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My Trail Down Light Hooded Jacket

rated 4.5 of 5 stars

My Trail is no longer in business, and the Down Light Hooded Jacket has been discontinued. If you're looking for something new, check out the best down insulated jackets for 2020.

photo: My Trail Down Light Hooded Jacket down insulated jacket

Specs

Price MSRP: $99.00
Reviewers Paid: $90.00
Weight 13 oz
Insulation 800-fill-power Goose Down
Fill weight 110g

Reviews

2 reviews
5-star:   1
4-star:   1
3-star:   0
2-star:   0
1-star:   0

My Trail has got a winner with this affordable, warm, down jacket. Perfect balance is achieved, using quality materials at a "WOW" price point. With ethically sourced 800 fill power and weighing in at less than a pound, this jacket is ideal for the weight-conscientious outdoors person, or simply for those who want a warm casual-use puffy.

Pros

  • Excellent price point
  • Fit has room for additional layering
  • Windproof

Cons

  • Elastic hem cord slips
  • Items can fall out of lower inside pocket

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My Trail Co may be a new name to the industry, however the company has had a previous life, known as GoLite. My Trail has been around since 2016, basing their operations out of Denver, Colorado.The company has resurrected several of the best and most popular products, and is growing from its streamlined product range.

There are many similarities between the Down Light hooded jacket and GoLite’s Demaree Canyon Jacket, like the vertical channels along the sides. The My Trail Down Light Hooded Jacket is simply an incredible jacket! It can be difficult to find a warm piece of gear, let alone an ethically sourced down jacket! Functional yet fashionable, this lightweight coat (13oz) is quite warm for its weight. Simplicity meets smart function with this well thought-out puffy.


IMG_6551-.jpgMountain Dan said you can't have any, Fernie...

Specifications

  • Price: $99
  • Shell: 100% Nylon With DWR (Durable Water Repellent) Finish
  • Fill: 800 Fill Power Down
  • Lining: 100% Polyester
  • Weight: 13oz 
  • Fill Weight: 110g/3.9oz

Design, Fit, & Comfort

Although this jacket has more of a relaxed fit, the loft of the goose down does well filling space, while still allowing room for cold-weather layering. One fit that is different to the previous Demaree Canyon is a longer hem, which is similar to a belay-style jacket.


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Full freedom in regards to range of motion is possible with the fit of the jacket, whether climbing, reaching, etc.


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No adjustments are available with the hood, but was found to be comfortable, and large enough to fit a helmet.


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The men’s medium jacket fit the tester ideally, at 5'10", 160 lbs. This jacket does an excellent job keeping the wearer warm! As typical with any cold weather jacket, comfort begins to become a concern once wearing the jacket at its upper temperature limit.

I personally found the jacket to become uncomfortable above 40°F when active. When backpacking, I found myself taking the jacket off in the 40's due to high output. Upper limit during no activity was found to be approximately 50°F. Although not the warmest jacket ever tested, lower comfort limits during light activity were found to be around the 15°F range. Layering with this jacket is not a challenge, allowing the wearer to push this lower comfort limit much further!

Note: due to the delicate nature of down jackets, this jacket was primarily tested with some kind of shell. A variety of outer shells were used in conjunction with this jacket, from lightweight rain jackets like The North Face Verto Storm Jacket, to the Rab Latok.


IMG_1414.jpgTaking a break at the David Lesser shelter, Appalachian Trail

Features & Function

Although not designed to be a feature-rich powerhouse, My Trail has outfitted the Down Light Hooded Jacket with a few user-friendly highlights.

A full length-zipper with storm flap and zipper garage function as designed with no snagging, or difficulty attaching.


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IMG_0322.jpgA climbing helmet should easily fit under the hood

Vertical baffles along the sides help with comfort and warmth.


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A headphone guide loop is sewn into the jacket. 


IMG_1922.jpgThis loop also happens to be a great spot to hold a pair of sunglasses!

An internal chest pocket will hold a mobile phone, or iPod.


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A lower mesh pocket is large enough to stow a digital camera, or pair of gloves. This also doubles as a zippered stuff sack, with a sewn-in loop.


IMG_1953.jpgJacket stowed alongside a 32oz Nalgene water bottle

Note: The zipper with this pocket extends all of the way to the bottom of the coat. Although not a fault, items could fall out of the pocket!


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Full-zipper micro-fleece lined external pockets have a very pleasant feel.


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Simple, straightforward elastic cuffs at the wrists and hood. There is sufficient stretch to the cuffs to slide over gloves as well. 

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Elastic hem adjustment at the waist of the jacket 

Note: The lock/spring adjustment did not hold on the tested jacket; it simply allowed the adjustment to loosen. 


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Water Resistance, Breathability, And Moisture

The DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating on the outside of the jacket appears to do very well, especially for such an inexpensive jacket.


