Columbia OutDry Ex Featherweight Shell Jacket | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Waterproof Jackets

Columbia OutDry Ex Featherweight Shell Jacket | Review

A distinctive jacket that has a lot to offer. Introducing the OutDry Ex Featherweight from Columbia

Columbia are known for delivering reliable and durable outdoor gear that’ll serve you well and last you properly, and they’ve delivered the goods once again with the OutDry Ex Featherweight Shell jacket.

With the OutDry Ex Featherweight, Columbia present an option that is lightweight, incredibly waterproof, includes a well-built hood, and that’s perfect for your next adventure as a result.

If you’re not familiar with OutDry and how this waterproof system works, then let us fill you in. You see, many waterproof jackets come in three layers, with an inner lining, the waterproof membrane and then an outer fabric that protects the membrane all formed into one sandwich, and the big downside here is that in heavy or prolonged rainfall the outer fabric will often make the jacket heavy and not very breathable if it gets saturated.

To get round this, Columbia have totally gotten rid of the outer fabric meaning that the risk of ‘wetting out’ is gone, and then they’ve toughened up the membrane so that it won’t rip with the slightest snag. It’s like an inverted jacket, you could say.

“This breakthrough tech from Columbia has been around for a few years now, and we rate it highly.”

This breakthrough tech from Columbia has been around for a few years now, and we rate it highly. In fact, a number of OutDry jackets have been featured in our Outdoors Magic 100 over the years. They’re waterproof, durable and still breathable.

The difference with this version (which we should point out is available in men’s and women’s styles) is that Columbia have managed to adapt the material to make it substantially lighter. For instance, the last OutDry jacket weighed 260g whereas this version is just 187g.

These unique jackets feature their seam taping on the outside rather than inside. Photo: Chris Johnson.
The adjustable hood has a slightly stiffened peak. Chris Johnson.
OutDry flips conventional waterproofing on its head (or inside out...) Photo: Chris Johnson.

Other nice design features include the slight visor on the hood to keep the rain off, the two large napoleon chest pockets that are each big enough to hold a map, and the adjustable hem and hood. There’s also the drop tail on the coat which sits nicely with a backpack.

Overall, a great all-rounder option from Columbia sure to keep you dry on your adventures.

Tester’s Verdict

“Super light and fully waterproof – I can’t really complain! The Columbia Featherweight Shell also features loads of handy pockets and I’ve found it to be ideal when hiking with a backpack. The jacket was also much more breathable than I thought it would be. It’s now definitely my go-to waterproof for hiking trips. I’d trust it 100% to keep me dry.” – Athena Mellor, gear tester.

Price: £90

Weight: 187g

More info: columbiasportswear.co.uk

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