A good-looking and fully functional lightweight waterproof jacket, albeit one that needs to be treated with extra care.
- Very packable
- Smart looking
- Lots of pockets
- Easily damaged
- Flimsy hood with no peak
- Not much venting
- Possibly too many pockets…
Beyond Clothing Yuba Ultralight K6 Rain Anorak: first impressions
New to market, the American-made Beyond Clothing Yuba Ultralight K6 Rain Anorak claims to offer hardshell-levels of waterproofing performance with a vastly reduced weight penalty, thanks to the three-layer Pertex construction that has been employed.
It has a swathe of pretty impressive features for such a light jacket, including multiple pockets, one of which doubles as a stuff sack. The K6 comes with a hood, although it’s fairly thin and flimsy.
The hood is adjustable via one toggle at the back, and can be tightened to some extent, but with the emphasis being on making the jacket as light as possible, there is no peak or structure to this lid to help keep the elements out when things get really wild. The anorak can also be tightened at the waist.
The Beyond Clothing Yuba Ultralight K6 Rain Anorak is a fantastic-looking piece of apparel (at least until you put the hood up), well styled and available in a range of nice colorways. But is it up there with the best waterproof jackets in our buying guide?
• Price: $285 (US)
• Sizes: S / M / L / XL / 2XL
• Weight: 227g / 8oz
• Waterproofing: 20,000 HH
• Breathability: 30,000g
• Fabric: Ultra lightweight three-layer Pertex
• Colors: Rescue Red / Black / Coyote / Navy / Rustic Green
Beyond Clothing Yuba Ultralight K6 Rain Anorak: on the trail
I first tested this new jacket during a blustery and rain-strafed weekend in late fall in the wilds of Snowdonia, while hiking around the Glyderau Range, including a scramble up to the exposed peaks of Glyder Fawr and Glyder Fach.
During plenty of rainfall, I found the waterproofing to be reliable, but there isn’t much in the way of venting, with just a half-length front zip. That said, the jacket does seem to be pretty breathable.
In high winds, on exposed peaks and plateaus, I found the hood of this jacket a flimsy annoyance; even tightened is flapped a lot. But still, it did keep the rain out (if not off my face, because there is no peak). Learn how to stay dry while hiking with these tips.
The real downside came when I noticed a hole had developed on the arm during later outings. I do not recall getting snagged by a briar or on barbed wire fence, so while Beyond may have achieved hardshell waterproofing performance in a lightweight jacket, I don’t think they’ve nailed the necessary robustness you would expect from a product with this kind of price tag. See also: how to wash your waterproof jacket and trousers.
On the plus side, it is very good looking, as anoraks go, with a bucketload of pleasing features, such as the pocket that doubles as a stuff sack, and other storage pouches across the garment.
In fact, the jacket seems to have pockets all over the place, from one on the sleeves to a large pouch across the gut, which is useful for stashing a paper map in. The side pocket angles backwards – which means you can carry the contents without it flapping around too much while you’re moving – and this is the one that also functions as a stow pouch to make the jacket extra packable.
Writer, editor and enthusiast of anything involving boots, bikes, boats, beers and bruises, Pat has spent 20 years pursuing adventure stories. En route he’s canoed Canada’s Yukon River, climbed Mont Blanc and Kilimanjaro, skied and mountain biked through the Norwegian Alps, run an ultra across the roof of Mauritius, and set short-lived records for trail-running Australia’s highest peaks and New Zealand’s Great Walks. He’s authored walking guides to Devon and Dorset, and once wrote a whole book about Toilets for Lonely Planet. Follow Pat’s escapades here.
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