Paramo Aspira Smock Waterproof Jacket for Women
Product Review & Walking Gear Test

Paramo Aspira Smock Waterproof Jacket for Women Paramo Aspira Smock Waterproof Jacket for Women
Aspira Smock Waterproof Jacket for Women

Paramo Nikwax Analogy

Vital Statistics:

Guarantee:
Life of the Jacket

Colours:
Fire/Burgandy, Dawn/M Grey

Sizes:
XS, S, M, L, XL

SRP:
£250.00

Paramo says:"Highest specification waterproof smock for female mountaineers and Outdoor Professionals and for those entering the most extreme environments. Helmet and harness compatible. The Ladies' Aspira Smock has been designed and tested by women."

Features to Note:

In-use Test:

This is the latest version of the Aspira Smock for Women designed for high mountain use and/or relatively extreme conditions.

So far (December 07), I've only had opportunity to use it on cold, wet (but snow-free) days hill-walking in the Derbyshire peaks. Inevitably there are a few of its features that I've not tested - I've concentrated on its performance as a garment for winter walking.

I liked the overall look of the jacket - sleeve length and overall fit was very good. (I'm 5'8'', average build and was wearing a medium size.) I've tried a few short, simple scrambles in it and found the freedom of movement around the shoulder areas to be good.

As with most of the Paramo gear I've used, I tended to wear the Aspira with just a base layer and was perfectly warm enough. For periods of intense activity, there's a great range of ventilation options - I used the upper arm vents most frequently - and these were easily opened and closed while wearing a backpack. The foam pads down the back did certainly help with ventilation around my rucksack. When I needed to warm up slightly, the waist adjustment was easy to use and worked well.

The hood was very good - there's lots of volume which can be easily adjusted to cope potentially with a range of head gear although I've used it only with a woolly hat! Once the hood is up and fully fastened it really is snug and secure. The wired peak plus the face-guard provided great protection even during a Kinder rain-storm.

There's a sturdy two-way zip which opens right down the front - I certainly didn't detect any water leakage around it.

The range of pockets is good. There's two sited conveniently at the side for warming your hands (accessible when wearing a backpack), 2 differently sized pockets also on the outside (one of which is large enough for a folded os map) and another one on the front which was ideal for my compass. There's even means of attaching the compass to the outside of that pocket which I found really quite useful. There's a good size 'dry' pocket on the inside too.

Buying Advice:

The Paramo Aspira Smock for women does seem to be a well thought-out product. Small details such as the loop for attaching items to one of the front pockets, the drawcords at both waist and hem, the deep, easy to open, two-way chest zip plus the female specific design make it great to wear. As I've come to expect with Paramo gear, the waterproofness and breathability were both excellent.

It's a premium product at a premium price but the discrete reinforcement at shoulders and elbows plus the 'renewabilty' of the Analogy fabric should provide excellent durability. If you want to walk throughout the autumn/winter and be confident of staying comfortable whatever the weather, then this is a super option.


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