jsap439137

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jsap439137

jsap439137 wrote a review of on March 5, 2013

4 5

Got this jacket at the beginning of this season and it's a fantastic shell, especially for on-area, foul weather days. Most days between 15-30 degrees F I can get away with a base layer, a light merino shirt/sweater and this shell. When it's colder I'll add a fleece or a ultralight down shirt.
When it's super cold and windy, like at the top of the Continental Divide, in January, I'll toss a down sweater underneath and then I'm toasty to almost any temperature. With big pit vents it's easy to regulate heat and moisture.
Speaking of moisture... the fleece lined collar is fantastic. It's warm and comfortable and even on super-cold days it doesn't get soaked with condensation. It stays soft and warm all day long.
It's a burly shell with lots of stash pockets. Some reviewers have complained about it having too many pockets, but to that I say, "then buy a different jacket."
I love having well-designed and properly located separate pockets for gear, keys, snacks, shades, goggles, iPhone, and GoPro remote.
Now for the minor complaints:
It's roomy in the shoulders but a little tight in the waste. I'm 5'7" and about 170 so I'm stocky, but it does feel tighter than it should around the powder skirt, even when I'm not snapping the powder skirt. It's not uncomfortable, but it looks a little odd to me.
Another slight complaint is that the hood really doesn't fit a helmet very well. I have a pretty low-pro helmet but the hood barely fits over it, and when the hood is up it's not comfortable as it pulls the jacket in all directions.l The hood is easily removed, tho, so when it's not dumping or raining it can go.
Last minor gripe is with the zippers. No bottom zipper, which is sometimes nice to unzip on the lift to vent or to paint the snow yellow. Also, the pit zips are difficult to zip and unzip by yourself.
So that's the full skinny. Overall it's a great jacket and I am very glad to have it. I'd recommend it, but just be aware of some of the caveats.

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jsap439137

jsap439137 wrote a review of on March 5, 2013

Light, nimble but don't let 'em fall off
4 5

These are fantastic touring bindings. They are extremely lightweight, easy to get in and out of on steep, potentially treacherous terrain (once you have some practice) and they are solid on the slopes. I feel completely sturdy and secure in the binders in deep powd, on steep bumps and in heavy crud.
I'm riding 181 Surface Live Life's with a 110mm waist and I have no trouble at all controlling the skis with these binders.
Like the previous reviewer, my one and complaint is the brakes.
If you are on steep, hard snow, i.e. anything but very soft and deep powd, don't expect these brakes to stop your big fatty boards from taking off down the mountain.
The one and only time these bad boys came off was when I hit a rock HARD, right under foot, on the outside edge, in the apex of a turn, while skiing fast. The bindings did their job and release when they should have, but then things went downhill from there... literally. My ski took off like a bolt. Luckily I was in somewhat remote terrain where there weren't a lot of other skiers.
I found the ski about 400 yards downhill but it was only because it hit a small tree top that was sticking through the snow and got hung-up. If that hadn't happen I'd be out a $500 pair of skis and a $500 pair of bindings, not to mention the potential liability of hitting someone with my runaway ski.
A friend of mine had a nearly identical experience.
The shop contacted DynaFit who reported no similar complaints. I talked to Surface about it too and they said the same thing. The universal consensus seemed to be: "Ski brakes are no guarantee against runaway skis."
Fair enough.
However, I think it's valuable information to have ahead of time. The brakes on these skis sit back at an angle that doesn't give them much purchase. Check out the photo compared to the brakes on my Marker Barons.
I looked into modifying the brakes but that may be a lengthy off-season project.
Otherwise, I LOVE this bindings. They tour like a dream.

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