Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket Review

Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket Review

Without a doubt, everyone needs a puffy. The feeling of slipping that sleeping bag on puts you into instant cozyland. Putting a twist on the traditional puffy, Powderhorn introduced the Gunpowder Down Jacket featuring Toray Waterproof QUIX® Down technology and a slew of other great features. After putting it to the test, I dig it.

Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket Features:

  • 100% Nylon Toray Airtastic™ shell and lining
  • Toray Waterproof QUIX® Down system is 90% goose, 10% feathers
  • Pit zips for ventilation
  • 750 Fillpower
  • Powder skirt with gripper elastic
  • Colors: Harvest/After Dark, After Dark, Cobalt (reviewed), Vivid Green, Black
  • MSRP: $425

Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket Review

While I’m definitely a fan of puffy jackets, it wasn’t always that way. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest, I was told from a young age that synthetics and wool were the only way to stay warm when wet. So on I went for years without once slipping into the joy that is a down-filled sleeping bag or puffy. Then, I moved to Utah and it all changed… all of the sudden, natural down insulation was an option.

Once the world of down was opened to me, I embraced it whole-heartedly. But, I can’t toss out the thought in the back of my mind that down doesn’t insulate when wet. So, this was my opportunity to put that to the test.

Sandwiched between the Toray nylon exterior/interior is the specially-treated Toray Waterproof QUIX Down system. This 750 fillpower system is built to handle everything Mother Nature can throw its way while keeping you warm. After using the Gunpowder while sweating up a storm, it retained its loft and kept me warm when activity was complete. I haven’t doused the jacket with water or worn it in wet/cold weather, but its performance when sweating was noticeably-better than any down jacket I’ve tried previously.

Where the Gunpowder shined was on one particularly-cold ski day at Alta. Upon arrival, the temperature was 2 degrees and I was in for a morning of testing the new Salomon Guardian 16 bindings. After some hard-charging inbounds turns, I skinned up a few hundred feet and loved everything about the Gunpowder.

Warmth and overall comfort is off-the-charts good with this jacket. It’s quite puffy, but doesn’t get in the way as it compresses very well. One of my favorite features are the super-soft cuffs. They keep the cold out and add a hefty dose of comfort into the mix. Add on top of that a built-in snowskirt and this puffy is about as versatile as they come.

While I appreciate the attached hood, it lacks a cinch-down feature to pull it down over my head better. It does have a single-pull drawcord in the back, which does help it fit better and keep my peripheral vision clear, but it needed a little something more.

As far as sizing goes, the size Large fits my 5’11″ 175 lb frame perfectly. It is a little baggy, but not out of control. Sleeve length is perfect and the hem hits just right.

Good Gunpowder

  • Waterproof down is a game-changer
  • Love the overall quality and feel of the Gunpowder
  • Soft cuffs keep snow, cold out
  • Shines in ultra-cold temperatures
  • The most versatile puffy I’ve tested
  • Grippy powder skirt stays put

Bad Gunpowder

  • Attached hood could adjust a bit better
  • Hem doesn’t cinch, hood doesn’t remove and there are no thumb holes in the cuffs (though the Powderhorn site says it has all three features)
  • Pit zips are really hard to open/close and only open about an inch due to a mesh backing

Bottom Line: Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket

Without a doubt, a down puffy is required for anyone spending time outside in the cold. The Powderhorn Gunpowder Down Jacket is an excellent choice for a versatile puffy for hanging out on the mountain or skiing all day. I’ve not typically been a fan of a puffy on the slopes, but this one has changed my mind and the waterproof down puts it solidly in the win column.

Buy Now: Visit PowderhornWorld.com

 

Written By

A Seattle native, Jason developed a love for the outdoors and a thing for mountains. That infatuation continues as he founded FeedTheHabit.com in 1999--sharing his love of mountain biking, trail running and backcountry skiing with the world. That passion is channeled into every article or gear review he writes. Utah's Wasatch Mountains are his playground.