Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket Men’s Review

Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket Review

The Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket was designed with AT skiers and splitboarders in mind.  When it comes to going uphill not all snowboard jackets are created equal. In fact, the jacket you rock at the resort is going to be vastly different from anything you want to be touring in.

Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket Review

“That Skin track isn’t going to set itself” is the first thing you notice written on the tag of the Outdoor Research Skywear Jacket. Clearly as mentioned above the Skyward was designed for moving in the backcountry, but how?

Starting from the bottom up, the Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket utilizes Torso pit zips that run up the entire length of the jacket. Yes, you heard that correctly. These pit zips go all the way from the bottom of the Skyward Jacket up through the elbow. And the zips are located on both sides.
Skyward Shell Outdoor Research

It will be hard if not impossible to find another shell with this much airflow. Outdoor Research figured out a way to make the membrane of the Jacket breathe even better by using Air-permeable AscentShell technology or to geek out (Electra spun membrane).

Outdoor Research Skyward Torso Vents

Regardless if you’re touring on warm days, wet day or cold and dry days the Outdoor Research Skyward jacket can adapt to the changing conditions.

I have toured in the Skyward in a blizzard, on warm days and even climbing a 1,000 feet up the Glory boot pack. So far the airflow, waterproofness, and flexibility of this jacket is spot on.

Outdoor Research Material

What can be Improved?

The front of the Skyward Jacket has 2 pockets which work great for storing small items like a cell phone, compass, and snacks. However, the pockets are too small to fit an avalanche snow safety notebook so I have a hard time using this shell when going out to dig pits as that’s always been my go-to place to put my notebook.

Overall Impression

Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket Cuffs

When it comes time to rip your skins, you no longer have to worry about stuffing them inside your backpack while using the Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket as on the inside are 2 very deep skin pockets making a total of 6 pockets for all your gear. If you plan on filming or shooting photos in this jacket I would suggest going with the Hot Sauce or Vintage colorways. Also to note this Jacket is available in Men’s and Women’s sizes.

For everyone else, you won’t be able to find a better jacket that was specifically designed for touring. Let the Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket ($350) take you, well skyward.

Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket
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About the Author

Mike Hardaker
Mike Hardaker grew up surfing and snowboarding in Orange County and followed his love of surfing to Hawaii before eventually moving to the mountains to concentrate on snowboarding. When not on a board, Mike worked for Snowboarder and later oversaw TGR's online publication. He went on to found Mountain Weekly News where he is still CEO and Editor in Chief.

3 Comments on "Outdoor Research Skyward Jacket Men’s Review"

  1. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e37284ee9ae06f68f3db62309fd3dc5baafd0b45b8bb2350d067d2a7f8e2205d.jpg I use this jacket for touring here in AK. I wanted to test out the waterproofness of the jacket so I wore it to the resort when the lower mountain was raining pretty hard. My shoulders and arms got pretty wet, I wouldn’t’ call it waterproof but highly water resistant. That said when using it for its intended purpose ski/splitboard touring, I’ve stayed dry. The vent system works really well especially when you put your pack straps through the side zips. I often throw parts of the jacket over my shoulder (think Clint Eastwood poncho style) on the way up. For what its worth I run pretty hot and often tour up in a tshirt at 0 degrees or colder. I keep my avy notebook in my pants (outdoor research trailbreaker pants)

    • Cheers Austin. I’m going to go all Clint Eastwood on my next tour. How’s your season going up there?

      • So far so good, plenty of fun days in the BC so far. It would be nice if it would stay a few degrees cooler on storm days. We don’t have as much snow as we’d like at sea level. I think our snow conditions are better than a lot of places in the US right now so I’m not going to complain(much).

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