Darin McQoid, Big Agnes Meaden Review

Big Agnes Meaden: 15.4oz

($379.95, bigagnes.com)

The 850 fill power Big Agnes “Meaden” jacket is the lightest at 11oz and the most expensive; $379.95. It has two zippered external pockets and two internal stretchy mesh pockets. The Meaden also has a zippered internal chest pocket, great for music lovers. Unlike the other jackets in this review it has no hood which is a large part of its slim weight. It does not stuff into its own pocket. Throughout the length of testing this was never the jacket anyone chose at random when heading out the door, because of the fabric. It’s space age, shiny, synthetic and has an unpleasant tactile feel. When worn against bare skin it quickly feels a bit sticky and gets clammy with any perspiration or humidity. As the most snug and contoured of the test it’s the best suited to layering, which is good because it’s the least warm of the tested jackets. It is the only jacket of the test with thumb loops, good for adventures with a lot of upper body movement. The wrist closures are of the standard elastic variety and here is an elastic drawstring on the hem with a friction stopper so it can be tightened in the wind.

Best for: When you need the absolute lightest jacket or plan on layering.

Field Tested: Down Jackets   Brooks-Range Mojave