The Pantheon is a welcome relief from the modern trend of uber lightweight… and uber flimsy winter jackets. Constructed from Gore-Tex Performance Shell it has a tougher internal backer (the internal material on the jacket) than Gore-Tex Pro Shell and although this makes it heavier, it is a jacket that promises tough, full-on winter weather protection.
Heavy duty, abrasion resistant Gore-Tex has been used on the main ware areas of the jacket, namely the shoulders, upper arms, waist and hips. There are two stretch panels in behind the shoulders that make a noticeable difference to the easy of movement whilst wearing and climbing in the jacket.
At last, The North Face has finally made a decent, “wired peak” hood that is both helmet compatible and looks to have the sturdiness to stand up to a Cairngorm blizzard (although I’ve not tested this yet!).
The jacket includes an internal snow-skirt, which unfortunately isn’t removable accept with a pair of scissors. The snow-skirt is great if you are powder skiing or using the jacket regularly in atrocious weather but to everyone else, it just adds weight. The Pantheon is liberally adorned with waterproof zips that give access to two external big alpine pockets, bicep pocket and a Napoleon chest pocket. They are also used for the pit zips under each arm.
In use I’ve not yet been able to fins any fault with this jacket. It’s not a lightweight alpine waterproof offering freedom of movement but it is an excellent winter walking and mountaineering jacket that is tough, waterproof and has a reassuring feel of quality about it.
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