Properly dressed for the warm months with the right summer jacket

Summer Jackets

Like all other seasons, summer makes its own demands on both the athlete and his equipment. When its hot, the right kind of fitness and breathable clothing is indispensable so you don't overheat when doing sports outside.
A light summer jacket should be comfortable, airy and stylish while still providing the protection you need outside with its windproof and water-repellent properties!
Below you will find everything you need to know to help you choose the right summer jacket.

What makes a good summer jacket?

Unlike transitional jackets for spring and fall, summer jackets are very thin and lightweight. They are made either from a lightweight softshell material (e.g. Windstopper Active Shell) or the jacket comes in a fabric blend (e.g. G-1000 Lite).
Softshell fabrics are usually elastic and their thinner quality weighs practically nothing; perfect to take along as an emergency windbreaker. With proper dry treatment, they can also withstand a light shower. They have excellent wicking qualities and are windproof, as are the highly-breathable blended-fabric summer jackets. The latter are better adapted for backpacking, hiking and when travelling, whereas softshells are better for more intense activities such as running, cycling, climbing and mountain tours.
Naturally, there are also waterproof summer jackets. The best fabrics for warm-weather rain are highly-breathable membranes such as Gore-Tex Active Shell, Polartec Neoshell or e-Vent. This kind of summer jacket is extremely breathable, has a fully adjustable hood and a high collar that closes. It usually comes in bright colours. Armpit venting is always a good idea.
In general, when buying a summer jacket you should aim for light colours, the right amount of pockets, slim tailoring and the proper UV protection. There are even models where you can unzip the sleeves, though long-sleeved jackets offer better protection against sun and mosquitos. But short-sleeved jackets do allow air to touch the arms when its warm. In spring and autumn, try combining a windproof summer jacket with warm, lightweight merino undergarments as the perfect solution for cooler weather.
Vaude, Mammut, Haglöfs, 66 North and Arc'teryx all offer nice summer jackets.

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