Ireland and Scotland jacket for spring

Old Dec 15th, 2012, 03:18 PM
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Ireland and Scotland jacket for spring

Hey everyone,

The husband and I are headed to Ireland and Scotland in march and I am unsure what kind of jacket to bring. I'm thinking of bringing a leather jacket and a thin waterproof jacket but I am unsure how cold it will be. Being from Canada I am accustomed to the cold (currently -15 right now) and travelled through a few European countries last December and January but I'm not sure how cold it will be there in march. I've read it rains a lot and while its not cold the wind and rain can make it feel much colder. Any input would be appreciated!
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 03:34 PM
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layers? layers! layers?!?!!?!! yes, layers!!!!!!
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 04:07 PM
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The climate in both places is milder than that of Canada. But there is a lot of moisture - ranging from a sort of perma-mist through drizzle, light rain and downright downpours (but the latter are rare). But the wind can make it feel chillier.

I agree with layers. A leather jacket may be good - or might be too heavy. Definitely have T necks, sweaters of different weight and even a couple of tees to put underneath.

Most important are two pairs of well broken-in waterproofed walking shoes and a sturdy folding umbrella.

In April in Ireland I found a thin rain jacket with a hood to be plenty - but one day in July in Edinburgh it was about 45, pouring rain and very windy.
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 04:17 PM
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Depends on the leather jacket. I have 3 and none would be my choice -but if yours is soft and roomy enough to layer it might be fine.

At that time of year which can still be wintry or more spring-like (and likely both) I normally take a hip length or sometimes 3/4 length raincoat w/ zip out liner and button on hood so it does quadruple duty (raincoat/winter jacket/light jacket/windbreaker) and don't need any other outer wear.
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 04:31 PM
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I keep recommending checking Fodor Destinations and plugging in where you want to go and on the middle right side you can put in your dates and the weather history will appear. We will be in Dublin in April, so can appreciate the need to know. But hubby likes temps 80-95 and I prefer 45-68,and so I walk around in short sleeves and he's in a light winter jacket. All depends.
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 06:31 PM
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On an April-May trip around the UK and Ireland a few years ago I wore a leather bomber jacket. Perfect for drizzle and wind. I also wore a wool fedora and only needed an umbrella for part of a day out of 20.

Also, ditto nytraveler's suggestions.
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Old Dec 15th, 2012, 07:50 PM
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Something I have never seen mentioned is warm jammies. While you will likely be walking around creating warmth when outdoors, once you stop for the day you will feel colder.

If you are staying in B&Bs, be aware that while they say they have central heating it won't likely be what you are accustomed to.
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Old Dec 16th, 2012, 01:11 AM
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leather seems just a bit heavy to carry around... it would also need to stand up to lots of moisture, and don't know whether you want to put the leather through that.

i would recommend a very lightweight rain coat that you can layer with sweaters and what they now call a "down sweater" which is just a very light-weight and smaller down jacket. i bring a down sweater with me when i travel always-- and a good one can stand up to some rain pretty well. i love it because it doubles as a very small pillow during long travel days!
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Old Dec 16th, 2012, 01:57 AM
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Lots of good advice so far, especially that on the variation you can experience. First week of April last year, it was shirtsleeve weather in Edinburgh but we have also seen 40's in August. To emphasize and add:

1. waterproof outer layer, not just water resistant
2. cashmere scarf
3.gloves (even in summer)
4. two pairs of comfortable, preferably waterproof shoes
5. socks, not just kneehighs
6. tights for wearing with skirts or as a layer under trousers
7. a fleece jacket
8. cashmere or light lambswool sweaters
9. and (a great suggestion above) warm nightwear and perhaps bed socks as well as slippers.

I don't think all of the above would necessarily keep my wife _warm_ but it would make it possible for her to endure damp, chilly, windy days.
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Old Dec 16th, 2012, 02:52 AM
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Our standard for a good bit of the year is

a) fleece jacket
b) water-proof jacket
c) water-proof overtrousers

Note that the "windbreakers" that we had were not sufficient for the waterproof jacket that we all ended up purchasing.
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Old Dec 16th, 2012, 06:19 AM
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Use mink oil to waterproof and soften leather.
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Old Dec 20th, 2012, 03:07 PM
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I spent a month in Ireland last May. The weather in Dublin was bitter. I wore many layers - light weight merino wool chemise, light weight merino wool long sleeved underlayer, cashmere sweater, windjacket (or rain jacket when it rained), plus scarf, hat and gloves.

While the weather warmed a bit as we executed a semi-circle south and west to the coast, there were only 2 days when we could wear short-sleeved hiking shirts. Most of the time we were in at least one wool layer and a wind jacket.

Pack light-weight, warm layers that you can peel off or pile on. Be sure to have rain gear and a wind jacket. For many trips I make my rain jacket do double duty as a wind jacket, but I was glad to have the choice on this trip. That said, I have read trip reports by people who said they had hot weather and no appropriate clothing... If you truly hit a heat wave, there are department stores in Ireland.
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Old Dec 20th, 2012, 03:09 PM
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I forgot to add:
fleece jacket
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Old Dec 22nd, 2012, 04:29 AM
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My own preferred shoulder-season set of gear is:
Medium-weight (200-weight) fleece jacket
Lightweight stuffable rain jacket (mine is the LL Bean Trail Model Rain Jacket, I think)
Medium weight jacket (mine is the Lands' End Squall Jacket)

I can wear the jackets by themselves or put a fleece under them. I'm not personally a fan of 'zip out' liner or jacket items, so this is my alternative. I'm fine in anything including serious winter weather, if I add gloves.
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Old Dec 22nd, 2012, 07:45 AM
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I think a lot of the decision is based on your perspectives - what the temps a relike where you live now and what temps yuo prefer. One poster above talks about "bitter" and then short-sleeves. To me - bitter would be temps in the teens or low 20s (farenheit, not centigrade) and 65 plus would be shirt sleeve - so a 40 degree difference.

But I do recognize that people used to warm climates may think 40 is "bitter". Better to look at actual temps versus wha tothers wear. (I usually find things warmer than most people do.)
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Old Dec 22nd, 2012, 10:44 PM
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It may not be as cold as Canada, but the weather in Ireland and Scotland comes straight off the North Atlantic. There will be rain, and possibly snow in higher elevations. A leather jacket would quickly become sodden and heavy. Unless I missed it, no one has mentioned the high wind sometimes experienced in that part of the world. As you know, wind chill factor is just as important as actual temperatures.

A Gore-tex type outer layer will keep out moisture and wind, and layers will keep you warm. It's not for nothing that so many of the best woolen sweaters come from Scotland and Ireland. Save some room in your luggage for purchases.
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Old Jan 21st, 2013, 02:25 AM
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Always glad to sell warm hand knitted hats and scarves and gloves to unwary travellers ( cannot find the wink smiley)
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Old Jan 21st, 2013, 07:03 AM
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well when I go in June I do the waterproof jacket (LL Bean) outer layer and then various layers underneath. A warm fleece jacket is great. In spring I would probably do the same thing with also perhaps a sweater, gloves and scarf. Depends how long you are outside for. What I wrote would be fine for me for going in and out of shops and pubs, or site seeing a castle or city. It wouldn't be okay for a two hour hike in the mountains or along the coastline.
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