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HomeHomeDiscussionsDiscussionsGeneralGeneralMidlayer InsulationMidlayer Insulation
New Post
10/5/2020 8:36 AM

Dear All at HPG,

Like many of you, I am dusting off the mid-layers as the Fall rolls in. Also, like many of you, my go-to has been the Arcteryx Atom LT. I now have a Gen 1 and a Gen 2; not using the Gen 1 off-duty because its issued  and stands out due to the colour. The Gen 2 is inferior. Its still as warm but, the construction is not as good. The face fabric seems brittle and its not as fitted. Noisy in the cold.

I recently came across the Arcteryx Proton line. The FL (fast and light) weighs 25g less but seems warmer. The interior is soft and breathable. The exterior is soft and sheds water well. I now have the Proton Lt as well (there is a discount place near me that is 40-60% off last years models and I keep my eye on the Outlet). A bit lighter in  weight to the Atom Lt but softer, warmer and fits better (5'9", 165lbs).

Can't say enough good stuff about the Proton line; warmer, better breathability (if that's the right word) and seems better quality.

When you have to pump out big bucks for this kind of gear, you want the best. I will be retiring my Gen 2 Atom Lt permanently now.

Hope this helps anyone looking around for a new and improved mid-layer.

New Post
10/8/2020 7:21 AM

That's good to know Craig.  I often feel like I should buy three of a jacket when I get one that works - just so the manufacturer won't go and change it on me.

New Post
11/9/2020 3:44 AM

I recently bought this

and really like it. It comes in black, green and camouflage.

New Post
11/10/2020 10:34 AM

Thanks, Craig.  Good to know.  I am a fan of ArcT and have been looking for another mid layer.  I appreciate the scouting report from a knowledgeable user from the cold country :)

New Post
11/10/2020 7:17 PM
That Sitka looks neat.... if the solid colors were available in tall sizes.
New Post
11/11/2020 7:48 AM
Yes, the lack of tall sizes is a deal breaker for me, too.
Part of the reasons I like ArcTeryx so much is they are cut for an athletic body with long sleeves.
New Post
1/13/2021 4:52 PM

Probably similar, I had an Atom SL- nice jacket, but not what I would consider a mid-layer, rather a soft shell. Nice layer over a base layer as an outer layer in cool conditions with high exertion and did a good job of shedding both wind and light precip.

A mid-layer for me, foremost has to breathe really (really) well and secondly dry quickly- which basically eliminates anything that sheds wind/rain; a garment simply can't do both well.

If I need precipitation/wind protection, then I don a windshirt (or if heavier precip a rain jacket). If there is a lack of wind/precip then I'll often wear the mid-layer as an outer layer.

Sadly now discontinued, the Patagonia Nano Air Light (long name! :)) is as close to what I've found as a perfect mid-layer- breathes really well, dries very quickly and is very warm for it's weight. If it's windy (or raining/snowing) than I don an appropriate shell to go over the top.

I have a few soft shells and if it doesn't involve high exertion, they do pretty well and there is a convenience factor in using one garment over two.

New Post
1/19/2021 1:17 PM
A couple of years ago I bought a Wiggy's jacket liner to replace an old issue field jacket liner that finally gave up the ghost. I didn't realize at the time that the +5 zipper is the same on that many of the north face fleeces use that can be zipped into their shells as a liner.

I live on the 'better' side of the sound across from Seattle, and (before the covid mess) rode the ferry to and from work everyday, so the liner ended up seeing near-everyday use in my 'commuter' shell in addition to what I bought it for. It was subject to a lot of the kinds of repeated compression one would expect to see commuting to work, yet is told to avoid with synthetics to avoid prematurely ruining it due to loft/insulation loss.

Its still holding up well a few years later with no noticeable loss in warmth. Like anything else from Wiggy, its a bit heaver than it needs to be, and you have to work around some if his design shortcomings (unlike an issue liner, it has jersey knit cuffs, and a zipper, yet has no collar). It was, however, dirt cheap compared to synthetic jackets from the usual brands, and is showing no signs of wearing out after several years of constant use. You won't get any style points for wearing one, but it definitely gets the job done.
HomeHomeDiscussionsDiscussionsGeneralGeneralMidlayer InsulationMidlayer Insulation