Our testers love the way Polartec’s lightweight Power Shield balances breathability and weather resistance, creating a fabric with an outstanding comfort range (it helped the GoLite Kinetic earn an Editor’s Choice Award in 2004). Northwest editor Mike Lanza says the Mistral II adds an important attribute: affordability. He used the jacket while hiking and skate skiing in cool to subfreezing temps, and he praised the Mistral’s breathability, features, and stretch. His only hesitations: “The fit is boxy in the torso, and the cuffs would work better with gloves if they were elasticized or adjustable.”
Sizes: men’s S-XXL, women’s S-XL
Weight: 13 oz.
Contact:: (800) 426-4840, www.rei.com.