Rated 5 out of 5 by CentFLAShopper Love this jacket
I bought this jacket for a trip to Hawaii [surprise!] because the temperature at sunrise on a 10,000 ft dormant volcano was close to freezing with wind gusts up to 35 mph! However, I found this jacket just as valuable when I got back home to central Florida in December because when it gets cold here in the winter [20-30's], it is always windy and those lovely warm fleece things are useless unless they have a wind barrier built in, like this jacket does. Now when I run around at dusk covering plants to spare them from the frost, I am not in danger of hypothermia!
This jacket is very lightweight, not bulky at all, and has some very nice features -- a special covered zipper that doesn't cut into your neck when zipped up into the t-neck nor does it get caught in the lining when you zip; a hood that is slightly cupped so it stays on your head, even in high winds; elastic at the wrists that keeps out the wind but isn't cutting off circulation; and zippered pockets so things don't fall out when you are active. It does fit fairly close to the body -- which you want if you don't want the breeze to blow up your back -- but I have worn it over an undershirt/shirt/light sweater combo.
And I loved the spring green color -- so tired of always wearing black in winter!
December 14, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by sibbie Great jacket
This is a really great jacket. It does block the wind. I got a size large so I can wear a heavy sweater or fleece under it. I walk my dog about seven in the morning when it is cold and windy. The jacket keeps me warm and yet is very lightweight.
November 5, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by smkhaury Perfect light jacket
The material is thin, light weight, and breathable, yet the jacket is much warmer than you would think to look at it. This is my favorite jacket for much of the spring and fall seasons, and for the occasionally cool or windy evening in the summer. The cut is flattering, and the hood is functional.The best feature is the breathability of the fabric. The sizes are generous. I sometimes wear an XL but the L fits me just fine.
October 25, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by deed1962 Love this jacket
The wind challenger fleece, hooded jacket is very comfortable and is machine washable. I have been wearing this the last month and I love it. The jacket zips right up to the neck to keep the wind out.
October 13, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by MoreSizesPlease This isn't the first time I wished I was short
Nice jacket but the sleeves are way too short. If I were to layer anything underneath, it would be uncomfortable. I also don't like the overall length of the jacket. Wish you made these long enough to keep the rear warm. I'll be returning. If you're short, this will be a perfect fit.
October 10, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by GradStudentOnABudget Effective wind-blocking, but very boxy fit.
I really wanted to love this Wind Challenger hooded fleece: it seemed like the perfect spring/fall intermediary between a regular fleece and a proper winter jacket. Unfortunately, the fit just didn't do it for me. I ordered a number of fleeces and jackets in my last L. L. Bean order, and I found this one to have the least flattering fit for my figure (an hourglassy smallish medium: 5' 5", broad shoulders, and 34C bust - 27" waist - 38.5" hips). The size Small fit my shoulders, bust, and arms, but was rather shapeless around my middle. The XS size fit my hips, but was slightly too bulky around my waist and was too tight around my upper body, and the sleeves were on the verge of being too short. Both looked too shapeless for my tastes, and the cut was very boxy and not at all feminine or flattering. Compared to other Bean jackets I ordered, the fit of this jacket was less feminine/fitted than the others (I am comparing specifically to the Powerstretch Hoodie, the Ascent Power Stretch Jacket, and Pathfinder Softshell Jacket). This jacket also ran about the same size as the Ascent Power Stretch Jacket and the Pathfinder Softshell, but probably a size larger than the Powerstretch Hoodie (I imagine this is because the Powerstretch Hoodie is not meant to allow for substantial layers underneath it). In other words, there seems to me to be room for layers already built into one's normal size in this jacket, without the need to size up. Also, the Powerstretch Hoodie had very soft flexible fleece, and this jacket had stiffer and less plush fleece - the pile, while velvety, was very thin, and the overall feel was stiff and almost slightly cardboardy. While I would not want it against my skin, I could see layering it over something as a windbreaker that adds a bit of warmth. That said, I do think its wind-blocking capabilities are significantly more effective than normal fleece: I stood right in front of a fan, and couldn't feel much if any breeze, so if wind-blocking is your primary concern this fleece is likely a good choice. I didn't like the banded wrists - they felt a bit too tight and restrictive. Also, I really would have wanted a two-way zip, on this jacket and on all Bean outerwear: it renders outerwear much more functional and versatile. I did like the embroidered "L. L. Bean" - much nicer than how it is printed on the Polartec Powerstretch Hoodie. I think this might fit better if my shoulders and bust were proportionally smaller to the rest of my body than they are now; I would recommend this to L. L. Bean shoppers who are apple or pear shapes. Bean, please bring this out in a more fitted silhouette - similar to the Powerstretch Hoodie or Jacket! As is, this is a regretful return.
September 10, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by WILLBShopper Love this jacket! Amazingly warm!
About four years ago I bought this item to replace another fleece jacket I left on a plane. Turned out to be a fortunate lapse of memory as I ended up with an even better product. This coat is amazingly lightweight, windproof and hence, very warm. I live in Wisconsin and people are amazed that is all I wear, especially this past winter which was colder than the past few. Perhaps it would not be a first choice for winter camping, but it was fine for house/car/commute/errands and even for walking a mile or so for exercise. I found it warm enough for beach walking near Boston on some cold and windy days.
I just bought another one on sale as a gift for my grown daughter. :>)
April 15, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by MountainTrillian Great Jacket
This is really a great jacket, I live in the Rocky Mountains at 8,500 feet and wind is my worst enemy. We have winds of 50 mph and up pretty much all winter and it's nice to finally be warm walking home!!! I am only 5 feet tall and I REALLY needed a petite version of this which was not available, so that is my only complaint. It is too long and the sleeves are too long for me so I can't give it a full 5 stars, but it's really more than 4 also.
March 11, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by SafSis Wind Challenger Fleece lives up to its name!
I bought this jacket for cold weather hiking. I knew I would wear a few layers underneath, but was not sure how well it would actually 'stop' the wind. It exceeded my expectations! I felt the wind on my face, but not on anything that the jacket covered. It is attractive and launders beautifully! Loved it so much, that I convinced my husband to buy one for himself. He agrees--terrific quality!
March 10, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by 1tjk Delighted with Warmth and Lightness of Garment
I purchased this jacket 2 or 3 years ago in a bright red. Can't praise the warmth and comfort of this wind blocked fleece enough! At 20 degrees F this is still warm even with the wind blowing. The zippered pockets are a great place to stow the car keys. Even with the hood folded down it covers enough of my neck to keep it toasty warm. Sleeves are long enough (I'm 5'2") to be able to scooch my hands up into them when I don't want to bother with mittens. Launders like a dream and is just as bright and beautiful as when I first bought it. This is a must have for women who don't like heavy garments but like to be comfortable and also warm is cold weather. Great for warmer weather too. Moisture beads up and shakes right off. You'll love it!
February 9, 2014