1. Josh Spice says:

    Dave, regarding cutting the hood out – I WOULD NOT! Every time I wear a hooded layer, I wish the body were lighter and the hood were thicker, to actually be more like a real balaclava or stocking hat. Just a thought. I’m getting this hoody and imagine I’ll wear it more than anything else I own.

  2. Cap 4 is Polartec PowerDry isn’t it? Although maybe this new ‘High Efficiency’ version of the fabric is the reason the voids in the weave are far more prominent? http://www.polartec.com/comfort/polartec-power-dry-HE/

    I have an MEC PowerDry hoody and have worn it the last two winters. Works well under the Boreas ( https://picasaweb.google.com/112307819916350072414/ThunderInTheNightIV#5713792959615737506 ) and also under Paramo. Dries in a flash. On our ski tour of Finnmarksvidda I put a merino hoody on at night and the MEC hoody back on top to dry.

    Rab are also doing a PowerDry hoody now – http://rab.uk.com/products/mens-clothing/baselayer/baseline-hoodie.html

    Be nice to know the different weights of fabric each hoody is using. I have some very thin Rab PowerDry gloves that dry very fast. I would love a hoody made out of that weight fabric. Will there be a SOTM type report in the future?

  3. DaveC says:

    I suspect it must be the HE Powerdry. The fabric isn’t enormously innovative, except that it’s a few oz/yard lighter than anything else I’m aware of.

    Josh, we’ll see how the hood goes. I often wear a light beanie first and use the hood for additional thermoregulation. For that thinner is often better.

  4. Mark Roberts says:

    I saw something by Vaude in my local supermarket (!) using the same material: http://www.vaude.com/epages/Vaude-de.sf/en_IN/?ObjectPath=/Shops/Vaude/Products/04334/SubProducts/043344915600

    No hood though, which is always a bummer.

  5. Eugene Smith says:

    Dude, you can’t help but cut stuff up can you! Leave the hood alone man, removing the inner layer at most will make a marginal difference. You have high expectations from your gear, seems nothing is good in it’s original form. Thanks for turning me onto this piece. i’m likely going to part with my R1 hoody, which has been good, but is insanely warm for southern NM winters, even up in the mountains. The few times in winter when the mercury drops below 10F, I have still managed to sweat up a storm in the R1 hoody on my runs.

    1. DaveC says:

      Tis true. :) But I have decided to leave the hood alone. It’s pretty perfect as is.

  6. John says:


    You mentioned on BPL that you’ve used this piece comfortably with a hard-shell windshirt (such as the Houdini) during windy, cold, and rainy conditions as long as you keep moving; do you think the EW Zip-Neck (with the EW beanie) + a lighter windshirt such as the Montbell Tachyon (+ an umbrella) would work as well? I know the Tachyon isn’t as breathable as the Houdini but with the Houdini at 4oz, I could get a waterproof, semi-breathable shell in the Zpacks WP/B Jacket for only half an ounce more; out of the three, what shell would you recommend? I would be using it in similar conditions although also in downpours (which the umbrella should help out with). Thanks so much for all the fantastic insight, btw.


    1. DaveC says:

      Both of the Montbell shells I’ve used have had notably sub-par DWRs, which would make me loath to buy one myself. The Houdini has an outstanding (and very durable) DWR, which is worth the extra weight and expense on its own.

      I’ve not seen the Zpacks jacket, and my only real concern would be the hood. I’m skeptical that it’s anywhere near as good as I prefer (in something like the Rab Pulse, for instance).

      For my own use a rain jacket is never a substitute for a windshirt. I sweat too much. The only times I’ve regretted bringing both are those rare, ridiculously rainy trips where I have the WPB on all the time.

      1. John says:

        Thanks very much for the response. I have one last question, if you don’t mind – do you think I can get away with wearing a Cap 1 Silkweight crew, Houdini, and a Silnylon poncho tarp for 3 season backpacking (if I keep moving all day) or do I need to add the Cap 4 layer? Thanks again for everything.

  7. HikeVentures says:

    Just ordered the Patagonia Capilene 4 Hoody. Looks quite light compared with other hoodies e.g. the Rab Baseline hoody has 100 grams more. Will test it in 2 weeks.

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