Mountain Hardwear Thermostatic Jacket
The main reason to buy insulated jacket is to stay warm so when the mountain forecast predicted a plunge down to 25 degrees I got excited about the opportunity to put the Thermostatic through a real test.
I put it over a heavier weight base layer in the beginning of the hike, thinking I’ll take it off once I warm up. We hiked over moderately steep terrain with light variable wind at the base which became stronger as we got higher. Temperature varied from 37 degrees at the base to 23 degrees on the summit. While moving, the jacket kept me warm, without overheating so that I ended up keeping it on all the way to the top. It also did a good job keeping me warm during our short (5 minutes or so) water/snack breaks. I get cold easily and during this time of the year any stop longer than couple minutes normally gets me dig in my pack for an extra layer. For once I could enjoy my snacks rather than fuss with my gear which was really nice.
Once at the final ridge and summit block, the wind picked up considerably and the cold eventually started sneaking in. I opted to throw a top layer on, a three season down jacket, and that kept me cozy enjoying the views during the whole lunch break.
I also used this jacket as a mid layer during a cold coastal photo shoot. We faced strong biting winds, and were not moving much, good insulation was crucial. I layered Mountain Hardwear Torsun jacket over the top for wind protection. I was impressed. The only spots that got cold during the two hours on location were my fingers that I had to occasionally expose to operate the camera.
These examples are just two of many uses I see for this jacket. It’s great warmth to weight ratio and pack-ability make it the perfect “just in case” jacket to bring along on all outdoor adventures, and thanks to the stylish feminine cut, it is more than suitable to wear around the city as well.
It layers nicely and even with heavier layer underneath does not get bulky.
The feature I really like are the hem draw cords. I found them to be very valuable when the wind picks up and I am able to cinch the hem to prevent the coldness from sneaking underneath the jacket. The elastic cuffs do the same trick for the arms by closely enveloping around your wrist not letting cold air travel up the sleeve.
I’m 5’7 and 125 lb – size Small fits me well; however I noticed the cut is little narrower in the shoulder area. Those who have broad shoulder might consider up-sizing for more comfort.