Arc'teryx Squamish Hoody - Women's Review
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Arc'teryx Squamish Hoody - Women's
$160.00 at Amazon
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$64.93 at REI
$27.99 at Amazon
|Pros||Very windproof, decent rain protection, easy to layer, great warmth to weight ratio||Lightweight, very breathable, comfortable fit & feel, flexible, great cuffs||More waterproof, excellent wind protection, snap to allow unzipping during wear, superb hood, good hand pockets||Helmet compatible, lightweight, extremely packable, dries quickly||Decently wind resistant, moderate precipitation protection, lightweight, less expensive|
|Cons||Only one small pocket, not very breathable, light colors are see-through||Slim fit difficult to layer, not ideal for really cold wind||Doesn't pack into its own pocket, no reflective logos||Not the most waterproof, can see through thin fabric||Sleeves a bit short, small pockets, sloppy construction|
|Bottom Line||This classic windbreaker offers excellent protection in a lightweight shell, but sacrifices breathability in the process||A highly breathable, protective, and packable layer that will keep you moving whatever the weather||A blend of minimalist design and technical features, this jacket offers solid protection from the elements at a reasonable price||A true featherweight model that continues to impress, combining excellent performance with great value||A simple, casual jacket that's best for mild days and small budgets|
|Rating Categories||Arc'teryx Squamish...||Patagonia Houdini Air||Rab Vital Hoody - W...||Patagonia Houdini -...||SoTeer Waterproof H...|
|Wind Resistance (30%)|
|Weight and Packability (20%)|
|Water Resistance (10%)|
|Specs||Arc'teryx Squamish...||Patagonia Houdini Air||Rab Vital Hoody - W...||Patagonia Houdini -...||SoTeer Waterproof H...|
|Weight||4.1 oz||3.4 oz||4.1 oz||3.1 oz||6.6 oz|
|Material||Tyono™ 30D ripstop nylon||90% nylon (51% recycled), 10% polyester double weave with DWR treatment||Atmos woven nylon with fluorocarbon-free DWR||100% nylon ripstop with DWR (durable water repellent) treatment||95% polyester, 5% spandex|
|Pockets||1 chest||1 chest||2 hand||1 chest||2 hand|
|Cuffs||Half elastic||Half elastic||Half elastic||Half elastic||Elastic|
|Stuffs Into Pocket||Yes||Yes||No; stuff sack||Yes||No|
|Safety Reflective Material||Reflective logo||Reflective front logo||None||Reflective logo on front and back||None|
|Fit||Slim fit||Slim fit||Regular fit||Slim fit||Relaxed fit|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Arc'teryx Squamish is a full-zip windbreaker with an adjustable hood made of ripstop nylon Tyono™ with mechanical stretch. It's a slim-cut jacket that weighs 4.1 ounces and has a single left chest pocket, reflective front logo, and DWR coating.
The Squamish Hoody is one of the most windproof windbreakers we tested. Even without a storm flap behind the zipper, the Tyono™ nylon fabric does an exceptional job keeping gusts at bay. The half elastic cuffs are slightly longer over the backs of your hands, and a slight stretch in the material allows you to pull these sleeves down and bury your fingers inside away from the cold wind. A dually adjustable waist hem makes it easy to pull tight, even around bulky layers on a colder day. The chin guard comes up higher than most, allowing you to burrow your chin into this jacket on a cold day. The hood is also easily adjustable via cord — most windbreakers have just a velcro strap if any adjustability here at all. All in all, we're impressed at the wind resistance of this jacket, which offers one of the best warmth-to-weight ratios of any model we tested.
All that wind protection does come at a cost to the breathability of the Squamish. It has no venting features other than the usual unzip method of most windbreakers. The sleeves and cuffs are more comfortable to push up than we expected them to be, which does help. However, we aren't fans of this jacket during high output activities, particularly during something that's also high impact — like running. On a cool day, it easily collects condensation from your body on the inside of the jacket. Though this updated version has a lighter hood than previous iterations, the collar is still extra tall, which does flop around a bit during a run. If you're after a breathable windbreaker, this isn't the ideal option.
Weight and Packability
Weighing 4.1 ounces, the Squamish Hoody weighs less than average within this group — and is eight tenths of an ounce lighter than the previous version we tested! It stows easily into its own left chest pocket and has a carabiner loop for added ease. While previous versions struggled to fit the stiffened brim into this small package, this latest version does so with ease. This shell is one of the easiest to pack into a small, neat little package and is simple to clip onto your harness or pack.
The Squamish has some solid features that make it reasonably versatile within a specific weather type (aka on the colder side). The stretchy fabric that we've already discussed is augmented with underarm gussets that help give a full range of motion to your arms. The single chest pocket isn't large enough for a smartphone, though, and the shell-like material feels a bit crinkly and less comfortable than others against bare skin. This latest version of the Squamish has an updated fit as well. Gone is the rectangular boxy shape of past designs — the Squamish now has a slightly tapered waist while maintaining its overall relaxed fit. It manages to perfectly sit in the middle ground: fitted enough to look more stylish with plenty of space inside for adding layers. This is a great jacket for fall hiking, climbing on exposed faces, or evening walks with the dog.
A DWR coating helps the Squamish to be reasonably water repellent. It's slightly better than average when it comes to withstanding heavier rain or longer periods of lighter rain. That is to say, it will help keep you dry for a while, but it certainly can't replace a true rain jacket. After spending an extended neighborhood walk-in medium to light rain, portions of the Squamish were wet, as were our layers underneath. But for intermittent drizzle or short periods of time in light rain, it works reasonably well.
Should You Buy the Arc'teryx Squamish?
The Arc'teryx Squamish is among the more expensive models we tested, but it's not the most expensive. It's an excellent windbreaker for colder weather and works very well as an emergency layer on an alpine backpacking trip. It's durable enough to last through years of adventures, though not breathable enough to be pleasant when you're very sweaty. If you're after a long-lasting jacket that's lightweight but still warm and protective, this is a great option.
What Other Windbreakers Should You Consider?
The Squamish Hoody is a well-built windbreaker that boasts one of the best warmth to weight ratios of any jacket we tested. It offers impressive wind protection and decent water protection in a lightweight, compact package. If you need even more warmth, consider fully lined windbreaker like the Columbia Flash Forward Lined. But if lightweight is your game, we love the Squamish Hoody as a mini shell for adventures on days when the weather is iffy and we think it makes a great emergency layer.
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