Moonstone Men's Photon Jacket : All-Purpose Protection
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Moonstone Photon Jacket : All-Purpose Protection and Style

So what's a person to do when the worst weather winter can deal up is only drizzly, 50 degree (F) days?

Easy. Throw on Moonstone's new Photon jacket, and go hiking or running or walking. Or, if you're lucky enough to live near the mountains, go find higher, snowier, colder ground. The Photon jacket is all you need for a range of temperatures, a variety of activities, and all types of weather.

I admit I was first drawn to the Photon jacket by its elegant design. I saw a sample product, in black, at the Moonstone office, and I fell hard. I could picture how cute I'd look it in--on the trails or just walking around town in my favorite jeans.

Unlike its fleecy cousins--regular old boxy fleece jackets--the Photon is styled for action, as well as fashion. I tested a women's size L (I'm 5'11"), and was impressed by the cut, style, and design. This sleek jacket hugs my curves without binding, has a rounded, slightly longer, back panel (and toggles in the hem to adjust how tight or loose I want it around my hips), and its tapered sleeves are cut a bit long to account for movement. A very thoughtful detail. I wish all women's outdoor gear had longer sleeves (I can always use an inch or two of length in the torso, too, if any of you manufacturers are reading)!

I love the thumbholes in the sleeves for days when I don't want to wear gloves but need a bit of warmth. (The jacket is also available in a men's style, see photo in highlight box, above.) The hood has come in handy many times when I was half-way through a walk and realized it was cold out.

The Photon is constructed out of two types of Polartec material: a soft, stretchy, breathable fabric for the hood and under the arms, and a still-stretchy, but more weather-resistant material for the rest of the jacket. Both have a smooth texture, with a fuzzy fleece-like underside. So the jacket feels soft on in the inside, and has what it takes to keep me warm and dry on breezy, drizzly days. I wear it a lot for power walking and hiking, and I've been very happy with its breathability.

It's been so warm lately that I've been wearing the Photon under a super thin all-weather shell. The two work well together as a wicking system. Without bulk or weight, I get all the heat and dry I need. On colder days, and when the rain is pouring down rather than misting, the Photon fits easily under my Moonstone rain shell.

The Photon jacket is, hands down, one of my favorites. I just love how it fits, how it feels, and how easy it is to wear with other pieces. I'll never go back to boxy jackets. I almost forgot....the Photon has two zippered front pockets (and inside of the jacket these pockets form pouches for trail maps or other small, flat items) and a zippered cell phone pocket on the left sleeve.

Bottom Line: A staple piece of outdoor gear that every woman (and man) should have. Available in four colors, including black.--E.D.. (Jan 06)

Price: $175

Manufacturer's Site:

BUY ONLINE : Moosejaw Mountaineering

The first flashlight was invented in 1898. Joshua Lionel Cohen, original owner of the Eveready company developed the concept of using a battery to run a light bulb, which he shared with an Eveready salesman, Conrad Hubert. Hubert then turned the idea into a flashlight.

Source: "Invention of the Flashlight," by Mary Bellis, posted on