Mammut Kento Jacket | First Look
The Kento is a trim-fitting, neatly designed walking shell from the Swiss alpine specialist that defies the 2.5-layer fabric norms.
Mammut Kento Jacket: £175 / 420g (medium)
Mammut's tag-line is 'Absolute Alpine', but 'alpine' can mean walking and hiking as well as full-on mountaineering and the latest version of Mammut's medium-weight, 2.5-layer waterproof jacket is aimed squarely at walkers rather than climbers.
Generally 2.5-layer jackets are focussed on light weight, but we'd say the Kento at a real life 420g for a medium is more of a light-middleweight by contemporary standards. The fabric is something called DRYtech Premium™ and features a tough-feeling Polyamide face fabric and a PU membrane.
The lab stats are 20,000mm hydrostatic head, which is respectably waterproof. And 15,000 [g/m²/24h], which is adequate, though statistics don't always tell the full performance story. At any rate, the fabric feels reassuringly tough and has a little bit of stretch to it.
Not enough to worry a bungee cord in the elastication stakes, but not a bad thing given that even Mammut's 'regular' fit is pretty trim compared to most. For perspective we found we didn't actually need the classic shock-corded hem adjusters, the fit was snug enough already.
Mammut Kento Jacket - Performance
First, as we've already pointed out, the cut of the jacket is - despite its 'regular fit' designation - very trim. If you're carrying additional timer or like a looser fit, you may need to look elsewhere. It means the gentle stretch is more than just cosmetic, it helps stop the jacket feeling restrictive.
Also interesting is that the 2.5-layer fabric lacks the slightly slippery, 'yuk against the skin' feel of some similar materials, you can still feel it's not 3-layer, but it's not an unpleasant sensation even against the skin.
The detailing, as you'd expect from Mammut, is neat and nicely done. We like the svelte pocket-zip design - above - the easy to use pit-zips and classic cuff and hem adjustment. There's a handy, high-placed, phone-sized chest pocket too. Hurrah!
Finally, the hood is a neat fit, easily adjusted and moves with your head. The peak may not be wired, but the lamination gives it a reasonable level of stiffness and adds face protection.
Mammut Kento Jacket - Initial Verdict
You can imagine the Kento being worn by one of those near little, teak hard continental hikers you come across in the Alps. It's neat, trim-fitting and efficient. It's light enough to be easily portable, but doesn't feel remotely fragile or particularly like a flimsy 2.5-layer lightweight.
If you're not trim and wiry, it might not be the jacket for you. But if you are, it's nicely detailed and thought out. The fabric, based on our use so far, isn't amazingly breathable, which bears out the lab stats too, , but happy enough for steady walking use.
On top of that, neat, easy-to-use pit-zips give some additional cooling potential, though if you're fussy about such things, it's worth noting that they open from one end only, so you have to unzip them from the sleeves towards the body, with no option to open them up as core vents only.
Overall so far, a classy, slightly continental, walking waterproof with a dapper look and feel to it.