10 Great Deals on Outdoor Apparel: Baselayers, Insulated Jackets, Rain Jackets

Now’s the time the outdoor clothing industry starts thinking about spring and summer and offloads the puffy hoodies, fleece jackets, and wool undies. The weather isn’t there just yet, so if you haven’t felt as warm as you’d like outside these past few weeks, you can snag new threads at steep discounts. We’ve found deals on some of our favorite rain jackets, mid- and outer-layer insulation, and base layers.

If you’re an REI member and spend at least $100 on a single purchase by February 13, either at a retail store or at REI.com, you’ll get a $20 bonus card that can be used on any purchase from February 16 to 26.

Special offer for Gear readers: Get a 1-year subscription to WIRED for $5 ($25 off). This includes unlimited access to WIRED.com and our print magazine (if you’d like). Subscriptions help fund the work we do every day.

If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more.

Base Layer Deals

Smartwool Merino 150 base layer top

Photograph: Smartwool

Read our guide to the Best Winter Base Layers for more recommendations.

This ranked as my favorite wool base layer when I tested a bunch last year. I like thin base layers for active pursuits, such as climbing and hiking, and the Merino 150 was the perfect blend of warmth and breathability.

Likewise, Smartwool’s matching bottom base layers are warm, but not too warm that they’ll leave you sweating. There’s just a little bit of nylon here to make them form-fitting and stretchy to prevent bunching underneath top-layer pants.

For those who prefer a synthetic fabric for base layers, the Marmot Polartec is made from a midweight polyester, with a bit of Spandex mixed in for a snug fit. Synthetic fabrics dry out faster than wool, although they don’t insulate when wet the way wool does. 

Insulated Jacket Deals

Carhartt Yukon Extremes Insulated Parka

Photograph: Carhartt

Check out our guide on How to Layer Outdoor Clothing for tips on where insulated jackets should fit into your clothing system.

I prefer synthetic-insulation puffies like the Featherless Hoody in damp or snowy environments where temperatures can hover around freezing, because they dry out faster than goose down. There’s also a hoodless version for $131 ($44 off) if you’re not a fan of hoods flopping behind your head.

The Fuego is packed with 800-fill goose down, which is treated with a durable water-repellent finish to help lessen the amount of moisture it absorbs. Fill power is a way of measuring the warmth-to-weight ratio and compressibility of the goose down. A high number (such as the Fuego’s 800) means it’ll be warmer than a garment with a lesser number and can compress down smaller in your pack. The men’s hoodie is also on sale, and there are hoodless versions available for women and men. If you buy a Cotopaxi item for $75 or more at Moosejaw by February 7, you can score a free Bataan hip pack (worth $30) by entering the code COTOPAXIGIFT at checkout (as long as supplies last).

The lightweight fleece still has a place in my heart as mid-layer insulation between a base layer and shell jacket (or rain jackets). Fleece tends to be less bulky as a puffy mid-layer, and it’s durable and dries out quickly.

If you need something more durable, the Yukon Extremes parka packs around 14 ounces of synthetic insulation inside a 500-denier Cordura nylon shell. Unlike lightweight hiking puffies, you won’t have to worry about a branch or fence post slicing your jacket if you’re out doing yard work. 

Rain Jacket Deals

Outdoor Research MicroGravity

Photograph: Outdoor Research 

Just in time for the rainy season, a few of our favorite rain jackets are on sale right now.

The MicroGravity (8/10, WIRED Recommends) is a lightweight, three-layer shell designed for climbing. Its helmet-compatible hood and ability to pack down into its own pocket makes it a worthwhile addition to your climbing or hiking pack, but it’ll also serve you well on rainy days in the city. 

WIRED senior associate reviews editor Adrienne So likes the PreCip Eco for its PFC-free recycled nylon fabric. Its seams are completely taped, so water won’t leak in during harsh weather, and it has armpit zippers for venting the jacket during strenuous activity. The men’s sizing is on sale here.

The Helium is—surprise—a very lightweight jacket, weighing only about 6 ounces, depending on the size. While it’s not as feature-rich as heavier jackets, it still has pit zips and a hood, and it’s fully seam-taped. The men’s version is available on sale for $119 in limited colors.


More Great WIRED Stories