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Gear Review

5 5

Perfect Jacket

  • Gender: Male
  • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

After a long search, I finally found the ski jacket I was looking for. I thought the Patagonia Powder Bowl was going to be the answer, but it ended up having some serious functional flaws. On the other hand, this OR jacket seems to have been designed with functional requirements in mind.

1) the shell is adaptive and moves well with your body

2) the hood fits over my RED Avid helmet easily, allows me to zip up the collar, and provides a bit of head movement

3) has all the usual tech: fully taped seams, water resistant zippers, down, removable powder skirt, etc.

4) bonus: removable built-in balaclava

5) seems like it's configured to allow you to "batten down the hatches" on a cold snowy day, or stay cool on a warm day if you just wear a base-layer, unzip everything, and remove components (balaclava, snow skirt)

In my opinion the jacket has a great cut. It doesn't pull on my shoulders, but still conforms to my frame. It's also very cozy; I feel like I'm wearing a hoodie. I tried the grey color on and liked it, but ended up getting the blue instead.

As I was reading jacket reviews for Outdoor Research, Patagonia, Mountain Hardware, etc., I found this criteria from a reviewer on the Patagonia site: I want to "put [the jacket] on and forget that I am wearing it". The Stormbound jacket meets this requirement 100% and remains fully functional, so I highly recommend it.

5'11" 145lbs with broad shoulders: size small (medium was too baggy, small is just right)

Responded on

Update: I used the jacket this weekend at Stowe. Temps were in the 20's with wind/snow. I was comfortable with just a light baselayer and stayed warm and dry. I felt very mobile in the jacket. The mesh gear pockets are very useful when you get back to the lodge. The thumb loops were a nice surprise, and I ended up using them all weekend. I also tried out the balaclava while it was snowing. My gaiter-clad friends were complaining of cold faces, but I was very comfortable. One complaint is concerning the excessive number of feathers stuck to my baselayer when I removed the jacket. I hope this situation improves with usage. I'm still really pleased with this jacket.

Update 2: I used the jacket for 7 days in Colorado. Again I was impressed with how warm I stayed when my friends were cold. I also got to test the jacket out in 45 degree weather. With a baselayer and the pit zips open I was very comfortable. The jacket continues to shed feathers leading to jokes about avian moulting.