I initially bought this hoody because I wanted a versatile fleece that could be used for a wide range of activities. Something I could easily throw into my pack that wouldn’t weigh me down, but at the same time provide a good amount of warmth by itself or as part of a layering system.
My first proper use I had using the Patagonia R1 hoody was on my recent trip to Nepal for the base camp trek. I visited in the middle of winter and was pleasantly surprised with how it performed; wearing it pretty much all day every day, during the day and then wearing it to sleep, for around 12 days straight.
What I like
– This hoody is to me as light or even lighter than your average jumper/sweater, and can be rolled up to about the size of a 1 litre Nalgene bottle.
– The hood is fitted so it can fit under any jacket or even a beanie if needed. The hood also acts like a balaclava when fully zipped up which I found useful on those super cold and windy days.
– Love that the torso length is longer than most jackets. This stops it from riding up your back when you have your pack strapped on. Makes a huge difference to the amount of warmth it provides.
– The off-centre zipper ensures your chin doesn’t get chaffing when wearing it as a balaclava.
– Looks great, but more importantly, it’s super warm for its weight and the exterior material doesn’t collect lint like other fleece materials.
– Also really appreciate the fact that there is different weighted fleece depending on the body area. That is, there is much lighter fabrics under the arms and waist where heat tends to build up. Just makes the hoody much more breathable, and hence, slow the buildup of sweat in high exertion activities.
What I dislike
– I know this hoody was originally designed as a climber’s layer, but I found the sleeves just a tad too long for my liking. Not a huge deal, but if you were to ask what I’d change about this hoody, it’d be to shorten the sleeves just a little.
– Because it’s a gridded fleece inside, and pretty form fitting, I find that it tends to bunch up my thermal base layer or tshirt up a little when pulled on. Again, not a big deal, but rather a minor annoyance.
Would I recommend?
This hooded fleece by Patagonia comes highly recommended by others, and I’m of the same thinking. It’s such a versatile piece of clothing. It’s something you can keep in your pack for cool day hikes, an emergency layer in warmer weather, or something you never take off in more extreme cold. Overall, it’s one piece which I find is useful in almost any outing. I got a pretty good deal at the time from CampSaver.com with a 20% discount, so it’s been great value, especially considering it’s Patagonia.