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Greatest Down Vest for Backpacking & Climbing [2023] BikeHikeSafari

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This can be a evaluation about one of the best down vest for climbing and backpacking in 2023.

Whereas climbing, backpacking or touring, it’s extraordinarily probably that you simply’ll expertise opposed climate circumstances. Because of this, you must select your outside journey attire very fastidiously.

You need one thing that can shield you from the weather. But, it shouldn’t be cumbersome, as you want to have the ability to carry it round with you in case you turn into heat. Down vests have been rising in recognition not too long ago.

Not solely are they beautiful light-weight, however in addition they assist to maintain your torso heat. Attributable to being sleeveless, the down vest means that you can have way more mobility and freedom.  There are lots of of down vests on the market, so it may be scary realizing the place to look.

I’ve regarded into lots of of various down vests and are available out with one of the best ones so that you can personal.  On this article, I can be discussing my high picks for one of the best down vests for climbing and backpacking in 2023. 

Greatest Backpacking Down Vest 2023

The very best backpacking down vests for 2023 are:

Greatest Down Vest – Total

Patagonia Down Sweater Vest

Patagonia Down Sweater Vest

Weight – 8.9 oz / 252 grams
Down Fill Energy  – 
Responsibly sourced, non-hydrophobic 800 loft down
Outer material – 
20D Recycled Nylon with DWR
Pockets – 
2 hand hotter pockets, 1 chest pocket
> Makes use of Eco-Pleasant recycled supplies
> Heat
> DWR Water-Resistant end
> Adjustable Twine
> Small pockets

Outside lovers from all world wide depend on the Patagonia Down Sweater Vest. Patagonia locations a robust precedence on utilizing sustainable and ethically sourced supplies.

The vest works properly as an overlay or further insulation on bitterly chilly days, and the colours look implausible. The hem pull string can be utilized to change the hem, to offer a more in-depth match when going through chilly or windy circumstances.

The Patagonia Down Sweater Vest will stay dry from the weather and perspiration since each the liner and shell have a sturdy water-repellent end.

Total, the Patagonia Down Sweater Vest is without doubt one of the hottest choices in relation to one of the best down vest for backpacking in 2023.

Greatest Down Vest – Runner Up

Cotopaxi Fuego Down Vest

Cotopaxi Fuego Down Vest

Weight – 8 oz / 227 grams
Down Fill Energy  – 
Responsibly sourced, non-hydrophobic 800 loft down
Outer material – 
20D Ripstop Nylon with DWR end
Pockets – 
2 hand pockets, 2 inside stash pockets
> Good inside pocket
> Light-weight
> Rip-stop Nylon
> Some folks report that the sizing is a bit small

Excessive-quality supplies are used to create the Cotopaxi Fuego Down Vest, but it’s light-weight. The vest’s 800-fill RDS-certified goose down serves as insulation, whereas the face material is constructed of sturdy 20-denier rip-stop nylon and handled with a DWR end.

The vest has two inside stash pockets, two zippered hand pockets, a drawstring hem, and elasticated bindings on the armholes.

It may possibly simply be carried by packing it into the inside pocket. There are six completely different shade choices for hikers and backpackers searching for a skinny, colourful however extremely heat vest.

Total, the Cotopaxi Fuego Down Vest is without doubt one of the finest down vests for climbing and within reason priced.

Greatest Ultralight Down Vest

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 Down Vest

Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 Down Vest

Weight – 5.6 oz / 159 grams
Down Fill Energy  – 
Responsibly sourced, non-hydrophobic 800 loft down
Outer material – 
10D Recycled Nylon with DWR
Pockets – 
2 hand pockets
> Good adjustability
> Slim Match
> Makes use of Environmentally Pleasant supplies
> Light-weight
> Sizes could be a bit small

With a median weight of 5.6 oz / 159 grams, the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 Down Vest claims to be the lightest full-featured physique hotter on the planet. Of all of the down vests on this evaluation, that is my private favourite. The mixture of light-weight and small pack dimension makes this excellent for ultralight backpackers.

It’s cherished by those that like to pack mild, as you possibly can simply pack this vest into its personal inside pocket. Thus making it easy to hold round. With this down vest, it has fairly a slim match. Due to this fact, you possibly can simply layer underneath and over this vest as you see match, relying on the climate circumstances you’re going through.

Though it’s slim, the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 options 800-fill RDS-certified down insulation to make sure you keep heat. There’s a drawstring wire hem, which you’ll be able to simply modify to make sure the precise match.

