Arcteryx (LEAF) Atom LT Hoody – Revised (Gen. 2)

 photo ArcLeafAtom_7.jpg

Around 15 years ago, I bought my first motorized two-wheeler and my bicycle got a real competitor. While driving, I often wore ordinary jackets and pants back in these days and I suddenly understood the importance of windproof and 100% waterproof layers (especially when driving at high tempi). So I got rid of inappropriate clothing and got sucked into the hell/paradise of outdoor gear shopping.
Three years ago I quit my The North Face addiction (after 18 jackets!) and other brands like Wild Things Gear, Patagonia or Haglöfs became boring, too. Around that time I purchased my first Arcteryx jacket, an ordinary “civvy” ATOM LT Hoody and a new addiction was born.

My old Atom LT and first Arcteryx jacket:
 photo ArcAtom.jpg

With Germany winning FIFA`s 2014 Worldcup, many shops (in Germany) offered some kind of discount and so I used the opportunity and bought me another ATOM jacket – but this time I went LEAF! 🙂

 photo ArcLeafAtom_1.jpg

So why do I write about about a pretty ordinary “cash and carry price” jacket?
A piece that has no wind/waterproof features and is on the lower side of the Arcteryx price range? Because I used this one so often that I can do a long-term review! 🙂

The LEAF side of coolness – no ARC`TERYX lettering, black logo on black!
 photo ArcLeafAtom_2.jpg

Within the last 1000 days I wore my civvy jacket approx. 700 days! This was my everyday jacket that I stuffed in every backpack or inside the seat of the motorcycle. I used this as a mid layer in winter, as a sweater substitute (only worn with a t-shirt) or as a regular jacket (often with an extra windbreaker). I washed the jacket many times, used it with sports, clubbing and airsoft. I think this qualifies me to do a review and give some thoughts about my new LEAF version.

In side-by-side comparison there are obvious changes to small details. They included media ports inside the hand pockets allowing internal routing of communication cables.
The size of the inner hand pocket remained the same and is still enough to carry a handgun (click to enlarge):
 photo ArcLeafAtom_3.jpg

Besides this, the pull adjusters have seen a bit of improvement, too!
 photo ArcLeafAtom_4.jpg

Never change a winning team: Arcteryx sticks to their Coreloft/Polartec insulation, incl. their amazing Hardface technology side panels – working (stretchin`) like a dream! I dig this kind of hybrid, making it a real winner for me.

***

While going by foot or by bicycle, the lack of windproof feature never came to mind. Only when going over 40 kmh you`ll experience mother nature. The same goes for rain – you`ll get soaked within minutes within a BIG shower! Conclusion: Keep an extra protective layer around!

It`s very exciting to see my old jacket still performing very well. The overall cut is still good, no open seams or loose wristbands! I expect the same with the LEAF version!

Let`s take a look at the hood: while the civvy version lacks options of adjustment, the LEAF version seems more slim-lined and has awesome adjustment options! Pretty dope!

***

On the other hand, Arcteryx missed to get rid of very annoying part of this jacket: the zipper! The big downer is that the zipper opens when there is any pressure applied to it: e.g. if you are wearing a scarf and close the zipper over it, within seconds the zipper will start to open again! It is not possible to wear big layers under it! This happened not only to me but also to friends that own(ed) that jacket (sold it because of that). I heard an Arcteryx salesman talking about that (known) issue, but he said that Arcteryx did this on purpose. So far, so good, so what? For me, this is a fail! And with more time passing by, the zipper became more and more jammed easily (with material next to the zipper). It is not a real problem, but sometimes very annoying to fiddle around with this kind of stupid problem.

The new jacket`s inner sanctum (click to enlarge):
 photo ArcLeafAtom_6.jpg

Weight: 410 g / 14.5 oz
Materials: Gossamera, Polartec Power Stretch, Coreloft™ (60g/m²)
Version: Revised (or should be talk about 2.0?)

***

I can`t wait to get my new LEAF jacket on the road, but with 33 degrees outside I will have to relax. At the moment, I have very high expectations to this jacket and I think I won`t get disappointed!

If you`ll get your hand on this jacket pretty cheap, give it a try.
And I bet that you won`t regret buying this full price! 🙂

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~ by geardoshit on July 26, 2014.

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