REVIEW: Berghaus Mtn Guide Hyper Alpha Jacket - Madness or Genius?

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 UKC/UKH Gear 25 Jul 2023

An unconventional marriage of waterproof and fleece in one lightweight shell, the Hyper Alpha defies neat pigeonholing. So what does Toby Archer make of it?

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 Rich W Parker 25 Jul 2023
In reply to UKC/UKH Gear:

The hood is definitely not helmet compatible? Just asking because their marketing material very much suggests climbing and mountaineering.

 TobyA 26 Jul 2023
In reply to Rich W Parker:

Definitely not. I actually mention the marketing photos in the conclusion, concluding that despite the name, it won't be a very useful coat for a mountain guide.

In reply to TobyA:

> Definitely not. I actually mention the marketing photos in the conclusion, concluding that despite the name, it won't be a very useful coat for a mountain guide.

With my running cap on, I think it'd have strong applications for fell running throughout the cooler months of the year. That breathability, couple with the fact it's waterproof, and offers a bit of insulation, has the potential to make it quite versatile as an active layer.

In reply to UKC/UKH Gear:


Haglofs produced a jacket like this many years ago with their mimic insulation on the inside in strategic locations.

My biggest issue was how un-layerable it was (fully aware that probably isn't a word) you had no options for layering etc for when you got too hot or too cold as your insulation and shell where all together so you end up taking another lightweight waterproof and another fleece for options (or just leave the insulated waterproof in the van!!!)

Cool technology but for me a rather unnecessary piece. Potential for a good walking jacket in constant temperature.

 TobyA 27 Jul 2023
In reply to Euan McKendrick:

Fair points, but I'd say with this one the insulation being pile actually helps wick sweat away so actually helps deal with getting warm inside. I wonder if it could be bonded to goretex pro in the same way? A 3 layer mountain shell with a wicking lining like this could work better for walk-ins than standard designs where I at least feel the sweat so tend to walk in in a windproof.

 Hamish Frost 27 Jul 2023
In reply to UKC/UKH Gear:

I've been using one of these for the last year and genuinely think it's a really innovative bit of kit (despite being perhaps a little sceptical about how well it would work at the start). During the Scottish winter I used it as a thin shell layer to wear on the walk-ins when it was slightly damp or snowing. Prior to this I’d wear a lightweight running jacket, but with this I found that whenever we stopped to fill up water/work out where we were going/faff etc, I'd quickly get cold and might have to throw an extra layer on. With this jacket I've found I just about stay warm enough that I don't need to anymore, whilst also maintaining a comfortable temperature while moving.

More recently I took as my shell layer on the Peuterey Integral. Conditions were looking windy and I wasn't sure how well it would stand up abrasion-wise moving over lots of alpine rock, so it did feel like a bit of a gamble in order to save a bit of weight. On the first morning it actually rained consistently for the first few hours (which wasn't in the forecast), but I managed to stay dry enough in the jacket. We were moving fairly quickly, but for almost the entire climb I was just wearing this over a thin baselayer, with a lightweight down jacket to throw over the top whenever we stopped. I did also take a fleece midlayer, but I probably could've got away without it. There was no visible abrasion damage after the route, although obviously it’s not going to hold up as well in the longer run as a heavier-weight shell.

As my work involves working with various brands I try and avoid shouting about kit unless it's stuff I actually think is really good, but this has definitely been an item of kit that's really impressed me recently. It’s perhaps a bit of a niche item, and not something you’d get if you were just buying one jacket to cover all bases, but I think it's a concept that works incredibly well in certain scenarios. If it came in some brighter colours then it’d be even better!

 Siward 27 Jul 2023
In reply to TobyA:

Many folk complain that Paramo is too warm (not me!) and I don't imagine they'll want an insulated waterproof?

I don't see layering as a problem requiring fixing but maybe that's why I don't work in a marketing department

 VictorM 27 Jul 2023
In reply to Hamish Frost:

I’d agree, the color options are way too limited for an alpine jacket! 

Interesting concept otherwise. As soon as I’m even a little active I run hot so it’d be a big gamble for me though. 

 James123 28 Jul 2023
In reply to UKC/UKH Gear:

Looks a nice piece of kit, might be good for bike commuting where you want something minimal that can be stashed and provide warmth too. For everything else though I think I'd always rather have a light weight shell (windproof or waterproof depending) with something like a R1 or other grid fleece underneath 

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