Páramo Alta II 2008

Páramo garments have one huge advantage over all other waterproofs, and that is that they have exceptional control of condensation, which means you stay dry both from rain and from sweat. The fabric is soft and rustle-free too, making it very comfortable to wear. Compared to most jackets here, the Páramo Alta II general-purpose jacket is also longer in the body, a feature many walkers will like. There are two hip pockets that can be accessed while wearing a rucksack, thanks to this longer length. The hood has a wired peak and can be rolled into the collar. On the chest there is a map-sized pocket plus a smaller pocket that is ideal for a compass or GPS receiver. You also get outstanding movement in the sleeves, making the Alta II ideal for general hill-walking in wind and rain.  But, at 910g, the Páramo Alta II jacket is much heavier than the competition. It’s also a great deal warmer, which is annoying in warm weather. You can squeeze water through the fabric, but as it gets pumped out so fast this is a minor niggle, so you won’t get wet during normal hill-walking. Some hoods are slightly better too. 

Outer Nikwax windproof
Inner Nikwax Analogy Pump liner
Fabric waterproofness water-resistant/waterproof
Fabric breathability extremely breathable
Sizes S-XXL (men’s); XS-XL (women’s)
Weight 910g (men’s L)
Made in Colombia
Stores in the UK 50Verdict: The Páramo Alta II is a jacket with exceptional condensation control and good features for cold weather but others are better in warmer weather.

Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine November 2008