Mountain Hardwear Super DS Stretchdown Hooded Down Jacket Review – Incredible Stretch
The new Mountain Hardwear Super DS Stretchdown Hooded Down Jacket ($275) is really incredible. It stretches very well and is made from a single fabric. This is pretty awesome as it helps keep the down in place as well as reduces cold spots. I took the Super DS Stretchdown jacket for a test this winter and am impressed!
Mountain Hardwear Super DS Stretchdown Hooded Down Jacket
There have been several generations of Stretchdown jackets from Mountain Hardwear. We have tested several of them over the years and you can read about those here – Stretchdown DS and Stretchdown RS. This new Stretchdown is my favorite though. If you like insulated jackets that move with you, then this should be on your radar.
Made from one fabric
This is really crazy, but this jacket is made from a single fabric. That means, there are no stitches or glues holding it together. I am not sure how they do it, but it is pretty dang amazing. The reasons they do it are for 1) eco-friendliness (no harsh glues) and for 2) durability. The 700 RDS down stays put in the baffles and the jacket stretches with you as you move.
The Toray fabric is pretty burly compared to some other ultralight materials I have tested. It has withstood several winter camping trips with our dogs and lots of use in the mountains. I have not seen a down feather pop through the material either. That is impressive. Usually, I can get a feather or two to pop out of down garments and sleeping bags.
If you are looking for an ultralight down jacket, check out the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 ($300) or Mountain Hardwear Phantom ($350) Personally, I really liked the Phantom Hoodie, you can read that review here.
The Super DS Stretchdown does not claim to be ultralight though. It is more of an everyday down jacket. One that can be worn in town and in the mountains. This would not be my first choice for backpacking or hut trips. But it would be for daily use and times were I don’t care about weight.
This jacket is very comfortable to wear. It never gets in the way of movement and feels just right. I like the way it fits too. I am using a size XL and it fits just the way I want it too. Not tight and not baggy. I am able to layer a midlayer underneath the Super DS Stretchdown with ease. For reference, I am 6’1″ 205lb, 45″ chest, 33″ waist, and 36/27 arms.
The hood has no adjustments, meaning there is no way to sinch it down. I did not find this to be much of an issue when I was wearing a hat, as the hood is elastic and fit over the hat to create a nice seal. This could be an issue if you are in a windy (and snowy) environment. So, it is something to consider with this jacket.
Warm and comfortable
I found this jacket to be warm enough to use without a midlayer in temps down to the 20s. I do tend to fun warm and do not mind cold weather though, so keep that in mind 🙂 The jacket was warm enough for me to use winter camping, layered over a wool midlayer. The temps got down to the low teens and I was warm enough.
Mountain Hardwear Super DS Stretchdown Hooded Down Jacket Review
This is a great down jacket for a person that does not care about weight and wants stretch. It fits well and has good hand pockets, chest pocket, and an internal drop pocket. The elastic cuffs are comfortable and the style is good. The retail price is $275 and runs on sale. At the time of this review, it is under $200.