“Pray for snow.” These words are repeated by ski enthusiasts in the mountain west more desperately than ever this winter season. It is already January and the visible brown brush on the ground is a stark contrast from last winter’s deep snowpack.
This winter’s paltry snowpack has pushed me away from the ski slopes and skinning the backcountry. Instead of carving turns, I’m out in the bitter cold in search of wild ice. Skating on crystal clear frozen ponds and lakes has been my new passion. The temperatures have been well below freezing; The jacket that has kept me warm is the Women’s Outdoor Research Snowcrew Jacket.
Who’s It For?
This jacket is designed with resort skiing in mind. It is insulated and WARM. It has a helmet compatible hood, stretchy powder skirt and a long length to keep the snow out. This outer layer has the kind of fit and features you want in a resort jacket. It is comfortable and ventilated, but not quite breathable enough for me to reach for it when needing to get myself uphill. For this reason, I would not recommend it for touring. However, I wouldn’t count this jacket out off the slopes either. I love throwing it on for going out around town or for running errands, because of how warm and comfortable it is.
Amazon.com Price: $180.85 (as of 02/23/2024 13:59 MST) Details
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Fit & Features
The features on this jacket make it great for what it is meant to be great at: alpine skiing. The powder skirt, a lot of zippered pockets in easy to reach places, and a ventilating zipper under the arms is what I want on a powder day. For me, what I refer to as a “pit zip” is a make-or-break feature on a jacket. Being able to open and close that airway to ventilate, especially in an insulated piece makes me drastically more comfortable and regulated. Another key feature to highlight is the waterproof and wind resistance of this jacket— great things to have on a wet snow day.
I tested this jacket near Pinedale, Wyoming. With gratitude, I could really feel the protection from the strong winds of Wyoming on every inch of my body that this jacket was covering. As far as fit goes, this jacket runs big. Outdoor Research acknowledges this on their website about this jacket particularly. I sized down and it was the best fit for me.
I was impressed with the high quality of this piece. It was made with thoughtful design and feels very comfortable. I have the color ultramarine, and love how unique the shade is. I wasn’t the only one that took notice of this—I got a lot of compliments from multiple friends about the color. If you want an outer-layer for resort skiing that will keep you comfortable all day long, even on the deepest powder days, this one’s a top pick. If wild ice is your thing this winter, you can also count on the warmth and comfort of a Snowcrew Jacket ($349.00).