Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor

Washington, Montana, British Columbia

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Benjamin's Passions

Telemark Skiing
Backpacking
Camping
Alpine Skiing

Benjamin's Bio

No where do I feel closer to God than in the mountains...

Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a review of on March 23, 2011

3 5

Ordered this after reading the other reviews thinking that it would work nicely for me since I am rather slim and needing a medium-duty softshell. I am 6'1 175lbs. I was very surprised when I tried on the large and it was very snug. I usually have the opposite problem - I need a large or XL for sleeve length, but I need a medium for torso size. Well, this thing fit tighter than most mediums of other brands. Other reviewers are correct, the arm holes are uniquely small and seem a bit uncomfortable on the arm pits.
I don't agree with the other reviewer regarding features and durability. I was surprised at how thin the material felt, and I just can't see it standing up to a few brushes with trees while skiing (which is why I bought it). I can't comment on breathability or water repelling ability since I returned it.

I think it's an ok jacket, and appropriate for the price. It's certainly not anything special.

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a review of on February 22, 2011

4 5

First off, this jacket definitely does have insulation. I don't know if it's down or synthethic, but it's got a layer of that "puff" jacket material all along the inside. Skied two days in this jacket in single digit temps, and had the vents open the whole time. That's saying a lot, since I usually get cold and wear many layers. I only needed a single base layer under this jacket to stay warm. Another layer and I was too hot.

Features: My favorite is how the collar fits nice and snug around my face. I have a Mountain Hardware softshell and an Arc Teryx hardshell (about 10 years old), both good jackets, but both have large collars that kind of sag down and I have to dip my chin to my chest to get some shelter from the wind. Not so with this one. It zips up to just about chin height, and is nice and snug. Pockets are pretty standard, nothing special, but there are enough. I don't have a helmet, but I don't think one would fit under the hood. Powder skirt is good, with loops, and I love the inner sleeve liners with the thumb-holes. Keeps your sleeves from sinching up when extending your arms.

Fit: This is the one spot where I deduct a star. It's on the baggy side, and I think has too much material in the body. Length is ok, but I would prefer shorter. I'm fairly lean, though, so it might be perfect for a larger guy. I'm 6'1". 175 lbs, and have the large.

Color is not quite as bright as shown on the website.

Overall, a nice solid jacket at half the price of Arc Teryx or some of the other high-end brands. Lifetime warranty is assuring.

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a review of on February 22, 2011

4 5

I received this last week and was immediately bummed. The jacket was awesome, and fit perfectly, except for the arms. I'm 6'1" 175lbs. To be fair, I have longer than normal arms, but I was hoping for an "athletic" fit. Rest of the jacket was great - pockets are awesome and everywhere, fabric is smooth and comfortable, and I really liked the soft fleece lining inside the collar. Hood was a bit small (definitely NOT helmet compatible), and doesn't have the nice rigid brim to keep it from collapsing in your face. Also doesn't have the nice sleeve thumb-loop thingees that most high-end jackets seem to have now days.

All in all, I would have kept it if the arms had fit me.

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a question about on December 7, 2010

So I really want a pair of these, partly because I'm a fan of the Stoic quality, and partly because Stoic products fit me very well. However, there are no more left in my size (L), with none coming in on the horizon.
So, you have Arc'teryx, which costs a gazillion $$, or North Face, which seems to no longer be the quality it once was... and other than that, I haven't tried any other brands in a while.

Anyone out there have a recommendation of other brands that have a similar fit & quality to Stoic?

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote an answer about on March 28, 2010

Hey - I was just considering the Gotama for a new tele powder/crud ski as well. I ended up going with the Salomon Czars, only because they came up on Tramdock first. I admit, I've never skied a fat, rockerd ski, and I have always been dubious about it. Just got them this week, and skied them yesterday in thick, sticky, wet crud. THEY WERE AMAZING!! I have never had so much fun in spring crud. I could charge at 100%, and best of all, with the rocker tip, you never have to lean back! The tips just stay up, no matter what. I haven't taken them BC yet, but I plan on it. I'm sure you can use skins, you just won't get any grip from the front 15cm or so of your ski. Maybe someone else who has done it can say better.
Anyhow, in summary, if you want a powder/crud specific ski, I think these would be great, and I KNOW the Czars are. Other skis I was considering were the BD Justice and the 4FRNT VCT Turbo (which has been on Tramdock several times the last few days). I went with the Czars partly for the twin tip (I like to ski and land switch), but that may not be important to you. I mounted them with Hammerheads (also AMAZING), and one more thing: make sure to do a standard tele mount on your rockedred ski (1.5cm back from standard alpine) - I almost mounted these forward and I'm so glad I didn't. With the rocker tip they feel much shorter than they are.

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a question about on March 23, 2010

Finally pulled the trigger on these off Tramdock for a killer deal - now I need bindings. Tele bindings. I'm thinking BD 01, Hammerheads, or BD02. I don't do a lot of touring. Any suggestions?

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a question about on March 21, 2010

Tele Crud Busters?
Anyone tried mounting these Tele? If so, how are they in the crud? I need a new tele ski, and I'm considering these, the Blend, Salomon Czar, and Rossi Phantom S108. I don't really care about groomer or hard snow performance - I'm looking for a good crud/powder ski for the heavy sticky Pacific NW snow. Any suggestions?

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a question about on March 19, 2010

How are these in the crud? I'm looking for a new set of tele boards. I already have a good set of stiff, high octane skis that I like for hard snow. Now I need a set for the thick, heavy, sticky stuff we get out here in the Pacific NW. How do these compare to the Janak Bros? Stiffer maybe?

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a question about on March 16, 2010

Has anyone ever mounted and skied these tele? I'm an aggressive skier, pacific nw, and need a good pow/crud tele ski. I'm 175lbs, thinking 182 length for tele. Would this work well for a tele ski, and where would you recommend mounting it?

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a review of on March 9, 2010

5 5

Love this shirt, and am in the market for a few more! I'm 6'1", 175lbs, and the cut is perfect for me. I have a +2 ape index (wingspan is 2" greater than my height), so I do have longer-than-normal arms. It's usually really hard to find things that fit me. If it fits in the arms, the rest of it is like a dress. If it fits my body, the sleeves are too short. NOT THE CASE WITH THIS SHIRT! This thing is made for guys with long arms and slim bodies. Plus it holds of the stank way better than my Marmot base layer.

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Ben Taylor

Ben Taylor wrote a review of on March 9, 2010

3 5

Ordered these off SAC for a great deal, but they just didn't fit my face (I have a medium-sized face). They rode a bit high, too far up my face. They also left a slight gap around my nose. Other than that, they seem to be a great quality goggle - I liked the style and the lens (ignitor). I tried the Phenom next, and they fit much better.

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