Winter running can be a thrilling and invigorating experience, but staying warm, dry, and comfortable is crucial. A well-chosen winter running jacket is your best ally in conquering the elements and achieving your fitness goals.
With so many options on the market, selecting the perfect jacket tailored to your specific needs can be a daunting task. Let’s go over the best winter running jackets for various preferences and requirements, ensuring you make an informed decision and stay protected on your winter runs and other favorite winter endurance sports.
The Best Winter Running Jackets
Navigating the world of winter running jackets can be daunting. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of top-rated options that cater to various needs – from reflectivity and minimalist design to versatility and weather protection. These jackets come with unique benefits and features, promising a perfect match for every runner.
ODLO Zeroweight Pro Warm: Best for Reflectivity
- Excellent reflectivity for nighttime runs
- Water-resistant, vented, and body-mapped softshell design
- Not the most breathable
Exceptional reflectivity sets the ODLO Zeroweight Pro Warm jacket apart, establishing it as a safe yet stylish choice for nighttime runs. With a water-resistant, vented, and body-mapped softshell design, it shares features with most winter running jackets, but its reflective details truly set it apart. Crafted with a windproof three-layer super-light soft shell bonded fabric and a durable water-repellent (DWR) finish, the Zeroweight Pro Warm offers reliable protection from the elements while ensuring visibility during those dark winter evenings.
Beyond its reflective capabilities, the ODLO Zeroweight Pro Warm jacket offers the following features:
- Lightweight running jacket construction for easy layering with warm mid-layers
- Ideal for runners who prioritize safety and style during nighttime runs
- Provides excellent reflectivity and weather protection
Arc’teryx Norvan SL Hoody Jacket: Best for Minimalist Design
- Ultralight and highly breathable
- Minimalist design for simplicity and weight savings
- Not as breathable as a softshell
- Very expensive
- Almost no extra features
Minimalist runners prioritizing weight savings and simplicity will find the Arc’teryx Norvan SL Hoody a perfect fit. Made with GORE-TEX Shakedry fabric, this jacket is both lightweight and highly breathable, providing excellent weather resistance and keeping you dry in wet conditions. With a minimalist design that lacks pockets or extra features, the Norvan SL Hoody is a top pick for those who desire the bare essentials in their running attire.
At a mere 6.7oz (190g), the Arc’teryx Norvan SL Hoody is a featherlight choice, offering protection sans the bulk. Its slim fit and lack of extra features make it an ideal lightweight jacket for runners who value uncomplicated gear for winter weather. However, its breathability might fall short compared to softshell jackets, and its high price tag may deter some potential buyers.
ODLO Dual Dry Waterproof Insulated: Best for Cold Weather
- Waterproof and windproof
- Breathable and lightweight
- Excellent moisture management
Exceptional warmth and protection for cold weather running characterize the ODLO Dual Dry Waterproof Insulated jacket. It is a featherlight, insulated, and waterproof winter running jacket. Its features include:
- Streamlined fit
- Synthetic insulation
- Suitable for wet weather conditions
- Wicking lining to draw moisture away from the body as you heat up
Crafted with a 100% recycled woven ripstop fabric and featuring a water-repellency treatment, the ODLO Dual Dry Waterproof Insulated jacket is perfect as a mid layer for runners seeking both comfort and performance in cold weather.
Its key features include:
- Lightweight construction
- Advanced moisture management
- Insulated design for warmth
- Water repellent treatment
With these features, the ODLO Dual Dry Waterproof Insulated jacket is a top choice for those who want to stay warm and dry during their winter runs.
Salomon Bonatti Waterproof Jacket: Best for Trail Runners
- Durable and weather protection
- Fully adjustable hood
- Reflective logo on the back
- Some thought the inner lining was uncomfortable
Tailor-made for trail runners, the Salomon Bonatti Waterproof Jacket offers the following features:
- Durability and weather protection necessary to conquer trails under any conditions
- Constructed with Salomon’s 10K/10K waterproof fabric
- Fully adjustable hood for excellent protection from wind, rain, and snow
With a large reflective logo on the back, the Salomon Bonatti Waterproof Jacket ensures visibility during low-light conditions, making it an ideal choice for trail runners who venture out in various weather scenarios. While its inner lining may not be the most comfortable, the jacket’s overall performance and weather resistance make it a top pick for trail running enthusiasts.
On Waterproof Anorak Running Jacket: Best for Versatility
- Relaxed fit for layering
- Permanent ventilation for cooling
- Thoughtful design features
- Not suitable for staying warm in windy conditions
- Not recommended for mountain use
Runners requiring adaptability in their gear will find the On Waterproof Anorak Running Jacket an excellent choice. Here’s why:
- It offers versatility across various weather conditions and activities.
- The relaxed fit and comfortable cut make it suitable for all-weather exploration.
- It is perfect for a range of outdoor activities, from trail running to hiking.
Constructed with lightweight and breathable materials, the On Waterproof Anorak Lightweight Running Jacket provides a snug fit and unrestricted mobility during active pursuits. Its high waterproof rating ensures you stay dry in wet conditions, while the permanent ventilation allows for cooling during high-energy activities. Although not recommended for mountain use or staying warm in windy conditions, this jacket is a top pick for those seeking versatility in their running gear.
Gore Wear R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry: Best Lightweight Option
- Very water resistant
- Lightweight and small packed size
- Not as breathable as a softshell
Runners seeking minimal bulk in their running gear will find the Gore Wear R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry a lightweight and breathable option.
