pet3217896

pet3217896

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peter's Passions

Climbing

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a review of on October 10, 2012

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This softshell is nicely cut and fits well. The air permeability and significant fleece on the inside however, means it ends up being a bit of a oddball in my jacket quiver. The thickness of the fleece means the jacket ends up being too warm to use actively unless it's cold (duh, it's for skiing), but the permeability also means the jacket's temp range becomes compromised pretty rapidly by medium winds. This means for active use, I'm typically going for an un-insulated softshell like the marmot tempo or a more wind resistant shell like the patagonia hooded guide instead if conditions are more severe. The coat would be a good choice for bc skiing in calm conditions, with a hard shell as backup if the conditions get nasty.

Where this jacket works best for me as as a travel coat as I go back and forth from the northeast to california. When not active, you can wear it comfortably in 70f and then it takes the edge off transitioning around to outdoors, pacific coast winds and cold cars. Plus it looks pretty sharp and fits reasonably slim as well. Put it on and forget about it.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a review of on October 10, 2012

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is my grab and go jacket for lighter activity like walking or hiking on rolling terrain in cooler temps (50F to -10F), whether conditions are calm, windy or light precip. The breathability is just right to keep you warm while walking and to shake off a stiff wind, without causing sweat build up. You can layer under in the winter for extra insulation and getting just the right warmth. The hood allows you to regulate temperature, keep off precip and keep your neck and face warm if it's below freezing. The pockets and sizing allow you to stuff gloves and hats inside without becoming annoyingly tight as you get warmer, plus layer up for cold temps.

For heavy rain or mountain top type winds you might want a hardshell instead. For heavy aerobic activity you might want something uninsulated and more breathable like the simple guide hoody. For noactive use, buy whatever from Kohl's instead :-)

I have a quiver of about 20 technical jackets and this one gets a ton of use, and definitely number one for around the neighborhood.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a review of on October 10, 2012

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I requested that Patagonia make this piece with the hood. The breathability is super high and insulation super low for active use like hiking or cross country skiing, when you would just get soaked by sweat in even a breathable hard shell. Think snowshoe or XC in snowy woods, hiking in dripping trees and occasional showers. The hood option is necessary for a bit more warmth when starting out or to keep the precip off. High wind and heavy rain would justify a membrane. Cold justifies layers of capeline + fleece underneath, so don't ding the insulation it's a layering piece. Generally if I'm not pretty chilly starting out, I sweat too much once up to temperature. Getting the layers just right is so much nicer.

The regular guide is a better choice if you're just walking or the wind is strong, as the fleece and weave are more wind resistant.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a review of on November 14, 2011

2 5

I'm used to Garmont Ventures which have a traditional sizing/feel and these were totally different. The duckbill is inflexible and the midfoot flex is super soft. So your foot takes all the bend rather than balancing between the foot and duckbill, which was all wrong for me. Plus they fit so tight you can only really wear like a thin athletic type sock, otherwise the toe section crushes you toes. Trust me pressure on top of your toes is not a good idea from a biomechanics standpoint for backcountry skiing into middle age. The cuff and strapping system seems to work pretty well, but it's hard to trust for durability. I even cut the duckbill on mine almost in half to make the front end more flexible, which makes the flex balance *almost* tolerable.

After buying these, I scoured the earth and found another pair of garmont ventures in my size in an outdoor store in state college, PA. I also went for aggressive rehab, gluing together my old pair with shoe goo and nylon patches. This response says something doesn't it :-(

Do the designers of this stuff, use this stuff or evaluate the current best in class? Seems not.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote an answer about on November 14, 2011

They fit in my silvretta 404's, but the flexible sole really hurts your feet when interacting with the toe pivot of AT gear. AT bindings won't release right with flexible boots like climbing boots or tele gear, and skiing in them is the devil. Find AT Boots with a releasable walk control which allows you to lock shin support for downhill.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a question about on November 14, 2011

How flexible is the midsole under the toes, compared to the flexibility of the 75mm duckbill? I'd prefer more flexibility in the duckbill than in the toes, to take some of the bend pressure off the toes.

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pet3217896

pet3217896 wrote a review of on August 31, 2009

5 5

My toes are getting worn out from years of skiing, hiking, playboating, longboarding,etc. Wanted a full shank boot to help protect them from getting jammed / aggravated. These boots are perfect. The shank is very stiff but not totally inflexible. The upper is supple enough that the ankle support doesn't make each step an ankle gouge like my plastic boots. Fit following la sportiva fit guide is right on and I can wear out of box with no blisters as long as I'm careful about lacing.

Unexpected but awesome features:
- "soft shell" style breathable, water repellent leather
- removable, adjustable tongue. Keeps enough downforce on foot to prevent slippage.
- lace locks hold forefoot tension between uses, simplifying lace up next time.
- toe bumper rubber keeps off dew very effectively.

These boots are a bit harsh on impact walking on solid surfaces and not light. I put in better superfeet orthotic like insoles which help. But of course one expects this for a boot with this protection factor. Ankle support seems best for french crampon technique rather than german.

Worth every penny.

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