Last weekend I took advantage of the sunny weather and took my brand new North Face jacket and Brasher Country Boots on a hike to Sierra Mijas, a nearby mountain range, close to where I live. There are several trails that go up the mountain, starting in Mijas Pueblo – my favourite white village in Andalucia.
I parked the car in the village’s multi-storey which only charges 1 euro a day and made my way up, through the narrow streets and beautiful white houses decorated with flowers, to the start of the trail. I chose to do the red trail, as I haven’t been hiking for a while and this was one of the ones marked as easy.
Whilst I did enjoy the hike and the beautiful weather, I felt that it wasn’t really enough to fully test the jacket, which is waterproof and windproof as well. So yesterday, on a yellow code of wind, I got into my car and drove to Gibraltar, to climb the Rock.
The North Face Women’s Evolve II Triclimate® 3-in-1 Review
I think it’s been at least 10 years since I’ve first heard about North Face and their fabulous gear. I remember traveling around Asia and back then almost everyone I met had a North Face, be it a jacket, or a pair of shoes, a backpack, or even a hat. I was traveling on a budget, on my part time salary which I saved for months, and could no way afford a jacket like this. Even the copies in Vietnam were expensive.
Years passed though and whilst I kept traveling the world, faith made it that I didn’t get the chance to buy my own North Face. Be it a sale at the local mountain shop, or simply getting birthday and Christmas gifts, all my hiking gear ended up being different brands.
However, this changed a month ago, when I got my first North Face Jacket, the Women’s Evolve II Triclimate 3-in-1. What I absolutely love about this women’s winter jacket is that I can wear it anywhere, anytime, no matter the weather. Ever since I got it, The North Face jacket has become my only coat and I pretty much wear it every time I get out of the house.
The 3-in-1 feature makes this North Face jacket very versatile, part of a collection of hiking clothes for women that every mountain lover should have. It can we wore in summer – as a windbreaker, in autumn – as a jumper, or in winter – as a warm coat. The adaptable design makes it very easy to detach the inside fleece from the main shell of the jacket in just seconds.
The jacket is fully breathable and waterproof, and whilst hiking the mountain I felt that it kept a constant body temperature. The Polartec fleece is lightweight, warm and soft, highly breathable so that it keeps your body dry when you are out and about, sweating on a hard mountain trail.
In Gibraltar, at wind speeds of over 60 miles per hour, I felt very well protected. As you might notice from the photo, I do struggle to hold on to the rail so that the wind doesn’t blow me away. Despite this, I didn’t feel cold for a second, on the contrary. This jacket makes a fantastic outdoor gift for women.
On Monday I am heading back to Vietnam and bring The North Face jacket with me. At the moment is the monsoon season there and I trust that this jacket will be my best friend during my three weeks trip to South East Asia. For a men’s jacket, check out this North Face Thermoball Hoodie review.
Brasher Women’s Country Master Walking Boots Review
When you go hiking it’s very important to wear a proper pair of shoes and not just your trainers. Even worse, some people go hiking mountains in their flip flops! If you are a beginner, please read my guide on hiking for the first time and invest in a good pair of women’s hiking boots.
I wore the Brasher Country Master Walking Boots for the first-time last week, around Granada. I wanted to “break in them”, to make sure I won’t have any issues on the trail. When you buy new walking shoes you need to wear them before you get hiking, otherwise you risk blisters. I did this mistake when I went hiking in Bergen and I can’t even tell you how much pain I was in by the end of the 18 km trail!
I had no problems breaking in the Brasher Boots. I wear size 5 and the boots were perfect for my feet – I am one of those people who rarely find shoes that won’t hurt my feet, and this is why I would never in a million years be able to wear heels without getting blisters and pain by the end of the day.
The fit is very important when you buy hiking shoes. You should always test them with your favourite hiking socks on and make sure that you can slip one finger between your heel and the back of your foot. When you are on a mountain trail your feet will expand so it’s important that they have space to do so, otherwise you will feel very uncomfortable.
I found the boots to be lightweight and weight much less than my old pair of hiking boots. This helped a lot on the rocky path up the mountain, especially in the areas where I had to climb over boulders. Another great advantage of the boots is the good grip. I never felt that I could slip.
The Brasher Women’s Country Master Walking Boots are also providing a great ankle support, especially on rough terrain, preventing injuries. The inside of the boots is lined with shock absorbing PU midsoles, which feels so soft and comfortable. This is actually the first thing I noticed about these boots, once I started walking on the trail. I couldn’t feel any of the terrain, just the cushion underneath my feet. It was a bit strange at the beginning, but I got used to it quickly.
The Brasher Boots are made from leather and suede, providing excellent durability and water resistance. The boots also feature eVent waterproofing, which is a fabric that allows the feet to “breath” and keeps them dry.
When you buy hiking clothes and shoes, you need to make sure you can rely on them and that they will last. It’s an investment in both your comfort and safety on the trails. And I am so happy with my choice of the North Face Women’s Evolve II Triclimate® 3-in-1 and the pair of Brasher Women’s Country Master Walking Boots. I know they will last for years to come and we will go together in many adventures around the world!
Disclaimer: The brands included in this post asked for my opinion on the products featured from their range. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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