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packable down jackets options?

Original Post
Gabriel Corsida · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 28 days ago · Points: 0

I'll be going on a 3rd season deer hunt in Colorado this year and I want to invest in a good lightweight down or synthetic jacket for glassing. I'm looking at the Sitka kelvin line, kuiu down jackets, and firstlite along with regular brands like REI, Patagonia etc. Hoping some of you have used these already and/or have some feedback on the pros and cons of each. Ive read that kuiu doesn't seem to be very durable at all and is a little light on insulation. I don't plan on wearing it as an outer shell though and will most likely have it under my chugach rain coat or guide coat. Just need that extra layer of insulation to stay warm but need it to be light and pack small.


Ed Glass · · SOUTHERN Illinois · Joined Feb 2018 · Points: 730

I'm a big man and I went with the Eddie Bauer First Ascent Microtherm down jacket. EB sells tall sizes. I like the stretch fabric arm pit areas as the jacket doesnt "ride up" as bad as others when I lift my arms. It's super thin and packable but I've put it and the same line vest through some serious torture through thick brush and both have held up great. It's super warm too. I find myself sweating in it if hiking 25 degrees or above.

Skippy Davis · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 9 days ago · Points: 0

Hi Gabriel,

Sounds like you have a lot of fun hunting but not a lot of fun staying warm. I have the same problem while hunting. I always bring the right layers to make sure I'm warm on my way in and for the impending hours of boredom sitting listening for turkey. Down jackets are a great for this because they are lightweight and packable.

When choosing the right item for you I would suggest the following:

1. Understand all of the features jackets of any kind can have and what you are looking for in your new down jacket.
     -Camo Print, Breast Pockets, Hoods, etc
2. Color might be very important to you. As well, camo isn't a very common pattern for this type of gear.
3. Search all the big sites for availability and price.
4. Read the reviews on all the items you have found.
     -Generally searching "best thru hiking down jacket" in google is how I find most of my gear.
     -The sites you will find there are, for the most part, a good representation of what is out there.
5. Determine what you want and see if you can try it on in store.
     -Fitting charts in the hiking-gear world are just as bad as they are in men's pants. Make sure you like the fit.
6. Explore return options for prospective items.
7. Buy your gear and be excited!
     -Remember, even if you get a bum piece of gear, you learned what doesn't work for next time.

I would be interested to see what you think about a North Face Thermoball camo down jacket. For reference I personally own a Mountain Hardware Ghost Whisperer Hoodie. I wear it everyday. To and from work, etc. It has held up for a while now. But I certainly wouldn't run through briers without a heavy coat to protect its thin shell.


Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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