+ Slim fit, weight, pack size
- No hood, value
Designed for runners, this Gore Paclite jacket is unusual in featuring no hood – most runners prefer a hat to a hood. However, most adventure racing kit lists will demand a hood and one can be attached to a Velcro tab at the collar. The cut is athletically slim, clearly designed for lean runners rather than short, barrel-bellied ramblers and there is drawcord adjustment at hem and collar. The Gore Paclite fabric is light and narrow seam tapes help keep overall weight down and breathability up. Aiding this is a permanently open vent across the back of the shoulders, allowing through venting. Opening the high fleece lined collar wide and air will flow through without billowing up the jacket. Fine when training but useless in any race when carrying a pack. The collar isn’t adjustable so if it’s not snug enough you’ll get a bit drafty. Adjustable, elasticated sleeves are long enough to give full freedom of movement and they have enough stretch to allow pulling up when things get warm. The main water resistant zip is backed by a stiffened panel to keep rain out. A small pocket on the right hip will take a mobile, tissue and car keys. There’s some reflective piping along some seams, but not really enough for all round visibility to feel safe on the bike at night. The lack of a hood obviously means it’s not ideal for AR, but as a running jacket it works well and weighs little though is expensive compared to others.
Cost £140 though I’ve seen it here for £56!
+ Mesh stuff sack, short cut, rollaway hood
- Terrible hood, boxy chest
This was one of the first Gore Paclite jackets around and little has changed over the years. The large chest sizing, rollaway hood and hand warmer pockets suggest it’s more appropriate for easy going backpacking and travelling rather than athletic sports. It has a short body length with no drop in the tail to protect you when biking though the hem is the standard adjustable elastic. The hood suffers from serious design flaws that mean it doesn’t come close to sitting snug on the head and annoyingly billows up or blows the peak down on your face in a wind. As a result it doesn’t move with the head meaning when you turn to look to your side all you see is the inside of the hood. There’s no adjustment at the wide neck so when the hood’s not up and the wind is, it can send a shiver straight down the spine. A double storm flap, adjustable cuffs and waterproof zips on the pockets keep the rain out and the pockets are mesh lined to aid ventilation. However, when worked hard Paclite will always feel damp on the inside, but bear in mind all Gore jackets come with a Satisfaction Guarantee – if you’re not impressed then take it back for a refund. It’s probably best suited for easy-going ramblers or as a small, light, packable jacket for gap year travellers and their ilk. If you can get it for £56 then go for it, but if you’re looking for ‘the’ jacket to take out in all weathers then look elsewhere…