Gear Talk: Rab Cirrus Flex, Kinetic Alpine & Downpour Eco Jacket Review.
When it comes to jackets, one brand who continuously excels to deliver incredibly versatile and fully comprehensive products is Rab. Following our review of Everything We Love About Rab, today we wanted to do a full focus on some of our favourite jackets.
If you’re on the hunt for either your first quality outdoor jacket or are looking for your next jacket, this list will help point you in the right direction based on your next adventure!
Today we’ll be focusing on 3 key lines, the Cirrus Flex 2.0, the Kinetic Alpine 2.0, Kinetic 2.0 and the Downpour Eco, so without further hesitation, let’s dive in!
Cirrus Flex 2.0
Kicking things off we have the incredibly stylish and versatile Cirrus Flex 2.0, This jacket was MADE for UK hill walking and offers the perfect lightweight, windproof companion for those brisk windy days whilst walking across hills.
Whether it’s walking across peaks or a simple stroll through town, this jacket is perfect for both urban and alpine environments. Being windproof, it’ll keep you safe from windchill, whilst still being breathable for those hard walks to let moisture escape easily
Being so versatile, this jacket makes for both a great outer layer in non-wet conditions, but also a fantastic mid layer on those wetter or heavier treks and is easily overlaid with a waterproof jacket when needed.
The Cirrus Flex 2.0’s slim fit design and cirrus insulation system (a 3 layer lightweight synthetic insulation) provides quality synthetic insulation with a fantastic warmth to weight ratio.
The stretchy fleecing material under the arms and down the side of the body also add to this flexibility and make the jacket ideal for hiking situations where you’ll be putting out a lot of body heat. This material is more breathable, so does allow some air through, but will help stop any moisture building up.
In terms of durability, as mentioned, this is an ideal urban jacket or general walking jacket and is NOT designed for hard climbs, harsh terrains or large levels of abrasion. With two large hand warmer pockets (the left hand pocket also doubling up as a bag for the jacket on warmer days and inside pockets making for perfect map holders. This is the ideal, lightweight jacket that any UK hiker or walker will love!
Kinetic Alpine 2.0
Next up we have the Kinetic Alpine 2.0, which sits at an interesting place when it comes to jackets. Whilst this jacket is far more durable and intended for much more vertical or harsher environments than the Cirrus Flex, it is still not a fully heavyweight hardshell jacket. Instead, it’s far better to consider this totally unique jacket as the ideal versatile, comfortable and protective softshell outer layer that is ideal for changeable or wet and colder conditions.
Whilst maintaining similar levels of comfort, breathability and stretchiness found on the Cirrus Flex, this jacket also adds the waterproof membrane for enhanced protection against the elements that is ideal for high output alpine activities such as scrambling, climbing or mountaineering.
Because of this, manoeuvrability, breathability are all at the forefront of this jacket and thanks to Rab’s Proflex material, a 3 layer laminate material with outer waterproofing, hydrophilic breathable membrane middle, and stretchy lining on inside, this jacket is both lightweight but also highly versatile comfortable fabric.
Unlike most hard shell jackets, you won’t hear much rustling with this jacket, making it fantastic for a wide range of activities, this too is further enhanced by the ceramic overlays on the sleeves, shoulders and high abrasion areas to give further durability without affecting breathability.
We also can’t get enough of the hood on this jacket. Not only is it fantastic for a snug fit with a wired brim to keep drips off of the face for full face closure when needed, but it is also ideal for helmets too thanks to the volume adjusters and plentiful room.
Likewise, in terms of pockets, the two A-line pockets offer great versatility for maps, hats gloves and gear, with an inside pocket too for phones or other valuables.
All in all, this jacket is the perfect outer layer for those keeping active in changing conditions. That’s not to say this is a jacket for everyone and is not entirely suited to the harshest conditions, but it depends on where your priorities lie as what you lose in bombproof protection, you more than make up for in flexibility and breathability, making it ideal for fast moving high output activities if you get caught out on a wet and windy day!
Unlike it’s alpine cousin, the Kinetic 2.0 is much more of a leisurely jacket, that strips away the bulk of the alpine, leaving you with the perfect all-day layer, with refined fit that provides the stretch and comfort of a softshell and the protection of a hardshell.
The Rab’s own Proflex™ stretchy, breathable fabric provides high levels of comfort when active making this a jacket you can wear for more than just keeping the rain out. The light knitted inner face of the jacket wicks moisture away from your body and feels completely unlike a conventional waterproof shell. Designed for day-long use in challenging, changeable weather conditions, the Kinetic 2.0 Jacket has a waterproof component hidden inside: a high performance, flexible membrane with a waterproof measure of 10,000mm and an exceptional breathability level in excess of 35,000cc/sqm/24hrs. Other technical features include a helmet-compatible hood and A-line pockets, meaning you’ll be prepared for all eventualities!
Finally, we have the Downpour Eco that does…exactly what it says on the tin!
This is the ideal lightweight, versatile, waterproof, and made from recycled materials. Perfect for those who are hiking, walking or for everyday use with the environment in mind.
The Downpour Eco is made using Pertex Shield 2.5 Layer with recycled outer, a fluorocarbon-free DWR, and a recycled membrane. Giving the jacket a great layer of protection from rain (hydrostatic head of 20,000mm) with superb breathability and windproofing, thus, you get a jacket that will remain comfortable even in the worst conditions and under strenuous activity.
Unlike the Kinetic alpine however, the Downpour is far more accustomed to the walker instead of the climber who still requires a waterproof layer but not those who need helmet compatibility or the ceramic durability.
To further seal out the elements you get a fully adjustable hem drawcord and velcro adjustable cuffs. The jacket also handily stuffs down into its own hand pocket so you can stash it in your pack on changeable weather days.
The Downpour Eco features Rab’s ‘Regular’ Fit which means it has enough room for a couple of layers underneath it (so makes for a great pairing with the Cirrus Flex), without creating excess material that flaps around in the wind.
So there you have it! All you need to know about some of the fantastic new ranges we’ve got coming in from Rab! If you have any questions, our team would be happy to help! Or if you’ve just picked up your own Rab jacket, we’d love to see it in action! Tag us on social media using #ForTheOutdoors for your chance to feature!