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We put Montane's new Icarus mountain jacket to the test to see if it can work as well on the move as it does while resting.

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Best for...
As a versatile layer of warmth for almost any activity
Overall Score
Combines warmth and breathability

Despite the arctic weather defence looks the Icarus jacket is intended as a jacket for use on the move and resting.

It uses Primaloft's clever new Thermoplume insulation which mimics natural down to achieve greater warmth than other synthetic insulation, but unlike down it also benefits from retaining most of its insulating properties when wet. Thermoplume takes a step closer to being as compressible as down and to look at you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between this jacket and a fashionable down jacket.

Having said that, synthetic insulation still can't provide the warmth pound for pound of down and this shows in the weight of the Icarus at a shade under 600g which doesn't compare favourably to the 280g Arc'teryx Cerium LT down jacket for instance,although this is half the price. 

Cut is excellent with a close body fit for warmth and a good long hem length providing decent body coverage. There's enough freedom of movement in the arms for most mountain pursuits. When donned, the jacket quickly envelopes you in a layer of warmth, but crucially the insulation and inner and outer fabrics still allow for good air movement so you don't overheat and sweat prematurely. This ultimately makes the Icarus a versatile jacket for use as a main warm layer on multi-day hikes and wild camps.

The Pertex Quantum Eco outer fabric is light and supple but hard wearing, it also has a DWR finish to fend off light rain and has good wind resistance.

The pockets are neatly placed for hand access and hold a decent amount, there's also a chest pocket for extra storage, all the zips and pullers and general detailing is of a good quality. In fact, the general build quality of the Icarus is excellent considering the mid-range price tag, it looks like it'll be a regular hiking and camping companion for many years to come.

Overall, this is a great mid layer jacket which fuses warmth, breathability, quality and value. It's heavier than we'd have liked but this only becomes a major issue when packing it in a multi-day hiking backpack where every gram counts.

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