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Reviews > Clothing > Jackets > Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket > Test Report by Nancy Griffith

CRAGHOPPERS COMPRESSLITE II JACKET
TEST SERIES BY NANCY GRIFFITH
LONG-TERM REPORT
February 16, 2018

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT
CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE LONG-TERM REPORT

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Nancy Griffith
EMAIL: bkpkrgirlATyahooDOTcom
AGE: 51
LOCATION: Northern California, USA
GENDER: F
HEIGHT: 5' 6" (1.68 m)
WEIGHT: 126 lb (57.20 kg)

My outdoor experience began in high school with a canoeing/camping group which made a 10-day voyage through the Quebec wilds. I've been backpacking since my college days in Pennsylvania. I have hiked all of the Appalachian Trail in Georgia, Tennessee and North Carolina. My typical trip now is in the Sierra Nevada in California and is from a few days to a few weeks long. Over the past few years I have lowered my pack weight to a lightweight base weight of 15 lb (6.8 kg) while still using a tent, stove and quilt.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

FrontBackManufacturer: Craghoppers Ltd.
Year of Manufacture: 2017
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.craghoppers.com
MSRP: $85 US

Listed Weight: Not Listed
Measured Weight: 14.9 oz (422 g)

Size Tested: 8 Women's
Other Sizes Available: 4 through 16

Color Tested: Black
No other colors available

Made in China

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

cuffshemThe Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket is a synthetic-fill insulated jacket that is lightweight and compressible. It is designed to be a compact layer that is lightweight yet warm. The synthetic insulation is ClimaPlus which is 100% polyester hollow fiber fill. The synthetic is supposed to retain loft after being stuffed into the stow sack. The jacket has a water-repellent surface, is wind-resistant and is claimed to be quick-drying.

There is a hang-tag that gives the warmth a rating of 4 on a scale from 1 to 7 and is described as being insulated for warmth and comfort.

The one-way front zipper has a stormflap along the full length of the front zipper and a zipper garage at the top. There is also a large looped pull for easy grasp of the zipper when wearing gloves. There are two hand-warmer pockets with zippers that are similar to the front zipper with the large looped pulls. The front halves of the pockets are lined with a fine fleece for a cozy feel.

The bottom hem of the jacket extends down to provide good rear coverage. The hem has a drawcord which is adjustable from either the right or left side at the inside hem. The cuffs are a narrow elastic band allowing for insulation all of the way down the sleeves.

The hood is completely insulated with no visor nor adjustment to tighten it around the face or head.

There is a hang loop on the inside of the jacket at the collar.

A stow sack is included which has a drawstring closure and cord lock.

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS & TRYING IT OUT

stuff sack
stow sack included
stuffed sizeMy initial impression was that the jacket was larger than I expected. It is puffy and came in a fairly large box. However, the stuff sack is small and the jacket stuffed into it quite easily. I typically wear jackets with down insulation so I was expecting a little larger and less compact jacket than down, but this jacket is still quite noticeably larger and heavier than what I expected. Overall I found the jacket to be very much like it is shown on the website.

The fit is roomy with plenty of space for multiple layers underneath. When I put it on I could immediately feel the warmth of the insulation and loved the cozy comfort. It was quite cold in the house, so the jacket provided a nice amount of warmth without feeling restrictive to my movements.

The hood doesn't have any adjustment but the fit is snug around the face when the zipper is completely zipped up. I'm interested to see how well this works on the trail; whether the hood wants to blow off in the wind and snow or slip around while I'm sleeping in the tent.

I don't usually wear my down jacket while hiking for fear of any sweat making it wet and less insulated. While I don't expect to get this synthetic jacket wet, I would like to test out its warmth while wet or damp.

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

Washing instructions say to wash dark colors separately. No bleach, dry cleaning, ironing, fabric softeners or wringing. Zippers are to be fastened prior to washing. Tumble drying is to be on a low setting.

I'm used to down insulation that requires a special detergent for washing and is an entire process to clean our jackets. It will be interesting to see how easy it is to wash this synthetic jacket.

SUMMARY

The Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket is a synthetic-fill insulated jacket that is compact, lightweight and warm.

Initial Likes:
Comfortable warmth
Roomy enough for layers
Synthetic (good if wet)
Lightweight

Initial Concerns:
Will it compress enough for the warmth it provides?
Does the non-adjustable hood work well?


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Par Value LakeThe Compresslite II Jacket quickly became my favorite jacket to wear this winter. I wear it nearly every day including inside the house when I'm just too chilled. I have worn it for one three-day backpacking trip, eight day hikes, for several fishing trips and many walks.

Backpacking:
Green Lake, West Lake, Par Value Lake, Hoover Wilderness, California: 3 days, 12 mi (19 km); 8,030 to 10,300 ft (2,448 to 3,139 m); 38 to 64 F (3 to 18 C); clear skies with some moderate wind; some off-trail scrambling to upper lakes

Day Hikes:
Haul Road, Mendocino Coast, Northern California: 5 mi (8 km); 45 to 54 F (7 to 12 C); nearly sea-level; partly cloudy conditions

Point Arena Headlands, Northern California: 3 mi (5 km); 58 F (14 C); nearly sea-level; partly sunny conditions

Two hikes to Auburn Dam Overlook, California: 6.5 mi (10.5 km); 1,237 to 1,539 ft (377 to 469 m) elevation; 55 F (13 C); partly cloudy to sunny conditions with some light winds

Three hikes on Gerle Loop in the Auburn Recreation Area, California: 2.5 mi to 3.5 mi (4 to 5.6 km); 500 to 1,500 ft (150 to 450 m) elevation; 55 to 65 F (13 to 18 C)

Western States Trail, California; 5 mi (8 km); 500 to 1,500 ft (150 to 450 m) elevation; 50 F (10 C)

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

Fort BraggThe Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket is one of the most comfortable jackets that I've owned. It is very welcome on a cold or even cool day. I immediately feel cozy when I put it on. The pockets are great for warming my hands and the fleece lining on the front side of the pocket really adds to the immediate comfort.

