2012 Clothing Set Up

| September 23, 2011

I’m the type of skier who likes to find gear that works and stick with it, and would rather spend my time skiing than dickin’ around with unfamiliar products.  My annual gear choices are made even easier as I have the great privilege and honor of being an “independent contractor” for a variety of companies, including Mountain Hardwear, so every year I just find the most expensive items and order two of every color.  ;)  Okay, not really.

For the past eight or so years, I’ve been using alpine climbing jackets and pants as I like the looser fit, stripped down design and generally better construction and materials.  I’ve found that most “ski” specific clothing is more geared towards riding the wire, and as such has too many doodads and is too hot for hiking.  This year MHW has come out with a line of clothing that is far & away the best they have ever produced.  A big part of this push has resulted from them moving to their own proprietary breathable membrane, Dry.Q, which has allowed them increased design flexibility.

Dry.Q is available in three different flavors with the Dry.Q Elite being the ultra smack-daddy membrane of the Alpine line. The construction, materials and detailing of this jacket makes my inner designer swoon with joy.

For outerwear this season, I am using a Jovian Jacket and Bokta Pants.  Both are gorgeous pieces of clothing, but I am especially excited about the pants as; a) they are red, b) they have full length zippers. The full length zippers are essential for taking your pants on/off over ski boots (or even while wearing skis), and taking other things, like visits to the outhouse.  In the past I’d often cut the powder cuffs off right away, but now I let them rock until they inevitably get torn & ripped to the point that they serve no purpose, and then remove them.  This usually takes about half the season and is 100% user error.  I wear soft shell Synchro pants as a baselayer, which fit over the boot top, and if I really need powder cuff protection, like for extended postholio sessions, I’ll cinch the cuff down with a Voile strap.

I love the simplicity and bomb-proof quality of these pants. In case you are wondering, Bokta is just east of Chindwin.

The Jovian Jacket follows in the tradition of the Beryllium and Vertical jackets – a clean, simple design with fantastic materials and construction. If I were god, I’d do away with the pit zips and bicep Chapstick pocket, but I can live with them.

The Jovian Jacket is all business with two large, front waist pockets and a big mesh inner pocket.

I’m thrilled to see jackets and pants like these, as from a manufacturers perspective, they must be a tough sell.  To the disconcerting customer, it appears you can get a jacket with more bullet-points on its hangtag for less money elsewhere, but if you are using these things on a daily basis in the environment they were designed for, their value quickly becomes apparent.

Help support StraightChuter.com and fill your cart with a Mountain Hardwear Jovian Jacket from Backcountry.com. Click on the photo below…


Category: Gear Reviews

About the Author ()

Andrew McLean lives in Park City, Utah and is a gear designer, writer, photographer, ski mountaineer, climber, Mountain Unicycle rider and father of two very loud little girls.

Comments (7)

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  1. Deaner says:

    looks sweet!

    Isn’t this proprietary Dry-Q just E-Vent???

  2. Phil says:


    Not quite on the topic that you are talking about here, but looking at the float 30, what are you thoughts on issues that some like say Theo Meiners brings up concerning ava-airbags taking you “for the full” ride? Do you think that the Float does better at staying up above your arms so as to allow you to still try and get off the dragon’s back?

    Thanks for you input.

    I’m leaning towards the float when riding alone, as I think that the disadvantage of the avalung would then be that fact it just extends the end of my life, without necessarily improving the quality of it, just allowing me more time to contemplate the error of my ways….

  3. Andrew says:

    Hi Deaner – I haven’t used E-Vent garments, so I can’t really say.

  4. d3 says:

    what is the coupon code we can use to get the straightchuter discount when ordering on line?


  5. Steven says:

    What made you select the Jovian over the “MH Drystein”. The drystein seems much more simplistic version with the same Dry Q fabric?(and no pit zips!)

  6. harry says:

    your picture shows that the gaiters in the bokta open up to allow boots to stay on when putting on/ taking off the pants. however in a review on the mtn hardware site (http://ugc.mountainhardwear.com/profiles/7018-en_us/00683809/profile.htm) they say the gaiter does not open.
    which is it?

  7. Andrew says:

    Harry – My Bokta’s are a year old and they have an opening gaiter with a velcro closure.

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