Monday, November 5, 2012

Gear Review -Cabella's Avalanche Hoodie

When I landed my job at the Man Camp up at Lake Yellowstone, I knew my Georgia winter gear would not suffice. I found a catalogue for Cabella and started shopping.

I knew wintering at minus 40, wind chills at who knows what, required lots of layers. When I called to place my order, Cabella's Customer Service was excellent. I told them to put Two Polar Fleece sets of base layer down, then, with the incentive of free shipping and a sale in progress, proceeded to choose a hoodie.

The one pictured here is called the Avalanche. It's hood and neck are snug and toasty, fitting exactly right. This color is called Clover, a light purplish. I usually go for stealth colors, and this one actually compliments my wardrobe of blacks and forest greens. The zipper goes well up into the neckline, which I learned is pretty essential for cold weather. I had a black one from some other company whose zipper ended below the collar line. Not good. You end up needing a scarf with that, or turtle neck base layer.

The Avalanche is perfect. One cold day, I went skiing wearing just the polar base layer from Cabella's and this jacket. It was perfect. The side pockets are big enough to hold mittens, a second layer I put over my basic gloves. There is an elastic drawcord at the bottom hem. I chose a medium in both base layer and mid-layer. I didn't want sleeves too short, or hem lengths hitting me above the hips. In winter, you need plenty of overlap where different pieces of clothing meet each other, forming good pockets of insulation.

There are two inner pocket, just opposite the outside hand pockets. This feature somewhat compromises the capacity of either one, but so far its not an issue. The jacket and lining are 100% polyester, fast drying, on sale was $54.

The outside is a knit texture, the inside is plush. I especially like the contoured tailoring, making it a great layer beneath my Brooks-Range Mountaineering down jacket.

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