Helly Hansen Challenger Jacket Review

April 18, 2014
Helly Hansen Challenger Jacket
Challenger_Jacket_Back
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Helly Hansen Challenger Jacket Challenger_Jacket_Back HH_Challenger_Jacket_Field_Test
GEAR INSTITUTE RATINGS
75
Weather Resistance
6
Breathability
5
Mobility & Comfort
7
Weight
6
Attention to Detail
7
Value
4

The Good

  • Good stretch
  • Front fabric panels are functionally windproof
  • Excellent reflectivity for road use

The Bad

  • Accent piping is stiff and uncomfortable in places
  • Wicking performance is sub-par
THE VERDICT

The Helly Hansen Challenger is a lightweight aerobic training jacket suitable for light aerobic workouts in cool, dry conditions. Highly wind-resistant paneling cut wind and light rain, but the Challenger delivered surprisingly weak moisture-management performance.

FULL REVIEW

The Helly Hansen Challenger is a lightweight aerobic training jacket with highly wind-resistant paneling and lots of reflective piping.

Weather Protection
While the Challenger Jacket’s front panels provided good wind and light rain protection, even at high speeds, the more breathable panels on the back and sides offered very little resistance to the elements.

Breathability
For a non-membrane jacket that also features large panels of highly breathable fabric, the Challenger delivered surprisingly weak moisture-management performance. I was often left feeling too warm and a bit clammy after even short bursts of exertion.

Mobility/Comfort
Aside from being occasionally irritated by the reflective piping at the neck, I found the Helly Hansen Challenger to be generally flexible and easy to wear.

Weight
Average weight for a jacket of this style and performance.

Attention to Detail
Detailing and finish-quality were very good, and key features (media pocket, hem adjustment) were well-executed. I would have liked to see better-performing fabrics throughout the jacket, but found it to be otherwise thoughtfully designed and solidly built.

Value
Considering its average performance in most of the test-categories, the Challenger’s list price seemed fairly high.

 


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WHERE TO BUY
MSRP
$200.00
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