- Coats of armor for all activities and conditions.
Mammut Mittellegi Pro JacketBEST FOR: Wet-Snow Resorts
One tester might not have finished skiing the 40-mile Elk Mountain Grand Traverse without this multipurpose hard shell ($750). Designed with a burly Gore-Tex Pro exterior and underarm bents, it held up to the elements better than any other we tested. Bonus: the front pockets are big enough to stash your skins.
Columbia Chelsea Station JacketBEST FOR: Fashionable Wear
The synthetically insulated Chelsea Station ($149) gets design points for its cute silhouette and thoughtfully chic ruffling along the baffles. It's also remarkably warm, thanks in part to Columbia's Omni-Heat lining, which kept us toasty during frosty morning bike commutes.
Stio Hometown Down JacketBEST FOR: Mild Days and Layering
The 14-ounce, 800-fill Hometown Down ($275) held in heat on the coldest days at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, and the DWR-coated nylon shell kept out moisture even when the weather turned foul. Testers also loved the feminine styling, which gave the jacket enough versatility to wear out for drinks.
Aether Space HoodieBEST FOR: Mild Days and Layering
Sometimes simplicity and attention to detail are all you need. Minimal flourishes, no logos, and neutral colors keep the Space Hoodie ($265) stylish enough for evenings on the town, but a healthy dose of Prima-Loft insulation makes it warm enough to use as a midlayer or, in mellower temperatures, on its own.
Patagonia Knifeblade JacketBEST FOR: Ski Touring
This soft shell ($379) quickly became our go-to for skinning up 13,000-foot peaks. That's largely because it's cut from Polartec's Power Shield Pro fabric, which strikes the perfect balance between breathability and weather resistance. A helmet-compatible hood with a visor took the sting out of windy ridges.
Arc'teryx AndessaBEST FOR: Frigid Conditions
When temperatures in Girdwood, Alaska, went subzero, the 850-fill Andessa ($850) kept us warm and dry, thanks to a fully waterproof Gore-Tex shell and a plush goose-and-synthetic down liner. Add an insulated hood and a removable powder skirt and you've got the warmest, most technical down jacket around.
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