Keela Cairn Jacket Review 2016

Features

The Cairn is a new jacket from Keela, using Aquaflex 3-layer fabric, which is thin, flexible and slightly rustly, but it does help to keep the weight down to a competitive 337g (size M). There are two main pockets that extend to close to the hem. The third chest pocket is quite small and potentially too high on the chest. You do get a wired peak on the hood, though, which is good. 4/5

Fit

This is only available for men but there is a wide size range, from XS-XXXL. The fit is shorter than other jackets by quite a margin, but it does have a good fit with excellent freedom of movement in the sleeves without the cuffs or hem riding up. The hood also fits and moves with the head exceptionally well. Pity there’s no version for women, though. 4/5

Comfort

The material is light and soft, so this moves with the body and feels very comfortable. 
The hood fits closely and is very comfy too. But as it is shorter than others my bum is less well-protected, so the Keela Cairn is not a jacket for the wettest and coldest of conditions. The thin material also buckles in the wind more easily than that used in heavier jackets. 3/5

In use

The weight is a real bonus but this is less suitable for wild conditions as it does not trap warm air inside so well due to that short length and flexible fabric. The hood is great though. The pockets are annoying as the main ones extend to the hem so they can be difficult to fully access while wearing a rucksack hipbelt. The high chest pocket is very small and a rucksack shoulder strap can partially cover it. 3/5

Value

The price is very good but with some slight changes in design this would offer far better performance for the money. RRP £176. 4/5

Verdict

The Keela Cairn is a light, well-priced jacket; but the details let it down, which makes it frustrating to use in challenging weather. 3.6/5