The Patagonia R1 Hoody is a high-performing technical layer without many bells or whistles. This lightweight pullover is perfect for rock climbing missions, backcountry skiing, and cardio-heavy hikes. It breathes beautifully but still provides a good amount of warmth for its weight and thin-ness. It was our top overall scorer and the winner of our Editors' Choice award. Our favorite features on this jacket were the 3/4 length zipper and the fitted hood with a built-in balaclava. When you are working up a sweat you can unzip it almost all the way for extra venting, and when you need just a little extra warmth, you can pull the hood into place and zip it up all the way to the tip of your nose. Sure, you might look a bit like a ninja (especially if you opt for black), but this feature is beyond awesome when you need it. And if you don't want the hood up, it's thin and low profile enough to not interfere with a helmet or other layer.
It comes with thumb loops and a single chest pocket and not much else, but when moving fast in cold weather, less is often more. If you want a jacket that also offers some wind and water protection, the Arc'teryx Fortrez Hoody is a great choice. If you need something a little lighter for less frigid days, the lightweight Outdoor Research Deviator Hoody is also fantastic. But everyone who is active in cold weather should have at least one of these R1 beauties in their closet. It also comes in a R1 Full Zip with two hand pockets and no chest pocket. However, that version is heavier and not as great as a layering piece.