It might seem an odd time of the year to be testing waterproofs with something like summer in the offing, but here’s the thing, it’s when it’s warm and summery that you want your waterproof to be as light and compact as possible because most of the time – Michael Fish willing – it’ll be sat in your pack unused. At the same time though, when you do need it, you want it to work properly.
On the face of it, there’s little to split Montane’s Minimus Smock and Rab’s Pulse Pull-on – they even use the same Pertex Shield+ 2.5-layer waterproof fabric, so have pretty much the same levels of wateproofing, breathability and durability and both are respectably light: 138g for the Montane and 186g for the Rab and that’s actual weight in a medium.
Which might make you think the Montane is the automatic first choice, but there’s more to buying a lightweight waterproof than just the weight and pack size – both pack impressively small too. Stuff to look at includes:
- Cut – is it suitable for your body shape and activities?
- Hood – will it do what you need it to, for example, fit a climbing helmet.
- Adjustability – can you tweak the hood, hem and so on to suit you.
- Pockets – does it have enough storage for you in the right place?
- Colour – yes, it’s shallow, but hey, we’re only human.
- Fabric – in this case it’s the same, but look at breathability and durability.
So which would we choose – Rab or Montane, Montane or Rab? Check out mini-reviews of each and our final conclusion below.