I totally get the layering concept for outdoor activities, it makes complete sense. I have some lovely clothes for when my wife insists I partake in something dull called ‘rambling’.
A good few years ago I invested fairly heavily in the Kilm Traverse jacket and trousers. The Klim kit is ace for a cold, wet British winter, but it is very much a one trick pony. Come summer, despite the ventilation you end up overheating and sweaty. Over a couple of years I have been able to acquire a few bits of the Aeventure-Spec layering system. Great stuff so far. For the "The Secret Cabin” trip I was given the Adventure Spec Mongolia Trail and Aqua Pac Jackets to try out.
The Mongolia Trail jacket is a vented, no, not vented, it is made out of a hard wearing mesh material that completely lets air through everywhere except in the hard wearing areas - elbows and shoulders where it has a layer of harder wearing material. It also comes with full "CE EN17092 certified AA for motorcycle use” armour - elbows, shoulder and back.
Obviously if you are wearing a mesh jacket in the wild you need to have a waterproof layer to hand, hence the Aqua Pac Jacket. The waterproof layer conveniently packs into itself and fits in the Mongolia’s big rear pocket.
I am struggling to think of what to say about the combination, and I guess that is the best thing I could say about it. It just works. It does everything you need it to do. It is comfortable, provides excellent all weather protection, keeps you cool, keeps you dry, and looks great in an understated non-Power Ranger kind of way.
I am big and tall. Tall and big and fat, at the moment. I can lose weight! The XL fitted a treat, long enough, and wide enough. The arm length is spot on when in a riding position, and the sleeves have velcro fittings to perfect the fit. The armour is placed where it needs to be, is large enough for my liking and is the soft until impacted type, so its dead comfy. The venting/mesh is spot on for warm weather. I may have tested the shoulder and elbow armour at one point at about 30mph in a rut, and it works remarkably well.
When the temperature drops, or the rain starts, out comes the Aqua Pac waterproof layer. It’s a really simple jacket, though after reading the Adventure-Spec blurb, maybe it isn’t... You may ask why not just use any waterproof layer? Well you could of course, but what you would lose out on is the cut and shape of the jacket, it’d completely wind and waterproof and far tougher that any other Goretex type layer. It is long enough to cover your back when riding, has long sleeves, like the Mongolia to fit the riding position, it is very light and it packs down to fit into a pocket. And it’s black so it’s cool as fuck! It’s also very slimming, trust me.
I love this combination, it works really well, and should do for many years to come, thanks Adventure-Spec!
THE MONGOLIA TRAIL JACKET
A tough lightweight outer layer jacket designed for rally and extreme adventure riding. It features military spec snag resistant nylon 6.6 mesh body fabric that provides maximum ventilation and 1000D ballistic nylon fabric in key abrasion zones for extra protection.
THE AQUA PAC JACKET
A tough, lightweight waterproof jacket. It features AS-Tex 210D 3 layer nylon 6-6 ripstop fabric that is super breathable, windproof and waterproof to a hydrostatic head of 28,000mm. A longer tail helps to keep water and mud out when riding in the standing position. When not being used the jacket packs down into its own pockets sack.