Best for sunny resorts
Unless you’re skiing in the soggy Pacific Northwest, a completely waterproof jacket is overkill. A highly water-resistant, fleece-lined soft shell like the Venta MX, which has taped seams, offers more than enough protection. While really wet storms will eventually overwhelm it, the Venta MX’s Gore Windstopper fabric had no problem shedding drier fluff in Utah and Colorado. Come spring, it’ll vent heat via 16-inch pit zips. And because it’s softer, quieter, and stretchier than a typical hard shell, it was one of the most comfortable jackets we tested this year.