Ice climbing is a difficult sport to make apparel for. It demands everything - warmth, durability, breathability, mobility. We all know that outdoor clothing is a world of compromises, and so it's hard to deliver everything in one garment. The Outdoor Research Alibi Jacket is about as close as we're likely to come.
The shoulders and hood of the Alibi are made from a waterproof and abrasion-resistant fabric with a Ventia™ waterproof laminate, while the torso is made of a more breathable and stretchy softshell fabric for improved comfort and mobility. The two-piece hood is unique: one piece is a liner that goes inside your helmet to keep your head warm, while the outer shell goes over it to keep the elements at bay. The TorsoFlo™ vent zippers are another Outdoor Research special, providing a large area of ventilation that you can adjust according to the conditions.
Feature list from Outdoor Research:
ABOUT OUTDOOR RESEARCH
A passion for human powered adventure inspired the birth of Outdoor Research, an outdoor gear company based in Seattle, Washington. And 27 years later, this passion remains as strong as ever. But OR’s goals have expanded to embrace a greater mission: their customers' experiences of human powered adventure. Over the years, they’ve learned it's not simply about what we think. It's about listening to their customers and building their ideas into OR products.
Truly useful gear is the result of a process that begins by paying careful attention to the needs of outdoor adventurers. By listening to these people, OR achieves a clear purpose for the functionality of each product. From this, they deliver what is the hallmark of OR products: functional gear that works and lasts. As a result of placing quality and function first they offer the finest guarantee in the industry — OR's Infinite Guarantee®.
Ultra-rugged and fully featured, this soft shell Alibi Jacket from Outdoor Research is built for alpine climbing and ice climbing. A technical mix of fabrics provides wind and waterproof protection where exposure is greatest, high breathability where body heat builds, and stretch for unrestricted motion.
The men's Oudoor Research Alibi Jacket is part of an ultra-rugged ice climbing and alpine mountaineering collection with a technical mix of fabrics for wind and waterproof protection where exposure is greatest, high-breathability where body heat builds, and stretch for long, quick movements.
|Center Back Length:||30" / 76 cm|
|Dimensions:||Center Back Length: 30" / 76 cm|
|Two-piece hood:||adjustable shell fits over helmet; zip-out inner polyester/spandex balaclava fits under helmet for next-to-skin warmth|
|Weight:||(L) 24.3 oz. / 689 g|
|Weight [with packaging]:||Medium, Small: 1.4 lb, Large: 1.55 lb, X-Large: 1.7 lb|
|Outdoor Research Alibi Pants||$154.99 - $195.00|
|Outdoor Research Alibi II Gloves||$35.53 - $80.00|
A few years ago I bought the OR Alibi over the Arc Teryx Gamma MX. I haven't been disappointed since. I recently upgraded to the new Alibi and I am very happy with the changes over the old Alibi. Here are my initial impressions.
The first thing I noticed was that the softshell fabric under the arms and on the back is a bit more substantial than the old Alibi, I'm happy about this because I always thought the old fabric felt a bit too thin.
They did away with thumb loops on the wrist gaiter (I never used them anyway)
Another change I noticed is that the softshell on the front of the jacket feels much more water resistant than the old fabric which felt almost like a sponge, I'm very exited about this as I'm pretty sure it'll be even more wind and water resistant.
Overall the Alibi is a great hybrid soft/hardshell comparable to the First Ascent Frontpoint jacket (which I don't like as much) which I believe has been discontinued.
The Alibi is great jacket for conditions where the benefits of a hardshell are needed along with the perks of a high end softshell. This is an excellent do it all softshell for all your winter adventures.
I bought this hoping it would be similar to the Mithril but a little lighter. It is that - I really like the features - but the fit is quite different. I'm 6'1" 195# and have a medium Mithril which fits great. The Alibi in M was much smaller in the shoulders/chest. The Alibi in L was baggy, but in a weird way. The good news was that raising my arms didn't pull it up much - but the downside of the sleeve/armpit construction seems to be a lot of extra material in the chest.
Probably works for other folks, perhaps more barrel chested than I, but not really right for me.
The jacket is alright for the intended use, but I don't see the benefit of it compare to a hard shell. It has the same pit zip, make the same noise, and there are no weight savings. Granted it may breath better in the torso, but then why the pit zip? The noise made by the face fabric rubbing together is worse than my Gore-tex hardshell. The Ventia fabric in the hood make a crisp bending noise. The Ventia is just like hard shell.
Got the black. Stationed in NZ - winter right now - jacket works great.
I bought this on sale and was super excited because I really love all my OR products, however this wasn't one of them. This is a very form fitting jacket. I'm 5'6" and an athletic 170 lbs and usually wear a medium. Not in this jacket, maybe more lankier body types would be better suited for this jacket. Overall though, I agree with the previous poster that it's more of a hardshell. The front is the Ventia material and doesn't breath all that well, which breathability is the main reason for a softshell in the first place. It's waterproof and windproof, which is a plus and the back is a more traditional softshell material. I found that the substitution for pitzips in favor for sidezips doesn't work nearly as well. Overall, I'd say this is a decent jacket for ice climbing probably however since it has the waterproof front and shoulders and breathable back. If you're backpacking however your back is going to be covered by the bag anyway and the belt will cover the sidezips, go for a more traditional softshell or hardshell.