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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

1 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
Fit: Runs large
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 205 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

Wow, major fail from Black Diamond on these pants. These don't fit like previous versions of these pants, and have two serious design flaws that make these a terrible choice for a climbing/hiking pant.

First, the web belt is only sewn into the front half of the pants, which means there's a huge lack of ability to really cinch these pants down - as a result, if you've bought them for layering and aren't layering over a voluminous other layer, beware they only cinch down about an inch, so you may well have a whole lot of excess space you can't get rid of. BD should have just put belt loops with a full around belt instead.

Secondly, the legs and leg openings are huge, so expect massive drafts if you're wearing them over double boots or insulated hikers, when not wearing gaiters. Really dumb design. I'd imagine even wearing these with ski boots you'd still have drafts. These are like freakin' clown pants.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on December 8, 2018

2 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it

This helmet seems to be emblematic of the poor quality that now seems the norm for Giro products. Tried two of these helmets and both were defective before even riding with them. The first arrived with a broken visor, that flopped around, and the second had issues with the two pieces of the vertical adjustment mech on the head-adjustment element separated while I was trying to adjust it and despite best efforts, refused to go back together again. Not at all impressed with the finer quality of this helmet. It's too bad because otherwise it might have been a great helmet. Definitely not trying a third. Glad I managed to find myself a Bell Super 3 MIPS.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on September 30, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 205 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

I'm not normally one to say that I love jacket, but I love this one from Marmot. Marmot jackets are normally very hit or miss for me, with some being too large in the torso, and others too long in the sleeves. This one fits perfectly for me at 6'3" and 205lbs, it's roomy in the chest, without being sloppy towards the waist.

I bought this more for casual wear between 35 and 50 degrees, and it's perfect for that range, whether wearing it with a short sleeve t-shirt on a chilly 50-degree morning, or a light long sleeve on a 35-40 degree day. It breathes well when slightly more active, so I don't overheat in more active use. Offers good range of motion of the sleeves, without the hem riding up, or the sleeves. The hand warmer pockets are warm enough without being bulky.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on January 23, 2018

2 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
Fit: Runs large
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 195 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

Boy was I disappointed in the fit on these pants, and some of the design details are sorely lacking to boot. First off, these run way large in the waist compared to the size chart, which coupled with the fact that the belt is sewn-in on the front only - meaning it doesn't run through loops all the way around the pants' waist - means it's functionally useless for cinching the waist up more than a tiny amount.

The other major drawback is the aspect that the cuffs are HUGE, so if you don't plan to wear these with ski boots - and even then they might be big, even with the elastic cuffs - you'll have major draft issues. I wouldn't recommend these for anyone wearing plastic double-boots, or regular hiking or slimmer boots, you'll be very disappointed by them.

It's a shame really because with the Primaloft Silver version I got (now replaced with 100g Thermolite in the 2018 version), these would be good pants down to about 10 degrees or even zero in limited use. I expect the Thermolite version would be even warmer. I like the snaps on the waistband, which is better than Velcro for longer term durability, and the double-snap with zipper fly.

Contrary to reviews I've seen in places, this version is full-zip, separating completely on the sides.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on January 8, 2018

1 5

Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 195 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

Right out of the gate this jacket was an epic dud, firstly because both cord locs on the drawstring were defective and didn't keep the drawcord cinched. Secondly, despite being 6'3", with a long torso and arms, this jacket is apparently made for giants, because the sleeves are about 4" too long and the torso also too long by far. If you're not planning on layering this jacket, you'll find it runs large in the chest size too. Based on the level of insulation I would also rate this jacket poorly, because at 100g of the insulation, this feels like it would be about as warm as a 60g or 80g Primaloft jacket...most likely the 60g.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on July 11, 2017

1 5

Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
Fit: Runs small
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 195 lbs
Size Purchased: 9.0

I'm not sure what is going on in the minds of Merrell's designers and product managers of late, but a lot of their products are downright idiotically designed, and this flip-flop is one of them.

It's billed as a men's sandal, but runs so narrow that I cannot even get my foot through the straps to try them on, and I don't have an extra wide foot by any means. I'm not even sure these would be wide enough for an average woman to try on.

