Mountain Hardwear Women’s Keele Ascent Hoody – Super Comfortable, Wind-resistant
Mountain Hardwear Women’s Keele Ascent Hoody
The Mountain Hardwear Women’s Keele Ascent Hoody $175 feels like a cross between a soft shell and a fleece. It’s warm, wind-resistant, water repellent, and just plain comfy. Whether you’re out for a backcountry ski, hitting the resort, or doing laps at the ice park- this thing was made for alpine endeavors. The lightweight material ensures that I throw this mid-layer in my pack every time I head for the mountains.
Mountain Hardwear Women’s Keele Ascent Hoody Review
The DWR exterior keeps off light amounts of water so if you’re caught out on a damp day you won’t get drenched. Since I live in such a dry climate I haven’t had a chance to test the effectiveness of it but just based on how it feels to the touch, I would expect the material to repel fog, dew, and other light condensations just fine.
I have worn the Keele Ascent Hoody skiing, mountain biking, and hiking. It was donned on the uphill and proved to be breathable and able to move with me while I skinned and climbed. Although I was warm, I didn’t overheat with the Keele Hoody on which made for less stopping to delayer on the skin track and trail.
The one issue I have found with the Keele Ascent Hoody is you can’t roll/push the sleeves up. The material isn’t very stretchy in the arms, which somehow doesn’t inhibit movement, but it does keep the sleeve from being able to slide up my forearm. I found this to be a bit annoying and really wish the material had more stretch since I generally roll my sleeves up while skinning and hiking.
There are two hip pockets that sit very high so that they are accessible while wearing a harness. They are a decent size and provide plenty of room for stashing a buff, a snack, or a small personal item.
It definitely fits true to size. I’m almost always a small, 5’8” and 130 lbs, and the small fits wonderfully. It’s fitted around the waist, has enough room that I can move around in it and the length comes to just over my hips. The sleeves are also a great length and have thumb loops at the end.
Ok, let’s talk about this material. It’s a macro-grid construction, which is why it breathes so well but is still warm enough for when you’re sitting at the belay or transitioning at the top of your skin track. The interior is super soft and feels great against your skin. I was really impressed with how this material handled the wind. It truly does block all the elements out (I’m not even paid to say that).
At 13.8 oz / 390 g, and packing down relatively small, this mid-layer makes for a good companion in the alpine. I don’t feel restricted by it, it’s warm and it breathes well while you’re working hard on the approach.
Bottom Line: For $175 it’s not a cheap mid-layer- but then again, it’s so much more than just that. Being water repellent, super comfortable, wind-resistant, and a fantastic layer to bring along on your adventures, the $175 doesn’t seem so bad. Is it worth it, you ask? Yes, yes it is.
Growing up snowboarding and hiking in the bitter cold winters and humid summers of northern Vermont, Eliza learned how to beat up gear and quickly became infatuated with new technologies. After moving to Colorado in 2015 to pursue a degree in recreation and outdoor education at Western Colorado University, her passion for the outdoors grew exponentially. Soon after, she picked up rock climbing, telemark skiing, backpacking, canyoneering, and is slowly learning to love rafting. Through these learning processes, Eliza began to understand the importance of the right gear and hopes to share her experiences and knowledge with others through Engearment.
Now working for Beacon Guidebooks as the ‘Wearer of Many Hats’ (yes, that is her official title), Eliza has learned the ins and outs of the outdoor industry. She has also worked on marketing teams, as a photographer, media coordinator, outdoor instructor and as a wrangler. She is especially excited to encourage other women in the outdoors and is an advocate for diversity and inclusion.