Heading up high, very high? The new PHD Hispar Down Suit could be just the ticket.
For most of us, the existence of down suits is pretty theoretical sort of thing, but if you're off to tackle some 8,000 metre Himalayan giant, PHD's new Hispar Down Suit adds another option to your shopping list of extremely warm technical insulation.
PHD - Peter Hutchinson Designs - has an enviable heritage in producing top notch down clothing and bags designed and manufactured in the UK since 1998. Hutchinson, if you didn't know, was the founder of Mountain Equipment, and has had an extraordinary involvement in the development and design of kit worn and used by some of the legends of British mountaineering, names like Scott, Haston and Bonington all used his kit.
So, you can expect anything from PHD to be pretty damn good.
Super Warm And Light With It
What marks the new Hispar out is that not only is it claimed to be very, very warm thanks to 900+ fill power down, it's also extraordinarily light for what it is and that's without skimping on crucial features like pockets, a helmet-compatible hood and a rainbow toilet seat for ease of use on the mountain.
Claimed weight is just 1200 grammes, thanks to a combination of that top spec down, lightweight fabrics - the outer is lightweight Drishell, which is Nylon with a thin water-resistant coating and an inner made with ultra-lightweight MX. The outer shell also has strategic reinforced areas using light but durable HS2 fabric.
The back is elasticated on the inside for better fit and efficiency, zips are baffled, there are crampon patches, wired hood, inner waterbottle pockets and so on. In other words, nothing's been left to chance.
Plenty More Where That Came From
Cost of the Hispar is £750, but if you need it, then that's arguably pretty good value for what you're getting. You won't be wearing it down the pub any time soon though. Meanwhile, PHD has a full range of slightly less serious clothing and sleeping bags with cutomisable options not available from mainstream down brands.
More info on Stalybridge's leading down specialist at www.phdesigns.co.uk.