Size: Extra Large
Reviewer measurements: 6’0”, 160 lbs, Arm: 37.5” dress shirt
Color: Jet Black
- 100% nylon jacket
- 27K mm waterproofing with 20K g/m2/24hrs breathability and fully tape-welded seams
- GORE-TEX PRO laminate / GORE Micro-Grid Backer insert
- Fixed hood with brim (internal support wire) plus magnetic hold-down
- Chest pockets and hand pockets with waterproof zips
- Removable storm skirt with zip
- Pockets for your goggle and media player
- RECCO avalanche safety reflector
- Arm vents with zips
- Sleeve articulation
- Wrist gaiters and adjustable cuff tabs
- Welded hem
- Two-way front zip
- Embroidered icons and logo
Test Duration: 30 days
The Oakley Unification Pro jacket is part of the Oakley Pro Rider Series, and Seth Morrison’s pro model shell. Like many pro ski and snowboard athletes lately, Seth has pushed aside time in a helicopter, opting instead to use his own power to reach tall peaks and remote couloirs. This ski mountaineering approach in turn influences the components that make up the Unification Pro jacket: top-of-the-line fabrics, well thought-out features, and a fit that is comfortable but not super baggy.
Oakley spares very little in the composition of the Unification Pro series. This nylon shell uses a 3-layer Gore-Tex Pro laminate with Gore Micro-Grid Backer. This Gore-Tex Pro laminate is considered by many experts (including our in-house guru Sam Shaheen) to be the best available option for durable, waterproof, breathable protection. It may not be the absolute best at any one of these functions, but it is the best when combining the three attributes.
The Micro-Grid Backer eliminates the need for an inner liner, protecting the laminate from the skin while also decreasing bulk. This contributes to the jacket’s extremely thin, incredibly light feel and exceptional packability.
The cuff opening of each sleeve is adjustable via a Velcro closure, so gloves can be layered under or over the jacket’s cuff. The sleeve also offers a thin Lycra-like wrist gator with thumb loop to keep cold air out and warm air in.
The Unification Pro has a fixed hood featuring a small wire brim, which you can easily contour to any shape you desire. The size of the opening can also be adjusted simply by pulling on the draw cord at either side of the hood for a smaller fit, or by releasing the locking mechanism at either side. Both can be done single handedly.
All external zippers are 100% waterproof YKK zips. I find all sealed zippers to be a little sticky, and these are as well. The internal zippers for the removable powder skirt and skirt-to-pant interface are non-sealed YKK zips and slide as smooth as silk.
One last piece on the jacket is a Recco reflector, for a little bit of added security while resort riding in avalanche terrain, but it’s important to note that Recco does not replace an avalanche transceiver.
Pockets / Features
The Unification Pro jacket provides the four common external pockets: two chest and two lower hand pockets. These are all seam sealed, fully lined with the Gore-Tex Pro laminate, and, as I mentioned, use 100% waterproof zips. There is also a small (4”x6”) mesh, Velcro-closed, internal pocket located around the lower rib area. This pocket is the most logical for your music player in the jacket.
One interesting feature on the jacket is the right chest pocket, which is accessible from both the external zipper and an internal zipper. Opening both zippers allows access to inner layers of clothing, especially their chest pocket, without unzipping the jacket. While this is convenient, it does offer opportunity for potentially expensive blunders. For example, if the internal zipper is left open from a previous use, there is the possibility of an accidental passage of, say, your Samsung Galaxy S2 to slip into the no-mans-land between layers and find its way quickly to the ground. Let’s just say it took only one drop before I made a habit of solely using the external zipper.
The jacket also features a very nice powder-skirt-to-pant zippered interface to be used with the Oakley Unification Pro Pant. This works well for powder days and days when you want to trap every bit of heat. While the pants do have a removable bib that also works well on deep days, I have found the skirt-to-pant connection to be much more comfortable because it is easier to layer with. The only area of concern I have with this interface comes from the snap closer at the front of the skirt, which limits the powder skirt’s adjustability. On my slender frame, this left a gap that snow could infiltrate down into my base layers.
The Unification Pro jacket also offers a very large pit-zip vent, although I think it would more accurately be described as an arm-zip vent. The sealed zipper starts mid forearm and ends just at the armpit. While this does make opening and closing the zipper easier than the traditional pit-zip, I do feel like there is a benefit of having the zipper extend slightly into the torso region when needing to dump all the heat trapped in the shell. Fortunately with this jacket, trapping excess heat is rarely an issue. (More on that later.)
Being Seth Morrison’s pro model outerwear, one would expect the Unification Pro series to combine style and functionality. I have found the fit of the Unification Pro jacket to match the somewhat slim “regular” fit (as Oakley describes it), and the modern freeride/park style of Oakley’s “loose” fit clothing, such as the Identification series.
That being said, the fit is highly functional and comfortable due to the overall cut of the jacket. When thinner layers can be worn underneath (like when ski touring or resort ripping in warmer temps, for example), the cut provides ample room for all ranges of motion without feeling any restriction from the jacket. On colder days, however, or when more layers were needed, the cut did feel a little restrictive. (More on this in the Warmth section on the next page.)
I am six feet tall and have long arms, so I traditionally (99.9% of the time) wear extra large jackets, regardless of brand, mostly for the arm length. So other than a slight lack of bagginess, which I am accustomed to, I can comfortably say the sizing of the jacket is very accurate. The most common problem I have with coats is sleeve length, and with this jacket I have found the length to be perfect.
If you decide to purchase this jacket, I would recommend going with the size you are accustomed to. If you are tall and want a little extra bagginess, then I would recommend sizing up one size.