It can be hard to think of what gear you need for the next season when you’re still enjoying the one you’re in. When the weather’s nice and the winter chill hasn’t yet hit, it may be a challenge to think about waterproof jackets that keep you warm. But there are two reasons to do it: preparation and sales.

When you jump on getting your winter kit together, you’re grabbing gear that’s either new this season, or that was new last season and there’s still enough stock for stores to sell them at a discount. But if you wait until the season is upon you, that sale gear is long gone.

The Patagonia KnifeRidge Jacket offers waterproof hardshell protection that breathes like a shoftshell jacket. It’s made with three-layer Polartec Power Shield Pro fabric, treated with a durable, water-repellent finish. With 90 percent polyester and 10 percent spandex, the fabric is lightweight, stretchy, and waterproof in all but a downpour.

The jacket has low-bulk seams that are taped to keep out moisture, and the optimal-visibility hood fits over all climbing and ski helmets (adjustable with an embedded single-pull cord lock). Under-arm gussets, articulated patterning, and the stretchy fabric work together to provide unrestricted movement.

The hand-warmer pockets sit high—out of the way of any pack’s waistbelt or climbing harness. There’s also a check pocket, and all pockets have watertight zippers. Adjust the hem with one hand inside a hand-warmer pocket, or at the hem using the embedded cord lock system.

The KnifeRidge Jacket also has a concealed Recco reflector, helpful in rescue situations. An elasticized strap at the back connects to all Patagonia snow pants and select Alpine pants, to keep the jacket from riding up when you’re outside having fun and don’t want to be tugging at your clothing all the time.

The Patagonia KnifeRidge Jacket comes in men’s and women’s versions. For men, the jacket is available in carbon or Grecian blue and lists for $224 (on sale) on the Patagonia site. for women, the jacket is available in harvest moon blue and lists for $224 (on sale) on the Patagonia site.

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