Diversity of Shells: Article covers ‘Coats for any Climate’

In the past, you owned a single winter jacket. Now, if you’re into a variety of activities, you might own three, or even more. The genre of the winter jacket (coat, parka, puffy, shell. . . whatever you want to call it) has segmented wildly in recent years. There’s now a piece of outerwear for every thinkable activity and climate type.

This diversity of shells is something I cover this week on Outside magazine in my column “The Gear Junkie’s Top 10 Winter Shells.” From an uber-warm Arctic coat to a wind shirt, the specialized jackets here will keep you covered. —Stephen Regenold

‘Top 10’ Winter Shell Jackets
1. Aerobic Softshell: Ibex Breakaway 2

2. Insulated Parka/Shell: Helly Hansen Enigma

3. Bombproof Hardshell: Arc’teryx Alpha SV

4. Fast/Light Shell: Mountain Hardwear Quasar


Baffled warmth with goose down puffy from Outdoor Research

5. Down Puffy: OR Virtuoso

6. Arctic Parka: Canada Goose Snow Mantra

7. Minimalist Down: Patagonia Ultralight Down Hoody


Snow Mantra from Canada Goose touted as “world’s warmest winter coat”

8. New-School Softshell: Mammut Gipfelgrat

9. Electrically-Heated Jacket: Columbia Circuit Breaker

10. Wind Shirt: The North Face Verto

—Stephen Regenold is the founder of GearJunkie.com and a contributor to Outside magazine. See his bio page on Outside at this link.


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Stephen Regenold is Founder and Editor-In-Chief of GearJunkie, which he launched as a nationally-syndicated newspaper column in 2002. As a journalist and writer, Regenold has covered the outdoors industry for nearly two decades, including as a correspondent for the New York Times. A father of four small kids, Regenold and his wife live in Minneapolis.