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Will J.

Will J.

Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on October 6, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This pack will definitely last for hundreds of days.. The zippers/farbic/straps/clips seem very durable and still look/work like new after 30+ days of use. There's just a few things I would change/add..

- A dedicated pouch for skins.. They can fit into the avy gear pouch even with a shovel, probe and snow saw in it, but it's a little annoying.
- When using the helmet carry, the helmet covers the zipper for the avy gear pouch. It's not a huge deal, just annoying that you have to remove your helmet from the pack if you want to dig a snow pit (or dig your buddy out).
- Like others mentioned.. External loops for layers, etc. I actually just loop a nylon BD belt around the handle at the top of the bag (above the helmet carry) to cinch down layers.

Obviously with a bag this size/weight/price there has to be some compromises. I definitely like the overall design though. I have the Dawn Patrol 15 also. These 2 packs cover everything up to a full day of resort/sidecountry/backcountry skiing. I'm 5'10" 170 with a 43" chest and 32" inch waist. The M/L fits perfectly in both packs. The top (sternum) strap can be adjusted to fit around pockets/zippers or adjust the fit. The pouch and routing for the hydration bladder are designed very well. I have the 1.5L CamelBak Crux and it fits perfectly.

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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on October 4, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 170 lbs
Size Purchased: 9.5

These things are awesome! They're as comfortable as your favorite sneaks, but are tough, warm and waterproof. I even pressure washed the exterior (while wearing them) after they got caked in mud one day. Feet stayed bone dry.. They don't look like some clunky hiking boots either. You could go from the trail to downtown and these wouldn't feel out of place in either setting. I'll definitely be wearing these in all 4 seasons for everything except deep snow and extended periods of time in sub zero temps.

Sizing is pretty accurate. I usually range from 9-10 and the 9.5 fits perfectly. Enough room for a thicker pair of socks, but they tighten up really well, so my feet don't move around at all when I'm wearing normal socks.

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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on September 21, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These gloves are for real. Used them 30+ days last year for everything from below zero January mornings at Steamboat in 8"+ of blower, to soggy May afternoons at A-Basin when it was hitting 40. Size up, get liners and these gloves will get you through 90% of conditions (if you're from Texas, move up 2 sizes and wear 2 liners). I moved up one size from Hestra's chart recommendation and they're perfect. I use the Black Diamond Polartec liners..

The only bad thing about these gloves is they make every other pair I have feel lame. They're bombproof, but dexterous enough to tie your shoes with (no joke, I just tried it). I expect to get 200+ days out of these. I doubt the leather will ever become compromised, but I'm sure the insulation will eventually pack out.

Worth every penny. I'll be a Hestra customer for life.

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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on December 4, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

As soon as I put it on, I could tell it was made to last through years of abuse. I've never worn a pom beanie and I bought it expecting to cut the pom off (which I did). Poms remind me too much of this hat my G-ma knitted for me as a Christmas present when I was 5. It had a bell on top where poms go...

After the alteration (and a few flashbacks), it's my favorite beanie ever. Hands down..

Edit: Update.. After cutting off the pom, I never threw it away. A few days ago, while getting my gear ready for the upcoming season, I dug up the pom and decided to sew it back on.. After wearing it around the house for awhile, I've decided to keep it on. I've also forgiven my G-ma for humiliating me when I was 5 and the emotional scarring has been repaired. Thank you Flylow!!

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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on November 28, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: Runs small
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 170 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

As someone who's 5'10" 170 lbs. with a 43" chest and 32" waist, I always seem to be compromising between a jacket that's too tight in the chest/shoulders or too long/loose in the midsection. On this jacket, there is definite taper from the shoulder to midsection (not feminine in any way). With an Atom LT underneath, the fit is dead center on the spectrum of park rat - skin tight jerry. I doubt a world class tailor could've fitted this any better for me.. The Cassiar large is an inch (or a little more) longer than the Atom LT large, so they layer perfectly. For length, the Cassiar just covers my @$$, which is perfect IMO.

The hood seems a little overkill for anything below 20,000 feet. If you enter a civilian establishment with it up, people might think you're part of an outbreak containment unit. I'll probably just remove it and use the hood on my Atom LT 90% of the time. It is highly adjustable though..Plus, I would rather have it be overkill (in case of severe weather emergencies) than have something that isn't adequate. It'll be stored in my pack just in case.

The only things I would add to this jacket are a zippered pocket on the forearm with a D ring attached to a stretchable cord. A secondary zipper to open it from the bottom.. And a greenish color option..

If you're wondering about Arc'teryx products being worth the money.. My answers is a big YES. I've had about a dozen TNF jackets and 3 or 4 Helly Hansen jackets. Within a few hours of use, the difference in quality will become blatantly obvious.


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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on November 23, 2018

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 170 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

I really like the fit, feel, design and color (tin grey) of this jacket, but it seems like mine is defective. Within a few weeks two of the zipper ropes/rubber couplings have already come off and the cord for the waist cinch is starting to frey.. I also think one of the seams or main zipper was sewn improperly (noticable indentation where the zipper meets a seam). I haven't put it to a serious backcountry test, or even skied in it.. Not overly surprised by this since the tag says Made in China....

Having said that, the overall design is well thought out. The front pockets are properly spaced so the straps for my BD Dawn Patrol pack do not interfere with accessing them. Powder skirt is very nice and can be snapped into place when not in use. Zippers on the cuff make a wide range of gloves possible to use with this jacket. Gore-tex shell is very soft/non-restrictive and the Primaloft insulation kept me warm down to 0 degrees during light activity (with only a baselayer). Hood fits over my Smith Maze helmet nicely and allows for easy head movement.

Overall, this is probably the last major product I will buy from The North Face that is manufactured in China. The design is great, but the execution is subpar in my eyes. I wouldn't trust this jacket to perform when it counts the most. For resorts and apres it would be a decent choice though (as long as you don't get a defective example).


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Will J.

Will J.wrote a review of on November 8, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

After rocking Oakleys with orange lenses for the last 7 years, these are like getting punched directly in the retinas by a rainbow. If you're a guy without a giant face/nose, these are perf. I look like a gaper in most gogs, but I look fresh in these. If you can't pick up ladies at the bar with these on, you're hopeless.. Heavy breathing may cause short bursts of fog, but it doesn't build up.. Making late night activities go smoothly..

Seriously though, these are super nice. Lightweight yet solid with a great seal around the perimeter. Peripheral vision is not noticeably compromised. Lens change takes under a minute and the green everyday lense is adequate for most conditions.

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