To maintain your arms heat, there are two hand pockets that may be zipped as much as retailer private gadgets.

Total, the Mountain Hardwear Ghost Whisperer 2 is one of the best ultralight down vest for climbing and backpacking in 2023.

Greatest Finances Down vest

REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest

REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest

Weight – Unknown
Down Fill Energy  – 
Responsibly sourced, non-hydrophobic 650 loft down
Outer material –
Recycled Nylon with DWR
Pockets – 
2 hand pockets
> Good Full Size Zipper
> Good pockets
> 650-fill down within reason priced
> Moderately priced
> Informal match, which isn’t at all times as form-fitting to the physique.

The REI 650 Down Vest is a flexible, heat, and light-weight down vest. Squares of 650-fill down, assist keep the warmth trapped and evenly distributed all through your physique.

The down vest features a full-length zipper that extends to the chin and an elastic hem to assist retain warmth. The REI 650 Down Vest has two sizable zippered hand pockets.

This can be a no-frills finances down vest that also manages to make use of recycled and sustainable supplies to create this vest as properly.

Total, the REI Co-Op 650 Down Vest is one of the best finances down vest.

Mountain Hardwear Stretch Down Vest

Mountain Hardwear Stretch Down Vest

Weight – 10.6 oz / 201 grams
Down Fill Energy  – 
Responsibly sourced, non-hydrophobic 700 loft down
Outer material – 
20D stretch nylon and elastane with DWR
Pockets – 
2 hand pockets
> Sturdy
> Zipper Pockets
> Sensible choice of colours
> Not as adjustable as some others on this evaluation

The Mountain Hardwear Stretch Down Vest is created with a heat 700-fill, RDS-certified down. This supplies crucial heat throughout these chilly mornings whereas climbing or backpacking.

An unique stretchy and woven material is used on this vest to assist improve its sturdiness but additionally aids in offering further insulation. While you first put on the stretch-down vest you’ll discover that it may be a tighter match than different jackets on this evaluation. It’s the comfortable match that retains you hotter. However that doesn’t imply it is going to really feel tight on you. Stretch vests simply work very properly outdoor.

A full-length zipper might be seen on the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Down Vest. There may be additionally a detailed hook and loop fastener on the neck.

This fastening helps to shut the opening across the neck, to make sure no warmth escapes from that space. Moreover, there are two pockets that may also be zipped up. That is nice for storing any small gadgets when you are on the go.

Total, the Mountain Hardwear Stretch Down Vest is one of the best stretch-down vest for climbing and backpacking.

Down Vest Consumers Information

When you find yourself searching for a down vest for climbing or backpacking, there are a couple of components it is advisable think about. That is to make sure that you’re buying a high-quality merchandise that can maintain you heat and dry when you’re out going through the weather.

Lightweight hiking down vest
Light-weight climbing down vest

Sorts Of Down

There are many several types of down fillings on the market. Most firms use responsibly sourced down, if they aren’t then perhaps you must think about giving them a miss. Many firms even hint the farm the place your down has come from.

Moreover, down fillings are available two varieties: regular down and hydrophobic (handled) down. When moist, hydrophobic down outperforms strange down when it comes to heat retention.

This implies you lose rather a lot much less heat with handled down, in comparison with strange down. Nonetheless, as numerous producers are creating water resistant shells, this lets you scale back the quantity of heat your down loses as properly. However the highest high quality hydrophobic down is but to make its means into down vests. I think will probably be an excessive amount of longer earlier than they’re seen in all top-tier down vests.

A water-proof or water resistant shell can be ultimate, because it means you possibly can put on the vest in any sort of climate with confidence and lose little or no heat. Most down vests have some type of water resistant material, which is aided by a top quality DWR end that assists in stopping water from coming into contained in the vest.

Down Fill Energy

We will decide how a lot heat down provides for its weight by taking a look at its fill energy. The extra heat it provides, the upper the quantity. Usually, a 600-fill power-down garment should be hotter than a 900-fill power-down garment, relying on the design of the garment. To be hotter it might want to have extra down stuffed into the jacket to permit it to loft to the identical stage as a higher-quality down.

Fill energy for down vests designed for climbing sometimes vary from 600 to 900. Thus, it is advisable search for down vests with a down fill energy between this vary.

Baffle Design

The baffle design, which describes the compartments the place the down is housed, can considerably have an effect on how properly a down vest performs. All of the down feathers might cluster collectively and fall to the underside of the vest with out these chambers.

