Spring is a fantastic time to check out hard shells like the Spyder Eiger. This is a jacket that was designed by big mountain skier Chris Davenport, and has received a lot of attention over the last year. But how does the Spyder Eiger hold up to other high end hard shells on the market? There are many great hard shells out there, and the Eiger is no exception. It’s a solid hard shell jacket built for serious skiers. It offers solid waterproofing and breathability, and is built with Spyders high end quality with skier specific attention to detail. It’s great for those who want a solid jacket, but don’t necessarily need or want to pay for the highest end jacket on the market.
Waterproofing and Breathability: The Spyder Eiger has a 3 layer Xt.L 20k laminate that offers high waterproofing and breathability. Sure many people believe that Gore-Tex is better, but 20k Xt.L is definitely solid waterproofing, and will offer enough protection for everything except the wettest conditions. Spyder also has their own brand of DWR called Spylon+ which does a great job of beading up water on the surface of fabric, helping to keep you dry. Furthermore, the seams are critically taped, and the zippers water-resistant, ensuring water stays on the outside. Likewise, the Eigers breathability is also solid. It does a good job keeping you dry from the inside when you’re hiking to your favorite stashes. Xt.L is also quite pliable, and with stretch recovery the fabric can hold up to abuse. This ensures that the waterproof and breathable properties hold up over the years. Sure 20k/20k isn’t the highest rating on the market, but the Spyder Eiger is definitely a solid jacket, and offers protection that is on par with other high end shells.
Fit: The Spyder Eiger has a regular fit that is pretty true to size. Being a shell it’s important to remember that it won’t be warmest jacket out there, so if you’re looking for a jacket you can wear all season long you’ll probably want to leave a little extra room for layering. Usually for me, I always have to decide between a small and medium. I like my jackets a little more snug, so I often go for smalls over mediums, unless there is something weird about the fit. For me, Spyder jackets are often slightly short, and slightly boxy. Because of this I usually go with the small, unless it’s an athletic fit. The back of the Spyder Eiger is longer than the front and seemed slightly longer than most Spyder jackets, and the small still fit great. It offered enough room for layering without being too bulky or prone to bunching. The shoulders fit well, and the arms were plenty long. Overall it’s a pretty good fit, and pretty true to size.
Features: The Spyder Eiger comes with all the features you’d expect in shell including a stretch powder skirt, and fixed helmet compatible hood. The helmet fits pretty well with a helmet on, and it covers a decent amount of the face when you cinch it down. The zippers are water-resistant and the seams fully taped. Both shoulders have an anti-abrasion print that is great for those who ski with a backpack often. The underarm vents are pretty standard, but do a good job of releasing heat when you need to. The cuffs are pretty standard Velcro adjustments and the hem is adjustable. The chest pocket of the Eiger is at a diagonal and does a good job of keeping gear in, while still being easy to access and use. The pocket on the arm is great for a pass, but that’s about all it’s good for. The two hand warming pockets are pretty large, and offer a lot of storage space. The Spyder Eiger also has an internal mesh goggle pocket, and internal zippered media pocket. Another cool feature is the ventilation in the collar that helps keep the collar from freezing when your wearing your hood.The Spyder Eiger also has a built in Recco Reflector.
Jacket Size – S
Normal Specs– 5’10”, 160 lbs,
Upper Body– 34.5” Chest, Torso Length 23” (collar bone to pant button), Shoulder Width Approx 22”, Arm Length 18.5” (pit to wrist)
Lower Body– 30” Waist, 38” Hips, 30” Inseam, 22” Thigh
Turn On’s: Active fit jackets that fit well around my chest and torso, but don’t restrict movement. Size S Pants that have a bit more room in my thighs, that way I can actually use my pockets. And of course getting first chair with 12” of fresh powder on the mountain.
Turn Off’s: Size S Jackets that are too tight, and Size M jackets that are too loose in the waist. I really don’t like a loose waist that can allow cold air in, and I don’t like having to cinch down the waist. I also don’t like jackets that ride up when I’m skiing, The jacket should stay in place. Pants that fit too tight in the thigh, and I can’t use my pockets. Crowds in the mountains, and not being able to find a place to park in at the trailhead or ski resort