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Keela Sherpa Jacket in the CIC Hut, Ben Nevis

Reviews

Keela Sherpa Jacket | Review

Great value PrimaLoft-filled top with zip-off sleeves looks an interesting option, but the optional add-on hood doesn't integrate well with the rest of the jacket.

‘There’s nothing wrong with the PrimaLoft insulation and the zip-off sleeves add interest, but the basic cut and a terrible add-on hood let the Sherpa down’

Outdoors Magic: PrimaLoft Gold fill, great value for money, warm, windproof, zip-off sleeves, adjustable hem, collar, cuffs.

Outdoors Tragic: Optional add-on hood is an after thought and doesn’t integrate well, cut is basic and too short.

Outdoors Grabbit? If you’re on a tight budget and looking for a warm, damp conditions-friendly insulated jacket, the Sherpa is great value on paper. The basics – that 100gsm PrimaLoft insulation and fabric are fine – but we found the cut too short, the zip-off sleeves not useful for us and the optional add-on hood is too much of an afterthought to work well. It’s just not properly integrated. Some of that is maybe negotiable, but we found the hood quite annoying particularly as it costs an additional £32 on top of the price of the basic jacket. We’d suggest spending a little more.

 

Sherpa Jacket Ratings

Outright Warmth 

Packability 

Damp-proofing 


Overall:

Full Specification

Convertible synthetic-filled outdoor jacket / PrimaLoft Gold synthetic insulation / FlyLite rip-stop outer fabric / zip-off sleeves / twin zipped hip-pockets / single zipped chest-pocket / adjustable hem, cuffs and collar / two-way main-zip / optional add-on Sherpa hood £31.95/130g

Full Review Below

Keela Sherpa Jacket in gilet mode with sleeves zipped off
One of the few insulated jackets out there that - Photo by Lukasz Warzecha
Keela Sherpa Jacket with add-on Sherpa Hood
The separate Sherpa Hood sounds promising on paper, but there's no real connection between the hood and the jacket - Photo by Lukasz Warzecha
Keela Sherpa Jacket hood fastening close-up
Close up of the hood's front press-stud and Velcro fastening. The problem is that there's no attachment between collar and hood - Photo by Lukasz Warzecha

Keela Sherpa Jacket – The Fill

Nothing wrong with the Sherpa’s stuffing at all. It’s 100g PrimaLoft Gold insulation synthetic that’s hydrophobic and retains a significant level of insulation even when it gets damp making it a great option for UK winter conditions.

The medium-warm 100gsm filling is used both in the body and the sleeves, but to be fair, the arms don’t feel restrictive in use. But in a nut-shell, it’s a market-leading, proven, damp-friendly filling.

Keela Sherpa Jacket chest pocket
There’s a handy zipped chest pocket to supplement the twin hand-warmer pockets below – Photo by Lukasz Warzecha

Keela Sherpa Jacket – Performance

On paper the Sherpa looks like fantastic value for money, a medium-weight, PrimaLoft-filled jacket for £110, but bear in mind that if you want a hood, you’ll need to spend an additional £32 on the optional Sherpa add-on.

The reality though isn’t quite as rosy. The cut is a little on the boxy side, which isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker, but isn’t ideal. On top of that, we found the zip-off sleeves somewhat pointless and fiddly to use, though if you want a jacket that doubles as a 360g PrimaLoft-filled gilet we guess it makes sense.

Hoods You Lose

To be fair, as a basic, PrimaLoft jacket it does work quite well, handles damp UK conditions nicely and can be battened down using cuff, hem and collar adjusters. Where things go properly wrong is with the optional add-on hood.

It’s a £32, 130g appendage that doesn’t really integrate with the jacket at all. It’s more like an add-on bonnet than a proper hood, leaves a non-fastened area between collar and hood that’s an entry point for wind and has one point of attachment, via a press-stud at the rear, which means you can’t really let it dangle from the back without risking loss.

It’s also fiddly to use with winter gloves. Frankly, we wouldn’t bother with the hood. You’re better off with an insulated hat or mountain cap / balaclava combination. It’s just not very well thought out at all.

Keela Sherpa Jacket hand-pockets
Hand-warmer pockets have insulation between hands and the body rather than the other way round - Photo by Lukasz Warzecha
Keela Sherpa Jacket hem-adjuster
The hem along with the collar and cuffs are all conventionally adjustable - Photo by Lukasz Warzecha

Keela Sherpa Jacket – Verdict

Nothing wrong with the raw materials, particularly the PrimaLoft insulation and the windproof Flylite Ripstop outer fabric. And while the cut is basic and a little boxy, in functional terms it works fine, particularly in UK damp, cold conditions and it’s decent value for money on that basis. And particularly if, for some reason, you’d also like an insulated gilet option.

Where it all goes wrong is when you add the Sherpa Hood to the equation. It really does seem like an afterthought, doesn’t integrate at all well with the jacket and frankly, isn’t worth buying. Thing right be different with a zip-off or Velcro connection, but as it stands, we’d leave well alone.

And the big issue with that, is that for us, for a jacket of this type, designed to be used in wet, cold winter conditions, a hood is close to essential. We’d invest slightly more in a jacket with a better developed, grown-on hood instead.

More Information

See keela.co.uk

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