Saturday, 28 March 2015


I recently received some outdoor gear to test from those wonderful folk at Cotswold Outdoor Stores. Over the last couple of weeks I have been putting the Mountain Equipment Mission Softshell Pant through the rigours of the Scottish mountains.
Mountain Equipment Mission Pants

In action on The Ben
The softshell trousers are best suited to winter mountaineering but equally at home to winter hillwalking in the UK and Alpine environments. They are made from a combination of Windstopper and Exolite fabrics. Weighing in at  550g but they certainly don't feel  heavy when out on the hill and very comfortable.
I've had these out on some demanding conditions. A couple of rounds of The Carn Mor Dearg Arete onto Ben Nevis, a backpacking trip to Ben Alder and a few winter skills days. The pants coped well in a wide range of conditions from almost 'summer like' in the glens to full on Scottish winter weather. On all occasions I felt comfortable and never got too hot in the higher temperatures. There are excellent, long venting zips on the thighs and on the calf area. Of course when I was operating in the colder conditions they were perfectly suited. I encountered 40mph+ wind speeds giving an high windchill which the windstopper did its job well to keep me warm and toasty.
The quality in the materials is excellent has can be expected from Mountain Equipment. Unfortunately the pair I received had a small area of loose stitching after only a couple of days out on the hill. Cotswold have an excellent returns policy so this should be resolved quickly.
Windstopper & Exolite fabrics with excellent venting zips
All in all a great winter mountaineering pant, suited well to the Scottish weather. There is a wide range of softshell pants on offer from Mountain Equipment for warmer and colder environments. I have had the Ibex, G2 & Liskamm pants in the past and I would say that these are the warmest and most windproof I have owned up to now. They retail at £130.

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