Mammut Stratus

Posting the picture of the Paramo Velez reminded me that I wanted to report on the outstanding performance of this jacket over this past, very cold, winter.

This is not the “Hybrid Stratus” I see more often in on-line catalogues. It has no hood, no softshell shoulders, none of that.

The plain old Stratus weighs a light 500 g., (17-18 oz.). It has a light shell; synthetic fill; a high, adjustable collar; zippered handwarmer pockets; a big napoleon pocket; two good-sized internal mesh pockets (the jacket easily stuffs into either one); a two-way zip (left-handed—is this some Mitteleuropa thing, or is it just a fluke weirdness?); a hem with adjustments at either side; and thumb loops (really helpful when you’re wearing mitts with gauntlets).

The Stratus wouldn’t be good for long in a downpour, and I wouldn’t want to use it for sitting around a winter campsite, but on the move and worn over a baselayer and a 200-weight fleece, it performed extremely well in temps down to 0° F. It’s proof against wind, and the high collar lets you tuck your chin. The biggish pockets are good for gloves, buff, and ski hat. It’s the opposite of bulky and can quickly stuff it into the closest nook or cranny when necessary. I love the thumb loops

It’s not, to my mind, especially attractive, but, boy, did it fill the bill this winter on those frigid pre-dawn and after-dark walks on the wild side with Jasper the Wonderdog. It also works well in the merely cool, and because of its light weight and stuffability is a good jacket to take along “just in case” in shoulder seasons or the higher hills.

And it often turns up on sale.

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