The Arc’teryx Atom Lt Hoody is a staple in the Arc’teryx line. It’s one of the most versatile lightweight synthetic jackets that can easily tackle the morning commute or a mountain summit. There is a good reason the Atom LT Hoody is our most worn jacket, and it’s beloved by many.
It perfectly straddles the line between warmth, weight, style, and comfort. Unsurprisingly, just about every outdoor enthusiast owns one of these epic jackets. It feels ready to crush any sport, whether ski touring, mountain biking, or climbing. We particularly love pairing it with the Arc’teryx Rush for a snowboard jacket.
Our detailed review of the Arc’teryx Atom LT hoody covers all the jacket’s features and compares it to the competition. Then share its best uses so you can determine whether or not it matches your needs and outdoor lifestyle.
Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody Quick Specs
Price: $259 (CAD 320) | Weight: 375 g / 13.2 oz (Men’s) & 320 g / 10.9 oz (Women’s) | Materials: Tyono™ 20 (face fabric), Coreloft™ Compact insulation, Polyester, Elastane
Mobility, Versatile Style, Weight, Wonderful Comfort, Decent Warmth, Ideal Fit
Expensive, Waterproofing, Breathability
Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody Review
Let’s dive right into what makes the Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody stand out among other synthetic insulated hoodies. We’ll go through all the jacket components and how it holds up to actual use, so you can decide whether it’s the fitting addition to your gear.
Warmth Of The Arc’teryx Atom LT
The Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody is best suited as an outer layer jacket for fall and spring. It also works outstanding as a mid-layer for snowsports. Warmth is provided mainly by the synthetic insulation, 60g Coreloft Compact insulation, and side panels, a stretchy midweight fleece. A weather-resistant shell effectively cuts the wind, and the tall collar, adjustable hem, and hood provide added protection in cold temperatures. It’s a versatile blend of features.
It works well for several temperatures and keeps you warm just above freezing without many layers. When active, such as on a hike, it’s comfortable under freezing and can go well under for high-output sports like ski-touring or cross-country skiing. The jacket is best for active sports. If you have plans for relaxing or sitting around, you may need a shell jacket around freezing and below.
If you need more warmth, Arc’teryx has the Atom AR with more insulation and a burlier face fabric. That jacket is considerably heavier and feels a little less versatile for sports. Granted, if you run cold, it may be an excellent option.
Protection From Elements
The Arc’teryx Atom LT jacket is designed to provide reliable protection in inclement weather. The jacket boasts a weather-resistant shell, synthetic insulation, and coverage from the collar and adjustable hood. The Tyono™ 20 face fabric feels slightly more substantial than other leading synthetic jackets, such as Patagonia’s Nano-Air. It is finished with a DWR treatment that effectively sheds water and snow.
The side panels are made of fleece, which may not be ideal for blocking wind. It’s worth noting that the jacket will not be suitable in extended heavy rainfall and is not a replacement for a waterproof rain jacket or hardshell. However, if caught in a surprise storm, the jacket can hold its own for a short period.
Additionally, the insulation in this jacket, the Coreloft fill, will continue to provide warmth even if water manages to penetrate the jacket, which is a benefit synthetic insulation has over down insulation. I find this most useful for snow sports, where it’s common to find yourself wet at the end of the day.
Weight & Packability
The Women’s Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody weighs 10.9 oz (310g), while the men’s version weighs 13.2 oz (375g). This makes the jacket lightweight enough to be considered a “lightweight” jacket. However, it is slightly heavier than other light jacket varieties offered by Arc’teryx.
Regarding durability and effectiveness in keeping you warm, it’s essential to strike a balance between weight and performance. The Atom LT jacket offers the durability and sturdiness expected of an adventure jacket while also being lightweight and not adding unnecessary bulk to your pack when not in use. In terms of packability, the Atom LT Hoody excels. The materials are highly compressible and can regain their shape even after being packed away for an extended period.
This is particularly useful for hikers, as the jacket can be easily packed away when not needed without affecting the quality or appearance of the jacket. In contrast, some compressible jackets may lose their shape and appear “deflated” after repeated packing and unpacking. It does have one downside, as there is no included stuff sack or pocket.
Fit & Sizing
Arc’teryx describes the Atom LT as having a “trim fit,” which is an accurate real-life statement. This jacket was meant to fit more snuggly against your body and was made for people with an athletic frame. Some reviews have mentioned that it can be challenging to find the right fit if you are between sizes. The size guide is usually accurate for those with a taller, leaner body frame, but the Atom LT can be either too long or too tight for people with other body types.
The Atom LT Hoody fits us both very well and, overall, looks flattering. We find it even has a better fit than the Arc’teryx Cerium. I know I can wear this anywhere around town. Double-check the measurements before ordering the jacket and size up when in doubt. Arc’teryx has an excellent exchange policy should you have to exchange the jacket for another size. To help with fit, there are lower hem adjusters on the jacket and stretch cuffs to keep the sleeves in place while wearing it.
Comfort Of the Arc’teryx Atom LT
A jacket does you a little good if it’s uncomfortable to wear, but thankfully there aren’t any complaints about the Atom LT. The super soft and flexible material and excellent breathability make the Atom LT comfortable to wear as an insulating or standalone jacket, depending on your activities and the weather.
