|NATIONAL PARKS QUICKLINKS|
Backpacker Magazine – September 2008
Our testers faced raging blizzards, pounding hail, frigid temps, and 60-mph winds to select these top clothes.
All weights are for men's large (unless otherwise noted), on BACKPACKER scales.For more in-depth apparel reviews, check out our exclusive online Apparel Guide supplement.
The North Face Omen Power Stretch
Silky smooth on the outside and fleecy soft on the inside, the Omen is our hands-down favorite layering piece for winter. The four-way stretch polyester fabric is powerfully warm for the weight, but also breathable and quick-drying. "The wicking was incredible," said one tester who wore it all winter while climbing and backpacking in Arizona and Utah. Flat-lock stitching prevents chafing under backpack straps, and a sturdy front quarter-length zipper permits some venting. The tightly woven, smooth outer face resists snagging, and the tall collar and interior zipper storm flap seal out chill gusts, helping the Omen double as a mid or outer layer in milder temps. $129; men's S-XXL, women's XS-L; 10 oz. (men's M); thenorthface.com. Reader service #104