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Breathability and moisture management are a bit of a gray area when it comes to down insulation. Although sweat evaporates from the jacket inner, moisture inherently gets trapped in the down insulation, which can lead to a cumulative decline in insulative efficacy (much like a down sleeping bag). It has been argued that wet down still yields a higher insulating value than dry synthetic material, however technological advances challenge this more every day. 


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Construction & Durability

My Trail has done a very good job with the construction of this jacket. From the quality of materials, loft of the jacket, and overall durability, no faults have been found with the jacket, save the adjustable elastic hem. It appears that this jacket will hold up as long as the 6+ year-old GoLite that is still usable.


IMG_1926.jpgCloseup of interior stitching

Conditions

This jacket has been tested from late autumn to mid-winter in the Mid-Atlantic region of the USA. It has been on several backpacking trips, day hikes, and has seen daily use around town.


IMG_6554.jpgWinter backpacking on a cool morning

Conclusion

From ridge running the Appalachian Trail to walking the dog, this inexpensive jacket is a definite excellent piece of gear. Bang for the buck, My Trail has hit spot-on with the Down Light Hooded Jacket!


IMG_0903.jpgPhoto Credit: R. Reed

Many thanks to the people out at My Trail for the opportunity to test the Down Light Hooded Jacket for the Trailspace Gear Review Corps. 

Source: received for testing via the Trailspace Review Corps (Sample provided by My Trail Co for testing and review)

Betty Battleaxe

Great review! Really dig the color of this jacket. It does look warm.


3 years ago
g00se

Sweet looking jacket!


3 years ago
Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Nice review, Sean! Thanks for testing out this jacket. I also like the green color. I'd be curious to see the Down Light and Demaree Canyon jackets together.


3 years ago
Dr. Bryan Ryles

Excellent and thorough review, Sean. I held onto my GoLite backpacks for a long time, so loved their products from before. Looks like a great value for all the features on this jacket!


3 years ago

Excellent warm compressible jacket, featuring high quality materials and great durability in a joke of a price.

Pros

  • Warm
  • Excellent down volume-to-total-weight ratio
  • Durable
  • Very affordable

Cons

  • Large hood with no adjustments
  • Pockets are in a bad position

I was on the market for my first down jacket. I am an experienced hiker, but always had a fleece jacket as this is what Israeli hikers are accustomed to (that’s what they give you in the military). My first choice was the high-end Rab Continuum Jacket, but I had a terrible experience with it and returned it. I didn’t want to go over the same mistake and spend a lot of money on a jacket that I will have high expectations of it. I saw the My Trail UL hooded jacket before I bought the Rab jacket, but the reputation of the company owner, the suspiciously low price, and the lack of certain features made me choose the Rab.

My demands of the jacket were as following:

  • The main purpose of this jacket will be to serve as an outer layer at camp, and as such, it should have enough down to keep me warm when I am static.
  • It must be under 400 grams (14 oz) to make it a worthy upgrade to my existing gear.
  • Hood is a must, adjustable one will be a big bonus.
  • Durable, so I won’t need to babysit it.
  • It should have a hem cinch.
  • Good reviews and good quality control.

Back on the market for a down jacket I saw a ridiculous price drop on the My Trail jacket. Putting aside the price for a moment, this jacket possesses excellent specs in matter of total weight, 800FP down with high total volume (equivalent to warmth), down weight/total weight ratio, down volume/total weight ratio. Moreover, it features 20d nylon fabric which in my opinion is the right compromise between weight and durability, and it has many pockets which to one of them it can be folded into.

Down-jackets-comparison-table-2.jpgThe table is sorted by down volume/total weight because of price variations, but notice the significant gap in down volume to price ratio between the My Trail UL and the rest.

The downsides are the company reputation and possible warranty issues, and that the hood is large and has no adjustments.

The new price drop saw the price coming down from 150$ to 90$, for a down jacket with 800FP and these specs that’s a steal!

I ordered it knowing that even if it won’t match my standards, I know I’ll have a decent jacket for a normal price.

Since I got the jacket I used it on multiple hike and camping trips and used it daily to go to the office (spent several weeks in Germany with temperatures around 0°c).

First, the jacket is warm! It fully serves its most important task. It is also longer than usual which helps a lot to keep your waist area warm. Second, the construction quality is excellent with no feather leakage, seams fabric and zippers are robust and had no issues with them. The jacket doesn’t get clammy, and I could wear it indoor and outdoor. It compresses to a funny sausage like shape that is a bit weird but efficient for storing in your pack.

The downsides are the huge hood that cannot be adjusted which lead to heat loss, but even though, it stayed on my head during winds which was surprising. Another downside is the hand pockets which are located at the bottom of the jacket meaning your hands stick out of the bottom of the jacket. They could be located at a higher position (suited for a waist belt).

Overall, I love this jacket, it’s warm and cozy, durable, breathable and compact. Giving the price I paid for it, it has no competition as a backpacking jacket.

Experience

Experienced thru-hiker, day hiker, backpacker and climber. This is my first down jacket.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 90$

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Nice review of your My Trail jacket, Yuvalk! Too bad the company went out of business...


2 months ago

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