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Jacket Reviews

Maloja Beifuss/Birne

The most breathable shell of 2021.

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Specs

Weight

11.3oz.

If you’re expecting to break a sweat—think trail running, mountain biking, hard-charging dayhikes—this airy softshell will keep you from entering the sauna zone. The combo construction—polyester with a breathable, windproof PU membrane on the chest and upper arms; nylon/spandex panels everywhere else; and a large, covered mesh vent on the back—effectively jettison body heat. (Boo: The vent doesn’t work if you’re wearing a pack). “On a challenging hike up Hunger Mountain on a 50°F day, I got only mildly sweaty,” reports a Vermont tester. “The material plus mesh vents made it easy for my body temperature to regulate.” A nonadjustable hood stretches over low-profile helmets yet stays in place on a naked head in windy weather, and the chest pocket fits a smartphone. Caveat: High breathability means limited water resistance, and a misty drizzle soaked in after 15 minutes despite the PFC-free DWR.

m’s XS-XL, w’s XS-XL