The fully-insulated hood is also helmet compatible, an excellent bonus for outdoor adventure enthusiasts. We wear ours with a scrambling helmet, but rock and ice climbers would love it too! A single pull adjuster on the hood provides additional protection to accommodate the wind.
Arc’teryx receives another star for comfort thanks to the stretch-knit cuffs. Not only does this keep the sleeves in place while wearing the jacket, but it also makes it easier to layer up with further insulating layers underneath or a heavier outer shell jacket over the top. To help with mobility, the Arc’teryx Atom LT also has articulated elbows on the sleeves and stretch side panels on the underarms, allowing for an increased range of motion.
The Arc’teryx Atom LT is made from a combination of synthetic insulation layers and stretched fleece. There are three total layers of insulation in the jacket. The Coreloft Compact 60 insulation gives the jacket more loft and is a compressible material that won’t “deflate” so much over time, like other fabric choices.
The super lightweight and soft Tyono20 provides the Atom LT with excellent breathability and durable face fabric. Along the sides, there are also stretch fleece panels which add more mobility and help with the ventilation of the jacket. The three components create the flexible, breathable, and lightweight hoodie, the Arc’teryx Atom LT.
Another great thing to note about the Arc’teryx brand is its commitment to sustainability and quality. Like many other products from Arc’teryx, the Atom LT is made from materials that follow BlueSign criteria, which is a definite bonus if you like to support environmentally friendly businesses.
Hood & Pockets
The hoody has an excellent selection of features, including several pocket and fit adjustments. The two hand pockets on the sides of the jacket have “hidden zippers.” It’s a nice aesthetic feature that gives the jacket a sleek look but also helps reduce the zipper catching when used as a mid-layer. They also have custom TPU zipper pulls, which are excellent in terms of ease of use and the aesthetics of the jacket.
An internal zipped pocket is a perfect spot to store valuables like a wallet or phone. It’s worth emphasizing just how comfy the hood of the Atom LT is, especially if you’re the type whose head or ears tend to get cold. The hood offers excellent coverage, and the front zipper comes up to your chin to keep the wind out.
Putting the Arc’teryx Atom LT to Use
Arc’teryx describes the Atom LT as an “all-around” activity jacket, which is certainly true in terms of practical use. Thanks to the combination of highly breathable material and insulation, it’s a jacket designed to keep you warm and comfortable at various output levels.
This means that whether you’re doing a high-energy activity like skiing, or something more casual like running errands around the city in winter or spring, the Atom LT Hoody will keep you warm without trapping sweat next to your body.
Although the Atom LT Hoody can work as a standalone jacket, it’s thin enough to work as an insulating layer beneath a heavier shell jacket. Since the exterior fabric of the Atom LT Hoody is only moisture-resistant, it’s better to put on another layer if you’ll be encountering heavy snow or cold rain.
In addition to fulfilling the requirements for being out on the trail, it’s also worth pointing out that the Atom LT has undeniable style. The sleek appearance and multiple colors the Atom LT is available will probably more than satisfy most wants.
What To Consider
As you can see, there are a lot of positive qualities to highlight with the Arc’teryx Atom LT. However, despite being such a fantastic jacket, it might not be the best fit for certain people. Here are a few potential cons to the jacket you’ll want to keep in mind.
- First off, the Atom LT is not exactly cheap. Of course, if you’re shopping for Arc’teryx products, you’ll probably already know that their gear is not a “budget” option. However, you get what you pay for in terms of quality. For the outdoor enthusiast or for someone who lives in a colder climate, buying an exceptionally well-made jacket like the Atom LT can be a smart investment in the long run.
- Secondly, it’s also good to remember that compared with some of Arc’teryx’s other products, the Atom LT is slightly less weather-resistant. Yes, it still has decent protection thanks to the water-repellent coating, but you’ll need another outer layer if caught in an icy rainstorm. However, this is the case with any mid-layer, and a lightweight windbreaker rain jacket is always handy.
- And finally, like other Arc’teryx products, the Atom LT was designed for people with a more athletic frame. Although this works perfectly for some people, it can make it difficult for some people to find a size of the Atom LT that fits them well.
Pro/Con Comparison for the Arc’teryx Atom LT
Now that we’ve gone through the details of the Arc’teryx Atom LT hoody in our review, here’s a round-up of the pros and cons of the jacket.
- Lightweight and highly breathable material
- It works well as an insulation layer or standalone jacket
- Protective adjustable hood and stretch cuff sleeves
- Versatile uses include skiing, hiking, urban wear, camping, or ice climbing
- A more expensive jacket
- Moisture-repellent, not completely waterproof
- A slim fit may be too tight for some people
The takeaway for the Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody
We’ve come to the end of our Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody review, and hopefully, you have a better idea about what makes this jacket such a great addition to your gear for year-round adventures. Overall, the Atom LT provides a lightweight jacket with excellent wind protection and warmth. It’s an outstanding balance between durability and flexibility that’s easy to pack and carry along on your adventures.
When matched with the proper lifestyle, the Atom LT is a worthwhile investment that will pay off in the long run. Thanks to its comfort and versatility, it performs equally well whether you’re waiting outside for the bus in winter or hiking in the mountains. Given proper care, it’s a tremendous packable jacket that can accompany you on your adventures for years to come.
Shop For the Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody