Here it is: the best eco-shell in our Summer Buyer’s Guide jacket test. “The three-layer construction is more durable than its 2.5-layer predecessor,” our testers wrote. “Still, as with Torrentshells of old, it’s breathable (pit zips help), a high collar and brimmed hood seal out showers, and there are hand pockets for snacks.”
Now Is a Great Time to Buy a Winter Puffy
Fend off chills and cold weather in the Ghost Whisperer Reversible 2 jacket. Its 800-fill down retains heat while the ripstop shell and DWR finish resist moisture—that means the jacket can be worn in light rain and snow and still provide ample protection from the elements.
The Nano Puff is a classic jacket that is “super versatile, warm, and looks good with any outfit.” It’s built with 100 percent recycled polyester for the ripstop shell and 55 percent recycled content for the insulation. Plus, it packs down into its own chest pocket for easy transport.
This hoodie is as high-tech as it looks. Packed with quality 850-fill down in the core, the Cerium LT Down has strategically mapped areas with synthetic insulation to resist moisture. You’ll barely notice it in your pack: it weighs just 10.9 ounces.
The Stretchdown is a staff favorite. "This puffy is made with a nylon-elastane face fabric that's super stretchy, so it's great for increased range of motion for climbing, hiking, and skiing," said gear editor Ariella Gintzler.
Former editor Ben Fox loves the Transcendent for its uber-warm protection from the elements. “When you’re on a chilly belay or ripping off touring skins on an exposed summit and the wind starts gusting, you’ll be thankful for the Transcendent’s lofty, lightweight 650-fill down insulation, wind-resistant fabric, and cozy hood,” he says.
To combat cold spots in its Featherless hoodie, Marmot ditched large baffles and instead filled tiny compartments with synthetic Thinsulate Featherless insulation.
Packed with premium 850-fill down in the torso and synthetic insulation elsewhere, the Cerium LT is constructed to retain warmth where you need it (around your core) and manage moisture everywhere else. You’ll barely notice it in your pack: it weighs just 9.7 ounces.
The Storm is a perfect example of how far headlamps have come. It’s moderately priced but pumps out 375 lumens from a proximity beam—ideal for working in close quarters or as a spotlight when you’re on the trail. We really like the battery meter, which shows how much juice you have left in your AAAs. Oh, and it’s fully waterproof.
This sleeping pad was our top choice for winter camping in our 2020 Winter Buyer’s Guide. Our tester spent a week in Wyoming’s high country with the Trail Boss and confirmed it’s one of the warmest and toughest pads out there. It’s built with heat-reflecting PrimaLoft Silver insulation wrapped in puncture-resistant, airplane-grade nylon.
We included the Helium II in our roundup of the world's most portable gear. The jacket not only weighs in at just 6.4 ounces—it’s also completely waterproof. “Stow it in your running or hiking shorts, and whip it out for full-on protection when the weather turns,” our tester said.
Outside contributor Wes Siler loves these pants so much he wrote an in-depth piece about its new design changes, showing how they’re even better than before. Siler writes: “The new Kebs are lighter, more durable, and have better freedom of movement.”
Our Gear Guy called the Lowball the only Yeti product you actually need. “I’ve been using this tumbler almost every day since August 2015, and after four and a half years of heavy use, it still works just as well as the day I got it,” he wrote.
Outside contributor Wes Siler called these the best hiking boots he’s tested. “If you need ankle support and weather protection, then you’ll find more of that in these Altras at less of a weight penalty, and with more comfort, traction, and support, than you will in just about anything else,” he wrote.
The Snap-T is a classic piece of outdoor gear. When it was released in 1985, it was the first sweater of its kind. “Here was an insulating layer that offered next-to-skin softness but had the wool-like ability to keep the wearer warm even when wet,” we wrote. Bonus: it’s made with recycled materials.
The Momentum is one of our favorite beginner shoes, but it also excels on long outdoor multipitch routes or as an intermediate gym shoe. The relaxed fit is ideal for those who want more toe space, and the breathable knit upper helps keep your feet from overheating.
The full-zip version of this windbreaker was one of our favorite pieces of peak bagging gear for its compact size and light protection. This half-zip is ideal for day hikes or getting around town, and it won’t blend into the landscape—that’s just fine with us.