The Guardian Jacket is the first piece of Rohan kit I’ve tried in years, so it was with excitement that I put it to the test. It’s a lovely looking jacket that uses Rohan’s Barricade waterproof fabric. The cut is long enough for wet weather hiking, yet sporty enough to suit more mountain-based activities.
With such a high price tag you’d expect the Guardian to offer something special, and while there’s nothing that particularly sets it above other jackets in the £200-plus range, it’s comfortable and the two hand-warmer pockets are positioned perfectly for use with a rucksack waist strap. The hood is adjustable and fits well, with the stiffened peak doing its job, and the collar has a nice, soft microfleece lining.
The jacket’s main zip is water resistant (as are all of the zips on pockets) and it has a full-length storm flap for added protection. There are three pockets: two hand-warmers (which are large enough to hold an OS map) and a large inner mesh pocket for valuables.
It’s a shame that the Guardian Jacket lacks any significant ventilation: there are no pit zips or mesh pockets and the main zip cannot be opened from the bottom up, so in warmer weather it will be hot.
There’s no doubting that the Guardian Jacket is a decent piece of kit, but is it worth the £245? With a weight of 520g it’s not the lightest, nor is it the most packable, and with no ventilation either, it’s not a jacket to wear when exerting yourself. If you have the money it’s a nice looking jacket, but if money’s tight you’re best looking elsewhere.
In a line: A fashionable jacket at a high price.