This jacket is ideal for people seeking a versatile coat to use outdoors and in everyday situations. Highly breathable, packable small, and providing plenty of warmth at an excellent price point – these features make this piece highly desirable!
It features responsibly sourced down and a durable shell for everyday wear or layering with other gear.
Down jackets provide lightweight yet warm insulation, making them ideal for cold-weather hiking or backpacking adventures. Down jackets are excellent when combined with a t-shirt and light fleece layering system.
Fill Power is the measure of how much warmth per ounce of down. The higher its rating is, the warmer the jacket will be.
As with the fill power, water resistance and durability should also be key considerations when purchasing a jacket. A jacket featuring waterproof shell fabric will be more suitable for rainy conditions.
Look for a down jacket made of hydrophobic down, which has been treated as more moisture resistant and will help it remain plump even in damp and rainy environments. Avoid dry cleaning your down jacket as chemicals could strip its natural oils, diminishing its insulation qualities.
Light jackets are essential when backpacking, hut trekking, alpine climbing, and other activities that involve rapidly moving bodies creating heat. One such lightweight option is Rab Neutrino Pro; packed with 7 ounces of 800-fill hydrophobic down at a highly reasonable price point, this model packs plenty of down and offers excellent warmth-retaining properties.
Our list includes one of the most breathable lightweight down jackets, thanks to its thin fabric face and airy design. However, this jacket should not be used for off-trail bushwhacking or alpine climbing with chimneying techniques, and we do not advise using it on hiking less-maintained trails.
An ideal down jacket must provide warmth and style; its durability should match its kind, which is why REI Co-op’s 650 Down Jacket 2.0 makes an excellent investment at such an amazing price point.
Arc’teryx Cerium Down Hoody jacket is one of the best choices for mountain athletes looking to reduce weight, offering an excellent warmth-to-weight ratio and sustainably sourced down. Furthermore, this stylish piece looks good as well.
Outdoor Research’s Cold Front Hybrid Insulated Jacket provides comfortable synthetic insulation with an equivalent warmth-to-weight ratio. This jacket uses responsibly sourced 700+ fill down in areas where extra warmth is necessary, and Vertical X Eco 85% recycled polyester synthetic insulation in those that may get wet.
Down provides a superior warmth-to-weight ratio. However, not every jacket uses this material; some have synthetic insulation which mimics its clustered form but doesn’t retain as much warmth when wet.
Whether you’re backpacking or taking quick hikes between climbing routes, the Ghost Whisperer 2 jacket is one of the lightest insulated. Crafted with DWR-treated 10Dx10D recycled nylon shell fabric and 800 fill power RDS certified hydrophobic goose down for optimal insulation performance, its weight-saving design makes this an excellent lightweight solution.
This jacket also boasts two zippered hand pockets, an adjustable hem cinch, and adequate wind and water resistance. Its fill power measures the amount of space one ounce of down takes up in a cylindrical tube; higher fill powers indicate loftier and warmer insulation properties.
Higher-fill power-down jackets typically cost more than those with lower fill power because they are lighter, more compressible, and have better-insulating properties than their counterparts.
Arc’teryx Cerium Hoody is an exceptional piece in this category, providing an unrivaled warmth-to-weight ratio and numerous features in an attractive package. Perfect for backcountry epics and weekend trips to alpine lakes alike!
REI Co-op 650 Down Jacket 2.0 is another great value at $100 (and often even less on sale), featuring 3.3 ounces of RDS standard down and durable shell fabric that packs down into a size smaller than 1-liter bottles for easy travel. Furthermore, this jacket includes zippered hand pockets and an adjustable hem cinch system.