I usually wore a long-sleeved base layer underneath and haven't yet had cold enough temperatures to need a fleece or other mid-layer. There is plenty of room for layers with the jacket still seeming comfortably fitted and not too loose.

I love the hood for sleeping and when it is particularly cold or windy. The hood provides good coverage when the zipper is fully zipped. I haven't yet had any problem with the hood lacking adjustment although I haven't been in very windy conditions yet. The hood is also great for sleeping to keep any drafts out on cold nights.

The durability of the jacket has been very good considering that I've worn it for some yard work, fishing trips and some hikes through brush. There are no signs of any snags or abrasions. I haven't yet washed the jacket but plan to do that in the next test period.

I've carried the jacket a few times in my pack on day hikes with it being stuffed in its sack. But I usually just ended up wearing it and unzipping it or slipping it off of my shoulders when I got too warm. I was pleasantly surprised at how perfectly it provided warmth on chilly days. I would expect to be too warm at times but with a chill in the air I would end up wearing it the entire time.

The synthetic insulation provided a new experience for me versus down insulation which I have always worn. I liked having synthetic insulation since I wasn't concerned about getting sweaty in the jacket and thus 'wetting' the insulation and affecting the warmth level.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

ltr sandiaThe Compresslite II Jacket has been my favorite jacket this winter. I continue to wear it nearly every day for day hikes, many walks, for yard work, playing disc golf and just around town.

Day Hikes:
Auburn Dam Overlook, California: 6.5 mi (10.5 km); 1,237 to 1,539 ft (377 to 469 m) elevation; 55 F (13 C); partly cloudy to sunny conditions with some light winds

Three hikes on Gerle Loop in the Auburn Recreation Area, California: 2.5 mi to 3.5 mi (4 to 5.6 km); 500 to 1,500 ft (150 to 450 m) elevation; 55 to 65 F (13 to 18 C)

Western States Trail, California; 5 mi (8 km); 500 to 1,500 ft (150 to 450 m) elevation; 50 F (10 C)

Sandia Peak, New Mexico; 8 mi (13 km); 8,480 to 10,368 ft (2,585 to 3,160 m) elevation; 39 to 50 F (4 to 10 C); 30 to 40 mph (48 to 64 kph) winds at summit

Tent Rocks, New Mexico: 4 mi (6 km); 5,700 to 6,581 ft (1,737 to 2,006 m); 58 to 65 F (14 to 18 C); mostly carried since it got so warm

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

ltr conditionThe jacket continues to be my go-to outerwear for the winter. I absolutely love the comfort. It provides cozy warmth while protecting from the wind and even light rain. I haven't worn it in any heavy rain but with the hood, it protected me from light rain on multiple occasions.

The hood has stayed in place and kept me warm in moderate rain and wind conditions. I haven't had much of a problem with the lack of adjustment or tightening drawcord. The only time that it was a partial issue was at the top of Sandia Peak where the wind was gusting to 53 mph (85 kph). I know the exact wind speed because the tram operator had instrumentation. The wind would get under the hood and pull it away so I had to hold it at the front of my neck to keep it closed tightly. This is the only time that I would've liked to have a drawcord to tighten the hood closed. But these were extreme conditions and only lasted for a short time as we scrambled back down off the ridge.

The front zipper has worked well but the pocket zippers keep getting stuck in the fabric around the zipper. It's really my only beef with the jacket. Many times when I'm opening or closing the pocket, the zipper gets stuck about halfway and I have to work it free.

I washed the jacket for the first time and found it to be really easy as opposed to my down jackets. I zipped the main zipper and pockets zips and threw it in a cold water load with other dark clothing and dried on low heat. Nothing to it! I usually make down washing a special weekend project since it requires special detergent, hand washing and careful drying. Wow, this was easy. I'm wondering now why I didn't wash this jacket sooner. With my wearing it nearly every day for three months, I'd say it was due.

The durability has been great considering how much I've worn this jacket. It has often gotten snagged on branches or bushes with no apparent damage, pulls or tears.

I've used the stuff sack on occasion when hiking to stuff it away when temperatures got too warm. It is easy to stuff and makes a much smaller package inside my pack.

SUMMARY

The Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket is a synthetic-fill insulated jacket that is lightweight and warm.

Couldn't Be Better:
Comfortable warmth
Roomy enough for layers
Synthetic (good if wet or sweaty)
Durable
Super easy to wash

Could Be Better:
Pocket zippers get stuck
Hood isn't adjustable in worst wind conditions

This concludes my Long-Term Report and this test series. Thanks to BackpackGearTest.org and Craghoppers for the opportunity to test out this jacket.

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.

Read more reviews of Craghoppers Ltd gear
Read more gear reviews by Nancy Griffith

Reviews > Clothing > Jackets > Craghoppers Compresslite II Jacket > Test Report by Nancy Griffith



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