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Arches National ParkArc’teryx was started in 1989 out of a climber’s basement in British Columbia. They began with four sewing machines turning out unrivaled climbing harnesses. In 1998 they launched into the apparel world debuting the most advanced alpine climbing shell available in the Alpha SV. The original company name was actually Rock Solid Manufacturing but It wasn’t until 1991 when they entered the US market that the name was changed to Arc’teryx Equipment.
AllOutdoor Review – Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody
The iconic symbol of the company is s named after a 140 million-year-old creature, the Archaeopteryx. This creature made an evolutionary leap forward to escape the horizontal world of dinosaurs and developed the feathers for flight. Much like the Archaeopteryx making an evolutionary leap forward, Arc’teryx doesn’t focus on incremental advancements, but on making large leaps forward in the outdoor industry. In 2016, Arc’teryx opened a 243,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in North Vancouver known as Arc’One. With this Arc’teryx is the only major apparel manufacturer in the industry that owns its own factory.
The Gamma MX Hoody was privately purchased and Arc’teryx has had no input on this review, they definitely don’t even know who I am.
The Gamma MX Hoody was evaluated over the course of 2 years and was used in settings such as hiking, alpine sniper schools, everyday use, and many trips to the range in the winters.
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review Specs
-Weight- 594g / 21 oz (M)
-Materials – Fortius
-MSRP – $350
-Designed for – Rock Climbing / Ice Climbing / Alpine Climbing
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review – Construction and Materials
The MX in the name stands for “Mixed Weather” meaning this jacket designed to work in challenging conditions. The Gamma features a proven stretch material that Arc’teryx has been using for years now in their Gamma line. This fabric can kinda do it all in my opinion. It’s great a blocking wind while still being breathable and is incredibly tough and stretchy. Did I mention it can also keep light rain off you? This stretch-woven Fortius 2.0 fabric keeps the elements at bay but don’t go out in a rain storm with it as you will still get soaked.
Breathing a highly breathable jacket this jacket is great for traveling and when you’re doing moderate activities in the cold. You can layer it up or down depending on your environment and still maintain a comfortable temperature. As this jacket is designed for mountaineering and ice climbers this feature makes sense but that doesn’t mean you can’t reap its benefits on a winter walk to the gas station. The interior of the jacket is fleece lined giving it that extra amount of comfort and warmth. While I prefer my jacket to not have any abrasive materials on the interior as it makes taking them off and on with a flannel shirt that much more time-consuming, I really didn’t mind it on this jacket and enjoyed the lining in the end.
Like on all Arc’teryx products, the construction and stitching are second to none, and the fit is fantastic. I’m 5’ 9” at 165 pounds with an athletic build and this jacket fits me like a glove. After a few years of use, I can’t see any real wear marks on the jacket and all the seams are still where they were when I purchased it.
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review – Features
The Gamma Mx has a few more features than most other jackets in the Arc’teryx line. This is still a jacket that has a minimal design to it like all of the jackets that the company produces but this one has five pockets instead of just three. There are two standard hand pockets and two standard chest pockets in the front. All pockets are zippered while the chest pockets are recessed by flaps into the jacket meaning they are not visible until when utilized. The zippers are high quality as you would expect. There is one shoulder pocket and it is very small. The only use I found for this pocket was to hold my ski pass while o the mountain or a small tube of chapstick.
The primary zipper of the jacket is a YKK that has a fleece-backed flap that runs the entire length of the jacket to keep the wind from coming into the jacket. As mentioned before the interior of the jacket is fleece lined meaning this is a great garment for fall and winter use. The hood of the Gamma is large to accommodate the use of helmets and has three adjustable drawstrings to sinch it down to your head. The bottom of the jacket has a drawcord for adjustments also.
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review – Performance
Being that the Gamma is primarily constructed of a stretchy material you will not lose any range of motion when wearing this top. This is key when you’re getting into awkward positions while climbing or running a firearm or the range. The Gamma is also a lot warmer than I anticipated it would be. I recently took it out to Utah in February and found that in 30-degree weather with a long sleeve shirt on underneath I was more than warm enough. The breathability of the jacket works both ways though so if you’re not actively moving in colder temps, you will begin to get cold.
– Athletic Fit
– Great pocket placement
-Fitted Cuffs are too tight
-Limited colorways that change every season
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review – Competitive Options
Outdoor Research Ferrosi Hoodie $150
Men's Ferrosi Hoodie
Best-in-class durable softshell hoodie with award-winning Ferrosi fabric, new and improved for your 2022 spring and summer multi-sport adventures. Stretchier, stronger, and more sustainable than ever before - with the same trusted performance.
Arc’teryx Gamma LT Hoody $ 220
Gamma Lightweight Hoody Men's
Light, weather-repellent, breathable softshell for hiking and all-mountain use. *The Gamma Lightweight Hoody was previously the Gamma SL Hoody.
Arc’teryx Gamma MX Hoody Review – Wrap Up
Finally, we need to talk about the elephant in the room and that is the price of the Gamma MX. Coming in at $350 this is one of the most expensive jackets I own and while nothing Arc’teryx makes is cheap, I feel that there are some interesting options on the market if your not looking to spend that kind of dough. I think you could get something like the OR Ferrosi hoody and pair it with a light fleece mid-layer and spend about half as much as the Gamma. With that all being said I love this jacket but I don’t love the cuffs. If your looking for a stretchy hoody that looks as good on the range or in the mountains as it does on your way to the craft beer store, look no further than the Gamma. Again it is expensive but it will definitely last you for years and years.
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