Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud

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Alain's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Biking
Skiing

Alain's Bio

I now ski on the Dupraz D2 "White Curve"ski... with its asymmetrical profile of 155-103-135, this ski is a total winner on piste and off!!

Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on January 3, 2013

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I returned the iON goggle and exchanged it for the Eclipse. I have had three ski days so far and I am extremely satisfied! The fit for me is just right for both my face and helmet. I appreciate the Polarized lenses on those sunny days. The lens performs great in low light... flat light must be respected otherwise you will hurt yourself. What a joy it is NOT to change lenses during the day! This is for the skier who is passionate and expects quality. There are other really good ski goggles. Alpina for instance makes a sun lens that connects to your goggle with a built-in magnet. The Eclipse has met all my expectations/requirements. I hope I never forget them somewhere!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on December 18, 2012

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I was super excited for the iON. I went to Zermatt for a day of skiing. The conditions were low light in the morning, sunny in the afternoon. The positive factor is that you don't have to attach anything to your helmet. The negative is that the camera films the snow more than anything else. Skiers have to look down otherwise you will probably fall. I (personally) like to see the whole background - mountains, clouds etc. - I don't get that with the iON. I also had issues with the microphone... it picked up my voice well but doesn't eliminate the wind noise at all. I was skiing at speeds near 90kmh. The lens on the goggle is superb. I saw everything in low light just fine. The lens adapts well to the Sun but it isn't Polarized. Zeal (I'm sure) will fix this problem in the future. I would also advise an external microphone component in the next iON. I ended up returning the goggle. I would say the iON needs improvement. C'mon Zeal... get it right the next time!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on February 12, 2012

5 5

I just finished skiing at Lech/Zurs, Austria, during the week of Feb. 4 - Feb. 11, 2012. The early A.M. temperatures were (on average) -27C/-16.6F. The average mid-day temperatures was (on average) -17C/+1.4F. I said in my earlier post I would wear an Atom LT under the Micon if temperatures were brutal... I did! I was NEVER cold and I left the vents open all the time. We did have one day where the temperatures warmed to -5C/23F... I was TOO WARM with the Atom LT under the Micon. On a normal day all U have to wear is a base layer under the Micon jacket... that's it!!

I understand most skiers use the base, mid & outer layer scheme. The Micon is your mid & outer layer on a normal ski day. Very cold temperatures (I think) do require some sort of mid-layer. I think the Atom LT is best! You could also use RHO AR Top with success as well or any mid/heavy fleece. I must stress ONLY IN VERY COLD WEATHER!

Don't take my word for it... wear it :-)

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on December 17, 2011

5 5

I just skied with the "Micon" Jacket at Saas-Fee, Switzerland in snowy conditions w/moderate winds.

This jacket compares w/Patagonia's "Insulated Powder Bowl Jacket". The "Micon" is over 500grms lighter, has way better vented pit zips - mine were open all the time - and (IMO) a simpler design... "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" - Steve Jobs

I wore an Icebreaker GT baselayer under the jacket and nothing else. I was warm all the time. I would not wear this jacket on a spring day, this is meant for cold, nasty weather. Leaving the lined pit zips open will keep your temperature regulated... no worries at all. I did keep a "Sigma AR" vest in my pack just in case. Layering with an "Atom LT or SV' would only make sense if the temperatures were brutal!

The "Micon" is worth every penny in my book ;-)

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on July 13, 2010

5 5

I put this shirt through a hot day in NYC. The temperature was in the low 90's and I was comfortable. The amazing thing is that the shirt doesn't have a vent or pit zip. I don't know how ARC'TERYX keep coming up with the goods, this shirt is a must if U really appreciate a good looking technical shirt! My only regret is I should've bought a couple of long sleeve Skyline shirts as well!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on April 2, 2007

