The Alpha Flash Jacket is a highly breathable, lightweight, packable active insulation using Polartec Alpha ‘Direct’ technology and zoned stretch fleece for active use.
Highly breathable, light-weight, packable active insulation using Polartec® Alpha® technology and panelled with Thermic™ for active mid-layer use.
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Rab's Alpha Flash Jacket uses Polartec Alpha breathable insulation, a more modern version of a lightweight fleece, that keeps you warm but lets sweat out, even when active. Polartec Alpha Direct insulation is basically the same but with the mesh liner removed, so you get more unimpeded airflow (not to mention less weight and bulk) without sacrificing warmth. It also feels super soft against your skin!
Designed to be worn when you are active - so on the move - there are alternative insulation garments that are more suited to wearing around camp - Polartec Alpha is about keeping you vented even though you are also being kept insulated. In truth the insulation value is quite moderate so it only really comes into its own when you are exerting yourself and you need insulation but can easily get clammy if the garment doesn't breath.
Its quite a breakthrough, especially for cold weather walking when you need insulation but start sweating hard when you reach a strenuous bit. Weight for weight Polartec Alpha is only about half as warm as Primaloft so the king of insulation keeps its crown - but Alpha has its place - I recently wore an Alpha garment all day while walking in Corsica in particularly cold conditions and stayed warm & comfortable for the duration - I kept checking my baselayer, which stayed completely dry.
This Alpha Flux jacket differs from the Alpha Flash jacket as it does not feature the outer shell fabric, instead it features stretchy, breathable Thermic fabric under the arms and down the sides for breathability and comfort. Because of this and the lack of hood, the Flux is over 100 grams lighter.
- Reviewed by Ultralight Outdoor Gear
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