I'd urge Backcountry to stop selling this product immediately, because it's quite frankly a joke

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on January 14, 2017

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: Runs small
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 190 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

These would be great pants, but they have some very glaring faults that I can't get past and thus can't recommend them.

First, they run very short per waist size and small in the hips. I bought these as midweight winter pants for walking my dog and found them too snug with just a midweight long underwear layer on below them, albeit they are warm. Second, though they have some elastic on the cuffs of the legs, the openings are still too large, so if you're not looking to wear them with voluminously-large boots (like ski or giant pac boots), you'll find them very drafty, even with double-mounatineering boots...let alone wearing these with a hiking boot or insulated hiking boots.

This is a pretty big oversight on BD's part, because they should snug down tighter and stretch or adjust to accommodate larger boots, rather than be too big to begin with. This is an issue with every insulated pant I've tried in the last few years, with manufacturers seemingly inclined to make them fit for ski and snowboard use, which is weird given these pants are meant for climbers.

That said, they have a lot of great features, like the snap behind the full-side zip on each leg, to hold them together as you take them off/put them on over boots, the belt and zipper/two-snaps combo on the waist and fly, and the zip exterior right thigh pocket, along with a trim fit that would be good for climbing, but still enough space inside the pant for layering - outside the too snug hip area that is.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on December 21, 2016

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 190 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

This would be a great jacket if it was as warm as described, but it's not remotely as warm as a 600-fill power down jacket, in my opinion. This is about on par with a 60g Primaloft jacket for its warmth, or ever so slightly warmer, but not by much. I also found that the zippers on this jacket leave a bit to be desired, with the handwarmer pocket zips snagging easily and frequently, even if one adds longer zipper pulls. Fit for a medium on me was snug with a light or midweight shirt, but I didn't want to order a large, because I find TNF large jackets too big if you don't plan to layer below them, like I avoid with my casual jackets.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on February 28, 2016

2 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 190 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

I have to say that based on the reviews here on Backcountry and the North Face's own description of this jacket being as a warm as 600-fill power down, I'm very disappointed. I run on the very warm side as it is and found this jacket to be way short of the warmth described. With a long-sleeve shirt on and nominal activity levels, this jacket is barely, if at all, warmer than a jacket with 60g of Primaloft Silver or Gold. Given it's described as 600-fill equivalent, I'd have expected way more in the way of warmth. I was also disappointed by the amount of wind resistance this jacket has. In 30 knot winds, you could feel a lot of that through the seams between the pockets of Thermoball.

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Chris Pierdominici

Chris Pierdominiciwrote a review of on February 24, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: Runs large
Height: 6' 3"
Weight: 190 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

Overall, I have to say I really like this jacket and give 4 stars, even though it could merit 3. It's very warm, seems durable and is waterproof, although it does have some minor to moderate issues that I wouldn't expect to find in a jacket of this price point. I found that this jacket runs a full size large, so if you don't plan to wear this over another moderately thick jacket, order a size down. I wear a men's large and with a normal long-sleeve shirt it was too big, so I had to order a medium, which is a bit restrictive in the shoulders, but not too bad.

Pros:
- Warm: I can wear this comfortable with a long-sleeve shirt in light activity (like a brisk walk) to about zero degrees, and standing still, to around 10 degrees.
- Overall good range of movement, with minimal sleeve creep.
- Waterproof (except exterior layer)
- Pockets - well-placed to wear with a pack, if one's inclined, and deep to hold quite a bit.
- Pit-zips - very handy for venting when needed

Cons:
- Exterior layer water resistance - Quite honestly sucks. The sleeve edges soak up water fast in a rainstorm, as does the body, after only several times out in snow and rain, which to me is unacceptable at this price point. This needs work North Face!
- Velcro - low-quality knock-off(apparently?) that doesn't seem durable and too easy to undo. Placement of 2nd from top strip on the inside of the storm flap is too high, so it causes the jacket when zipped to dig into one's chin.
- Hood - not sized well for wearing over much beyond a hat (won't accommodate a helmet to my mind if you need it to), and lacks articulation to move well with side-to-side head movements, even with center shock-cord pulled. Brim isn't stiff and too small to really block snow or rain well, would benefit from a thin wire or plastic piece to make it more functional.
- Cuffs - would work way better with a half-length amount of elastic on the edges, to minimize the need to adjust the cuffs to fit over gloves

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