Kit review: Salewa Pedroc Jacket
The Salewa Pedroc jacket is a hybrid design that is aimed at walkers and runners who like to move fast over the terrain but still want to stay dry.
“What does that jacket do?” asked a friend as I set out for a walk in the Salewa Pedroc Hybrid jacket. “It looks good but why are there different fabrics? And who is it aimed at?”
I tried to explain. “Salewa has created a jacket for people who want a waterproof feature in the rain but ultra breathability because they will be moving fast and sweating a lot.
“An ordinary all-over waterproof jacket might be good at keeping out the rain but most waterproof fabrics don’t work so well at being breathable.
“In this way waterproof jackets are always a compromise between waterproofness and breathability. With the Pedroc there is a high level of breathability but that comes at the cost of being less waterproof, although this jacket is waterproof in some of the areas that you really need it.”
“Oh,” said my friend, not really looking any the wiser. “But don’t you want the jacket to keep out the rain when it rains?”
“Well, yes, you do,” I replied, “but there is compromise to be had if you want to be fast moving and you want the sweat to escape.”
And so the chat went on.
In my mind, this jacket is for days when it might rain but it might not and for people who want to walk fast or run and need some cover from the wet but won’t need a lot of waterproofing.
Adventure racers might like the look of this hooded jacket and also hill walkers and runners who plan to spend a day in the countryside but don’t want to carry or wear a full-on waterproof jacket.
Another friend, who is a runner, listened to the above explanation and said: “Yes, sounds good although how much is it?” I told him £160. “Hmmm. I am not sure I would spend that on a jacket that is not completely waterproof.”
Yet, when I walked (fast) and ran in the jacket in the ind and rain I was very impressed. Although it is not fully waterproof it is waterproof in all the right places, shoulders, back and front. It allowed great breathability, felt light, didn’t rustle annoyingly in the wind and has lots of nice features.
The techie details:
Half waterproof: The fabric that is waterproof is on the shoulders, hood and outside of the arms
Half soft-shell: A lightweight and stretchy softshell fabric is used elsewhere.
Hood that can be adjusted at the back when wearing it. It also comes with a roll away hood with button closure. (I might be dim but I can’t get this feature to work!)
Elasticated cuff and thumb loops
One zipped chest pocket
One tuck-things-in chest pocket
Adjustable hem with a lower back to cover your bum
Jacket stows into an integrated compression pouch.
My thoughts on the Salewa Pedroc Hybrid Jacket
At first, as I wrote above, I really wasn’t sure about this jacket but having worn it I am a much more convinced by its merits and cleverness.
So, there are waterproof jackets that I love and softshell jackets that I love and I wear them for wet weather and dry weather. But this hybrid jacket is a combination (compromise?) of both in one product.
If you take the weather recently on a wet and windy run. It started out dry and then it was wet and windy, then dry-ish and then it was very wet and then it was windy.
If I had worn a fully waterproof jacket on this occasion I would have stayed dry from the rain. But because I was running I would have found that the inside of the jacket became a bit damp with sweat. If I had run harder on a warmer day, the jacket would have become even wetter inside.
If I had worn a softshell I would have ended up soaked through because of the rain. By wearing the Salewa Pedroc Hybrid Jacket I mitigated the worst of the rain and also the worst of the sweat. And the jacket kept out the wind.
I didn’t think it would work, but it did.
I reckon that if it had rained any heavier I would have ended up rather wet. And if I had been out all day I would have ended up cold and damp eventually. But because I was out for a an hour or so in on-off rain and working quite hard this jacket worked a treat.
If you live in Scotland you expect fickle weather and the Pedroc jacket seems to be designed to cope with this, although I suspect it would be even better in Alpine places where it is not so wet in the summer.
What I also liked about the jacket:
The fit is neat and athletic. I have a UK 10 and it fits fairly well. I would have preferred it to be a bit neater but I am fairly slim.
The sleeves are long enough for my long Ms Tickle arms and I can use the thumb loops (this doesn’t often happen because usually the sleeves are too short).
The chest pockets are stretchy so you can fit a hat or gloves inside what might at first sight look like a small pocket.
The hood can be adjusted to fit well so it doesn’t fall off your head – or engulf it – when needed.
Salewa do great colours in most of their kit and this includes the men and women’s versions of the Pedroc jacket.
What I am not so sure about:
The price and need. If you have a spare £160 that you really don’t know what to do with this jacket would be a good buy but for most people it will seem costly.
The thing is, if it looks like heavy rain I’d take a robust waterproof jacket and if it looks like mostly sunshine I’d take a softshell.
If I was planning to carry a rucksack I might well pop this Pedroc jacket inside as a just-in-case item but it is pricey as a just-in-case item.
Perhaps, if I was to use it for cycling, running and walking on kind-of fickle Scottish weather days (we do get quite a lot of these in summer now I think about it) it could be a reasonable outlay. I guess, then, it could be worth the cost and I have also spotted it online for around £130.
To be fair, this jacket is created with Alpine activities in mind so for people who are lucky enough to live in the Alps, or planning to visit, this could well be your perfect summer item for walking fast and running.