Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody Review
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For the gear snob that has pretty much everything, but wants to have the newest, lightest and greatest gear, the Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody might just do the trick. The Ultralight Down Hoody is an 800 down fill jacket that works great as an outer layer and also works nice as under a shell for the really cold days.
One of the best uses I have found for this jacket so far is colder weather backpacking and camping. When backpacking, I like to keep my pack weight light, but I don’t want to sacrifice on my gear’s performance. The Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody weighs in at 264 grams, or 9.3 ounces. When stuffed into its own stuff sack, this jacket packs down to nothing and weighs close to nothing. The amount of warmth and protection it packs is far from nothing though. While backpacking outside of Aspen, CO the temperatures dropped down to freezing at night and it stayed pretty cold in the morning until about 9 or 10am. Having a warm down jacket made the colder nights by the campfire and the cold mornings much more tolerable. If this were a regular down jacket, it would have taken up a lot more room in my pack which I didn’t want to do, so having a warm jacket that could pack down to the size of my fist was a huge plus.
While hiking with my pack the first few hours of the morning with the Ultralight Down Hoody was easy as pie. It was nice to have a jacket that was slim and didn’t get in the way of my hip belt and pack straps. The fit of the jacket is a little slimmer than most down jackets. I am 6’0 and 170lbs and the medium fits me well, so plan accordingly if you plan to make a purchase.
One of the downsides about wearing a down jacket sometimes is if it gets wet, it often loses its insulating properties and you get cold. To keep this from happening, Patagonia added a durable water repellent (DWR) to the outside of the jacket. This helps shed snow and rain and keeps the down from getting wet; think of it as Rain-X for jackets. Sometimes with down jackets, the down will begin to clump up in certain sections and cold pockets will begin to form. To prevent this, Patagonia has added lots of small baffles to keep the down in the right place so you don’t get cold spots in the jacket.
As the temperatures have started to fall in Colorado, I have found the Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody to be one of my favorite, go-to jackets as well. For around town, it looks good, it’s light, stashes in a backpack or shoulder bag super easy, and it keeps me plenty warm. With a price point of $299, there will be a number of people saying no way! But if you can afford to spend a few extra bucks and want a jacket that will last many years to come, this is a great choice. For more information on the Ultralight Down Hoody and other Patagonia products, visit www.patagonia.com or www.rei.com/patagonia.