Tierra Västra Jacket review: a premium Gore-Tex waterproof for the high places

We venture into winter’s embrace wearing the Tierra Västra Jacket, a Gore-Tex waterproof jacket for challenging conditions from a quality Swedish brand

Tierra Västra Jacket: Alex in Scotland
(Image: © Alex Foxfield)

Advnture Verdict

A great waterproof jacket that’s ideal for wintery adventures in the mountains, while it has design features that make it very well suited to snow sports, alpine exploits and hiking days too. It makes use of a pioneering, fluorocarbon-free, 3-layer Gore-Tex fabric and is thoughtfully designed throughout.


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    Nice looking

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    3-layer breathable Gore-Tex waterproofing

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    Harness-friendly, map-sized pockets

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    Long profile, ideal for winter use

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    Helmet compatible hood

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    Ventilation zips

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    Plenty of pockets


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    Limited colorways

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    Pricey compared to some

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    Not particularly lightweight

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With a name inspired by the distinct climate zones found in the Andes, Tierra is a Swedish brand that enjoyed its big breakthrough when it was asked to supply technical, high altitude mountain wear to the 1991 all Swedish expedition to Everest. Today, it focuses on 'functional, durable and sustainable' kit with the minimum environmental impact. As the the trusted supplier to the Swedish Alpine Mountain Rescue services, Tierra’s gear is clearly fit for the peaks. I was delighted to test one of Tierra’s latest Gore-Tex jackets, the Västra, which was supplied by the lovely people at Trekitt, specialist UK outdoor gear outlet.

Västra is Swedish for 'western', though it’s not the kind of jacket we’d expect to see Clint Eastwood rocking up in. The name is inspired by Västra Ravine, an off-piste region on Äreskutan, Sweden’s largest ski resort area.

Meet the reviewer

inov-8 Venturelite Jacket: hiking along the summit
Alex Foxfield

Alex is a Mountain Leader and a member of the London Mountaineering Club's committee. He has a great passion for the high places and enjoys a range of activities, whether it's hiking the English Lake District, scaling alpine peaks on the Continent, getting his teeth into the Scottish Highlands during winter or scrambling in North Wales. 

First impressions


List price: £360 (UK) / €449.95 (EU)
Gender specification:
Male and female versions available
Materials: 100% polyester face fabric, 100% polyethylene membrane, 100% recycled polyester backer, 75 denier Gore-Tex ePE 3L, 142 g/m², Gore PFCec free DWR
Weight: 500g / 17.6 oz
Men’s: Lichen Yellow, Black / Women’s: Infinity Blue, Black
Best use:
Hiking, winter walking, skiing, mountaineering

The Västra has the kind of rugged feel and weight to give the impression of a serious mountain waterproof jacket, not necessarily something for fast and light missions but something that’ll have you covered in challenging conditions. The Lichen Yellow color is bold yet it works – or so I’m told (I’m slightly colorblind). For men, there’s only this or the black option, while women have the option of black or the attractive Infinity Blue. I liked the fit, which gave plenty of room for mid layers without feeling baggy. Plus, it’s adjustable in all the right places. So far, so good.

Tierra Västra Jacket: up in the Highlands

The Västra will have you covered in challenging conditions (Image credit: Alex Foxfield)


The Västra is one of the first jackets in the world to feature Gore-Tex’s new microporous, fluorocarbon-free ePE membrane, a groundbreaking fabric that offers performance alongside sustainability. Drilling into the numbers reveals an impressive hydrostatic head of 28,000mm and a breathability rating of RET < 13 m²Pa/W. In plain English, its three-layer construction is very waterproof and nicely breathable too.

Its ski-themed name suggests that the Västra is at home in snowy environments and study it closely and its design features point in that direction too. Firstly, there’s the relatively long fit, which means plenty of overlap with your hiking pants to stop snow ingress in its tracks. Secondly, you can tighten all conceivable entry points, from the Velcro cuffs to the elasticated hem.

Tierra Västra Jacket: Gore-Tex

The Västra is one of the first jackets in the world to feature Gore-Tex’s new microporous, fluorocarbon-free ePE membrane (Image credit: Alex Foxfield)

Climbers and mountaineers are served by an adjustable, helmet-compatible hood, while the front zippered pockets are placed high enough so as to not get covered by a harness. They’re also large enough to take a standard topographical map. As well as these, there’s a small, zippered ‘lift-card’ pocket on the left arm, another nod to its suitability for snow sports. This secure little pocket is also obviously ideal for cards of any sort. On the inside of the jacket, there’s also a zippered mesh pocket, which is a good place for a phone on cold days. Storing electronic devices close to your body heat stops cold weather affecting battery performance.

Ventilation is provided by two, long pit zips on either side. If things get a little stuffy during ascents, you can open these up along with the front zip to dump heat. The front zip is also lined underneath with a stormguard, enhancing its ability to repel wet conditions.

Tierra Västra Jacket: High on Ben Cruachan

High up on Scotland's Ben Cruachan (Image credit: Alex Foxfield)

In the mountains

To test the Västra against challenging conditions, it took it up to the Scottish Highlands in the midst of winter. It was the ideal testing ground, with a period of cold weather from the east bringing freezing temperatures and squally winds. A week spent battling spindrift and windchill allowed me to fully judge the Västra’s credentials. Both jacket and I emerged from the week smiling and I’ve enjoyed testing it in England’s uplands ever since too.

I found it was perfect for winter walking or mountaineering on freezing days and it provided an effective shield against windchill, spindrift and snow. Of course, during the more strenuous stretches – many of Scotland's mountains entail sea level starts with plenty of relentless ascent – I needed to make full use of the pit zips. However, the jacket was comfortable throughout and provided the necessary breathability alongside its shield against the elements.

Tierra Västra Jacket: in the Pennines

I've also enjoying testing the Västra while hiking in England's uplands (Image credit: Alex Foxfield)

The option of four pockets was very welcome, particularly as the front pockets are designed to still be accessible when wearing a harness. It was easy to manipulate the zips and various adjustments on the hem, cuffs and hood, even wearing thick winter gloves.

At 500g, the Västra is hardly lightweight. I’ll switch to something a little less robust, and therefore less weighty, for the summer hiking season, as I like to be as light as possible. I find a running jacket usually does the job fine. However, I’d happily don it again for any alpine exploits and I can well imagine it working very well for skiing trips too.

Alex Foxfield

Alex is a freelance adventure writer and mountain leader with an insatiable passion for the mountains. A Cumbrian born and bred, his native English Lake District has a special place in his heart, though he is at least equally happy in North Wales, the Scottish Highlands or the European Alps. Through his hiking, mountaineering, climbing and trail running adventures, Alex aims to inspire others to get outdoors. He's the former President of the London Mountaineering Club, is training to become a winter mountain leader, looking to finally finish bagging all the Wainwright fells of the Lake District and is always keen to head to the 4,000-meter peaks of the Alps. www.alexfoxfield.com