Color: Distressed stripe/smolder blue
Price: On sale for $114 (normally $229)
To be clear, I knew what I was getting before I purchased this jacket. A couple of years previously, I bought the same jacket in bright red for $60 at an REI garage sale. Interestingly, the reason for return on the garage sale tag was “no longer suits my needs” (REI’s return policy is great right?).
After a few seasons of use, this was my go-to jacket. It’s so light and packable, yet I have never felt too cold while wearing it. Whether hiking through Japan’s mountain ridges at 3,000 meters in October, or walking to Big Dig Coffee on Pittsburgh’s south side on a blustery February day. Dependability comes to mind.
The first jacket was used very often for 2-3 seasons. I washed with Nikwax down wash once a year and dryer fluffed it twice a year. The down was becoming more and more matted each year, and while it may not significantly impact the jacket’s warmth, it was enough to convince me to start looking for a replacement.
I found the distressed stripe/smolder blue jacket marked down to $114 on Patagonia ‘s website in July and I jumped on the deal. Unfortunately, I couldn’t wear the jacket for another 4 months or so. I was also a little unsure of the color, I prefer solids, but the smolder blue isn’t too bad. Actually even though it’s called smolder blue, there’s only dark brown with yellowish stripes-still haven’t found any blue on this coat.
Although I hadn’t had much opportunity to wear my new jacket in the mountains, it feels nearly the same as when I got my red one, so the results would likely be similar.
I can’t emphasize enough that this jacket is great for hiking trips during the fall/winter months in the mountains. It’s light, packable, turns into a pillow, and if you’re doing any kind of strenuous hiking, the body heat that this jacket retains will make you start thinking about removing layers real quick.
The only negative: if you’re hiking through brush in the backcountry (or crowded train stations in Tokyo), the shell material is not super robust, so you should be careful or wear a light shell over it.
I’m 5’10, 160 lbs, and the S size fits perfectly.
I highly recommend this jacket.