This Winter our top clothing brands have updated their tough waterproof mountaineering shells with new GORE-TEX PRO Shell 2.0. PRO Shell has been GORE-TEX’s top end waterproof membrane since 2012. It’s incredibly durable, light and breathable and has been pretty much the standard waterproof / breathable membrane for serious outdoor clothing brands since its introduction (unless you’re a Paramo or Buffalo fanatic). So whats new?
GORE-TEX PRO is now divided into 3 different membranes which most brands have used to make hybridised jackets with panels of each membrane in the most suitable areas.
GORE-TEX PRO Most Rugged.
Most Rugged is unsurprisingly the most durable of the three new membranes. It is a new, thicker membrane. GORE only allow brands to use face fabrics from 70 to 200 denier on this membrane to ensure that it lives up to its Most Rugged title. This does mean that this version of PRO Shell is less breathable than the others, but it is very rugged. If you’re a Scottish winter climber with some classic gullies or thrutchy routes in mind then you will want a jacket with GORE-TEX PRO Most Rugged. Guides and others with day in day out use planned should also have Most Rugged garments on their kit list.
Most Rugged clothing is designed to be worn all day in pretty terrible conditions. If you are looking for something that you can use in warmer months, that will live in your pack as much as on your back then maybe look at clothing which use the new Most Breathable membrane…
Arc’teryx Beta SV
GORE-TEX PRO Most Breathable.
Most Breathable is essentially the same membrane as the previous version of GORE-TEX PRO, but GORE have allowed brands to use lighter face fabrics down to 30 denier. This makes it more breathable, as the name suggests, but also more pack-able with less of that iconic GORE-TEX ‘crinklyness’. Most Breathable garments are more versatile for year round use, but you will find that most brands have created jackets where the main body is Most Breathable with reinforcement of Most Rugged in high wear areas, which is a sensible compromise.
Rab Muztag GTX Jacket
GORE-TEX PRO Stretch
Stretch is a bit of a left field one for GORE who usually focus on durability and breathability. With many brands releasing their own stretch waterproofs GORE seem to have taken the plunge in their own way, by essentially crinkling the membrane slightly and bonding it with stretch face fabrics and backers. This does reduce the breathability but the amount of stretch created in the fabric is impressive. Our clothing brands have mainly stuck to Most Rugged and Most Breathable, with panels of Stretch under the arms to allow good freedom of movement in climbing jackets.
GORE’s diversification of GORE-TEX PRO has allowed brands to innovate and improve many of the flagship mountaineering jackets in interesting ways. You can view our full range of new GORE-TEX PRO 2.0 clothing from Arcteryx, Rab, Mountain Equipment and Patagonia below.