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Icebreaker Merino Wool Sierra Plus Jacket Review

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Not all outdoor gear can be considered “fashionable”, but the new Icebreaker Merino wool Sierra Plus jacket fits the bill. It is soft and fits snug. While hanging out at camp on a cool damp night or out for a late evening urban walk, you can count on this jacket to keep you warm and cozy. Although it is water resistant, it isn’t going to keep you totally dry, but as countless generations of outdoors enthusiasts know, wool will help keep you warm even when wet.

We tested this garment in typical damp cool conditions in the Pacific Northwest in Winter. The jacket did bead up water in the misty rain for a while, but eventually it got wet. This is easily avoided by layering over with a light rain shell. On those days where it is somewhat windy, I found the jacket kept out most of the chill even without a shell.

Cameron Ownbey

The sizing of the Large jacket runs a bit small around the chest, but the sleeves are long. If you like a snug fit order your regular size, but if you like loose fit, order a size larger. The long sleeves do cover part of the wrist which is nice if you like to keep cold hands covered.

The material is very soft and since it is made of Merino wool, it isn’t itchy or rough like your grandpa’s wool sweater. It is very flexible and moves with you as you scramble up a hill or day hike along a beach. The hoodie stays put even without snugging it tight around your head. It does have two ways to adjust the hoodie fit should you need to cinch it up a bit to keep drafts out.

The garment is machine washable alone and should not be dry cleaned. Wash with mild soap and do not dry in dryer. It should be allowed to dry slowly as wool often shrinks in heat. It maintained its smooth appearance after washing when hung out to dry.

It has 5 pockets. Two interior open top pockets, two hand pockets with water resistant zippers and a breast pocket with a rain flap to cover the zipper. This pocket has an additional feature with a buttonhole through to the inside of the coat so you can carry your phone, iPod or other small device in the pocket and run headphones or ear buds through from device to ears.

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PROS:

  • Fashionable style and look
  • Soft feel
  • Breathable material
  • Reasonably light weight at 23 Oz.
  • Long sleeves for wrist warmth
  • Media cord port for device
  • Reasonably rain resistant

CONS:

  • Small fit for stated size
  • Cleaning is slow and takes extra care
  • Cost is high at about $250

Conclusion:

This garment is a stylish urbanwear hoodie which can double as one layer of backcountry 3 season gear.

 

Tech Specs

Manufacturer: Icebreaker

Date available: Currently Available

MSRP: $249.99

Listed Weight: 260 Midweight

Materials: Merino Wool

Dave is a native of the Pacific Northwest who grew up on the beaches and in the mountains here. He has walked many miles of trails in his 40+ years as a backpacker. Dave was taught the skills of backpacking by a devoted member of the Tacoma Mountaineers and will always be grateful for the education received from him. One of the greatest lessons learned was respect for all that nature has provided us and to protect and defend the wild. Dave loves fishing and nature photography as well as preparing unusual gourmet meals in the wilderness. Dave’s bucket list includes many international travels and treks. Whenever time and money allow, he will be found in trekking in Nepal, climbing to Machu Picchu, on safari in South Africa, scuba diving in Mexico or wherever wander lust carries him.

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