Sherpa Dingboche Jacket Review
by Richard Crabtree
Over the last 12 to 18 months I have been training hard for the recent successful attempt on Mont Blanc. My current down jacket has been used for many years, is too heavy and is starting to drop in bits so I needed something new and lightweight.
After entering a competition with Mountain Training I received a phone call informing me I’d actually won a brand new Sherpa Dingboche Down Jacket
worth £160 !!! Winner...
So the jacket arrived and I was amazed at just how compact it was and how it compressed down into the lightweight stuffsack. The Sherpa website says that the jacket weighs in at 480 grams however as you can see from the picture I think this is an underestimate with my jacket weighing just 377 grams.
Upon first wearing the jacket I was amazed at the weight and how soft and comfortable it felt compared to my old jacket...you can tell that the materials and finish are of a high quality. The jacket has two standard pockets and also a chest pocket featuring a rear hole for an mp3 cable. It doesn't have a hood, but for the weight and what I needed for Mont Blanc this was perfect.
Prior to the Mont Blanc adventure and part of the training we had numerous camping weekends in the Lake District including one quite cold night on the Wasdale Head campsite after climbing the historic Napes Needle. The jacket kept me warm whilst sat out at night on any of these nights with just a thin base layer underneath, however due to how lightweight this is I'm sure in winter you would need additional thermal layers.
After some brief testing in our damp climate we headed off to the Alps where we spent 4 nights between the Trient, Albert 1er and Gouter hut's. Due to the warm weather I didn’t need the jacket in the first two huts, but at 2am on Mont Blanc Summit day with a temperature of around -10 I was glad of the warm comfort of the jacket whilst stood on the metal platform of the Gouter Hut at 3835m.
To sum up the Sherpa Dingboche jacket, I would say the quality and stitching is excellent with very little or no down leakage. The warmth to weight ratio again is spot on meaning the jacket can be carried in the pack at all times for reasonably cold summits, but it also holds its own around a cold damp camp in the British Lake District due to the DWR water resistance. I think if the temperature was to drop lower than say -10 I would want a heavier jacket, however for the majority of UK usage and summer alpine use the jacket is excellent!