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Gamma MX Pants for very cold and windy weather?
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(mountainwalker) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area & New England
Gamma MX Pants for very cold and windy weather? on 02/15/2007 23:24:03 MST Print View

My wife and I just used our Ibex Guidelite pants (made of climawool light as opposed to the heavier climawool Ibex uses in its Backcountry pants, now called Solitude Pants) skiing and snowshoeing in -5F to 15F (-25F to -5F with wind chill) for several days in the High Peaks region of the Adirondaks.

How do you like the Gamma MX pants for cold winter use? The one place I think I would appreciate a little more wind blocking and warmth in very cold weather would be for the legs. In Ibex Guidelite pants, which are fantastic and which we use 3 seasons, with Ibex merino Long Johns and Janes underneath, we were still cold (again, it was bitter cold and windy). I thought a more wind resistant and less breathable pant would have done the trick.

Can anyone comment on the breathability, wind resistance, temperature range, durability, water resistance and fit of the Gamma MX pants. I have a chance to pick up the MX pants at a good price in the next day - I'd sincerely appreciate any and all advice. Thanks!

(mountainwalker) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area & New England
Gamma MX Pants - can anyone comment on winter use? on 04/06/2007 20:24:09 MDT Print View

I just managed to get a pair at a great price. Unfortunately a little too warm in my area to do a good evaluation. Appreciate it if anyone can share their experience using these in winter for hiking, backpacking and ski tours.

Lloyd Graves
(lloyd) - F
Gamma MX on 04/10/2007 21:04:41 MDT Print View

I don't have much to compare them too but I use these above treeline w/o long underware down to about zero, maybe 40mph wind. Anything more extreme I put some Precip pants over them or some Primaloft belay pants.
They hold up pretty well to bushwacking too.

(mountainwalker) - MLife

Locale: SF Bay Area & New England
thanks for the feedback; any other Gamma MX pant wearers out there? on 04/10/2007 22:51:39 MDT Print View

Hi Lloyd,

Thanks very much for the feedback. I have heard such different reports about them. A climber friend says they are good for him to 30F without wind without wearing long underwear, down to 10F with a thin baselayer (again without wind). I know people can have very different metabolism and run "hot" or "cold," but a difference of 30F between 2 people is a lot. I'd like to hear from more people who have used them if you are out there.

I love the fit and think they'll work very well for me for ski touring, hiking and snowshoeing in very windy conditions (I have Ibex Guidelite pants - merino/cordura/spandex softshell pants - and these with a thin merino baselayer are great for X country skiing, ski touring and winter hiking, except in very windy weather. I think the Gamma MX should have a wider usage range because of their wind resistance. The Guidelite Pant's breathabilty is its downfall in highly windy conditions, where it can lose quite a bit of heat (a lesson I learned in the High Peaks Region of the Adirondaks this winter in -5F with a windchill down to -25 to -30F.

Paul Cappelluzzo
(ensopc) - F
Thumbs up on 04/17/2007 10:16:28 MDT Print View

I picked up a pair in the beginning of the winter season and they've been fantastic. I've been wearing Smartwool Midweight bottoms with them and I've been fine down to -15 as long as I'm moving. Over 40 and I'll start to feel the heat, but I'm pretty amazed at the wide temperature range I was able to feel comfortable in. That setup moves moisture like you wouldn't believe. And the wind has to blow pretty hard (30mph+) before it will cut through.

I didn't have much luck bushwhacking though. Tore a big hole in the thigh on a low branch that I didn't even feel. The good news is that I haven't repaired it yet and over several more trips it hasn't gotten any bigger. The fabric does not seem to be as tough as what is on my Gamma SV jacket, which is, apparently, impervious to pretty much everything.

Anyways, I liked the pants so much I just picked up the Gamma MX hoody (on sale, unfortunately I won't get to use it much until next winter).