Strade Hayden Jacket and Summit Pant Kit Review: Lead Image

Ski Reviews

Strafe Hayden Jacket & Summit Pants Review

Strafe Outerwear really nails it in the insulated kit department with the Hayden Jacket and Summit Pants combination. This kit, although not sharing the same name, is one of the comfiest, warmest, and sharpest-looking in the lineup, and has certainly gotten me a lot of compliments so far this winter. Aside from the complete paranoia that I’ve developed since November about getting this suit dirty, I’ve loved every second that I’ve spent in it. As per usual with our outerwear reviews, we like to focus on the fit, features, and fabric of the garments.

I’m 6’2 and 225 pounds and I fit really well into the XL in both coat and pants. The fit of the pants is more on the traditional side, and while they sit a bit low on my hips, the legs are long and wide enough with an appropriate inseam for sitting over the boot cuffs. One of my pet peeves is when the pants don’t cover the cuffs, and these seem to do the trick quite nicely. They’re slightly tight right at the tops of the thighs, but I’m a bit stouter in that zone, so I’m not surprised by this fit. Other than that, the pants fit great and are insanely comfortable. I do wear a belt with the pants, and do so on all of my ski pants. For the coat, the XL is right on the money from top to bottom. There’s really nothing else to say about it—the arms, the length, shoulders, and back all line right up with my body shape, again leading to a totally cozy feel. When combined with the material, it gives it an almost sleeping bag-like quality to it, which on the cold days here in Vermont, I certainly appreciate.

Strafe Hayden Jacket and Summit Pants: Action Shot 1 Strafe Hayden Jacket and Summit Pants: Action Shot 4

Fabric-wise, the outer portion of the Hayden Jacket is a Recon two layer, 4-way stretch material that’s made from 86% polyester and 14% spandex. It’s 100% recycled material and includes a DWR treatment. So far, I have found it to be more breathable than waterproof, so it does not make an ideal companion on rainy or wet snow days. That said, it’s more than capable of handling the cold and dry, mostly due to the 100g body insulation made from Primaloft Silver material. On the sleeves and hood, the composition drops to 60g of insulation. I normally wear a t-shirt (I know, no cotton, but I like it) and a base layer and that’s about it. It’s plenty warm down to about 10-degrees Fahrenheit, but below that, I’d likely add another layer to the mix. The lining is super-cozy, mad from a 100% polyester double rip-stop material that is smooth and adds to that sleeping bag quality. It’s breathable, warm, and incredibly comfortable, both inside and out. The outer fabric is not loud like some other technical outerwear is, so it gives a nice and quiet sound while you’re moving down the mountain. The same is true for the Summit Pants, with similar fabric, insulation, and repellency. While neither the coat nor the pants are particularly waterproof, they’re certainly warm and comfortable. Some skiers may find that this kit just won’t cut it when it comes to wetter weather, and I wouldn’t blame them. From a color perspective, Strafe calls the pants “Frost Grey,” but for all intents and purposes, they’re white. Most of the coat is white, too, and while it looks super-sharp when it’s clean, I’m not sure it’s the best choice for daily use. I basically quit drinking coffee in the morning to reduce the risk of spillage—one drop on the pants and the staining would drive me nuts. For the coat, I’m constantly worried about oily water dripping from the lift towers and ruining the clean look of the kit. Touching your car in the winter and then touching your pants or coat is simply out of the question as the salt or dirt will stand out pretty easily. When the weather turns wet, any melted snow or rain turns the whiteness of the kit to a pretty obvious grey. I’m not sure if the color is worth the stress, but it does look really sharp when it’s clean.

Strafe Hayden Jacket and Summit Pants: Hayden Closeup 1 Strafe Hayden Jacket and Summit Pants: Hayden Closeup 3

The Hayden and Summit have some really nice features that make this a very user-friendly kit for a variety of users, focusing on resort skiers and riders. The coat has a great hood with an adjustment, and since it’s pretty light and insulated, it’s a warm hood that feels pretty unobtrusive. In the front, the flap covering the zipper is easy to adhere with the velcro patches, and two standard pockets can hold normal stuff from keys to a GoPro on a little stick. There’s a chest pocket on the outside that I use for my pass, although there’s also a pass pocket on the wrist of the left sleeve. The pit zips have no liner, so there’s a direct pass through to the inside. I’d rather see some mesh here, but it’s still effective at ventilation. We get a powder skirt with two button options, I suppose for different depths of powder, but it’s a nice feature for sure. On the inside, there’s a zippered mesh pocket that’s great for quick access and media devices. The cuffs of the arms are great, with a soft liner and a velcro-adjustable wrist cinch. As far as the pants go, there are two standard pockets and one thigh pocket, in addition to those pockets, there’s also dual exterior vents on the outside of the legs, again not featuring a mesh liner to prevent snow passing through. I keep my phone in the right-hand pocket and it works okay there, although there is definitely a phone stain starting to shine through after about 40 days on snow. I don’t keep much else in the pants, as the pockets are pretty tight to the leg for me. I like the cuffs being reinforced with cordura, and the gaiters work just fine—nothing special here, but there’s no real need for anything other than a basic gaiter. I certainly make sure to roll the pant bottoms up in the gaiter to prevent dragging the pant bottoms on the ground.

Aside from my crippling inability to use this suit in wet weather and my perpetual fear of getting it dirty, it’s one of the most comfortable kits I’ve ever worn. There’s a huge upside to the Hayden Jacket and Summit Pant combination, and for skiers who consider the fashion worth the risk, it’s about as clean of a look as you’re going to get, especially considering the coziness and warmth of the pairing. Perhaps the Stealth/Black Camo colorway will be better for me next time, but overall, I really like this kit in how it looks and feels.

Written by Bob St.Pierre on 02/01/23

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