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  1. Lightweight Down Jacket – Full Zip or Half Zip?

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    Lightweight Down Jacket - Full Zip or Half Zip?

    When choosing a lightweight down jacket one of the most important decisions you will need to make is whether to have a full length zip or a half length zip. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, so ruminate on our list before you make a decision.


    Full Length Zip Positives

    Easy to take on and off

    Vent yourself easily if the zip is two-way

    Can be opened out and used as a blanket

    Access inner pockets quickly

    Possible to join it with other jackets

    Full Length Zip Negatives

    Larger zip area leads to greater heat loss

    More surface area for wind and rain penetration

    More wear and tear on the zip


    Half Length Zip Positives

    More down area, so warmer

    Less zip wear and tear

    Better fit around the stomach

    Less zip area for wind and rain penetration

    Half Length Zip Negatives

    More difficult to take on and off

    Harder to access inner jacket pockets

    Harder to vent your body during intense exercise

    Lightweight Down Jacket – Full Zip or Half Zip?

    At the end of the day both half zip and full zip lightweight down jackets are going to keep you warm. The decision you will need to make is do you want a jacket that is versatile – full length zip, or one that is slightly warmer and better fitting – half length zip.

    If are poor at regulating your body heat and are constantly placing on and removing jackets then the full length zip is the style of lightweight down jacket best suited to you. If you feel the cold and very rarely remove a jacket over long periods of time outdoors, then the half zip version is going to be more useful.

    And finally, what about your hair? If you like to look perfect and are constantly preening yourself then a half zip jacket is going to cause you untold grief, so they are best avoided!

  2. Down Jacket Repair Tips And Tricks

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    Down jacket repair instructions

    If you have ripped your favourite down jacket then there are a number of options available to fix the tear. Our down jacket repair tips and tricks are quick and easy to follow without being onerous on your pocket.

    You can of course do nothing, but over time the down insulation filling will billow out and you will be left with a very expensive windproof!

    Preparing The Down Repair

    Before you do anything you must ensure that the down filling is pushed back in to the hole. If the rip is small then use something thin and blunt such as closed tweezers or the end of a pen.

    Try and avoid using items with a sharp tip that could push through the fabric if you slip, or a finger, as they often make the hole bigger.

    If the fabric is dirty around the hole then you will need to clean it before applying an adhesive patch or tape.

    Tweezers used for down jacket repair

    Duct Tape Fix

    Good quality duct tape is a quick way to prevent any further loss of down insulation from your jacket. Just cut the required shape and apply it. If you spend a bit of time pressing down the edges then they will not peel away very easily.

    A lot of people use this technique as a permanent fix, but if you want something more aesthetically pleasing then you could use this as a temporary measure.

    Duct tape used for down jacket repair

    Down Jacket Repair Tape

    Repair tape is similar to Duct Tape but it is a bit more refined in appearance and is easier to cut in to the required shape. These tapes come in both an adhesive form and an iron on system in both fabric and plastic materials.


    If you are handy with a needle then you can always stitch the rip in your down jacket. This can be a very permanent solution if done correctly. However, it can look very messy as you need to pull in a lot of fabric around the tear.

    Stitching used on down jacket repair

    Down Jacket Repair Patches

    This is probably the best looking fix for small to medium sized tears in down jackets. The self adhesive backing on these waterproof flexible fabric patches is very sticky, allowing for good coverage over seams.

    Most packs come with both oblong and circular shapes to avoid patches lifting off when edges are caught.

    Down jacket repair patches

  3. Correct Clothes For Autumn Trekking In Nepal

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    Autumn’s post-monsoon season is a great time for exploring Nepal’s iconic trekking trails. Clear skies, big views and challenging days on foot all add up to a great adventure. Whether you’re trekking as part of a group or independently, you’ll want to be comfortable throughout the long, demanding days. With sweat dripping off as you slog up a hillside, you could be forgiven for thinking you’ll never be cold again. A few hours later, you could be wondering if you’ll ever be warm again!

    The trick is to dress in clothing that offers versatility, flexibility and comfort as needed. Sounds like a tall order, but Sub Zero has the answers and options – they won’t break the bank. Cooling baselayers that wick away sweat to leave you feeling comfortable are the answer. Worn on their own, they look smart; worn under a thermal fleece top, they do the same job and help in staying warm as the temperature drops. Gilets are a great option for quick, light, flexible warmth.

    And it drops fast when the sun dips behind the peaks. That’s when you need to pull on some more warmth, such as a down or synthetic jacket. During rest and food breaks, or if the wind gets up as you cross a pass, you can pull on an extra layer so you avoid getting chilled. All the tops are light, pack small and are carried easily in your own daypack.

    That’s important as temperatures and activity levels vary throughout the day. There’s not much point in having such clothing packed away in a duffle bag carried by a porter. You need it to hand in order to keep control of your comfort. As night falls, you’ll appreciate the layers that keep the cold at bay. Slip on a spare thermal baselayer top and leggings for the evening and wash the one you’ve been wearing. It’ll dry quickly and be ready to cope with more days on the trail. Don’t forget hat and gloves. They’re not accessories, they are essentials offering fast and flexible ways to warm up and cool down.

    Items worn on the ‘trek of a lifetime’ can earn an affection that’s quite surprising. What’s not surprising is that the technical fabrics used will earn their keep for years with durability a key factor in design.

  4. New Super Lightweight Down Winter Sleeping Bags

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    Terra Novas new Elite down sleeping bags are probably one of the lightest and warmest  ranges available for serious mountaineers. High quality 900 Fill Power goose down and superlite down proof fabrics create  comfortable bags that are the closest you can get to just carrying the down! These sleeping bags have all the quality features you would expect from an elite winter sleeping bag, from box wall construction to zip baffles and welded seams. The Elite range of Terra Nova down Sleeping bags come in 3 variations, the 300, 600 and 900. The lightest down bag, Elite 300, weighs just 330g (11.7oz) and has a  temperature rating of  +10°C to -2°C. The heaviest down bag in the range, Elite 900, still only weighs in at 990g (34.9oz) and has a temperature range from -10°C to -26°C.

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