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Slioch Pioneer Jacket

rated 5.0 of 5 stars

Slioch is no longer in business, and the Pioneer Jacket has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best waterproof jackets for 2023.

It might seem a bit bizarre having your mountain waterproofs handmade -- but in fact it can be cheaper. Slioch Outdoor Equipment, Poolewe, Ross-shire, Scotland IV22 2JU, Telephone +44 (0)1445 86 412 (Fax:781412) will make them for you in Gore-tex, Ventile or a breathable nylon, and it will be cheaper than from a shop, made to fit you, and within reason, incorporate your requirements.

My wife and I enjoy hillwalking, but I don't like the short cut of most serious waterproofs which are clearly made with the climber/scrambler in mind. With a knee length cut one can postpone the putting on of the overtrousers for as long as possible. For this reason I was able to specify my Pioneer Jacket from Slioch with this in mind. It already boasts elasticated hem drawcord, waist drawcord, hood with volume adjusting strap (brilliant), wired visor and usual drawcord (though not with tethered ends on mine, so you need to tuck it into the velcroed storm flap when its windy).

Fleece lined handwarmer pockets behind the large cargo pockets are brilliant too, and the map pocket will accept Ordnance Survey maps easily. Mine is made from three-layer goretex (navy blue with contrasting scarlet).

How does it perform? After eight hours in serious Scottish rain I remained dry apart from a bit of water getting in round the front of the hood - where there is stitching to capture the end of the wire in the visor it was not seam taped (about the only seam which wasn't) which then dripped down between me and the chin guard. I have since sealed these seams, and a similar walk in the carneddau in North Wales in terrible weather has proved the point.

The hood is especially good - I wear the hood a lot as a wind break for my rather rheumatic neck - as it moves well with the head and does not obscure vision like so many. With the volume adjuster, it can be used easily in less severe conditions, and when the weather gets naughty you really can batten down the hatches.

I understand that the RAF mountain rescue teams use Slioch equipment.

I can understand why!

Fabric: 3 layer Goretex Taslan
Price Paid: �200 approx.

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