Flylow jacket. Photo: David Reddick
Flylow jacket. Photo: David Reddick

Warmth Without the Bulk

Flylow's Daphne Jacket is an everyday jacket with synthetic insulation

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Details Details

Price: $420

Sizes: Medium, Large, XL

Weight: Average 856 grams

Materials: 2-layer Intuitive™ stretchy ripstop; 20k/20k waterproof breathable membrane; 80 grams of Primaloft Eco insulation

Features: High performance DWR (Durable Water Repellent); fully seam-taped;
5 exterior pockets, 1 inner, 1 mesh dump pocket; baffled interior; helmet-compatible hood; removable powder skirt; no-bulk cuffs; YKK waterproof zippers

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I will wear the Flylow Daphne Jacket every day this winter. Already have been. And not just every day, but everywhere. It's just that kind of jacket: comfortable, warm, looks good, functions at the highest level, waterproof, lots of pockets, big hood. You really can't ask for more in a jacket.

What I love most about the Daphne is the warmth-to-bulk ratio. It warmed me right up on a frigid -10 degree Fahrenheit day in northern British Columbia. But it's not bulky. Do yourself a favor, and skip the marshmallow. Eighty grams of synthetic Primaloft Eco insulation—made with 55 percent recycled material—is all you need.

The difference between the Daphne and other synthetic jackets is that it's made to be your outer layer. I'm also a fan of other synthetic options like Patagonia's Nano Puff and Arc'teryx's Atom hoody, but unlike the Daphne, those are midlayers to go under a jacket. For super-hero warmth, I wore my Arc'teryx Atom under the Daphne and the cold couldn't touch me.

Flylow jacket. Photo: David Reddick

The Flylow Daphne Jacket. Photo: David Reddick

The Daphne is a two-layer jacket, however, so it's good for cold, dry storms and high-pressure days with arctic blasts. If the weather outside is a Pacific Northwest torrential downpour, I'd probably grab a three-layer Gore-Tex. Still, the stretchy ripstop fabric and 20K/20K waterproof breathable membrane is a solid for 99.9 percent of your winter day.

Did I mention pockets? The Daphne has a ton of pockets, specifically seven. Two zippered pockets are high on the chest, which fits perfectly with backpack straps and are big enough to stash a hat or a pair of skins. Then there's a chapstick and cash pocket. A snack pocket. A pass pocket. And inside, a media pocket and a mesh pocket. The only qualm here is that I frequently mix up my snack pocket for my chapstick/cash pocket, which creates one of those frantic "Where'd I put my [blank]?" situations.

As far as fit, I don't really think about it because it fits. So there you go. It's long, but wide enough so it doesn't squeeze my hips. The sleeves and shoulders have a large range of motion. And duck under the roomy hood to stay anonymous, which is nice and cozy sometimes.

One last thing: the powder skirt is removable. I never use powder skirts, so I took mine out immediately.

Pair the Daphne with the Foxy Bibs, also by Flylow.

PHOTOS: David Reddick