submitted by Mike De Lia
Has Cotopaxi created the ultimate spring layering piece? Blending natural and synthetic fibers with fleece and down insulation, the Capa Hybrid Insulated Hooded Jacket may just be the outdoor lifestyle brand’s first truly technical piece of gear. I’m here to tell you why.
From the brand’s inception, Cotopaxi never heralded itself as a clothing company; instead, it sought to focus its efforts on social innovation over textile advancement. But this most recent spring/summer collection focuses on sustainable materials, featuring prominent outdoor-tested fabrics like ripstop, PrimaLoft (P.U.R.E.), and textured stretch paneling. By the sound of it, I could be describing a rival of Arc’teryx’s venerable Atom line, but rest assured, this is a much different, much lighter beast.
The Capa Hybrid is a superlight take on the more traditional hybrid-insulated jacket. Think Atom LT, Thermoball Hybrid, or even one of Patagonia’s many R-line hybrid iterations and divide the r-value by 2. The Capa is a vest with tapered fleece sleeves, a helmet-compatible “scuba hood,” and thumb holes since ninja cuffs are always fantastic.
On the technical side, you get 40g PrimaLoft Gold P.U.R.E. insulation for warmth, while knit side panels and sleeves enhance mobility, not to mention a thorough, full-arm panel. PFC-free durable water repellent (DWR) finish keeps you dry along with keeping you warm, with elastic binding at the hood, cuffs, and hem to further keep the heat in. Lastly, an interior chest pocket lets you pack the Capa Hybrid into the perfect size to throw into your outdoor pack.
So what makes the Capa Hybrid the first “truly technical” garment from Cotopaxi? Like the vintage aesthetic it encapsulates, it mashes together ideas and features to create something more than the sum of its parts. The clashing materials, tapered fit, and head-clenching hood harken to the good old days of outdoor gear, where clothing was loud, experimental, and oozing with character. Cotopaxi created a layering piece that will do its job well and utilize industry-leading technology to compete in a very saturated space. This is a marked shift in the brand’s journey and represents a growing desire to create industry-leading garments in the most sustainable way possible.
Cotopaxi’s growing pains in terms of an outdoor brand are finally reaching a turning point, and I’m very excited for what’s to come. Check it out and pick up yours at the link below.