The Alpinist Mountain Standards reviews apply Alpinist's tradition of excellence and authenticity to gear reviews by providing unbiased, candid feedback and anecdotal commentary to equipment tested (hard) in the field. Our panel is comprised of climbers who use the gear every day as part of their work and play. Only the gear they would actually buy themselves, at retail price, qualifies for the Alpinist Mountain Standards award. The five-star rating system is as follows:
One Star = Piece of junk.
Two Stars = Has one or more significant flaws, with some redeeming qualities.
Three Stars = Average. This solid piece of gear is middle-of-the-road on the current market.
Four Stars = Better than most comparable gear on the market. It has one or two drawbacks, but still 90% positive.
Five Stars = Is there such thing as perfection? An Alpinist Mountain Standards award-winner.
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Mountain Hardware Chockstone Jersey: The All-Rounder
Posted on: August 27, 2007
Weight: 9 ounces
Since I first put on the Mountain Hardwear Chockstone Jersey to guide in the Tetons five weeks ago, it hasn't left my sight. I traveled to Chile last week to heli-ski guide and, amazingly—summer or winter—this jersey was always comfortable and left my core at just the right temperature. And at nine ounces, it's so light and small that it easily fits into a quart-sized zip-lock bag for easy waterproof storage.
What really draws my attention to this jersey is how light it feels. Unlike some fabrics that pill or rip over time, the Chockstone Jersey has excelled. The fabric feels like Schoeller but is lighter than any soft shell I have seen. It is slightly wind- and rain-proof, and stretches nicely for comfort. The fine design, without a doubt, is a must have for climbers, skiers, bikers and outdoor athletes in general, especially if you are thinking about shaving more than a few ounces off your pack.
Beyond finding it warm enough for alpine climbing and heli-skiing in Chile, it also has a handsome cut that's great for a night out in town... so one piece does it all.
The only con I've discovered about the jersey is that its not tight, but very anatomic, fit requires me to pull it off from the neck, where there's an upper zipper. This is no problem if you have washboard abs; otherwise your gut will be exposed in full every time you pull it off, even if your under-layers are tucked in.
Pros: Lightweight; anatomic fit; versatile layer for summer or winter; particularly nice for alpine climbs in the summer
Cons: Anatomic fit requires one to pull it off from the neck
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