User Review: Mountain Hardwear Men's Zonal Jacket
Source: bought via a "pro deal"
Price Paid: $50
Great alternative to down, best one out there I feel.
- Water resistant to a T
- New version has elbow pads that make me jealous
- No chest pocket
My wife is allergic to down, so much so that I can't even wear a jacket that has any mention of the word "down." So I had been searching for a while for a great alternative, looked at many other jackets from Marmot, Patagonia (my wife subsequently ended up with the hooded Nanopuff from Patagonia and loves it), and a few others. Some were just down right too expensive, some did not fit me as well as I'd wish, and yet some others were just down right not warm. Nothing is as great as down truly is, but this is the next best thing!
I really liked the fact that this was form fitting and not only meant to be a layering jacket, but also one that could stand alone. A lot of the others that I looked at I could tell were constructed to be just another layer, not tight at the bottom, or little bit too loose in the sleeves etc. This however form fits and has a sturdy collar that can stay up, or fold down (many others had whimpy collars).
The Primaloft in this jacket does its job too! I am a cold person, growing up in Vegas has given me bad traits, so I yearn for warmth and layering. This jacket did very well all the way down to 20°F for me. I also took it out a few times on the trail, never once did I overheat, still have no snags, and despite some puppy paws on it, no holes or frays. I am a stickler for chest pocket though, especially when you're just out for a quick jaunt with the dog.
Side note, it does layer well too though, I used it under just a Patagonia Torrentshell, under a Marmot ROM and Patagonia Torrent, and under my Marmot Leadville. Doesn't bunch up in the armpits, doesn't create any undue tightness around your arms as you add or subtract layers, and doesn't restrict movement. I also like that it is rather slim-line. The stretch panels under the arms too? Genius! And it doesn't negate the overall insulation.
Overall, if you aren't down with "the down" then come on down and try this guy out. I promise you won't be disappointed! There is even a new model with elbow pads that seems to me like a fantastic idea.
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