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Best West 'un

11:40 17 January 2012

The cargo pockets have magnetic closures.

The cargo pockets have magnetic closures.


Sometimes, I think life is made more complicated than it needs to be. I’m all for clever things that do a better job, but sometimes I really need to keep things as simple as possible and just get on with the job.

Take winter clothing for instance. Ive got a selection of technical cold weather gear, and it works a treat, with its various layers, zip-in fleeces and thru-flo fabrics, and I need never be cold again.

Then I decided that I wanted a winter hunting coat I could just put on, zip up, and take to the wintery fields in, without worrying too much about my base layers, wicking, or anything else.

My simple needs turned out to be not so simple at all, until the Rivers West Kentdale Parka turned up.

Stolen goods

I say turned up, when what I actually mean is stolen from the editor after a lamping trip.

Terry was wearing the Kentdale Parka and seemed to be perfectly comfortable in it as we strolled around with the lamp.

To my surprise, he had only a sweatshirt on under the coat (yes, yes, trousers as well), and while hes a resilient old chap, I was impressed that he needed no layers to ward off what was a bitterly cold night.

We were fairly mobile, too, so I was doubly impressed when he told me he wasnt sweating buckets.

So I blagged the Kentdale Parka for this test, and it wont be going back any time soon.

Single skin

This coat is made from a lighter version of Rivers Wests original H2P material, called APF, or Advanced Polymer Fabric and it comes in Realtree AP pattern.

Its a single-skin garment thats totally waterproof, windproof, flexible, tear-resistant and rustle-free, and combined with the way the parkas made, this Kentdale coat has so far delivered just what I need.

Features line-up

The Kentdales list of features includes a snap-off hood with draw-cord adjuster, a pair of cargo pockets with magnetic closures, handwarmer pockets, pit zips to regulate body temperature, side straps to adjust fit, adjustable neoprene storm cuffs, articulated elbows and a totally stormproof front zip.

Ive so far crashed around through brambles and blackthorn bushes, bashed it against barbed wire, and Ive even let my sons pony have a chew on it, and theres no sign of damage whatsoever.

This coat isnt cheap at 239.95, but Im already pretty sure that it will last for many years, and the reputation of Rivers West gear is beyond doubt.

Proper job

The design is of a proper parka, with more length at the back and that super-warm hood, but its the one skin does all feature that I really like.

This coat hangs on my back door, ready to be grabbed as I head on out. Ive worn just a shirt and jeans under the Kentdale, and its been nothing short of superb.

Theres more to find out about this coat, but for me its the simple answer to a simple need, and every time I wear it the editor has less chance of getting it back.

Contact: 01524 548060

Price: 239.95


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