Arc’teryx Patera Parka Review – One Of The Best Women’s Down Jackets

Arc’teryx again did their best and brought us the Patera Parka – a winter jacket that combines breathability and waterproofing like no other.

Because I today came home with my winter jacket completely soaked, I decided to write a review about the best women’s waterproof winter jacket. Keep reading to see me reveal every pro and con that this jacket is hiding from you.

 

Is This The Perfect Winter Jacket For You?

Although the Patera Parka is a comfortable and durable jacket, it contains a lot of synthetic insulation, which is not as warm as down. It still more than warm enough if you wear some layers underneath, but if you want a very warm parka, I suggest you check out the Marmot Montreaux.

What makes the Patera good, is that it’s completely waterproof, which is something that most down jackets are not. On top of that, the Gore-Tex makes it very breathable, making it a parka that can be used in a wide range of temperatures.

Where I live, in Belgium, I think this jacket would be a great choice if I were a woman. Our winters hover around 32 ° (0°C) during the day and usually consist of rain or wet snow – I hate it. While walking to work, I wouldn’t have to worry about getting wet or being cold and sweaty. Of course, you can face much colder conditions with the Patera, but this is just one example that you can wear this jacket even in warmer temperatures because its breathability is outstanding.

Apart from that, this jacket looks sleek while still holding up in freezing temperatures. Maybe you like the look, or maybe you don’t. It doesn’t feature flashy pockets or unnecessary zippers, but rather keeps it simple and clean.

 

Main Pros And Cons

Pros

  • Completely waterproof
  • A thick nylon shell protects the insulation
  • It’s extremely breathable due to Gore-Tex, which means you can use it in a wide range of temperatures
  • Comfortable
  • You can feel that it’s a qualitative jacket
  • Fashionable and stylish

Cons

  • Expensive
  • The zipper sometimes doesn’t work properly
  • Not enough down insulation in the sleeves
  • To face extremely cold conditions you need to layer your clothing correctly
  • Lack of down insulation

 

Warmth

Although this clean jacket doesn’t give the impression of a winter jacket, it’s very much capable of handling the winters of Chicago or New York. That being said, it’s not a jacket that can protect you from the freezing temperatures during your expedition in Alaska.

If you need a warmer parka, I’d suggest the Marmot Montreaux. You can read the review here.

Arc’teryx did their best and gave this jacket 5 ounces of quality goose down with a fill power of 750. Fill power is basically a number that represents the efficiency of insulation. Most winter jackets range from 400 to 900, so 750 isn’t a bad number at all.

Goose down is great but loses its ability to insulate when wet. That’s why Arc’teryx designed this jacket with both down and synthetic insulation. Coreloft synthetic insulation doesn’t care whether it’s wet or dry, it insulates in both conditions. On top of that, it also dries much faster than down.

It’s therefore only logical that they install this type of insulation in areas that are vulnerable to moisture. The shoulders, underside of the sleeves, hood, along your sides and the bottom eight inches of the jacket all contain a good amount of Coreloft insulation. However, the areas that are most important to hold in heat, like the tops of your arms and core, consist purely of down insulation.

That’s also the reason why this jacket isn’t the warmest among the winter jackets. Synthetic insulation does a significantly worse job when it comes to keeping you warm. And since this jacket consists of synthetic insulation for roughly 50%, you’re going to get cold faster than with the Marmot Montreaux. When you’re on the move, you’ll be warm, but I can’t promise you the same result when you sit on a bench for an hour.

One area that Arc’teryx should’ve protected more against the cold, are the underarms. They should’ve just completely insulated those spots with down insulation. A significant amount of reviews mentioned that the jacket manages to keep everybody part warm, except for the arms.

And that’s not due to wind, snow or water breaking in the sleeves, because wrist gaskets make sure that doesn’t happen. It’s simply because those parts don’t feature enough insulation.

Although wrist gaskets guard your sleeves to make sure no wind, snow or water gets in, the minimal insulation results in coldness either way. Besides that, the pockets aren’t insulated but instead are given the same fabric as the outer shell.

In addition, as I mentioned a few paragraphs ago, the bottom eight inches of this jacket is too thin. Some people online complained that this jacket failed in keeping their legs warm, which is just the one thing you expect from a knee-length jacket, right?

Also, it seems like Arc’teryx didn’t think enough about their zipper system. The Patera’s zipper doesn’t start from the very bottom, but rather from just above the first eight inches of synthetic insulation. This makes it able for the wind to slip in. Arc’teryx did this to make sure that you can move your legs, and that you don’t walk like a penguin.

However, since this jacket features a two-way zipper, they could’ve just made the zipper start from the very bottom. That way, you could decide for yourself whether you want the bottom unzipped or not. Now, you don’t have a choice.

Nevertheless, you can’t deny that this jacket’s hood is extremely well insulated. In case of a storm, you can easily tighten it with the use of a cinch. So need to worry about your hood constantly slipping off your head.

Fortunately, Arc’teryx realizes that this jacket isn’t that warm, and therefore gives it a generous cut. Thanks to that, you can easily layer your clothing, put on your jacket and face the freezing temperatures.

