Mountain Equipment Rupal Jacket Review 2016

Features

The Mountain Equipment Rupal is built with Gore-Tex, but not the higher-spec Pro version – although it does have the benefit of feeling very robust to fend off bad winter weather. You get two huge chest pockets that are easily accessed and a hood with a very well-stiffened wired peak. Pit zips are provided for more ventilation control. There are only two chest pockets though and some others are slightly lighter. 4/5

Fit

Available is sizes S-XXL for men and 8-16 for women. The fit is about 4cm longer than the short jackets we looked at, so it does give the bum some protection. The hood fits closely and moves easily with the head, and sleeve movement is very good with barely any movement in them or the cuffs when raising arms. The overall cut is less close than some. 5/5

Comfort

This does feel stiff, which you may not like in milder weather; but for me I prefer this when battling across the winter mountains as it buckles less in the wind and feels warmer as more air remains trapped inside. There is a massive patch of soft fabric at the top of the zip to protect the chin from being scratched, which I really like. 4/5

In use

On a tough day’s scrambling the Mountain Equipment Rupal really proves itself. It uses 75 denier fabric so it has more abrasion resistance than some others. It feels nice and protective, and those two massive pockets are ideal for maps, gloves or guidebooks. The hood really makes foul weather enjoyable as it offers so much protection. I’d like a third pocket ideally, but that is the only niggle. 5/5

Value

There are lots of lower-priced jackets but this has benefits that others cannot offer and you have to spend more to better it in my view. RRP £250. 4/5

Verdict

A really solid performance on the hill that is ideal for those heading into more challenging conditions. The Mountain Equipment Rupal wins Trail’s ‘approved’ accolade. 4.4/5