Arc'teryx Proton LT Hoody Review

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Arc'teryx recently released new colors for their Proton LT Hoody (men’s and women’s), which is their most durable, insulated climbing jacket to date. The LT Hoody provides lightweight synthetic insulation for a range of activities from climbing to snow sports to backpacking. It’s a versatile, high-functioning, breathable jacket that offers a comfortable and stylish fit and feel. If you’re looking for a durable and breathable mid-layer from a top-of-the-line trusted brand, the Proton LT Hoody is a great option. 

This post has been sponsored by REI, but as always our opinions and reviews are completely independent and unbiased.

Quick Specs

  • Weight: 14.1 oz (men’s medium) / 12.3 oz (women’s small)

  • MSRP: $299

  • Insulation Type: Synthetic

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Pros

DURABLE -  Arc'teryx claims that the Proton LT is their most durable, insulated climbing jacket to date and that sounds about right to us. The face fabric on the Proton feels like it will take a beating and its synthetic insulation will require far less care than a lightweight down jacket. We expect the Proton LT Hoody will hold up very well over many years of rough backcountry use. 

VERSATILE - A lightweight, synthetic mid-layer like the Proton LT is an excellent choice for a wide range of alpine activities, from climbing to snow sports to backpacking, while also being stylish enough to wear around town. 

hem adjustments allow for customizing fit

hem adjustments allow for customizing fit

convenient chest pocket

convenient chest pocket

ATTENTION TO DETAIL - Arc'teryx makes a premium product and they pay attention to every detail, which shines through in the Proton. We love the functionality of the zippers, pockets, hem adjustments and wrist cuffs, all of which add to the value of the jacket.

COMFORTABLE - One of our favorite features of the Proton LT is how soft and comfortable the fabric feels against our skin. The slight stretchiness of the material allows for more freedom of movement for high-output activities. 

STYLE & FIT - The fit of the Proton Hoody is designed with an athletic body type in mind, which we love. We often have trouble finding jackets that fit us correctly, with long enough arms/torsos and with a cut that isn’t boxy around the midsection. The Proton comes in a range of color options and we think it’s one of the best looking mid-layers around. 

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GREAT HOOD - We love the functionality of the hood on the Proton LT. The elastic band and simple adjustment cord allow for good hood functionality and a customizable fit. The hood provides a wide range of movement while still retaining heat and is designed to function properly with or without a climbing helmet. 

SYNTHETIC MATERIAL - The Proton is built with lightweight synthetic material, which is a nice alternative to down for increased durability and warmth in wet conditions. Generally speaking, synthetic jackets tend to be a bit bulkier and heavier than down, but they can also be more durable and versatile. 

SOLID WARRANTY -  Arc’teryx makes high-end products that are built to last, but if you do have issues with any of their gear, they have a solid warranty program. In the few instances when we’ve needed to contact Arc’teryx for a repair or replacement, we’ve had very good experiences with them.  

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Cons

EXPENSIVE - The biggest downside to the Proton LT Hoody is its sizable price tag. The Proton’s MSRP is $299, which will put it out of range for budget-conscious outdoor adventurers. That said, as we often find, you get what you pay for, and the Proton is one of the highest quality insulated mid-layers on the market. 

HEAVIER & BULKIER THAN DOWN - One of the main downsides with synthetic insulation is that it tends to be heavier and bulkier than down. That said, the Proton LT Hoody is still only 3-6 ounces heavier than the leading ultralight down jackets and it packs down fairly small. For ultralight backpackers looking to go as lean as possible, we recommend checking out our Best Down Jackets List for our favorite compact and light options.

WIND PERFORMANCE - The Proton LT Hoody is a mid-layer designed for warmth and breathability, so it’s the not the best at cutting down wind. That said, it still does an okay job and if you pair the Proton with a rain jacket or windbreaker, wind isn’t an issue at all.

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Bottom Line

The Proton LT Hoody (men’s and women’s) is no doubt an expensive jacket, but it offers an extremely comfortable fit for a wide range of activities. If you’re in the market for a top-of-the-line mid-layer that provides a great deal of warmth, functionality, and durability in a lightweight package, then the Proton LT Hoody may just be your jam. 

More Proton LT Hoody Photos

More Information

We hope this review helps you determine if the Arc’teryx Proton LT Hoody is the right jacket for you. As always, please leave a comment below if you have any recommendations, questions, or suggestions.

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