It’s been many moons since I reviewed the Hymir Waterproof Jacket of Jöttnar’s for MyOutdoors when I was the then Running Editor. It’s a product that was burly, wanted to face adverse conditions and I still use it this day, my girlfriend even borrowed it when we went to the Lake District last month.
A constant companion and one which has got me out of a few sticky situations when others I have been with were wearing much lighter weight, more race orientated jackets. See, I love light kit, its easy to stow, breathes well and doesn’t feel cumbersome on long runs. But, when the proverbial hits the fan or its a long slog in clag and rain, you want something thats going to offer more then minimalist protection. It’s all too easy to get drawn in by the marketing of “lightest in the world” and see your running idols smashing a time out that you’ll times by 2, 3 or more to equate to your race finish time. I’ll hold my hand up and admit I get drawn in by it like many of you reading.
Does going ultralight suit your requirements?
Well, I’m not about to try answer that in this feature. Thats to come.
However, having tested and used a piece of Jöttnar’s kit for the past 5 years, I reached out to them to grab a little more intel on whats available from the brand this season.
A 2.5 layer jacket, constructed from SKJOLDR UL fabric, its highly waterproof with a 20,000mm Hydrostatic head and designed to follow the contours of your body, as you traverse the trail ahead. Yes, if you want to go for a more robust and feature rich jacket, Jöttnar have several available, however, for a jacket thats suitable for carrying with you in changing seasons, when you’re not planning on wearing it all day long, the Hjalmar offers protection balanced with agility.
Features include a scoop drop back hem to keep your booty covered, stow-able hood with a wired peak (you know I love a wired peak), shaped elasticated cuff, draw cord to cinch things down, YKK zips and a chest pocket that doubles up as a stuff sack.
Medium weighs in at 200g, colours Dark Ink or Nightshadow. Yours for £235.
Windproof/wind shirts are versatile for when the winds are high but the precipitation is low or non existent. More packable, breathable and lighter on you than hard-shells such as the HJALMAR above, something to stow for those lunch stops, unexpected events and for days you want to take the chill off the wind.
A slim cut and under helmet hood for you looking to enter skyraces in Italy and more adventurous mountain regions, a deep chest zip enables quick and efficient removal and/or whipping it on when the conditions dictate. Once again a stiffened peak, this time laminated, with elastic adjusters at the front and rear. YKK zippers and a chest pocket thats abracadabra a stuff sack carry over.
Medium weighs in at 137g, colours Polar Blue or Dark Ink . Yours for £135.
Synonymous with trail running, the cap has become a trademark for some runners and a fashion piece as we move from long peak to short, trucker to cycling cap. For me it serves two functions, one it keeps the sun out of my eyes (having a dodgy right eye that struggles with glare, it really makes a difference at times) and keeping the sweat from pouring down – its not the first time you’ve read about my perspiring abilities. World Champs 2023 in training.
For the odour producers out there, the side panels are treated with Polygiene®, while the front panel is spacer mesh to keep the air filtering through to your luscious locks. Reflective logos on the front and side, topped off with a quick release closure at the rear. Its a cap at the end of the day, but with thoughtful touches.
Weighs 57g, colours Orion Blue, Black or Blackstone . Yours for £35.
Everyone needs a jacket for before/after a run, overnight camps, sipping your preferred beverage and in winter months, in your pack in case of emergency. Jottnar have a few on offer and the ASGER stood out for its use of Polartec® Alpha®, deigned to give insulation whilst being breathable. Yes, its an insulated jacket you won’t boil over in if you run in it.
The outer fabrics a DWR treated windproof, while the inner is Polartec® Alpha®. Hand pockets, yes hand pockets, you read that correctly, to stuff your hands or map/compass/essentials in when on the move or stationary. A hood, elasticated hem/cuffs and YKK zippers for your pulling pleasure.
Medium weighs in at 274g, colours Balsam Green or Dark Ink . Yours for £195.
Lightweight form fitting, packable hoody mid layers….. the thing you end up chucking on for all manner of activities and often forget about if under a hardshell. Different from a windshell, as although the torso is wind and water resistant, the remainder is highly breathable, allowing you to glide over the fell while not dropping 3lbs of sweat at the very thought. All bar the torso get the Polygiene anti stink treatment and a lightweight hood lets you emulate scenes out of Street Fighter II when the elements roll in. Chest stash and pack pocket keeps it easy to throw in the your tech dumb bag or race vest.
Medium weighs in at 136g, colours Orion Blue or Dark Ink . Yours for £140.
Natural fibres, I’m a fan. I use them mainly in winter, and seeing your sweat evaporating off your shoulders is a site to be seen. The MAR uses a 52% Merino, 35% Lyocell, 13% Nylon blend, with flat lock seams to ensure comfort regardless of output. Be careful when washing, you don’t want to make this athletic cut into a shrink wrapped hand me down.
Medium weighs in at 140g, colours Dark Ink, Black or Blackstone . Yours for £55.
When you want to go lightweight and flat out, the four way stretch that synthetic weaves can provide gives them advantages over natural fibres – that and cost. Flat locked and athletically cut like its sibling MAR, the Polygiene® treated OVE with fend off the stink bacteria long after you’ve bonked.
Medium weighs in at 91g, colours Dark Ink, Orion Blue, Polar Blue or Black . Yours for £50.
I love a hood, don’t get me wrong, however, if its flapping around like you’re trying to get the attention of every one you meet on the trail, its distracting and borderline frustrating. The TYR is similar in features and looks to the NJORD, but differs in the fact there is no hood. If you like zero fuss and would rather stick a more substantial hat on when the weather gets rowdy, this could be the answer.
Medium weighs in at 116g, colours Dark Ink or Orion Blue. Yours for £115.
If you’ve made it this far, you can see there is a lot on offer for a brand more known for mountaineering and ski touring. In fact, theres a lot of further kit that could have made the list….. I wanted to stop short of making this a website listing of Jöttnar’s website. Shorts and gloves are all that are really missing from a complete system – there a lightweight soft-shell trousers and full blown salopettes if you fancy standing waist deep in the white stuff come winter.
The main reason for me putting this together, was to show there is more out there than the headline acts of the trail and ultra running gear world. Finding products/gear that meets your needs will enhance and potentially get you out of dodge when the time comes, so don’t feel like you have to go for the established ultra light kit at every turn. I’ve used Jöttnar on the trail and its a brand I’ve kept an eye on every since, due to the build quality and attention to detail the team put into their products.
Remember, the longer you are out in the elements, the more you need to ask of your equipment and your body.
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