Patagonia R1 Air Zip-Neck Review
It’s easy to dismiss the humble fleece. They have become such a staple of the outdoor wardrobe since the 1980s. But they have evolved and the Patagonia R1 Air Zip-Neck is an excellent example of the modern fleeces. These newer designs tend to be lighter, warmer, more breathable and dry quicker.
Patagonia have updated their classic R1 with the R1 Air fleece which has a zig zag pattern that wicks moisture and traps warmth. They use this material in three designs, a full zip hoody, a basic crew top and a zipped neck version.
Patagonia R1 Air Zip-Neck
I have the R1 Air zip neck. A simple over the head design with a long half length zip for ventilation. There is a small zippered chest pocket. And that’s it. Very simple but very effective. The advantage of such simple designs is that there isn’t really anything to go wrong and the lack of zips, draw cords and pockets means the fleece layers very well.
I been wearing the R1 Air over a variety of base layers including synthetic tops such as the Patagonia Capilene Cool Trail, also with Rab Syncrino which is a wool and synthetic combo. For maximum warmth and breathability the R1 Air is excellent over the incredible Patagonia Capilene Air Crew.
One disadvantage of many fleeces, including the R1 Air, is the lack of any wind proofing. So unless the weather is particularly still you generally need an outer layer. Here at Beyond the Edge we are all big fans of the Mountain Equipment Echo Hooded Jackets and these work really well over the top of the R1 Air. In windier conditions I’ve been using a Mountain Equipment Aerofoil or wearing a hard shell waterproof jacket. I would imagine these would be great over a Paramo in colder conditions.
One huge bonus when buying Patagonia gear are their exemplary environmental credentials and the fabric used in the r1 Air is made with 100% recycled polyester.
I really like this fleece and I’ve been wearing it most days. It feels really cosy and warm. It air drys really quickly, so if I pop it in the washing machine in the evening I can usually wear again the next morning. I’ll definitely be wearing this in while working on our Scottish Winter Skills Courses. I like it so much I’m tempted to buy the full zip hooded version.
Beyond the Edge Ltd is based in the Peak District, easily reached by train from London and within easy travelling distance from Sheffield, Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham and other Northern towns and cities.
We are one of the UKs most experienced providers of climbing, walking, scrambling, mountaineering and navigation training courses.
Most of our courses are run in the Peak District National Park which has some of the finest climbing, bouldering, walking and hiking in the world.