Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket Review
The Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket is THE all-purpose mountain piece of apparel made to handle a wide variety of conditions. Its versatility allows the backcountry or resort skier to enjoy all the wonderful benefits without sacrificing comfort or style. The ability to stay warm is priority number one. Check! The way to do that is by keeping the wind, snow, and rain out. Check! Add in a highly breathable H2Flow system, and you have all the pieces of the puzzle in place. This jacket absolutely nails my criteria for a mountain outing to near perfection.
Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket Backstory
Helly Juell Hansen was a rough outdoorsy seaman in Norway back in the 1800’s. He started soaking jackets, trousers, tarps, and sou’westers (that’s those fishing rain hats) in linseed oil. The technology has come a long way, but to this day the Helly Hansen product line reflects its tough lineage and ability to fight the elements. The clean Skandinavien design is the real eye-catcher here. Smooth and almost stealth-like. The subtle cuts provide for a relaxed yet athletic fit. I am of average athletic build (6’-1” – 170 lbs), and there was no bunching, and I felt great looking good.
Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket Features
Early season snow and ski conditions can and will be all over the place. Versatility in your gear and ability is critical. The Durable Water Repellency (DWR) speaks for itself. The outer layer repels and beads away moisture while sporting a hardcore toughness. This is kind of nice as it provides a windproof shield against those long chair lift rides. The sleeve cuffs provide a decent tightening range to allow for whatever thickness mitt you may have. The wrist gators with thumbhole loops made for a secure fit and coverage for the entire wrist and most of the hand. They fit great inside my favorite mittens, and the sleeve extension is fantastic because it eliminates any draft whatsoever.
The fusion modular system zips together the Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket and the HH Mission Pants. This is a sweet combo. A simple 4 button snap secures both, and off you go. I took a bit of a tumble in some fresh powder, and completely buried myself. No cold snow up my back! The Fabric Rating is a solid 20,000 for Waterproof test, as well as 20,000 for Breathability. That is definitely at the higher end of what can be accomplished for an action performance piece of outerwear. The delicate balance between waterproofing and keeping your body comfortable has been accomplished with this Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket. Recco Rescue System is an advanced rescue technology integrated into the jacket. In case of an emergency, organized rescue teams are able to detect a signal transmitted by the Recco System. Although if you do venture out into the backcountry this does NOT substitute for avalanche safety gear, beacons, education and awareness on the mountain.
This is not necessarily ground breaking, but having the pass pocket on the arm is a small but welcome feature. No lanyard around your neck, or searching for your pass at the lower lift checks. Mesh Goggle pocket on the right side inner lining provided a nice place for me to store my extra lens case and goggles when going in for an apres ski beverage. The Phone or media pocket is pretty much an automatic these days. Easy access to check any last minute emails on the lift, or quick selfie at the top to post to your favorite social media site. A small but often overlooked detail is the small interior chord opening. The pocket can stay closed while you thread your earphones through on the inside.
The Performance and function of The Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket
I took this jacket up to Keystone Ski Resort (click HERE for review) right along the I-70 Corridor in the Rocky Mountains. The resort sits just west of the Continental Divide. This means high altitude, exposed, above tree line skiing. The Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket was up tot the task with early morning cold, and sunny afternoon conditions. As the season progresses, I hope to really push this jacket to the limit. The body, arm, and head coverage was adequate while providing excellent wind and waterproof protection. As they say, beauty is on the inside. That is definitely the case here. The 80g PrimaLoft synthetic insulation combined with the H2Flow system keeps you warm or cool depending on conditions or intensity levels. I stayed warm on the cold lift rides up, and was able to fly down some well groomed slopes without any discomfort.
While wearing the Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket, I have hiked up several peaks in near perfect sunny blue bird sky conditions. It was quite cold, but the workout was intense. My base and mid layers did their job by wicking sweat while remaining breathable. The jacket was able to stop a rather gusty wind to not chill that sweat allowing me to keep going quite comfortably. This is also where the Helly Hansen designed and proprietary H2Flow system comes into play. It’s a breathable ventilation system that incorporates light materials and appropriately placed venting to allow body moisture to vent maintaining a comfortable body temperature. The hood is ski helmet compatible and adjustable to allow you to bundle up to prepare for whatever mother nature will throw at you. It can be zipped and secured as needed. If I had my druthers, I’d rather not wear a hood if I didn’t have to. I feel like it kind of restricts my movement and field of vision, but it does come in handy with blizzard conditions. Wouldn’t you know it, a nice early winter storm made sure that I got to test the hood in its full glory. Sideways snow, wind, and temperatures in the teens were no match once the hood was tightly pulled shut providing all the protection needed.
Colors and Technical Specifications
I tested the Park Green color. I’m not quite sure I would have picked it out of the retail store line-up, but I absolutely love it now. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. It’s sleek, unique, a bit flashy, but why not. When you’ve got it, flaunt it, right?. Other available colors include: Black, Arctic Grey, Ice Blue, Bright Orange, and Clementine. Specs:
- Fabric Rating: 20K Waterproof / 20K Breathable
- Shell Material: 100% polyamide Helly Tech Professional fabric
- Insulation: 80g PrimaLoft Synergy insulation
- HELLY TECH® PROFESSIONAL
- Waterproof, windproof and breathable
- 2 ply fabric construction
- 2 way dynamic stretch fabric
- Fully seam sealed
- Durable Water Repellency treatment (DWR)
- PrimaLoft® Silver Insulation 80g
- Fully insulated
- H²Flow System mechanical venting for optimal comfort
- RECCO® Advanced Rescue system
- Articulated arms and elbows for superior fit
- Fusion modular system jacket to pant with zip
- Snap away powder skirt
- Detachable helmet compatible and adjustable hood
- Dual hand warming pockets and chest pocket
- Wrist gaitors
- Internal pockets for goggles and electronics
- Ski-pass pocket
- YKK® water resistant zippers
Final Thought on The Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket
If you are looking for a tough, durable, and versatile piece of mountain apparel, the Helly Hansen Mission Ski Jacket will be a nice addition for your winter adventures this season. With advanced Helly Tech Professional fabrics, PrimaLoft insulation, waterproof fabric, and the H2Flow system for breathability you can feel confident tackling the elements. MSRP: $400 For more details and purchase for this and other quality Helly Hansen Ski Jackets please visit: www.hellyhansen.com