This category buster—consider it an insulated windshirt—offers puffy-jacket warmth and wind protection in a light and compressible package. It works as the only insulation you need on cool summer nights in the mountains, and as a versatile layering piece in colder conditions.
PrimaLoft Sport insulation is laminated to the 15-denier DWR-treated nylon shell, which eliminates the need for quilting and extra stitching. That reduces weight and bulk (it packs to cantaloupe size), but you still get full-featured performance.
“The microfleece-lined pockets warmed my hands on chilly summits,” says our tester, who pulled it on atop blustery Colorado Fourteeners. “And the high collar trapped body heat.” A cinchable hem seals out drafts, and the shell’s dense, ripstop weave blocks all but the strongest gusts, so testers needed a shell only for rain and snow. Fit is efficient: trim, but not snug.
> Weight 14 oz. (w’s M)
> Price $280
> Sizes m’s XS-XXL, w’s XS-XL