Montane Prism 2.0 2010

The Prism 2.0 is the lightest insulated jacket in the Montane range and now it uses 40g/m2 Primaloft Eco insulation so that it reduces its impact on the planet. The shell is windproof, while the weight and bulk are low enough to make this a warm and comfortable jacket for general hill use. Unlike some insulated tops it also features a hood.

Design
Like other jackets the Montane Prism 2.0 has a layer of insulation sandwiched between the inner and outer windproof and breathable materials. This is synthetic Primaloft, so it won’t be as drastically affected by rain as down, but the outer is not waterproof so it still needs some extra protection in the rain by wearing it under a waterproof jacket. To help trap air around the body and stay warm the jacket has a drawcorded hem, elasticated cuffs and a baffle behind that full-length front zip. It’s nice to see a soft chinguard too at the top of the zip to prevent skin contact with cold zips. A nice bonus is that the pockets are insulated on the inside too. Those same pockets are placed relatively high on the body, so you can warm your hands without having to remove rucksack belts or harnesses. The hood is the primary benefit of this jacket though as this should make it feel much warmer. It also has a wired peak, volume adjuster and face drawcords, so it can fit very snugly.

On the hill
The Montane Prism 2.0 is a very comfortable piece of kit. It is light and compact enough to stash in your rucksack, but whip it out and in a flash it makes you feel warm and cosy. The hood fits well but does not move with the head easily, which is a little frustrating. While the wired hood peak gives shelf appeal, it is really too small I feel to add any on-the-hill benefit. The pockets are a dream, as they are big enough to stash a map, hat or gloves in on the move. The cuffs are comfortable and the length good. The jacket can be rolled into its own pocket, although I just rolled the body into the hood as I do with waterproof jackets and this worked perfectly.

In the lab
The Montane Prism 2.0 provided 2.2 TOGs of insulation, which was the least of any jacket here. However remember that, like the majority of jackets in this test, it does have a hood, which will make it feel warmer than its TOG value suggests as we lose so much heat from our heads.

Fabric Pertex Microlight Rip-stop
Insulation Primaloft Eco (minimum 50% recycled fibres) 40g/m2
Sizes XS-XXL
Weight 446g (size L)
Made in China
Stores in the UK 100
Stockist details – tel. (01670) 522300; www.montane.co.uk

Verdict
The Montane Prism 2.0 uses eco-friendly insulation; hood provided; insulated pockets
easily accessible. But hood movement was not perfect; not waterproof. All in all it’s an ideal insulated layer for carrying in your rucksack year-round and wearing on the hill in cold weather.  It won the ‘Best Value’ accolade in our test.

Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine March 2010