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Mountain Hardwear Kepler Softshell jacket - Page 4

post #91 of 126

Just got the blue Alakazam jacket and grill Returnia pants from STP.  With the added 35% off, not a bad deal.  I wish they had the Returnia in the Bonfire in my size as that would have been awesome.

post #92 of 126

I've got the Blue/Grill combo as well, just like you.  Looks awesome.  I had debated getting the Bonfire but a bit too loud for my tastes HEH.

post #93 of 126


Quote:

Originally Posted by roverdisco View Post

Just got the blue Alakazam jacket and grill Returnia pants from STP.  With the added 35% off, not a bad deal.  I wish they had the Returnia in the Bonfire in my size as that would have been awesome.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

I've got the Blue/Grill combo as well, just like you.  Looks awesome.  I had debated getting the Bonfire but a bit too loud for my tastes HEH.


I now have  Blue/Grill Alakazam with the Bonfire Snowpocalypse pants...it's borderline too loud for my tastes as well, but my grey Free Thinker pants can tone it down if I so desire.

 

Actually, the Alakazam doesn't have nearly as much bonfire accent as the previous jacket, so it won't look so matchy-match.  I typically try my hardest NOT to match, but my wife persuaded me to try and look a little gaperish :-)

 

post #94 of 126

I had my first chance to use the Alakazam and Returnia in the elements.  We had a sleet / rain mix yesterday.  Nothing came through and the hood fit well over my helmet.  Very pleased with the performance.

post #95 of 126

Just wanted to post an update on the MH shells.  In Colorado I've generally never needed a shell to do what my Alakazam went through in Tahoe this past week.  And I have to say that the shell performed far beyond my expectations.  The new DryQ.Elite laminate works perfectly - we had very cold days, very warms days, and very wet days. Through it all the MH shell provided the best protection I've ever experienced.  I also have to say that I was very happy to have a shell with a hood.  I can honestly say that I will never ski in a storm again without one.  Having that protection for my neck and head not only made the skiing bearable, but actually quite pleasant.

post #96 of 126

My MH gear got the ultimate test this week.  My son and I went out the other night with on and off showers.  Not 2 seconds after getting on the lift, the bottom fell out.  Once we got home my wife commented that rover jr. was soaked all the way through (TNF hyvent).  Me and my MH outer ware was dry as could be. 

post #97 of 126

Sorry to hear about JR, but Hyvent is garbage.  MH gear.......some wisdom there to pass onto your son now.

post #98 of 126

sorry to bring this thread up again.  but nows the time when im searching for a shell (cheaply) and i'm seeing a few snopocalypse jackets on geartrade (which means no returns) and im wondering what everyones experiences were with the sleeves/armpits in this jacket.  One thing I really dont enjoy is when jackets cut up very high and tight into the armpits (such as a patagonia primo that I tried on) and I'm wondering if the MH shells are cut like this or if they are roomier in that area.  Im 5'9" and skinny (145ish) and im looking into a large MH shell if that helps at all.  Thanks

post #99 of 126
Thread Starter 

well, its a jacket you should really try on 1st. I love mine; great stuff.

post #100 of 126

Yeah id prefer that but I may not have the option.  Ive tried on the drystein and keplar in a local store and both of those seemed to fit in a large.  Is the fit of the sleeves/armpits in the snowpocalypse comparable to those two for those who have tried both?

post #101 of 126

I've tried on several MH jackets (and I own 3 of them as well) and though there are some differences, the overall styling/fit is similar.  I'm an XL in all of them. I'm 6'2", 200lbs, so based on your height/weight, and experience trying on the other jackets, it sounds like a Large should fit you fine.

 

I don't find the armpits restrictive/tight at all.  My Kjus jacket is tight, but all my MH jackets are fairly roomy.  Not baggy, just "roomy" in the pits.  At your weight, you're skinny, but not overly tall, so you shouldn't have any tight pulling in the pits.  Can't say for 100% certain unless you try it on, but since that's not an option, I'd go with it if I were you.  Worst case scenario?  Doesn't fit like you want, keep the tags ON, and then sell it in the Fall, recoup most if not all your money.  Sounds like you'll be fine though. 

 

Report back after you buy it!

post #102 of 126
Thread Starter 

Not sure on that model. some do have different cuts.  Did you check STP?

post #103 of 126

I just picked up a red XL Kepler off eBay for $189.99 (free shipping). I'm 6'2, 185, on the lean side, thin back to front, medium wide across, long monkey arms. (I'll typically take a 42 or 44 Long in a sport jacket.) The Kepler fits me very well, good on body and arm length, and good torso fit - not a tent like some XL jackets are on me, but not too snug. However as others have noted there's not a whole lot of room for layers, and the arms are indeed cut surprisingly tight!

 

I have a big head and a long neck - most jackets if the hood will fit over a helmet at all it lifts the entire jacket up, often off my shoulders a little. With this Kepler the hood fits fine over my helmet, and doesn't lift the jacket up at all, but again as others have pointed out it's a big-ass hood and when not on your head thereis a lot of material flopping around back there!  (No zipper stow compartment for the hood on this jacket).

 

Overall I wanted a windproof/waterproof/breathable shell not just for downhill skiing at times but also for other stuff where I might work up a sweat - skinning and cross country, and biking and hiking in winter weather. The price seemed pretty good - I think I'll keep it.

 

There is currently one left on eBay - red, size large. $159.99, free shipping and 14 day return.

