Patagonia Nano Storm Jacket

2011-2012 Patagonia Nano Storm Insulated Jacket photo of the Patagonia Nano Storm Jacket

Weight (size Medium): 620 grams / 22 ounces


  • 2.5-layer nylon ripstop with waterproof/breathable H2No® barrier and Deluge® DWR (durable water repellent) finish
  • Lightweight 60-g PrimaLoft One polyester insulation provides excellent warmth and compressibility
  • Unique quilt pattern holds insulation in place for durability
  • Helmet-compatible, fully-adjustable hood with laminated visor for visibility in bad conditions
  • Watertight, coated center-front-zipper
  • Self-fabric hook-and-loop cuff closures and dual-adjust drawcord hem
  • Pockets: Two hand warmers; one exterior left chest; one internal zippered pocket, one internal drop-in
  • Shell: 2.5-layer, 2.6-oz 50-denier 100% nylon ripstop, with a waterproof/breathable H2No® barrier. Insulation: 60-g PrimaLoft® One polyester. Lining: 1.4-oz 22-denier 100% recycled polyester. Shell and lining have a Deluge® DWR (durable water repellent) finish
  • Made in Vietnam.

MSRP: $299

Test Locations: Las Leñas, Alta Ski Area, Taos Ski Area, dog park, multiple bars, pretty much everywhere.

Days Skied: 30  / Days Worn: ~90

It could be argued that the Patagonia Nano Storm is kind of a dumb jacket to buy. After all, at an MSRP of $299, you could purchase for roughly the same price the Patagonia Nano Puff mid layer and the Patagonia Torrentshell ($129), wear them alone when appropriate, and combine them whenever the temperature dropped. (The Torrent Shell is Patagonia’s price point, 2.5L rain jacket, and it is a great jacket for the price.) That would be smarter, right?

The only problem with this position is that I really like the Nano Storm Jacket. I highly recommend it, and so do several of our other reviewers.

Jonathan Ellsworth blows through powder in the Patagonia Nano Storm Jacket at Taos Ski Valley.
Jonathan in the Nano Storm, Two Bucks, Taos Ski Valley.

On our way to Argentina last August, I read Yvon Chouinard’s book, Let My People Go Surfing. It’s a good origins story of Black Diamond and Patagonia, and the Patagonia Nano Storm Jacket perfectly embodies several principles that Chouinard addresses in the chapter called, “Product Design Philosophy.”

While Patagonia obviously makes sport-specific garments for skiing, climbing, etc., Chouinard spends a decent amount of time outlining Patagonia’s interest in manufacturing multipurpose pieces that may be used for skiing, climbing, hiking—one jacket to do everything.

Among the criteria for such pieces: Is it Functional? Is it Multifunctional? (“Why buy two pieces of gear when one will do the work of both?”) Is it Durable? Is it as simple as possible?

While Chouinard’s book was published more than five years ago, he seemed to be describing the 11/12 Nano Storm Jacket that was in my luggage and that I was going to be wearing in Las Leñas.

In describing what he considers to be a “great mountain jacket,” Chouinard writes, “Stonger, lighter, fabrics eliminate the need for ballistics cloth reinforcements at the shoulder and elbows. Newer, more breathable fabrics let us do away with heavy, awkward pit zips once necessary for ventilation. Make the front zipper sufficiently water tight, and you can dispense with the weight and bulk of a protective wind flap.”

The Nano Storm is Patagonia’s most recent attempt to realize this vision.

It is a very capable cold weather jacket for skiing, but it doesn’t have a powder skirt. It’s also cut a bit short, so that it won’t get in the way of a climbing harness. But it does have an excellent, insulated hood that fits beautifully over my Smith Vantage helmet and does not obstruct my peripheral vision at all when it is pulled up over the helmet. (That hood is perfect.)

5 comments on “Patagonia Nano Storm Jacket”

  1. Great review – I just ordered the Sherpa Adventure Gear Mani Rimdo Jacket ( which is very, very similar (in the Gokyo Lake color it’s a near twin of the Patagonia in the color you tested). I haven’t received it yet so I’m reserving judgment (there are zero reviews of this jacket, consumer or otherwise, on the web, which is a bit worrisome), but your review is good proof of the concept and I have my fingers crossed that the Sherpa will perform equally well if not better (it has some stretch and those new-fangled things called pit zips). Unfortunately I can’t tolerate the fit of Patagonia’s jackets – it sounds like I have a similar build to you (6’0, 180lbs, 31″ waist) and Patagonia M’s are too short and tight in the shoulders for layering but L’s are way too boxy and loose in the mid-section.

  2. Hi Jonathan

    Great review of this jacket. I’m about your weight and height at 5’10”, 180lb and 33″ waist looking to get this jacket but undecided on size medium or large. Does it fit anything like the torrentshell? I have the torrentshell jacket in medium and it is pretty athletic and slim fitting. I would like to use the nano storm for snowborading and as a general everyday jacket for fall, winter and spring. Would you suggest the medium or large given your experience with the jacket? I’m just afraid the medium might be to tight when I add on a mid layer and the length too short for sking and snowboarding. What’s your thought on this? Thanks – Jeff

    • Hi, Jeff – I think the safe bet is to go with the large. I like the medium, but it is definitely on the short side. I dont’ need the additional room around the waist and torso that the large offers, but the extra length is good, and especially if you think you’ll layer up a decent amount under it. Bottom line: I’ll be surprised if you get the large and then decide that the medium would work much better for you.

  3. Great review! I was really wanting the nano storm, but then I ended up getting the First Ascent BC Microtherm 2.0. Its eddie bauers version of the nano storm, except two differences. Its down insulated, and the huge 10.5″ chest pockets double as core vents. (which actually i guess its very similar to Patagonias primo down jacket). The BC microtherm is 800 fill, doesn’t have a powder skirt either, and like the nano storm uses a proprietary water proof fabric which seems pretty good (and is well reviewed online). And at 300.00, its a lot cheaper then the primo down, and priced the same as the nano storm.

  4. hey hi everybody here. Divjot this side. I wanted to ask the owner that what is the advantage of buying such a nano fibre jacket and whats its price.

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