Expert Review: Mountain Hardwear Men's Sky Ridge™ GORE-TEX® Shell Jacket
This review is my honest opinion of the jacket, which I purchased with my own money in December of 2021.
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the jacket, which I purchased with my own money in December of 2021.
The Mountain Hardwear Men's Sky Ridge™ GORE-TEX® Shell Jacket is for powder-chasing riders who venture off into the deep snow, bowls, trees, and backcountry and want to keep dry.
About the jacket I own
- Model: 2021/2022 Mountain Hardwear Men's Sky Ridge™ GORE-TEX® Shell Jacket
- Size: Small
- Fit: True to size
- Height: 5’2”
- Weight: 150lbs
- Experience: 28 years of snowboarding and 35 years of skiing
- When I bought this: December 2021
- Days tested: 40
- Where I’ve used it: Snowboarding, skiing, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing in Oregon, Washington, and Tahoe.
- Conditions I’ve used it in: Snow powder days, rainy days, and laying in the snow taking photos.
How it performs
What I was looking for
I was looking for a lightweight shell GORE-TEX jacket to keep me dry on powder days and a lightweight and breathable jacket for backcountry riding and shooting winter sports photography. I also wanted simple colors and nothing too flashy.
Why I chose this gear
I chose this because it was a GORE-TEX shell. I prefer to ride in shell jackets so I can fit my layers under to keep me warm if needed. I really like the color this jacket came in. I did not look at any other jackets because the prior year I purchased a similar GORE-TEX Mountain Hardwear Ridge jacket and wanted another jacket this season.
What I love about it
- Fit: I was looking for something that was a relaxed fit and that suited my frame. This jacket allows me to ride and hike up any type of terrain, have full motion, and move.
- Range of Motion: I like my body to move when making turns. And this jacket gives a full range of motion when I am hiking and hitting side hits.
- Design: Easily accessible pockets in which I can store snowboard tools, cell phone, chapstick, ID, and snacks.
- Style: The regular fit is perfect for me because I don't like the feeling of tight or too-loose outerwear.
- Durability: After 40 days of riding, the jacket has no wear and tear.
- Pockets: I like the pass pocket on the sleeve for easy ticket scanning. There are four easy-access pockets in the front.
- Waterproofing: The** **GORE-TEX is 100% dependable. I am dry all day when it's dumping snow or when I am on the ground or in deep snow shooting photos for hours in one spot.
- Breathability: Very breathable with vents on the armpits that open up. However, I do wish there was some sort of mesh in the vent area. I am in deep snow a lot and get hot. That would help prevent snow from coming in with vents open.
- Warmth: I prefer shell jackets, so I can layer underneath them if needed. This jacket is warm enough on a powder day with an underlayer and flannel.
- Weight: The light weight helps when I am hiking up the mountain. I like to move quickly, and this jacket moves easily with me.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Quality of Materials: The material used is high quality but a little stiff. It is not a soft-material shell.
Favorite moment with this gear
I explore the whole mountain in this jacket and take it out every time I'm out in the backcountry. On a powder day, one can find me floating through the trees at Mt. Hood chasing the snow.
Value for the money vs. other options
GORE-TEX technology is worth the money. I prefer to protect myself from wet conditions. I am also a photographer, so I can lie in the snow for hours and need to stay dry. Price did not factor in my purchase. I choose fit, comfort, and great quality over money. This jacket is comparable to other jackets like the Quiksilver Highline Shell Pro 3L GORE-TEX and Burton AK Hover GORE‑TEX 3L Stretch Jacket.
I know the quality and technology will last for years on this jacket. GORE-TEX never fails me, and I was glad to add this jacket to my jacket collection.