Everyone who travels in the winter needs at least one lightweight, packable, isolated jacket for the road. Bonus points if it’s highly affordable. The White Sierra Zephyr jacket meets all this criteria, for only $100.


The Zephyr is a men’s jacket that fits both my teens perfectly, but there’s also a boys’ version. I absolutely love how versatile it is: in our household, the Zephyr has been my teens’ go-to jacket for cold mornings while commuting to school, a mid-layer on mountain hikes, and will be packed in their carry-ons when space is at a premium for an upcoming international trip. Once the snow starts flying, I’m sure the Zephyr will be used as a insulating layer under a waterproof shell.

The Zephyr is fairly thin yet quilted, with whisper fill insulation. It has a full hood, which is a nice extra feature in a travel-ready jacket, and is completely water repellent. The shell and lining are 100% microfiber nylon, and boy does it pack down small. In fact, the Zephyr can lie nearly flat at the bottom of a bag, and still spring back to life once unpacked.

Included are two front hand-warmer pockets with zippers, lycra trimming on the cuffs and hood, a media pocket and cable holder, a chin guard (good for ski days), and a drawcord at the hem, so you can keep wind and snow out. The fit is fairly boxy, we think, so don’t expect the Zephyr to fit too snugly. My teens are ok with this, as they like a lot of mobility while they’re wearing it, but it should be noted.

Because the Zephyr is quilted and quite thin, I would consider it more of an insulated ‘sweater’ than an insulated jacket, working well on its own in mild to medium cold, and working as a mid-layer in extreme cold and wind. Yes, you’ll sometimes need to pair it with something, but for the price, it’s reasonable to me that it’s not going to work for me in all temperature extremes. I think of the Zephyr as a staple: one piece that performs in most situations and can be the only jacket packed for a trip in almost all situations.

Pick up the Zephyr for just $100 in a multitude of colors, including asphalt, green moss, black, and legion blue. The sizing is S-2XL. Find it on White Sierra’s website or on CampMor or REI for significantly less.

Categorized in: