Mountain Hardwear Type 2 Fun 3/4 Zip Hoody Review
Cons: Less breathable
Manufacturer: Mountain Hardwear
Our Analysis and Test Results
Mountain Hardwear is going for a slice of the Patagonia R1 market with the Type II Fun Hoody. This style top has become a favorite and an indispensable layer for casual weekend warriors and big mountain alpinists alike. This fleece has a few key attributes that impressed our testers.
The Type II Fun is a lightweight fleece that doesn't have a ton of loft, and as such, doesn't trap much warm air. However, a fleece of this type isn't intended to be super warm. This fleece is made to breathe well and be a warm layer for cool weather activity. Any warmer, and this would be to thick for moving in the mountains.
Our testers absolutely loved the fit of this layer. Some of our testers found it to have a better overall fit than the long-standing leaders in this category. The fleece is soft, but not overly so, and the exterior has a smooth, almost oily touch. The hood fits and feels great under a helmet or by itself.
We found that the fleece had a fairly tight-knit. This keeps warm air close to the body and doesn't allow a light breeze to rob you of it. However, the breathability is only marginally worse than other performance half zip style layers in our test, and we think it's just about a toss-up.
This jacket layers just as well as any fleece in this test. The thumb loops assist in keeping your sleeves down when layering up, and the fit is trim so it won't bunch up under a shell. There are no handwarmer pockets to get in the way of a harness or waistbelt of a pack.
The Type II Fun strikes a balance between ultimate breathability and weather resistance. The slightly tighter knit makes it a little harder for the wind to penetrate, but it still breathes quite well. On cold, windy days, however, you will definitely want to have your favorite wind shell nearby.
At 11.5 ounces, this is just about the lightest fleece in our selection. The shorter hemline and lightweight fabric make that possible.
The tight-knit face fabric on this fleece jacket adds a level of durability that is unmatched in this category. After weeks on the trail, there was no pilling or any loose stitches to be found. We thought hard about this piece. With its relatively low price and high functionality, we debated giving it the Best Buy Award. We also think that it competes well against the top lightweight models; with that said, we give this high ranks for value.
We had very few issues with this jacket, and even our gripes felt nit-picky. We loved the performance this brings to the table. We were impressed by the design and execution, and any serious outdoor enthusiast should at least consider this for your layering collection.
— Adam Paashaus