As the Nano in the name implies, this synthetic gilet is a thin, light (237g in a men’s large) vest that makes an ideal mid- or outer-layer on chilly mornings around base camp or on the hill when you don’t need to be wearing anything too bulky but want to stay warm. And when packed into the built-in stuff sack in the pocket it will take up very little space in your pack.
The jacket’s outer shell is recycled ripstop polyester which is treated with Patagonia’s own DWR, called Deluge, so it will resist light showers and shouldn’t get damaged by any overhanging branches or thorns lurking in the undergrowth. The lining is breathable polyester that will wick moisture away from the body, keeping you comfortable and dry. The gilet’s thermal properties come from Primaloft One, one of the leading synthetic insulators, which is lightweight and compressible.
The YKK zip has a storm baffle behind it to stop the cold getting in; there’s a protective shroud at the top to stop it digging into the neck and chin. The collar is high and snug which will keep the cold out and prevent warm air from escaping. There’s a single, easy-to-operate hem adjuster on the right-hand-side that enhances the fit and stops draughts from getting underneath. The armholes have elasticated edging but aren’t restrictive.
The inner pocket doubles as a stuff sack for the vest and has a clip that can be used to secure it to your pack. The outer hand warmer pockets are big enough for your hands even if you’re wearing gloves.
I’m not overly struck by the Nano Puff Vest’s quilted design (it looks a bit like a liner from a jacket), but I like the fit – it’s not overly tight so movement is unrestricted and the drop tail design will protect the lower back from the cold when you are stretching up. For the amount of warmth it offers I would struggle to spend £100 on it when I could get something equally as warm for less.
In a line: Unobtrusive and lightweight, ideal for those chilly climbs.