Features of the winter jacket include:
- Fully waterproof and windproof
- Exceptional weather protection
- Slim fit
- Incorporated hood
- Stretchable cuff inserts
Despite its slim fit, the Gore Wear R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry provides a secure and comfortable fit.
Weighing only 6.5oz (men’s size L), the Gore Wear R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry is perfect for runners who prioritize weight savings and simplicity. Its features include:
- Ultralight and highly breathable design
- Allows for easy layering and comfortable movement during high-intensity runs
- Provides excellent weather protection in a lightweight package
While not as breathable as softshell jackets and carrying a higher price tag, the R7 Gore-Tex Shakedry is a great option for runners looking for lightweight and reliable weather protection.
Nathan Protector Rain Jacket: Best for Comfort
- Waterproof 2.5-layer breathable jacket
- Adjustable and packable hood
- Zippered hand pockets and zippered chest pockets
Offering comfort and protection from the elements, the Nathan Protector Rain Jacket doesn’t sacrifice mobility. Designed for light to average rain, this jacket features a waterproof 2.5-layer breathable construction and a fully adjustable, packable hood. The zippered hand pockets and chest pockets offer ample storage for essentials during your run.
Features of the Nathan Protector Rain Jacket include:
- Constructed with a soft stretch-woven face and stretch-printed backer
- Provides ease of movement and comfort during active activities
- Seam-sealed shell and adjustable elastic drawcord hood ensure you stay protected in wet conditions
With a focus on comfort and protection, the Nathan Protector Rain Jacket is an excellent choice for runners who value both features in their running gear.
Ultimate Direction Ultra Jacket: Best for Race Day
- Waterproof and breathable protection
- Flip mitts, fully taped seams, and underarm vents for comfort and utility
- Not much warmth provided
The Ultimate Direction Ultra Jacket, designed with race day in mind, ensures you stay dry and comfortable during your most challenging runs. It offers the following features:
- Waterproof and breathable protection
- Made with high-quality materials
- Fully waterproof
- Extremely breathable
- Offers protection in any weather
The Ultra Jacket stands out with its flip mitts, fully taped seams, and underarm vents for improved comfort and utility. Its lightweight design ensures it can be easily packed away when not in use, making it a top choice for runners who need reliable protection during races.
Although it comes at a higher price point, the Ultimate Direction Ultra Jacket is an investment in performance and protection for your race day needs.
Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket: Best Waterproof Option
- Waterproof and breathable fabric
- Fully adjustable hood and seam-sealed for maximum protection
- Uncomfortable inner lining
For those running in heavy rain, the Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket poses as an excellent option among water-resistant jackets, including waterproof jackets, designed to protect against both wind and water.
Features of the Cloudburst Jacket include:
- Waterproof and breathable fabric for superior protection from the elements
- Fully adjustable hood for added coverage
- Seam-sealed design to keep you dry even in the heaviest downpours
With the Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket, you can stay dry and comfortable during your runs, no matter the weather conditions.
While this jacket’s inner lining may not be the most comfortable, its overall performance and weather resistance make it a top choice for runners who need reliable protection from heavy rain. With the Showers Pass Cloudburst Jacket, you can confidently head out for a run, knowing you’ll stay dry and protected no matter what the weather has in store.
Hoka ColdSnap Jacket: Best For Wearing While Not Running
- Soft, quiet, and comfortable design
- Insulated with synthetic PrimaLoft 60G fill for warmth in cold weather
- Not tight in the abs section
Designed for chilly weather, cold and wet conditions, and even cold rain, the Hoka ColdSnap Jacket offers warmth and comfort for runs in colder temperatures.
Made from 100% recycled woven ripstop fabric with a water-repellency treatment, this jacket offers protection from wind and cold while remaining environmentally friendly.
Insulated with synthetic PrimaLoft 60G fill on the chest, collar, and back upper yoke, the Hoka ColdSnap Jacket ensures warmth and comfort during cold weather runs. Its soft, quiet, and remarkably comfortable design makes it an ideal choice for runners who want to stay warm and cozy while tackling their winter workouts.
Choosing Your Ideal Winter Running Jacket
In the quest for your ideal winter running jacket, take into account factors like your running style, the weather conditions you’ll encounter, and the features you deem most crucial. Assess the jackets’:
- Water resistance
- Additional features such as pockets, reflective trim, and hood adjustments.
Remember to add 10 degrees to the temperature when determining the appropriate jacket for your run, as your body temperature will rise once you start moving. Consider the fit of the jacket and ensure there is enough room for layering when temperatures drop.
Follow these tips and you’ll be well on your way to finding the perfect winter running jacket to keep you comfortable and protected during your cold-weather runs.
In conclusion, a well-chosen winter running jacket is essential for staying warm, dry, and comfortable during your winter runs. From reflectivity and minimalist design to versatility and weather protection, there’s a perfect jacket for every runner’s needs.
With the tips provided in this guide, you’ll be able to choose the ideal winter running jacket tailored to your specific preferences and requirements, ensuring a comfortable and protected running experience all season long.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best Patagonia jacket for winter running?
For winter running, Patagonia didn’t have a bonafide jacket for our list. However, we like the Patagonia Airshed Pro Pullover as a decent layer along with a running jacket. It’s versatile and suitable for year-round shoulder season conditions.
Are windbreakers good for winter?
Windbreakers are perfect for slightly cool days in the spring and fall, as long as the temperature is above 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. However, they are not suitable for cold winter weather.
What is the primary function of a running jacket?
A running jacket is designed to provide protection from the elements while still allowing for breathability and comfort during runs.
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