Like the RI Pullover by Patagonia, the Storm Shadow Jacket uses a microgrid pattern on the rear of the material which allows good ventilation but insulates really well once a shell is over it. The Storm Shadow pips the Patagonia top both on price and features. Firstly, there’s a full zip with a baffle, two hand pockets and a chest pocket. The fit is snug (as it needs to be) and it’s also quite long, allowing it to be tucked well in. The zip is a little lower around the neck than the Patagonia one, and comfortable. The pockets have a mesh lining for ventilation. There are no thumb holes, but the sleeves are very long – the longest of all here – but the material is so light it doesn’t bunch up. It would be excellent for climbers and cyclists. The extra features come with extra weight… but barely any. The jacket only averages 376g. This is a great piece that wins the Best Buy because it’s probably the most versatile item here.

First published: May 2014