Patagonia R1 TechFace Hooded Fleece Jacket – Better than R1?
Patagonia released the new TechFace version of the very popular R1 fleece. Could they possibly make the R1 better? After 15 years of a cult following, the R1 is an iconic fleece. What could they do to improve it?
TechFace – softshell like performance
TechFace feels a lot like a softshell and performs like one too. It is smooth, sheds water (thanks to a DWR coating) and stretches. At first, I was not sure what to make of it. After years of using the regular R1, I had grown accustomed to it. The R1 fleece is soft and comfortable. It keeps you warm and breathes well. One of the downsides to the R1 was that wind whips right through it. Just like any other fleece. Enter TechFace. The outer portion of the R1 is now a smooth material that blocks wind surprisingly well and sheds moisture.
Better than R1
I was given this hoody to test in January. After 5 months of using it almost daily, I have grown quite fond of it. From use in the mountains while splitboarding to walking the dogs and getting groceries – this jacket was the first one I would grab. It was not heavy, provided more warmth than it looks like it would be capable of and fits well.
Fit and function
I am 6ft 200lb and found the large to be the best size for me. I can usually get away with an XL, but this was perfect in a large. They say it is a slim fit. I think it is athletic fit and not at all boxy (like some Patagonia tops). I did not find the fit to inhibit any movement. Whether I was touring in the backcountry, setting up a tent or just wrestling with the dogs – the TechFace did not restrict movement.
Having used the R1 TechFace for 5 months and putting it through several washes, I can say that it is indeed durable. It has withstood tree branches, ski edges, dogs, and lots of different kinds of snow. Washing it was easy, no need to get delicate with it. My wife kept trying to “borrow” it when I was not wearing it. Fortunately, there is a women’s version as well. Looks like she will be getting one soon 🙂 At the time of this review, there is only the hooded full zip version. I assume that Patagonia will bring more options to the table soon.
The R1 TechFace Hooded Fleece is a truly great jacket. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a fleece or fleece like hoody with pockets. It will serve you well from the city to the trail. From spring to winter. If you are still a fan of the R1 fleece, don’t worry! They still have the R1 fleece and all its versions – pullover, full zip, hoody. I hope Patagonia offers the same versions for both the R1 and R1 TechFace.