 

One pet peeve shout out to all jacket manufacturers: I don't understand why anyone would make a sport shell and not put two big/deep webbed pockets on the inside. Someplace to easily stash gloves, goggles, platypus, sandwich, etc. Some jackets have them, most don't, including the Kepler. Argh!

post #104 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Noodler View Post

Just wanted to post an update on the MH shells.  In Colorado I've generally never needed a shell to do what my Alakazam went through in Tahoe this past week.  And I have to say that the shell performed far beyond my expectations.  The new DryQ.Elite laminate works perfectly - we had very cold days, very warms days, and very wet days. Through it all the MH shell provided the best protection I've ever experienced.  I also have to say that I was very happy to have a shell with a hood.  I can honestly say that I will never ski in a storm again without one.  Having that protection for my neck and head not only made the skiing bearable, but actually quite pleasant.

 

I skied and rode several chairlift rides with Noodler on a very snowy/windy  day in Squaw last winter during the Gathering. I fought my non-MH shell jacket all day, and, was jealous of Noodler's Alakazam. While I really don't need a new jacket, the thought of getting the same jacket is rolling around my brain. When Noodler gives a icon14.gif icon14.gif review, take that recommendation to the bank. Nobody sweats the gear details  like him.

post #105 of 126

Can anyone who's familiar with both summarize the differences between the Kepler and Alakazam? I've looked at some of the specs on the MH web site - appears the Alakazam may be a little roomier, perhaps better suited for underlayers, ergo skiing in colder weather?

 

http://www.mountainhardwear.com/on/demandware.store/Sites-MountainHardwear_US-Site/default/Search-Show?q=kepler

 

http://www.mountainhardwear.com/Men%27s-Alakazam%E2%84%A2-Jacket/OM4828,default,pd.html

post #106 of 126

The Kepler is more mountaineering/backcountry oriented than the Alakazam (which is more targeted at inbounds resort skiing).  Not to say that they both couldn't be switched up.  The Kepler is a bit shorter and lighter, but I'm not sure where they may differ on fit.  I can say that you should probably size up with the Alakazam. Most of my other ski jackets are mediums, but with MH stuff I'm wearing a large.

post #107 of 126

Cool. Thx for the feedback.

post #108 of 126

I just jumped on the MH web site and see that they've redesigned some of the jacket models for this season.  I like what they've done with the Alakazam - better colors and some zipper changes.

post #109 of 126

Definitely look better, but other than a few (what I consider) minor changes, the price tags just went through the roof!  Your first DryQ Elite season fix is cheap, then it's really gonna cost you?!

 

WAY overpriced now!!  They're crazy.  Fuhgettaboutit, I'll pass on the new MH stuff, thank you very much.  You were once affordable, Mountain Hardware, now you're out of your collective minds.

post #110 of 126
Thread Starter 

if interested, I am selling a pair of snowpocalypse pants in that cool Voltage, new with tags for 175.00 shipped. size M.  pics over in the marketplace area

 

Funny, I didn't realize I started the thread and yes, I think the DryQ proved itself and now they are asking $ for it.  

post #111 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunnerbob View Post

Definitely look better, but other than a few (what I consider) minor changes, the price tags just went through the roof!  Your first DryQ Elite season fix is cheap, then it's really gonna cost you?!

 

WAY overpriced now!!  They're crazy.  Fuhgettaboutit, I'll pass on the new MH stuff, thank you very much.  You were once affordable, Mountain Hardware, now you're out of your collective minds.

Last year, Noodler predicted a major MH price increase. They were bought-out by Columbia Sportswear and to differentiate the higher end Mountain Harware gear from Columbia stuff, a big price delta is foreseen. 

post #112 of 126

Well, that sucks... I am glad I got my MH Gravitor jacket through SAC, and I've been very happy with their gear/DryQ Elite stuff. I guess I will just have to keep an eye out at SAC for deals next season! 

post #113 of 126
Quote:
Originally Posted by roastpuff View Post

I guess I will just have to keep an eye out at SAC for deals next season! 

 

Doesn't hurt to scan fleaBay and Spadout too - good deals to be found there, sometimes.

post #114 of 126
Thread Starter 

no takers for my pants????  come on 

post #115 of 126

Sorry Finn, I'm not svelte enough. I need a L pant at a minimum - have to also fit my knee brace underneath with enough room to move around, and it's a fairly big one. 

 

Thanks for the heads-up on Spadout. 

post #116 of 126

Wow, I hadn't noticed the predicted price increases actually are reality now.  That really sucks - especially when we all know that there's absolutely no difference in the technology or the build quality.  If I were Columbia I would have timed dramatic price increases to coincide with a major change in the technology and somehow pawn it off on that.  They way this will play out now is that they lose "cred" for pricing the gear into the stratosphere with no possible excuse to throw out to any prospective customers.  A really bad move on their part... nonono2.gif

post #117 of 126

Are you talking about the advertised prices on the MH web site? Aren't those somewhat akin to suggested retail ski prices, i.e., won't different entities which actually sell the products discount them, perhaps heavily?

 

School me, please.  ;-)

post #118 of 126

Good point.  But I've checked several retailers....Altrec, REI, BC, etc.....they're all selling the new jackets for $500-$550. As I understand, they are the actual retail prices on the shelves. I suspect prices will drop over the course of the season, no different than any other gear by any other manufacturer. But it looks like MH did a refresh on their lineup and are now charging exorbitant prices for their items. It's quite a sticker shock in my opinion, from what they had going previously.

post #119 of 126
Well then, that does merit a "wow"! Let the market decide, I guess.

I'm just glad I could find a new MH jacket at a relatively good price. That it's not the latest model doesn't bother me a bit.
post #120 of 126

Man, I'm glad I got my Alakazam the end of last season from STP.  Got it for a third of those prices.  I have it and a Gore-Tex and much prefer the DryQ for moisture management.

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