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Warbonnet Stash Jacket (WindBreaker) Review

Warbonnet Stash Jacket Review

The Warbonnet Stash Jacket is available as a rain jacket or a non-waterproof windbreaker, depending on the fabric you order. This is a review of the windbreaker made with the 20 Denier high-thread count nylon which Warbonnet uses to make their backpacking quilts. While it’s not waterproof, it’s a great wind-proof jacket to use year-round for hiking or backpacking when you just need a thermal envelope over your base or mid-layer to prevent the wind from robbing your body heat.

While you can wear a windbreaker or wind shirt anywhere, they’re particularly useful when wearing a rain jacket or technical shell will be too warm and make you perspire. Windbreakers or wind shirts are a great layer to wear on cold mornings over a fleece because they help retain your body heat or above treeline when high winds can make you feel much cooler. Experienced hikers swear by their wind layers because they provide so much insulation value for so little weight.

RELATED: 10 Best Windbreakers and Wind Shirts

Specs at a glance

  • Material: 20D Nylon, calendared on one side with external DWR
  • Weight: 4.7 oz (large)
  • Gender: Unisex
  • Sizing: Runs large for layering
  • Waterproof: No

Feature-wise, the Warbonnet Stash Jacket is best classified as a windbreaker and is more akin to the REI Flash Jacket or the Arcteryx Squamish Hoodie than a much lighter weight and more minimal wind shirt like the Montbell Tachyon Parka or the Enlightened Equipment Copperfield Wind Shirt. It’s called a Stash Jacket because it bunches up to the size of an orange and is easy to stash in a backpacking pack or a day pack whenever you think you might want to bring an ultralight wind layer with you.

20” side torso zips make it very easy to dump excess body heat.
20” side torso zips make it very easy to dump excess body heat.

Made with 20D nylon, the Warbonnet Stash Jacket isn’t nearly as breathable as garments made with thinner material (like 7D or 10D nylon) and is much warmer because it traps more body heat. Despite that, it can be used across a wide temperature range because it has 20″ side zippers that begin under the arms and run down the sides of the torso. If you’re too warm, you can unzip these and dump a huge amount of excess body heat to avoid perspiring while still providing wind protection for the head, arm, and torso. The torso zippers have two metal sliders each but do not come with zipper pulls, which you’ll want to add (a simple cord is fine) to make the jacket easier to use.

Warbonnet Stash Jacket WindBreaker

Breathability
Comfort & Mobility
Hood Adjustability
Weight
Durability
Packed Size
Ventilation

Excellent Venting Options

The Warbonnet Stash Windbreaker is a great wind-proof jacket to use year-round for hiking or backpacking when you just need a thermal envelope over your base or mid-layer to prevent the wind from robbing your body heat.

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The Stash Jacket also has an adjustable hood with cord locks positioned on the sides of the neck that let you adjust the size of the front opening. This is an important function on a windbreaker or wind shirt, especially above treeline, because you don’t want a hood that flaps wildly against the sides of your head: the sound will drive you crazy. The hood also has a slight bill on top to reduce glare and a lined chin guard for added comfort.

A Polartec Alpha Hoodie + A Windbreaker/WindShirt makes a very lightweight but warm layer for springtime use.
A Polartec Alpha Hoodie + A Windbreaker/WindShirt makes a very lightweight but warm layer for springtime use.

There are elastic cuffs over the wrists to prevent drafts from blowing up your sleeves, but they’re loose enough that you can pull them up your forearms to vent more body heat. Your blood flows close to your wrists, so pulling up your sleeves is a good way to vent more warmth and reduce perspiration. Other than that, there aren’t any pockets, an elastic hem adjustment, or other features on the Stash Jacket. It’s quite a simple garment.

10 Best Windbreakers and Wind Shirts

The Warbonnet Stash Jacket is one of our top 10 recommended windbreakers and wind shirts.

Make / ModelFabric DenierWeight
Arcteryx Squamish Hoodie30d4.9 oz / 140g
Patagonia Houdini Jacket15d3.7 oz /105g
Enlightened Equipment Copperfield Wind Shirt10d2.05 oz / 58g
Rab Vital Windshell Hoody20d4.6 oz /160g
REI Flash JacketNA4.3 oz /122g
Outdoor Research Helium Wind Hoodie30d5.3 oz /150g
Black Diamond Distance Wind Shell15d3.5 oz / 98g
Warbonnet Stash Jacket20d5.0 oz / 142g
Montbell Tachyon Hooded Jacket7d2.5 oz / 72g
Black Diamond Alpine Start Hoody20d7.4 oz /210g

Recommendation

The Warbonnet Stash Jacket is an ultralight hooded windbreaker with long side torso zips that give it a wide range of use across many different temperatures. It’s designed to trap your body heat and prevent wind from stripping it away when layered over a base or mid-layer. I’ve been using the Stash Jacket all winter and into this spring and think it’s a pretty unique wind layer with a great range of uses both above treeline in full exposure and below when the leaves have no trees. When ordering, make sure you pick the non-waterproof quilt fabric if you want the windbreaker version and not the waterproof rain jacket fabric. I particularly like the blaze orange color shown here for use during hunting season, but Warbonet has many other colors available as well.

Disclosure: Warbonnet donated a jacket for review.

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2 comments

  1. This jacket has been on my short list. With the pit zips do you think there is adequate ventilation to order with one of the waterproof fabrics and get dual use as a windbreaker and raincoat?

    • Not sure I’d hazard a guess yet. This breathable fabric runs pretty warm. I suspect a waterproof one will be even hotter. But I’ll let you know if a few months. I have the raincoat version too.

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