Eddie Bauer First Ascent BC MicroTherm Down Jacket
Price Paid: $299 retail, $200 on anniversary sale.
Well, I haven't seen a lot about Eddie Bauer products on Trailspace, but some of the newer higher end products are killer. This piece is a waterproof, down insulated (800 fill) hooded jacket that weighs under 20 oz.
It has quickly become my go to shell as it is so light, totally wind- and waterproof, warm and seems to breath very well. I have several Primaloft jackets and this seems less clammy even with the waterproof outer shell. (Gotta love down!) The medium size fit for me is perfect @5.10 165 lbs, arms might be a tad long but there is a good adjustable wrist closure.
I was thinking of a down or Primaloft hooded sweater, like the Mountain Hardwear Compressor or North Face Redpoint, then tried on a Marmot Trient and was impressed by the additional weather resistant shell, then I stumbled onto the B.C Microtherm and liked it best of all as it is 8 oz lighter and fit better.
The most impressive thing is the fit, especially the hood, it's the first jacket i have had that i can fit my xl size ski helmet in plus shrink down over a bare head and not be restricted and have it move to follow my line of sight. I like to ride my motorcycle in cold weather, and use this to evaluate the wind resistance, this jacket blows me away, no leakage thru the zippers and minimal leakage around the neck and hood, warmer than many high end heavier insulated jackets I have tried.
Jacket has one chest pocket (lined), two mesh lined hand pockets (high up) that double as vents. I like this better than pit zips as it makes the arms less restrictive.
This is a light jacket, it is not going to endure hard, abrasive use, but as it stuffs in its own pocket and you can compress it down to the size of a cantaloupe, it will be there when you need it.
The zippers are wind- and waterproof but don't stick and bind like some of my other jackets with water proof zips.
Highly recommended, also look for special sales and coupons , as you can usually find a deal.
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