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OUR TAKE Call it the jacket of all trades: The Ajax proved it­self wor­thy for all sorts of win­ter pur­suits, thanks to its bal­ance of weight, dura­bil­ity, and breatha­bil­ity. Rugged 70-de­nier ny­lon patches on the shoul­ders and hips make it tough enough for us to haul heavy packs on long ski tours, while 40-de­nier ny­lon ev­ery­where else en­hances breatha­bil­ity on trail runs and keeps weight down. (We even thwacked through branches and patches of devil’s club with­out dam­ag­ing the thin ma­te­rial.) Three-layer GoreTex breathed well on heart­pump­ing Nordic ski trips and rainy hikes into the 50s, and the Ajax dried within 20 min­utes after an ac­ci­den­tal creek dunk­ing on a warm, sunny hike.

THE DE­TAILS The Ajax packs in the features—like a roll-up, three-way ad­justable hood that fits over ski hel­mets, an ex­tended col­lar, and large hand pock­ets for maps or gloves—with­out a lot of bulk (it packs down to the size of a 1-liter wa­ter bot­tle). The cut is long and trim, work­ing best with just a base­layer or thin mid­layer. Draw­back: Some testers re­ported the cut re­stricted their reach.

TRAIL CRED “The hood fits a hel­met, but doesn’t sag in your eyes or let wa­ter drip into your face when you’re not wear­ing one,” says an Alaska tester. “It’s one of the best hoods I’ve ever tried.”

$380; 15.6 oz.; m’s S-XXL, w's 6-14; mon­

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