5 5

Hello gearheads! I put the "Seeker Comp" through a day in hell in Whistler. Their freezing level that day was 1200m - raining below, snowing above that level with 80km winds. I wore an Arc'teryx Ether Crew SS shirt as a base layer and Patagonia R1 fleece pants and pullover top... that was all under the "Seeker Comp". The jacket withstood EVERYTHING the weather threw at it! No water got through at all! Honestly, I really needed a Gamma SV vest on top of the Patagonia R1, because I did get slightly cold on the upper part of the Red Chair where U are exposed BIG TIME to the wind.
The skiing that day was phenomenal - over 40cms of powder! I didn't overheat when skiing through the powder and the trees in Franz's Meadow and V.D. Chutes. The jacket breathes well as I found out going through the bumps on "Lower McConkeys" in Harmony Bowl.
In conclusion, the "Seeker Comp" withstood Whistler's worst, but on days like these U would be better off wearing a Sidewinder SV - any other day is Seeker Comp day!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on October 23, 2006

5 5

Hello Gearheads!! I got my Seeker Comp on October 20th - a cold, windy & rainy day here in Helsinki. Like the Gamma MX no water got through what so ever. I really like the Sidewinder zip and how it covers my chin with space for a neck gaiter. I didn't feel any wind or any dampness... I was wearing a t-shirt and a sweat jacket under the Seeker Comp. The temperature was 5C, but it felt like -1C with the wind chill. My body temperature was just right - no overheating or cooling whatsoever. The next day the rain and wind were more intense. I wore Arc’teryx Ether Crew SS and Patagonia R1 Pullover under the Seeker Comp. Once again I was very comfortable and didn't overheat. The wind chill factor was at -2C, and the rain was coming down at a steady clip. The Seeker Comp does breathe very well... like the Gamma MX. Arc’teryx says the jacket is made for the backcountry. I think if you layer properly, it will be great inbounds as well. The RX (prescription) would be a) your base layer and b) a mid layer like Patagonia R2 or Arc’teryx RHO Top for cold winter days. You would use a mid layer like Patagonia R1 or microfleece on a warm spring day. I love this jacket already! I can't wait to ski with it. I will post an on slope review after I go skiing with the Seeker Comp. Move over Gamma MX. Seeker Comp is the BMOC now.

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on March 11, 2005

5 5

Hello Gearheads! If you've read my reviews U know I live in Helsinki, Finland. We get nasty, damp cold winds off the Gulf of Finland. Arc'Teryx's Fission LT vest is essential when the temperature drops to -15C and below. When the temperatures are closer to 0C, it's perfect with a soft shell like the Gamma MX or Sigma AR. Another bonus is how great it looks either in Azul or Black.

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on March 11, 2005

5 5

Hello "Gearheads"! Arc'Teryx does it again... so what else is new eh? The Sigma AR has Gore Windstopper and pit zips. The Sigma will work on the slopes, X-C in the woods, open the zips and your bike ride won't be a sweatfest! I bought the Salsa from backcountry.com, and I've gotten a lot of compliments already. I also own the Gamma MX, but the Sigma AR gets the nod in nasty, windy conditions. I'm looking forward 2 my bike rides when the snow melts! BUY IT!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on March 11, 2005

5 5

The Strider-T breathes very well, but not as well as the Airius-T. The Strider is a true Tech-Tee which is as comfortable on the court, as it is walking around town or hiking. There are more advanced Tech-T offerings you can choose from... more $$$'s as well. The Strider (in my opinion) will keep you cool and happy.

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on January 25, 2005

5 5

I wore my Gamma MX 5 of 6 days while in Lech. The weather ranged from a balmy +5C to -14C. The Gamma MX was excellent in all conditions. Here was my layering scheme for the cold days: base layer was my Nike Dri-Fit form fitting shirt open air mesh, mid layer was my Arc'Teryx RHO Top and the GAMMA MX that's it!! Lightweight, wicked breathable with plenty of pocket storage. You also get the "Nod" from those who know all about Arc'Teryx... a good way to hook up with your fellow Canadians and Yanks on their ski trip to Europe. I only wear my Sidewinder SV in really nasty weather now.

