This updated version of a former Editors' Choice Award winner (4/04) continues to impress testers with its warmth, weather resistance, and reasonable price. A welded DriZone waterproof/breathable shell protects against the worst condensation (the fabric will wet out, but the membrane stops moisture). And the Trade Wind has kept testers warm into the single digits–well below its temp rating–thanks to a generous helping of 600-fill down and a hood that seals tight against drafts.
It serves one experienced staffer (read: spoiled and finicky) as a go-to bag for shoulder-season mountain trips. Nitpick: It's a tad bulky for a three-season down sack. Tip: Get one now, as they won't be made for the fall. Women's model is the Solar Flare. $279; 3 lbs. 1 oz.; 15°F