User Review: Mountain Hardwear Brono Jacket
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $90
My ideal softshell.
- Fits well
- Extremely windproof
- Small is just a tad small, medium was too big
- Short in torso
I LOVE this jacket. Somehow, between REI clearance rack, friends and family 20% discount, and the remaining $15 of my dividend, I got this softshell for around $75. A steal when I look back on it. I was looking to replace a somewhat windproof fleece that I had used for several years for everything from casual wear to snowboarding. I found this and decided it was worth a shot based on the price and I liked the feel of the softshell fabric.
Of all the softshells I've ever laid my hands on, this is absolutely the best feeling from a durability and construstion feel. It's a bit stiffer than other materials, but bomproof, warm, supple, and comfortable. MH did an excellent job with the paneling as well. There torso and top of the arms are a thicker material, and the underarm area and sides of the torso are a more flexible, thinner, more breathable material. That material also has a fantastic feel and finish.
The jacket is absolutely windproof, windstopper really performs here, I've been riding 30 down a hill on my commuter bike into a 5 degree headwind, and felt comfortable all over my body, while my face and eyes burned and dried out in seconds. It works.
The fit of the jacket is nice. I prefer slim fitting garments, and this is definitely that. Others have complained about the armpits being too small, and digging into the armpit. I notice this a bit after wearing the jacket for a day, but nothing too terrible. I'm not extremely muscular, but not a twig either. It is a bit short in the back, I wish it were maybe an inch longer, but it fits nicely.
Durability is amazing. It will last for years.
Insulation on the inside is a soft thermal fleece with the little squares. It's grey and oh so comfortable. It's a shame they didn't run that insulation all the way up to the neck area, I prefer it to the anti chafe material found there, which is black and shows dry skin flakes quite easily (I get dry skin in the winter).
The piece is waterproof, although I haven't really tested it too much in rain/snow, as it doesn't have a hood. It will keep you dry in moderate rain/snow though, that much I have tested.
Overall, amazing jacket. I have considered picking up a second one, with windstopper, as MH changed to their proprietary windproofing the year after I bought it. Not that I don't trust the new stuff, but if it isn't broke, don't fix it. This softshell really turned me on to the advantages of softshell fabrics in general, and I won't go back