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Fjällräven High Coast Wind Jacket Review

Last weekend I got to try the new Fjällräven High Coast Wind Jacket during a trip to the Lake District and here is my review of the product.

The jacket is made from a waxed polyamide and organic cotton material and is very light and breathable. As the name suggests, this is a windproof jacket as well as being shower poof so will keep you a little dry should you get caught in light rain showers.

My first use of the jacket was during a hike up Blencathra. It was a clear day and quite warm when I started the hike, but as I got higher up the wind started to pick up and started to feel a little colder, so on came my High Coast jacket. The jacket certainly did its job of keeping the wind off me and help maintain a comfortable body temperature.

Although it was windy as I got closer to the summit, my baselayer top was damp with sweat in the usual places where you sweat when on a hike, however I was surprised how quickly my baselayer seemed to dry under my High Coast jacket and how breathable the jacket actually was when wearing on top of a damp baselayer. I often find when hiking that you always seem to be taking layers off or putting layers on in order to get the right body temperature based on how strenuous the hike conditions are, I was very pleased with the combination of my baselayer and jacket and just pulled down the jacket zip if I felt I need to cool down or let more air to my upper body.

When I finally got to the summit and stop for lunch, it was a lot more windy and cooler, yet I didn’t need to put any extra layers on, I just zipped up the jacket and hood and pulled the cords to tighten the hood around my head. The jacket has a single zipped chest pocket on the left and two zipped hip pockets either side. The cuffs are elasticated and the hem of the jacket can be tightened by hidden chords at either side.

I continued to wear the jacket for whole of the descent and I just unzipped/zipped up as and when my body temperature dictated it. I also wore the jacket for most of my hike the following day in warmer, yet more changeable conditions while doing the Fairfield Horseshoe; both times the jacket protected me from the wind when needed and helped maintain my body temperature at all times.

The biggest thing that impressed me with the Fjällräven High Coast Wind Jacket was its breathability. I have worn lightweight windproof or showerproof jackets in the past and one thing what always happened was condensation/sweat inside the jacket. This never happen once with the High Coast jacket. Even when the temperature increased as I got lower down towards the start of my hikes, I never once felt condensation or sweat inside the jacket. I was actually amazed how dry the jacket was inside when I took it off.

Although I never got caught in any rain showers during the weekend (which makes a change for the Lake District), I’m sure the High Coast jacket would keep me dry in any light rain when the time comes. The waterproof level of the jacket can also be enhanced a bit by waxing it with the Greenland Wax as used on the other G-1000 based Fjällräven products, though I will wait to see how the jacket performs in light showers before giving it the waxing treatment.

I would thoroughly recommend the Fjällräven High Coast Wind Jacket as a perfect jacket for Spring or Summer adventures and look forward to putting it through its paces more over the coming months.

UPDATE 7th May 2015

Last weekend I got to test this jacket in more wet and windy conditions. Last Thursday I got caught in strong winds, hail, snow and light rain for nearly 2 hours during a hike in the Lake District. The jacket held up very well in the light rain, snow and hail showers, in that the jacket kept my baselayer completely dry. Two days later I was caught in much stronger winds and heavier rain while on another hike for a period of over 5 hours.

This time the jacket did become a lot wetter than previously in lighter showers and shorter time. The jacket was wet through but I was wearing it on top of my Keb Loft down jacket. Although my Keb jacket was damp on the outside, it still kept my baselayer completely dry. So basically the High Coast Wind Jacket certainly does its job in more moderate conditions over a shorter period of time, but if caught out in more heavier rain and for longer periods then the jacket will get wet, but it’s not designed for such conditions and would be best with a more heavy duty waterproof jacket.

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Boker Knives – Fine German Craftsmanship

It was during the early 70s when George MacFarlaine, founder of The Sporting Lodge, was touring Germany and came across Boker knives while searching for fine barrel makers for his shotguns. A keen knife enthusiast, George purchased some small knives to use in his workshop.

Some forty years later, The Sporting Lodge now stock a range of these finest and well priced German knives, which started life in the small Boeker tool factory in Remscheid in the 17th century. Boeker tools then and known as Boker now, were among the leading products in Germany and neighbouring countries.

In 1829 the factory produced 2,000 sabers a week, made by 64 smiths, 47 grinders and a large number of unskilled laborers. In the 1830s, Hermann Boeker emigrated and founded H. Boeker & Co. in New York, developed into Canada, and then Mexico later in 1865.

Heinrich Boeker took production to Solingen, where the German industry of cutting tools was growing. In 1869, he founded Heinr. Boeker & Co. with Hermann Heuser, a well-known specialist in the field of cutting tools. The Boeker family produced shaving blades, scissors and pocket knives which bore the famous tree symbol.

The Sporting Lodge carry a range of knives selected for their durability, practical use and finest materials.

What could be more practical than the Boker Magnum Bon Appetite Pocket Knife? Knife, fork and spoon are made of 440 steel and are separated from each other thanks to the use of an innovative fastener technology. We carry this little set of eating tools on our picnics in the forests and woodland trips, and it’s the perfect camping cutlery set. Never be without cutlery on the go!

As a gift for the knife enthusiast, the Boker Arbolito Eltrampero Ciervo stag knife is a lovely stag handled hunting and general outdoors knife, in Böhler N695 steel, with a full and tapered tang. This attractive knife comes complete with a premium leather sheath.

Widely grown in Argentina, Uruguay and Chile, quince wood dates back to the 13th century in England, when quince trees were planted by Edward I at the Tower of London. It has a fine patina and markings. Our Boker Magnum Silver Pin Quincewood Pocket Knife has handsome quincewood handle scales and brushed stainless steel bolsters with a handy lock back mechanism.

Browse the complete Boker knife range online at The Sporting Lodge!

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The Fjallraven Rucksack No. 21 Mini – Little Gem of a Backpack!

The Fjallraven Rucksack No. 21 Mini is perfect for the young outdoors, and for holidays or travel to school. Inspired by Fjallraven’s earlier backpacks from the 1960s and 1970s, the Fjallraven Rucksack No. 21 Mini is made from a durable waxed G-1000 HeavyDuty with details in natural-toned leather. We tested this little gem on a trek with the family, and it was tough enough to withstand the elements of wind and rain. Plus, as we’d waxed it with Greenland Wax, the rain water formed droplets on the bag and did not make our sandwiches soggy.

The main compartment has plenty of space for a flask and lunch bag, a t-shirt, our iPad in its own separate compartment and plenty of room for purses, notebook, and our umbrella too. There is also a sitting pad in G-1000, and a pocket that keeps a flask upright. The Rucksack No. 21 Mini features a large front pocket and two side pockets, an inside zippered security pocket for keys and other small items, and has super leather straps which are sturdy with easy-to-handle press buttons. Sometimes shoulders ache with narrow straps, but these are padded with an additional chest strap to keep you in place! This is the ideal backpack for the kids who want a rough, tough and fashionable reason to get out in all weathers.

The Fjallraven Rucksack No. 21 Mini is from the family of vintage designed backpacks from Fjallraven and they come in four sizes for all the family. You are spoilt for choice with the range of 6 colours from shouting Red to Ochre (our favourite) and the smart Navy, Black, traditional Green and the new addition, Lake Blue, which is stunning. The best thing about these bags is that it actually encouraged our kids to leave the laptop and get out in the great outdoors!