The 2 most typical designs obtainable are the sewn-through, which sews the 2 partitions collectively. All of the vests on this evaluation use sewn-through baffles.

Field baffle design is considerably higher high quality, however high quality comes at the next price. They insert a further strip of material between each layers to create a field that allows probably the most loft.

Normally, Field Baffles retain extra warmth. A down vest that makes use of a field baffle design is way more costly and higher suited to very chilly temperatures or mountaineering.

Baffles and zips on down vests
Baffles and zippers on down vests


Gear that’s light-weight is less complicated in your physique than gear that’s hefty. Because of this, clothes for climbing, trekking, and backpacking is usually fairly mild. One of many principal advantages of down vests is that they’re typically fairly mild and can compress and pack into a really small pack dimension. Excellent for backpacking.

Because of this, you must guarantee your down vest is as mild as attainable. It will make sporting and carrying this jacket a lot simpler. I actually just like the ultralight down vest on this evaluation.


Match is kind of a private alternative, however usually, you need a down vest to have fairly a detailed match. That is to make sure that you keep as a lot warmth as attainable. The size of the vest and the kind of neck the vest has is vital.

You need to really feel snug, however you additionally want to make sure that the vest is fulfilling its function and maintaining you as heat as attainable. A stretch vest offers one of the best match which is able to make sure you retain as a lot warmth as attainable


Pockets are one other private function. Most down vests will function two pockets, on the skin. But, some producers will give you extra pockets when it comes to exterior and inside pockets.

The quantity of pockets you want in your vest depends upon what number of gadgets and the scale of the gadgets you want to hold in your individual.

Some exterior pockets additionally include zips, which is beneficial if you’re recognized for dropping issues. Nonetheless, you must double-check the sort of pockets your chosen down vest has.

Most down vests have hand warmer pockets
Most down vests have hand-warmer pockets


As a result of nice loft that down-filling has, all down-filled clothes compresses down fairly small. Nonetheless, undoubtedly sure vests will do it extra effectively than others.

You possibly can see why they’re so well-liked amongst hikers and backpackers, contemplating that the smallest a down vest might compress to is roughly the scale of a big orange. The material chosen for the shell and liner, not the down itself, makes probably the most distinction in packability.

You will discover sure down vests have an inside pocket which you’ll be able to pack the vest into. This makes transporting or storing your down vest a lot simpler, nonetheless, it isn’t a necessity.


The very best down vests for climbing and backpacking in 2023 are:

Steadily Requested Questions

Are Down Vests Price It?

Though down vests are expensive, they’re properly well worth the funding for the consolation, heat, weight discount, and pack dimension that they provide.

They supply heat, and make sure you don’t overheat on the identical time. Moreover, down vests, liberate your arms, making them ultimate for climbing and backpacking.

What Ought to You Be Sporting Beneath Your Down Vest?

What you determine to put on underneath your down vest is totally as much as you and the climate circumstances you’re going through. You possibly can put on a easy brief sleeve or lengthy sleeve t-shirt and sweaters or jackets underneath your down vest.

If you’re going through actually chilly climate, then we’d advise including a number of layers underneath your down vest to create loads of price in your down vest to carry onto.

Ought to A Down Vest Be Unfastened Or Tight?

To actually profit from a down vest, it ought to have fairly a comfortable and shut match. Though, there nonetheless should be sufficient room so that you can layer up beneath as properly.

Nonetheless, the match is a extremely private alternative and can depend upon what you discover snug. Not everybody enjoys a detailed match, so that they go for a looser match.

Best Down Vest for Hiking and Backpacking

BikeHikeSafari Gear Assessment Course of

The creator, Brad McCartney from BikeHikeSafari is a small unbiased adventurer and outside gear tester who owns and runs

BikeHikeSafari isn’t half of a big weblog community and is proudly unbiased. All evaluations on this website are unbiased and trustworthy gear evaluations of out of doors merchandise by the creator.

The creator, Brad McCartney is a really skilled triple crown thru-hiker, adventurer, and bike tourer having spent 1000s of nights sleeping in a tent and sleeping bag (Learn extra). He was a supervisor of an out of doors retail retailer and could be very skilled in what’s vital when utilizing and testing gear for evaluations like this.

BikeHikeSafari won’t ever obtain any cash for evaluations and they don’t settle for sponsored evaluations on this web site. All of the feedback in regards to the gear evaluations are from the creator primarily based on his years of expertise. Hope this unbiased evaluation was useful for you.

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