It’s time to rethink your conception of high-quality snowmobile outerwear. Heavy, abrasive, and rigid fabrics like Gore-Tex and 5-Tech have been industry standards for far too long. There’s a new player taking the impermeable, heavily insulated outerwear game by storm: the Ungava Jacket by CKX.
At Bear Rock, we’ve been carrying CKX for years. The brand is famous for its durable, technically elevated Mission and Titan helmets. CKX’s exceptional apparel, however, was a secret (even to me) until we began stocking it in the Bear Rock Outdoor Adventure Store this season. So far, all I can say about CKX’s clothing is: “I can’t believe we didn’t carry it sooner!” The manufacturing standards, insulating potential, and attention to detail with convenient pockets and stretchy snow skirts are right up there with our big three brands (Klim, 509, FXR). The Ungava jacket in particular, however, has some standout features that raise it above the pack—not the least of which being its extremely accessible $289 price tag!
Beyond the bottom line, there are countless other reasons to choose the Ungava as your companion of choice when you hop on a Polaris adventure snowmobile this season. The most immediately noticeable benefit is its weight. The Ungava is featherlight compared to the Klim Keweenaw and 509 R-200, my previous go-tos for hitting the trail. It’s probably about a third to two-thirds the weight of these competitors, but the supreme softness of the interior fleece makes it sit light as air on your neck and shoulders.
It’s not only what’s on the inside that counts with the Ungava. Run your hands across the 10K-treated shell of the jacket and you’ll feel the difference CKX quality makes. The Ungava is smoother, quieter, and more flexible than other snowmobile jackets. Its look and wear is more akin to that of a ski jacket, but make no mistake: it can handle anything a Pittsburg New Hampshire snowmobiling adventure can throw at it. It’ll even keep your cash and cards bone dry with its plethora of seam-sealed compartments—including my favorite, the micro-zipped left forearm pocket perfect for stashing your sled key.
The Ungava’s tech doesn’t stop at storage, either. Perhaps its most defining feature is the strip of LED lights illuminating its back. You may not notice it but, to the slowpokes sledding behind you, you’ll shine like a diamond—even in the dead of night. Plus, you can easily take it off for day rides when poor visibility isn’t a concern (and did I mention it’s only $289??!?).
While it’s a bit early in the snowmobile season to put the Ungava to the test, it’s been thoroughly vetted in some truly brutal conditions. CKX is actually a Canadian (or should I say, Canadien) company operating out of the bone-chilling backwoods of Quebec. If the Ungava can endure winter in La Belle Province and have theQuebecois chanting “C’est tiguidou!” (“It’s all good!”), it should be right at home in the North Country.
The only feature the Ungava lacks is a triple-flap closure over the front zipper, but my 509 R-200 doesn’t have this either, and I’ve never been cold in that jacket—even on the day last February when the real feel dropped to -53℉!
Trust me: this jacket is the real deal (and once again, at $289, a real steal). We have it in every size, but (not to alarm you) I’m forecasting the Ungava to be a popular piece that’s likely to sell out this winter.
Lastly, as a final word to those hesitant to become early adopters: I get you. Gear is an investment in quality. You want your snowmobile wear to be supremely comfortable and durable season after season, but trust me, this is the piece you need for any winter adventure.
Stay warm my friends!