View Full Version : Insulation layer

11-07-2010, 22:28
What are the best options for an insulation layer to be warn underneath a Pro shell. I was
thinking of a down/ synthetic type jacket. Possibly the Patagonia nano puff and or the Mountian hardware Zonal jacket or my likely jacket the Montbell thermawrap, which i've heard nothing but great things about. Should I get the synthetic version or the down. I know the down probably packs smaller. But what about getting it wet. Any other pros and cons of each?

Sorry I am kinda new to hiking. And I usually wear my Mt. Hardwear monkey man fleece. Great warmth but kinda bulky in the pack. Looking to cut down bulk and weight obviously.


11-07-2010, 22:48
Is this to wear while moving or at camp?
What temps?

11-07-2010, 23:59
I use my thermawrap synthetic into the 20s, below that I would go with a western mountaineering flight w/ hood. I have and carry both of these frequently! I carried the thermawrap as my insulation layer for my thru hike and it was more than superb! Never once wished I had extra insulation.

11-08-2010, 12:00
I'll just tell you my philosophy.

I carry a great down bag. Therefore, in the wet east, I like to carry a synthetic insulating layer for two reasons:

1) In a really extreme condition, I could hike with it on and not destroy it's insulating value entirely, never actually done this - no need.

2) As an insurance policy against getting my sleeping bag wet. It's never happened in 30+ years, and probably never will, but there is always the chance of a freak accident. I like to have something in reserve to ward off hypothermia.

For base layer, wool or silk long underwear is my current choice, have very successfully used cheap PolyPro too.

Two or three extra layers of normal weight synthetic shirts underneath a wind layer has always sufficed with the base layer while moving. The insulating layer is normally only used during breaks and in camp.

Hat and gloves go a LONG way toward keeping you warm while hiking. Balaclava during the real cold. In camp, during winter, I find down booties a very worthwhile luxury. Around camp and in the bag.

11-18-2010, 21:48
I carried my Montbell Extremely Light Down Jacket my entire hike. It was so lightweight and packed so small that I never sent it home with the rest of my winter gear. Since I started in late February, this was one of my most treasured pieces of gear early in the hike, especially when the temperatures hit single digits.