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Patagonia Stretch Boundary Jacket

rated 5 of 5 stars

The Stretch Boundary Jacket has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best soft shell jackets for 2024.

photo: Patagonia Stretch Boundary Jacket soft shell jacket

Great ski jacket! I'd been looking for a non-Gore-Tex jacket to wear skiing for a while but had never been able to find the right combination of features until now. Gore-tex jackets are great in the rain/wet snow/sleet. However, for days when no precipitation is falling, I am finding that I don't like it. Breathability is certainly better than the old-fashioned coated rain jackets, but even with the latest version of goretex, I find the inside of my clothing pretty well soaked when I head to the hut for lunch. I ski hard (if not always well...) and I tend work up a sweat.

So, no Gore-tex. What then? The obvious choices these days are jackets made from the new soft shell fabrics. These are not waterproof like gore-tex, but they are (mostly) windproof, water resistant; and most importantly, they breath better. Unfortunately, the 'newness' of soft shells means that there is not the variety of styles available to choose from; and most didn't offer the features I wanted for skiing. For example, I already own a Cloudveil Serendipity jacket. It's a fantastic garment. And, I wear it all year for a variety of outdoor activities! However, I've found it makes a poor ski jacket for cold conditions. It has a very 'athletic' cut that makes it hard to layer things under; so it's not so good for cold days. It also is not as wind-proof as I'd like.

So, enter the Patagonia Stretch Boudary. It is a soft shell jacket with a lightweight fleece lining in the body and arms. The stretch nylon fabric is windproof (more so than Cloudveil's) and water resistant (it sheds wet snow well, but won't keep you dry in the rain). The fabric breathes very well; and the fleece lining also helps transport water vapor away from the body. So, no matter how hard I ski, I'm not bathing in my own sweat. The lightweight lining means that I don't have wear as many other fleece layers underneath. I'm still experimenting with this, but so far I've been able to stay warm on very cold days, and comfortable on warmer ones as well. My hunch is that it'll be too warm for spring skiing though...

It has a powder skirt, a hood that disappears into the collar (works well with my helmet), and a few other thoughtfull features that make it a really functional ski jacket for on- or off-piste.

If it rains, I'll wear my old faithfull gore-tex shell. Otherwise, it'll stay at home. I'm a softshell believer now.

Fabric: stretch nylon shell
Fill: lightweight R1 fleece lining
Price Paid: $279 U$

This is the jacket that has kept me moving on my hills, rutts & sinks and that's in all weather. With this tech fleece lining I don't have to wear anything under and I feel nothing from forces of Nature! Nothing touches it!

I spent a load on a North Face, with Gore, should be re-name North Waste! Spent extra on one of their fleece, another waste! I had limited movement and it wouldn't breathe.

I'll spend the extra donaro any day for my next Patagonia!

This stuff is RUSH!!!!!

Fabric: No Gore!!!!! Now I know why.
Fill: R4 Fleece
Price Paid: 520 (CAN.)

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Price Reviewers Paid: $279.00
Price Historic Range: $279.00
Price Historic Range: $111.97-$195.95