Unlike a lot of windproof soft shells, which rely on an embedded membrane, the Winter Guide's gale-thwarting abilities come from a supertight weave, enabling it to breathe better than most. During a day of ski touring in Washington's North Cascades that involved everything from cold descents to steep, sweaty climbs, we never took it off. Smart touches include a front zip that steers clear of your chin and hem and hood toggles that don't annoyingly flap around in the wind. 1.8 lbs (M); patagonia.comBonus: The hood fits equally well with or without a helmet.Bummer: We wish it was cut a bit longer in back.
BEST FOR BACKCOUNTRY