Following on from the Essens and continuing with the Less Is More gear, here we have the Haglofs L.I.M. Power Dry Hood.
At first glance this seems like a base layer, but it’s designed to be a lightweight mid-layer. It’s made with Polartec PowerDry which has a tight knitted face with an open brushed grid on the back. It makes for something that looks like a mesh of little fleecy bumps. It’s thin, you can see your hand through it easily. There’s no way that can be as warm as a fleece mid-layer surely?
There’s a full length zip so it’s easy to vent and there’s a wee chest pocket, along with a hang tag on the back. The hood is a snug fit and there are thumb loops to complete the feature set.
How does it all work on the hill? Well, the cut is excellent, there are no seams in awkward places and the tail is long enough to avoid becoming untucked at important moments. Turn out it is warm, roughly comparable to a micro-fleece, but with a fraction of the bulk and minimal weight (180g for my sample Large) and it’s extremely breathable and dries super fast.
The bit about it being a mid-layer is only part of the story. This also does a fine job as a heavier base-layer in the winter, the fabric is great next to the skin, so much so that it’s been go-to gear for every outing I’ve had since it arrived, either as a base or mid-layer. The hood is handy in winter, it’s a built-in balaclava you can just pull up quickly and it won’t take up any space under your helmet. In warmer conditions you can wear this over a base-layer and it works a treat for moisture management and it won’t bulk you up when you put a shell on top.
I’m not kidding about this being go-to gear. It’s one of the first things I reach for when I’m packing, it’s extremely versatile, and if you take it off you won’t notice it in your pack.
Another piece from the L.I.M. range that just does the job beautifully, you’d think they made this stuff just for me. Highly recommended.