If you have read any of my previous reviews you will have found my glowing praise for the Ferrosi 3/4 Pants which are my most favoritist pair of pants that I own. Since getting them I have wanted to invest in more from the collection but the price for the Hoody was a bit steep ($125!). I was able to get a blue one (actual color is called Glacier/Night) on clearance and with the use of some store credit…so it only cost be about $70! BAM!
(For reference, I am 5’10″ about 155 lbs so I bought a Medium. The small was a bit too short on my torso and a bit too form fitting. The Medium fits great on its own as well as over multiple layers.)
Outdoor Research lists the Ferrosi Hoody as their most versatile soft-shell. I agree with this for four reasons: breathability, lightweightness, wind resistance, and versatility.
Breathability I never seem to overheat in anything from the Ferrosi line. I am anxious to wear this on runs in warmer weather just to see how it does. I have read elsewhere that other reviewers have also noticed the breathability of the entire Ferrosi line. One issue that I had with the Patagonia Houdini was that my arms were always sweating and sticking to the jacket (though this was remedied a bit by the Patagonia Nine Trails Jacket, which I hope to review soon). The Ferrosi Hoody seems to breath quite well and, as one reviewer described it, “like your birthday suit.” That pretty much says it all.
Lightweightness This soft-shell hoody might be the most lightweight coat that is also incredibly durable. It feels almost like your don’t have a coat on, and the stretch material lets you easily move around without noticing the hoody all that much. At a mere 14 oz., it is only 10 oz. heavier than the Patagonia Houdini (which is probably the lightest nylon jacket on the market) but its durable, abrasion-resistent material makes it much tougher. Oh yeah, you can also pack the coat down into the lefthand pocket. Though it doesn’t fold up as small as the Houdini Jacket or the Nine Trails Jacket, it is about the size of a small pineapple (just in case you wanted that reference).
Wind resistance The hoody isn’t that warm on its own—nor is it meant to be—but once you add a thicker layer underneath I found that I was incredibly comfy even with wind whipping around me. Par example: It was in the low 30s today with a very strong wind and I wore the hoody over a button down shirt…and felt just fine. It also has a DWR finish that keeps light rain off of you, a plus in the wonderful Northeast. (You can revitalize the DWR finish by washing the jacket in Nikwax SoftShell Proof.)
Versatility The Ferrosi Hoody is meant for climbing and outdoor adventuring such as skiing (or trail running), but it remains stylish enough to be worn around town as a light soft-shell jacket. Additionally, the stretchiness of the spandex material allows you to wear just about anything underneath it. I put it over my puffy Colombia jacket and it worked fine (though I did look a bit ‘stuffed’).
Price $125 is not cheap. It takes some real dedication (or a sale) to justify spending that much on an article of clothing. As versatile as the Ferrosi Hoody is, it remains rather expensive so I am not sure how many people will shell out the money to get it if they could get something for less.
That said, so far the Ferrosi Hoody has totally been worth the money. I have two products from the Ferrosi line, and the Ferrosi Hoody has fast become my favorite all-round jacket, capable of functioning well in a variety of situations from casual to rugged and anywhere in-between. Again, as an FYI, Outdoor Research does have an Infinity Guarantee on all their products, ensuring that they are covered for life. I hope to be able to put this jacket through some tougher times, but until then I will leave the review here.
These are the specs as listed on the Outdoor Research website:
- Key Clip
- Zippered Napoleon Pocket
- Drawcord Hem
- Two Zippered Hand Pockets
- Water Resistant
- Wind Resistant
- DWR Coated Zippers
- Movement-Mirroring Stretch
- Left Hand Pocket Doubles as Stuff Sack
- Single-Separating Full Center-Front Zipper
- Fully Adjustable Hood