Gear Review: Melanzana PowerShield Hoodie|
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
|Photo Courtesy of Melanzana
|Melanzana PowerSheild Hoodie
It’s personally satisfying to find a company where business is done the old-fashioned way — gear handmade by locals, designed with function foremost in mind, small-scale, high quality and hip. Based in Leadville, Colorado, America’s highest town at over 10,000 feet, the clothing company Melanzana represents a throwback to the purist ideal.
Their newest creation is the PowerShield Hoodie ($TBA). Made from Polartec's Powershield material, this soft-shell jacket represents a synthesis of a hard-shell combined with a fleece layer. The tight outer material is abrasion resistant, 98 percent windproof, stretches and is highly water resistant.
Beyond just the fabric, this garment shines. Imagine a fusion between mountaineering and skater style. Cut long in the arms and the body, the jacket will not ride up, even when cycling in the drops or reaching high overhead to place a nut. Huge armpit zips let in extra ventilation when you need it and it has a hood.
"Why a hood?" you muse —a hood serves many functions when you're out in the weather. A hood fits under your helmet and keeps your head warm; it blocks the roar of a windy day or doubles as an extra hat when conditions deteriorate. The PS Hoodie is one of the only soft shells on the market that sports a hood.
The jacket performs best in chilly, challenging climates and is great to throw on when you reach camp. It's not the jacket you want in warm climates or when subject to torrential rain. For early spring everywhere or summer in the mountains, this jacket works superbly.
Melanzana sews their functional simple garments one at a time in their Leadville workshop. The shop, or their website, is still the only place to get these jackets.
For all the details, type in www.Melanzana.com or call 719-486-3245