Westcomb Kokanee ... a jacket that's trying to decide what it is, is it UL, a yuppie jacket, or a winter/belay jacket
Got a westcomb kokanee at the westcomb outlet sale few weeks ago, temps haven't been at the range to test out the temperature yet but i thought i would post my initial thoughts.
- $350 US MSRP
- Medium tested
- 505 g/ 18 oz measured weight
- 850 EU down, unknown fill weight
- 15D Pertex Shell
- Sizing runs large
- Pull adjustable hood
- Waist drawstring
- Fleece lined neck
- Elastic wrists
- Two way zipper
- Single inside mesh pocket
- Very lofty
- Appears to be sewn through
The Kokanee is a down insulating jacket roughly around the size and weight of a MB Light Alpine, FF Helios or WM Meltdown jackets. It is filled with 850 EU tested (875 US) fill, unfortunately Westcomb would not tell me the fill weight.
The shell is a pretty thin 15D Pertex shell inside and out. I'll refer to the test that Will did on the Chilko about the DWR. The shell feels ultrasoft inside and out unlike some other jackets. There is no nylon feeling at all.
The fabric also appears to be fairly fragile, more so than by EB FA Downlight. I would not want it around sharp or abrasive objects. It appears to be sewn thru construction.
The jacket retails for a hefty $350 US / $375 Can, since itss new its unlikely you'll see many sales.
It is made in Westcomb's Vancouver Factory. Construction is top notch, not a single loose thread so far.
The Kokanee has the normal features one would expect on a down jacket.
Let's start with the 2 way zip. Obviously intended for people with harnesses on, it is easy to use. The bottom zip does not comb with a tab, but that's easily remedied.
There are 2 fleece lined hand pockets with water resistant zippers at belly level.
The neck collar is also fleece lined. The hood is pretty large, and for me, helmet compatible. There are 2 pull tabs on either side for adjustment.
The wrist have a soft stretch elastic material. The stretch material feels a softer against the skin than the elastic on my MB Ex Light. There is also a waist drawstring.
There is an inside zippered mesh pocket on the left side. It's just large enough for a pair of light gloves, but not mitts. There is also some funky red label on the inside right with some marketing spiel.
The sizing runs large, no doubt about it. It is meant as a belay/over jacket for the winter.
As a reference I'm 165-175 lbs (depending on how many Krispy Kremes i eat), 5'7" and am a solid medium in most athletic brands (EB FA, dead bird, Patagucci).
I was able to wear a Cap 4 base layer, 200 wt fleece, Arc'teryx Gamma SV Hoody Softshell under it with no problems and could probably have added one more layers. The jacket run down to my hip. It is not a parka.
The Kokanee is very lofty, i'd say more so than a MB Alpine light. Along with the sizing, do not expect to reasonably fit this parka under a shell without significant compression.
I have not had a chance to test how small it will compress.
I do like the Kokanee alot. It is light, warm, and feels nice against the skin. The problem is that it is a jacket that really doesn't know what it wants to be.
On one hand it is sized for belays and has climbing specific features like the double zip and large hood. On the other hand it's shell seems fairly fragile and i'd hate to use it by itself around rocks or sharp bushes. Since I plan on using it under by synthetic belay jacket (yes they all do fit together) it isn't an issue for me.
It would serve credibly as a light winter over jacket if you are careful. The sizing is sufficient.
The problem is that at $350 US / $375 Can, there are many jackets that have the Kokanee beat in terms of either value or warmth. The most obvious competitors being the MB Light Alpine, FF Helios, and Mec Reflex (heavier, cheaper, much warmer). I got mine for $225 before taxes.
I have a feeling that the most likely use of this jacket is an around the ski lodge/town yuppie piece.
Thanks for reading this review.
PS . Richard if yr reading this, i wonder of you can calculate the iclo/warmth of this jacket by itself and with a OR Chaos jacket combined. Thanks!