Mountain Equipment Bastion (2014)

Synthetic insulation cannot compete with down in terms of keeping you warm in the coldest of conditions, but it’s ideal when you need to stay warm while being active. The Bastion uses Mountain Equipment’s own Polarloft synthetic insulation and this is combined with a Gore Windstopper shell, which provides water and wind resistance. There are stretch side panels where there’s no insulation, and this aids mobility but also means the jacket isn’t as warm as some others. The hood lacks a volume adjuster and doesn’t fit over a helmet, and while it provides good protection it doesn’t turn easily with the head. The two external pockets are map-sized and can be accessed while wearing a rucksack. As it has a water- and wind-resistant outer it can be worn without a waterproof, if there isn’t prolonged heavy rain. There isn’t a huge amount of insulation, though, so the Mountain Equipment Bastion is best used for staying warm while moving in cold conditions.

Outer Gore Windstopper with stretch side panels
Insulation Polarloft Micro (polyester)
Weight 486g (size L)
Men’s sizes S-XL
Women’s sizes 8-16



The Mountain Equipment Bastion was the best jacket for active synthetic performance in our test.

Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine February 2014