As we were gearing up for our trip to Iceland and Finland, we were in search of down jackets that would keep us warm. As most of you know, there are SO MANY options when it comes to jackets.
Since we travel all-year-round, we need something that’s lightweight, warm, and most of all packable so we can take it with us around the world.
The more I started researching into down jackets, the more I became aware that there are a ton of awful practices out there when it comes to manufacturing these jackets. I would hate to think that animals are intentionally being hurt (live-plucking of feathers) just to keep me warm!
This is one of the reasons why we decided to look for a featherless (or at least one with minimum feathers) down jacket, which was how we found Sherpa Adventure Gear.
At a Glance: Sherpa Adventure Jackets
To test them out, both Tom and I ordered the Annapurna Hooded Jacket, to act as our down jacket, as well as the Makalu Jacket which will serve as our outer shell to protect us from the wind.
Although I will go into the specifics of what each jacket is made of, I have to say that just by looking at the materials that they use, you can easily tell that the jackets are very well-made. We couldn’t wait to test them out.
Looking for more options? Check out our full article on the best down jackets for men and women
Why Sherpa Adventure Gear
We were initially attracted to the brand due to the fact that they have 75% recycled featherless insulation jackets. However, the more we looked into them, the more we liked their story and what the brand believes in.
Paying tribute to their home country, a large portion of their items is made in Nepal which has created over 1,500 jobs which is a huge boost for the local economy even though they could easily be manufacturing their items at a lower cost elsewhere.
Apart from that, we also love companies that give back which is why we like the fact that for every item sold, part of the proceeds go to a fund that creates educational scholarships for Nepalese children.
In the last two years, Tom and I have visited Nepal twice now and love both its people and the natural landscapes which is why this brand really resonated with us. The more we travel, the more we realize the importance of supporting sustainable brands.
Related: Best Travel Gear Guide
Sherpa Adventure Gear Product Review
Specs of the Annapurna Jacket: Shell Fabric: 100% recycled polyester with DWR (durable water-repellent) finish | Insulation: 3M™ Thinsulate™ 75% Recycled Featherless Insulation | Lining: 100% nylon plain weave
Admittedly, I was a little bit hesitant when I was ordering this jacket as I wasn’t sure if it would be warm enough for the temperatures in Iceland and Finland.
At the time of this review, we are currently in Budapest which is having a cold spell so I was able to test out this jacket in -1°C temperatures. I have to say, I am so pleased by the Annapurna Hooded Jacket. It has kept me warm and dry during pretty grim weather conditions which says a lot given that I get cold quite easily.
Everything about it is just so well-made, plus the attention to detail is great. The zippers have little prayer flags, fleece-lined hand warmer pockets, and the little side adjusters allowing you to cinch the sides and hood make a world of a difference.
I do have to say that I was surprised that on the second day of use, I managed to stain the jacket easily by accidentally placing it in a seat near a radiator which caused black scuff marks.
However, that said, it was my fault for not looking. I brought it to the dry cleaners and the stain came off easily. (P.S. for what it’s worth, the Hungarian dry cleaner gave me so many compliments on the jacket, saying it was very well-made!)
The best thing about these down jackets is that they fit in a little stuff sack, making them completely packable — perfect for frequent travelers like us.
Tom ordered the Annapurna Jacket which is exactly the same, except his doesn’t have a hood. The jacket looks really nice and can be worn casually as well.
Overall, both of us are very pleased with these and look forward to using them throughout our travels.
Specs of the Makalu Jacket: Himaltec Laminate ® | Seam-sealed 3-layer shell fabric has a 20,000mm/20,000g/m2/24h waterproof/breathable rating
The next piece in our winter gear ensemble is an outer layer shell to keep away the wind and rain. Named after the fifth highest mountain in the world, the Makalu jacket is another example of a piece of technical gear that just works.
This jacket is a 3-layer, seam-sealed shell with a Himaltec® laminate coating that is waterproof rated up to 20,000mm making it ideal for harsh climates. Similar to the Annapurna Hooded Jacket, this one has so many incredible details like the prayer flag in the zips which I love.
The hood has a little helmet visor which can be tightened and cinched, making it ideal for winter sports. I do love everything about this jacket but found it to be a little long for me in the arms.
Although I have not been able to test it out in torrential rain, I can see that all the zips are well-sealed, giving me ample protection. The jacket comes in lovely bright colors (hunter green, dark blue, red, black and yellow) which means you have plenty of options.
Similar to the Annapurna, the jacket is pretty lightweight, making it easy to carry around and pack.
Om Zip Tee
Specs of the Om Zip Tee: Fabric: 91% polyester | 9% spandex French terry with wicking finish
Last but not least, Tom ordered a simple base layer which is a great addition to his gear. The base layer itself looks quite sharp and isn’t so “sporty”-looking, making it a good item to wear when casually dining.
Overall, we are so pleased with our orders and can’t wait to travel with them full-time as the items look extremely durable.
What I Love About Sherpa Adventure Gear
Although I know this review might sound like I am gushing about the items, simply put, they are very well-made. Since we only have a limited amount of items that we can take with us when traveling, we have vowed to start investing in better quality items.
These jackets are a great example.
Everything from the zips, the hems, the lining, to the pockets are so well-thought-of, making them great investments for anyone looking to update their winter gear.
What I Don’t Love About the Products
To be honest: very little. I would say that the arm length of the Makalu Jacket (I ordered a Medium) was a little bit too long but it was easy enough to remedy. I am usually a size 10 but decided to go one size up as I wanted to be able to fit my other layers.
Ultimately, as mentioned, this isn’t a huge deal. I was able to fold the sleeve but this might be something worth considering when ordering items.
Overall, we are both very pleased with our new jackets. In fact, Tom was thoroughly upset when someone walking with a cigarette butt accidentally ran into him, burning a small hole in the jacket!
Although they aren’t cheap, we don’t mind spending on good quality coats that will last us for years. We are looking forward to testing them out in colder destinations and will report back here on how we find them after a few months of use.
We love supporting smaller grassroots brands like this one that are committed to making an impact and not just dedicated to profiting from their items.