 season mountain shell
- well-designed hood
- more durable than expected
- fast drying
- good value
Cons: - no means for securing hood when not in use
- small chest pocket
- no side pockets
- no full zip
Reviewed by Chris (Edinburgh) on 2008-07-27:
General comments: The Berghaus Paclite Smock is a really good investment. it is lightweight and has been atrusty piece of kit on many multi-day expeditions. It looks good in the hills and around town and fits in from a style point of view. The jacket is very breathable but after many uses it begins to lose its breathability (but its probably because of not washing it enough). The Jacket folds up very small in its own small stuff sack, this can be lost easily but i just keep it in the zipped pocket on the front and therefore i do not lose it. I can pack it up small enough that it fits in the (large) palm of my hand. The jacket's hood is not quite big enough in my opinion for a helmet but is good with its wire peak but with the front 3/4 zip done up fully, it does not blow off my head in force 8 winds and driving rain. Despite it being a smock, it is easy to put on as does not take away any dignity and is easy to take off too. The fit is excelent with it putting a down gilet underneith whilst being form fitting enough without the gilet not to have excess fabric to blow about. I can however fit extra layers underneith as and when it gets colder. I have worn it in the snow with a down gilet over thetop and been toasty. The fabric is tough and i have not had a rip in it despite many a scuffle with rocks and other abrasive surfaces.
I would give the smock a good 10/10 for the use it has given me.
Pros: It is small and easy to pack away and a great all round jacket for all months of the year. Can't recomend it enough.
Cons: A version with thicker fabric and a less losable stuff bag would be good.