Moerdeng Waterproof Ski Jacket Review
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Moerdeng Waterproof Ski Jacket
$64.99 at Amazon
|$330.00 at Backcountry|
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$178.83 at REI
$138.93 at REI
|Pros||Inexpensive, warm||Excellent performance in every category, durable||Inexpensive, warm, comfortable, good features||Weather resistant, good vents, plenty of features||Inexpensive, moderately weather resistant, warm enough|
|Cons||Doesn't look good, minimal features, no vents, poor fit||More snug fit than other options||Not that stylish, compromised weather protection, doesn't breathe well||Hanging liner makes it a bit warm for a shell, fit isn't perfect||Bland style, poor ventilation, generic fit|
|Bottom Line||This incredibly inexpensive jacket lacks the performance of most others on the market||This excellent resort ski jacket nails all performance aspects to deserve a spot at the top of your wish list||This jacket packs lots of performance into an inexpensive package, creating great value||A high-performance shell at a great price||An average-performance ski jacket with decent features at an affordable price|
|Rating Categories||Moerdeng Waterproof||Helly Hansen Alpha...||Obermeyer Foundation||REI Co-op First Cha...||REI Co-op Powderbou...|
|Weather Resistance (20%)|
|Comfort and Fit (20%)|
|Specs||Moerdeng Waterproof||Helly Hansen Alpha...||Obermeyer Foundation||REI Co-op First Cha...||REI Co-op Powderbou...|
|Main Fabric||100% polyester||2-layer stretch polyester||45% Repreve Polyester, 55% Polyester||2-layer Gore-Tex||Nylon|
|Insulation||Synthetic with fleece lining||LifaLoft synthetic||100g synthetic body, 80g sleeves, 40g hood||Recycled polyester lining||60g polyester sleeves, 80g polyester body|
|Pockets||2 zippered hand, 1 zippered chest||2 handwarmer, 2 chest, 1 internal chest, 1 internal mesh, 1 sleeve||2 zipppered chest, zippered pass pocket, interior electronics pocket||2 handwarmer, 2 chest, 1 internal chest, 1 sleeve||2 zippered hand, 1 zippered chest, 1 sleeve, 1 internal zippered chest, 1 internal mesh|
|Weight (size large)||2.40 lbs||2.56 lbs||2.62 lbs||1.76 lbs||1.81 lbs|
|Water Resistance||Unknown||Helly Tech Professional||HydroBlock Pro with critical seams sealed||Gore-Tex||2-layer waterproof breathable laminate|
|Hood||Adjustable and Removable||Adjustable and removable||Adjustable and Removable||Adjustable||Adjustable|
|Cuff construction||Velcro||Interior stretchy wrist gaiters and external velcro cuffs||Velcro, inner sleeve with thumb loop||Velcro||Interior wide hook-and-loop adjustments and external velcro|
|Powder skirt||No||Yes||Yes||Yes, removable||Yes|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Moerdeng offers surprisingly good warmth, thanks to its layers of synthetic insulation in the torso and sleeves, as well as a thick and soft fleece lining around the torso. We stayed toasty in this jacket on cold testing days in early winter. This performance makes this jacket a good choice for anyone looking for a cheap all-around winter jacket that can also pull double duty on the slopes during the occasional ski trip.
Unfortunately, despite the marketing claims, the Moerdeng isn't as weather-protective as we expected. The manufacturer claims to have a waterproof insert in the shell material, but with no further information about what kind of membrane is included, it's hard to trust. In our shower test, we noticed some water leaking in through the seams, and the hood doesn't effectively cover a helmeted head. This jacket will fend off some inclement weather, but we don't trust it to keep us dry and protected in major winter weather.
Comfort and Fit
The Moerdeng has a comfortable fleece lining that is nice against the skin and body. Unfortunately, that's about the only comfortable part of this jacket. The cut is boxy and straight, without any tailoring to make it form-fitting. It feels generic and sometimes restricting. The worst part is that the hood is way too small to fit a helmeted head. We tried to fasten the hook-and-loop closure that secures the hood around the front of the face, and we could barely get it to close across our face. That makes the hood unusable.
The Moerdeng lacks armpit zip vents, and with a thick fleece liner in the torso, this jacket doesn't offer any ventilation for aerobic skiers or those seeking hike-to terrain. Fortunately, the boxy fit and poor hood design allow plenty of air to escape, adding some incidental ventilation.
The Moerdeng doesn't win any style points. With a boxy, straight cut, wide shoulders, and flappy hood straps, we don't think the jacket looks good. It does come in an astounding array of colors, so there is some potential for customization. Most of our testers thought the jacket made them look like a beginner or someone who doesn't ski much. It has a generic look that doesn't win any fans on the ski lifts or at the après bar.
The Moerdeng is short on useful features. It covers the basics, with two external handwarmer pockets, an external chest pocket, and an internal zippered chest pocket. That's it for pockets, which gets the job done, but most other ski jackets on the market have more pockets. Notably, there is no sleeve pass pocket, which is super useful for quickly scanning RFID turnstiles, and there is no internal mesh stash pocket, which has become standard on top-of-the-line ski jackets. The hood is removable, which is good because we didn't find it very functional.
Should You Buy the Moerdeng Waterproof Ski Jacket?
At such a low price, this jacket could be a good purchase for a very occasional skier or someone just dipping their toes into the sport. It also doubles as a winter jacket. If you are decking out a large family for a rare ski trip, this jacket could fit the bill. Otherwise, we think most skiers are better off spending a little more money on a higher-performance jacket.
What Other Ski Jackets Should You Consider?
The low price of this jacket is intriguing, but for anyone who spends more than a few days on the ski hill each year, there are better options. If you are shopping on a tight budget, we recommend the REI Co-op Powderbound Insulated for a warm ski jacket that won't cost much. If you want an inexpensive shell and are willing to layer underneath, the REI First Chair GTX is a good deal. The The North Face ThermoBall ECO Snow Triclimate is an excellent deal as well, because it includes a removable insulating mid-layer. If you don't mind spending money, the Helly Hansen Alpha Lifaloft is the best insulated jacket out there.
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