25 Jul 2012

Mammut Ultimate Hoody (2010 model) Review

This is my first review, and to be honest it is more of a writing exercise than helpful because it's the 2010 model and no longer for sale. There is an updated version of it which solves some of the few issues I've encountered.
Posing felt weird, so a weird face was allowed

I bought the Mammut Ultimate Hoody in 2010 I think in Ghent so I can say this is a long term review. It is my principle jacket from March to October, from 5°C to 20°C. It's been with me on many trips including the Ardennes in winter, wet Scotland and Finland. It keeps me warm and dry in bad weather and in summer it is light enough to wear over a T-shirt when temps go down or the wind picks up.

This softshell is not a piece of UL kit, at 453 gram for size S I consider it a jacket suited for hiking and everyday life. The reason it's been with me on all my trips is because I liked it's versatility so much, it is both a warm layer + wind shell + well specced jacket + rain resistant shell. It's only when I gave my kit a second look I saw it could be replaced by a fleece and a wind or rain jacket.

The Mammut Ultimate Hoody is a full Windstopper jacket, wholly made from the Gore fabric. It has a hood with 2 draw cords, 2 pockets up front and 1 inner chest pocket. It has a nice fit, not too loose when only wearing a T-shirt and roomy enough to wear with thick sweaters in the colder months.
It has a DWR finish that has not faded since 1 wash (don't wash gear too often) and does a remarkably good job keeping me dry. It also has some design features like reinforced fabric around the pockets, elbows and draw cords, those grey spots on photo.

The bonus points:

  • It kept me dry on a very wet walk up Ben Nevis, I couldn't believe it but my rain jacket leaked like a sieve while the Mammut kept me dry. I also didn't notice a lack of breathability.
  • It was wet of course but upon arrival at the youth hostel around 4 o'clock it was almost dry to go eat around 7:30.
  • It has exceptional (Swiss designed / Latvian made) quality, after these years of almost everyday use, packing it in my rucksack, wearing it and hiking in it it shows no signs of wear. Just around the cuffs the fabric starts to raffle a bit, as you see in the photo.
  • I like the fit of it, it is not too short like the Ultimate Jacket, which for some reason sits 5cm above my waistband. 
  • The pit zips, now these are probably the USP of the jacket, they zip open both ways from the waist until the upper arm, a very effective way to cool down!
Awesome pit zips :)

  • Another thing that is huge about the softshell is that it has very large pockets, they hold a 1,5L bottle or an umbrella without complaining. This is because the pockets are mesh and are hollow up to the chest part. It also features a little napoleon pocket on the left.
Huge pockets up to chest, also notice pit zips

The minor flaws:

  • The minor scuffing on the cuffs

  • The thumb loops stay open, even when not in use. This allows for a pleasurable airflow in hotter weather but when it's cold I wish they could close. This seams to be fixed in the newer update however.
The thumb loops
  • The hood could've been a bit higher so it protects up to my lips, I wished for a more hardshell type hood. But it is a well designed hood with two drawcords.
  • The zipper is a bit fiddly. I like how all zippers run both ways but I always fumble with the main zip. They do run very smoothly I must say.
The hood 

Napoleon Pocket
So I hope you enjoyed this bit of useless info :) for more see: http://www.ukclimbing.com/gear/review.php?id=2875

Disclaimer: I bought this jacket with my own funds and am writing this out of my own will. I paid 250 euro then.

Update 1: January 2013

I've been using this jacket throughout most of winter and that also means rain. I have to be honest and say that it's started leaking quite badly in conditions that it was never designed for: mild to hard rain.
All the time my Mammut kept me dry even in these conditions but after years of use, a few washes and a never restored DWR, It indeed started leaking.

Especially the arms are sensitive when biking and they whet out after about 15 min's. I'm posting this just to be fair with you and I do emphasize that I'm responsible for this since I have not renewed the DWR. Also, softshells are not designed to be hardshells, in this light it's remarkable that it's done a very good hardshell job. 


  1. I also have owned this jacket for the last 2 years (same model as yours). I use it in the cold, dry winters in Colorado. For apline climbing I use it mostly as an outer layer over a base layer when on the move. When I stop I throw on my Belay/Insulated jacket over the top of it. Great versatile system since the ultimate hoody covers a wide range of temperatures from maximum venting to a fully zipped up wind blocking shell.

    1. Hey Randy, and thanks for stopping by.
      I agree with you on this jacket, it is a great piece of versatile kit and with a thick sweater under it I can easily handle around zero degrees Celcius.
      The great stretch it gives also comes in handy when climbing I can imagine :)