Patagonia has really got the backcountry crowd dialed in. If your idea of a good time involves grinding up the steeps and/or winding down the vert, Patagonia has you covered in the material of your choice.Random thought: I remember when Patagonia was a Southern California startup, and I've always wondered: is there a company in South America called SoCal?
But that's not important right now. What's important is their new Ascensionist jacket, which is a technical showpiece. For starters it's light at 19 ounces, thanks to stitchless seams and a minimalist design. It's alpinist-friendly with a 3-way adjustable roll-back helmet-compatible hood and an athletic cut with the arms and adjustable hem cut slightly long, great for those of us who spend a lot of time reaching up. Rip and stick cuffs, zippered hand pockets with mesh backing double as vents and a small inner zipped security pocket round out the features.
Performance is absolutely top shelf: breathability is superb, weather resistance hard care and the whole piece just feels moves with you. If you do manage to get this piece wet, never fear as the dry time is warp speed fast. The only minor quibble with this stellar jacket is that the hand pockets are not above the harness line as advertised; moving them about four inches would do the trick. An alternative would be to include a two-way zipper so the jacket could be worn over the harness. That aside, it's hard not to love this jacket, especially given the rockingly reasonable price.