This winter, I had the chance to try out a complete 509 outfit. Here are my comments on the Evolve off-trail kit which consists of the jacket and bib overalls.
My first comment is, wow! What a nice outfit! The colors, the schemes… Everything is made to fit and blends well from head to toe. The trial model is in khaki but is also available in four other colors for the season.
When I wear the outfit, it’s comfortable. There is plenty of room for several layers of clothing and there are plenty of pockets. The seams of the jacket are well sealed, and nothing is too loose or protruding to catch in the woods. I really like the material used, which is flexible.
When I ride with the outfit, the clothing is made to adhere to my body and does not hinder my movements on the snowmobile. Even if it is not a full one-piece suit, the jacket goes well with the bib. The jacket is wind resistant and breaks the wind very well off for the body. The snow does not stick to the garment. The lined section around the buttock is handy when you are caught and sit down to shovel.
I would have liked the same knee protection, as it is a position I often use when shovelling. I really liked the internal strip and the strap at the bottom of the pants to fasten to the 509 boots which prevents the snow from going up them. It is the same thing for the inner strip in the jacket, which prevents the snow from moving up.
Usually, I’m not a fan of wrist cuffs to protect from snow, but they don’t affect my gloves when I slip them on. The Velcro wrist straps are well made, and I don’t have to fight with the jacket to cover my gloves and protect my wrists from wind and snow.
One of the things I didn’t like so much is that I would have liked to have a heat evacuation zone at the top of the jacket to evacuate heat from the neck and the top of the shoulders. Just under the hood would have been great. There are some on both sides of the jacket, but I find that it’s not enough.
There are no issues during physical activities with the snowmobile, but when we stop, I get particularly cold because the whole top of the jacket and the upper part of the collar become very wet. It is important to carry a warm sweater to wear on the way home. I would also have liked to have an opening on both sides of the bib to access my pants because I often keep my cellphone there to keep it warm.
All in all, it’s a genuinely nice outfit with a distinctive look. It’s well designed and well suited for rides in deep snow. Although this is a garment made for backcountry riding, I enjoyed wearing it on the trail when the weather was nice. A big thank you to 509 and SledMagazine.com for allowing me to try this outfit.