PATAG­O­NIA PLUMA

Backpacker - - NEWS -

OUR TAKE Want a tech­ni­cal, durable shell to pro­tect you from the el­e­ments? You have plenty of op­tions. But if you want all that, plus ster­ling green cre­den­tials, your choice is a lot eas­ier: this jacket. On the moun­tain, the Pluma shel­tered us from snow, grau­pel, and 40-mph winds (it has ny­lon face fab­ric, which cuts gusts bet­ter than polyester) in Colorado’s Gore Range with­out a hitch. Trade­off: Testers judged the burly, three-layer Gore-Tex Pro shell to be only mod­er­ately breath­able; we over­whelmed its vent­ing, even with pit zips open, on hu­mid days when snow show­ers made us keep it on.

THE DE­TAILS The Pluma is made from 100-per­cent re­cy­cled ny­lon, a tougher ma­te­rial to re­cy­cle than polyester due to its molec­u­lar struc­ture. (Patag­o­nia sources its ny­lon from post-in­dus­trial waste and fac­tory scraps.) Two hand pock­ets, one chest pocket and one in­ter­nal pocket stash snacks and keys, but none quite fit skins. Gore’s Mi­cro­grid Backer felt great against bare arms and slid smoothly over un­der­lay­ers. The longer cut and slight stretch made lay­er­ing over mul­ti­ple pieces com­fort­able, too.

TRAIL CRED “I stayed dry even when ski­ing through snow that was fall­ing side­ways in heavy winds,” reports an Alaskan tester. “The high col­lar, long sleeves, and gen­er­ous hem kept all pre­cip out, and the hood seals up tight.”

$549; 14.6 oz.; m’s XS-XL, w’s XXS-XL; patag­o­nia.com

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