Why We Chose It: Protective, good breathability, packability, useful pockets.
Well done Rohan for doing the double. By that, we mean they’ve made it into two Outdoor 100 series on the trot. Last year we chose the impressive Rohan Elite which provided 3-layer protection at the light weight of just 250g. This year, it’s the slightly less technical but still impressive Cloudcover Overhead that makes it in.
If you’re not familiar with Rohan’s waterproof products, they’re made from a lovely and soft, fairly quiet fabric called Barricade. A 2.5-layer waterproof system, what this means is that it has a sprayed-on lining rather than the inner layer of ‘backer’ fabric that a three-layer has.
“I didn’t realise it was waterproof at first – it feels more like a windbreaker.”
While it might not be as durable as a three-layer design, it’s still just as waterproof – to the tune of 20,000 mm/24hr actually. That rating is good, especially when you consider its breathability is measured at 20,000 g/m2/24h. With those figures, it’s not far off Gore-Tex Pro which is 28,000 mm/24hr and 25,000 g/m2/24h. Long story short, it’s good tech.
OK for those of you still with us after those specs, let’s look at the other details of the Rohan Cloudcover Overhead.
As you can see, it’s a smock. The downside of a smock is the somewhat small inconvenience of having to pull it over your head. The advantage, however, is that a smaller zip means less of a risk of any leakage. This features a half-length zip which has a YKK Aquaguard rain seal, two zipped handwarmer pockets and then one rather small kangaroo pouch which doubles as a stuff sack for the jacket itself. All packed up, it will be about 750ml in volume, making it easy to slip into one of the pockets of your backpack.
The hood, which is two-way adjustable will hold very securely and move with your head. There’s also a little peak to shelter your eyes. Other details include velcro adjustable cuffs and hem drawcords.