The warm weather day in St. Anton you ask? I wore a Patagonia Lightweight Capeline T-shirt, Patagonia R-1 for my mid-layer and the GAMMA MX. Here I discovered how the GAMMA MX breathes. I concur with all the other posters on this jackets breathability. Everyone was sweating BIG TIME except me! Nuf said! BUY THE JACKET!!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on January 25, 2005

5 5

Those of you familiar with my reviews know I live in Helsinki, Finland. The weather here is cold, damp, snowy and quite windy. What you wear outside is very important. Salomon Snowclogs are essential for walking through fresh and recently packed snow. I must say that the "Snowclog" on ice is a different story... a slip n' slide fest awaits you!

I've walked through deep snow wearing thin socks; my feet were quite warm. The perfect sock would be a mid-weight sock when you're outdoors for an extended period of time.

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on December 21, 2004

5 5

If you're someone who has cold fingers then this is your glove. The "funky" 3 finger design is perfect for adjusting your boot buckles... this means U don't have 2 take your gloves off!! The inner lining is feels great to the touch. In damp conditions, I recommend a thin inner liner just in case. Take care of the glove, dry it properly, make sure U use the leather solution to preserve the glove and you might never have to buy another pair of glove for 15 years!

I live in Helsinki, FINLAND. Helsinki is cold, windy and damp. Over here this glove costs 110€. Keep in mind that we all have health care. Backcountry.com's price is AN ABSOLUTE STEAL!!

Hestra is a Swedish brand. You will see Hestra gloves all over the alps. In Äre, Sweden, I saw over 50% wearing Hestra gloves. Once you put these gloves on you won't want to take them off.

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on November 22, 2004

5 5

I finally got my Gamma MX on the day of Helsinki's first snow storm of the year. The temperature was -5c, though it felt like -10. I went outside waering only a Patagonia R.5 microfleece under my Gamma MX. The verdict: I was slightly cold. Keep in mind that this isn't the proper layering strategy. A couple days later I went out side (Temperature was -5C, but it felt like -12C) wearing a cotton t-shirt and Arcteryx RHO Top under the Gamma MX. The Verdict? I was toasty warm!

The Gamma MX is decepitvely light! My friends couldn't believe that such a jacket could protect someone in a cold and damp environment. Helsinki is right on the Gulf of Finland. I don't have any complaints about the jacket at all!

I will go skiing in Lech, Austria in January. I will post another review then about the Gamma MX on the slopes... I know that's what all of you want to know about how it performs. As an owner of many Arc'Teryx products, all I can say is that they are simply the best. The price should be the last thing you think about!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on October 19, 2004

5 5

I must admit I wear the Covert Crew more around town, than as a insulating piece under my Sidewinder SV.

On the slopes, I used the Covert Crew as a mid-layer and was quite warm. I think the Covert Crew would be perfect as your mid-layer for a soft shell jacket. The Covert Crew is very breatheable.

What makes the Covert Crew great? THE STYLE! Simple, classy and easy on the eye! The Covert Crew is first off the rack in my closet come wintertime... it will be on high rotation in your closet as well!

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Alain Brouillaud

Alain Brouillaud wrote a review of on October 8, 2004

5 5

I live in Helsinki, Finland. I don't need to tell you that it damn cold here. Helsinki is at 61 degrees north. We have days when we get only 5 hours of light during the day... if there's no cloud cover. My Patagonia Puff Jacket was awesome when the temperature dropped to -25C. Whenever the temperature drops I can't wait to put the "Puff" to the test. Last winter was fairly mild. Helsinki usually has a cold spell where the low temperature drops to -35C - BRING IT ON!!

When wearing the "Puff Jacket", I would recommend a microfleece and nothing heavier. The hood on the "Puff" is wicked warm... so much so I took off! Use the hood in temperatures lower that -25C with significant wind chill.

You'll be happy you bought this jacket - I am!
Alain
Helsinki, Finland

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