Hopefully, you’re still reading this review after all the negative criticism, because now it’s time for the good features that this jacket has to offer, starting with its weather resistance.

 

Weather Resistance

Although this jacket isn’t the warmest, it does a great job of protecting you from the elements. Let it be rain, snow or wind… this jacket doesn’t give a damn. Arc’teryx sure knows how to make their winter jackets rain resistant. That’s also why this jacket is included in my ‘best winter jackets‘ roundup review.

Most winter jackets completely count on their durable water repellent (DWR) coating. This jacket not only has a great DWR coating, but also a thick nylon outer shell, which makes it significantly harder for moisture to intrude. On top of that, you can’t forget the storm flaps that protect the zipper from moisture and wind.

Also, you don’t have to worry about water entering through the seams. Arc’teryx made sure they used very small seams and factory taped them before bringing it out to the public.

And like that wasn’t enough, Arc’teryx used Gore-Tex throughout the whole jacket. This is a special technology that ensures breathability, wind protection and rain protection. You can find more info on this page.

 

Comfort

The satin-finish inside gives you an elegant feel and makes you feel cozy when it storms on the outside.

Since the zipper only starts above the lowest eight inches of the jacket, it doesn’t force you to walk like a penguin. On top of that, it doesn’t feel bulky or heavy despite the high amount of insulation.

Then there’s also the adjustable hood, making it easy to tighten it when the wind is rising. Still, it doesn’t annoy you by bothering your eyes or touching your face. Instead, it creates a nice shelter that keeps your face safe from the wind, rain and snow.

As I mentioned a while back, the handwarmer pockets aren’t insulated but instead are given a luxury feel like the outer shell. It’s not your typical crinkle nylon, but rather a textured and smooth version, which doesn’t make your hands feel clammy.

Long story short: the Patera makes you feel comfy in stormy weather.

 

Style And Fit

I think it’s needless to say that this jacket looks extremely clean. If you like an athletic fit, I’m sure you like the look of it. Another thing that I think a lot of people love about this jacket, is that you don’t see the down baffles. They’re hidden underneath the thick nylon shell and layer of Gore-Tex.

The storm flaps are secured by buttons so that they don’t flap around when they’re not buttoned up.

The pockets are placed at the right height and are hardly noticeable. I guess Arc’teryx didn’t want to mess with the simplicity of the Patera.

Some customers mentioned it’s not tight enough around their chest. They claim this is because the models at Arc’teryx have a huge chest. However, most people (70%) think that the size is ‘just right’.

What some customers also mentioned is that this jacket makes a lot of noise when walking around, which can sometimes be a bit annoying.

 

Durability

We can safely say that this is one of the most durable winter jackets. With the outer shell made of 75-denier nylon, there’s no need to worry about accidentally tearing your jacket.

Some customers mention that the zippers don’t do their job well all of the time. With some people, they don’t run smoothly every time, which questions their durability.

 

Features

While it may not look like this jacket features anything, they’re just very subtle and hardly noticeable.

  • The roomy hood with elastic cords to tighten it in windy conditions. Unfortunately, this hood is not removable.
  • Two handwarmer pockets. Some people mentioned that it would be nice if they were insulated and a bit bigger.
  • One interior chest pocket that can be zipped up, which makes it perfect to store your keys, wallet or phone.
  • The two-way zipper, which for some reason stops eight inches above the hem.
  • The buttons to secure your storm flaps.

 

Social Proof

During my research, I found some valuable reviews that you may like to read. Most people complained about the fitting around the chest, price or warmth.

You can find them all on Amazon. I reworded them a little because Amazon doesn’t allow us to copy-paste their reviews.

Review 1: Generally speaking, I love this coat. It has a simplistic and stylish design, and keeps you warm at the same time.

The thing that I love the most about this jacket, is that you can use it in very cold temperatures but also in warmer conditions. It kept me warm when it was -20°F and didn’t overheat me in 40°F. Just make sure you layer your clothing properly.

The major downside is the main zipper. It’s fussy and sometimes doesn’t work properly. However, this jacket does have buttons that are handy in case you don’t want to mess with the zipper.

Review 2: Arc’teryx again didn’t disappoint me. You can really see that Arc’teryx thought about the design.

However, I have two complaints. Whose chest are they measuring? It’s huge! Definitely not a jacket for women with a small chest. Also, the fabric is pretty stiff and noisy.

Review 3: I love this coat! You can instantly see that it’s well-made. Apart from that, it’s warm and waterproof. I’m 5’1″ and weigh 100lbs and ordered extra small – it fits great.

I have no trouble with the heavyduty zipper, like other reviewers complained.

I bought this jacket because I needed a durable outer shell because branches and thorns ruined my previous down coat. Or they would get scratched while bringing in wood.

The only real downside that I can come up with, is the impressive price. I hope that this jacket will last 5 years.

 

Is It Worth The Buy?

And now the question that matters most: is this jacket worth your money? Well, that depends on where you’re going to use it. If you just need a jacket to walk through town with, this jacket is capable of handling those temperatures. If you want to face colder temperatures, you’ll need to know how to layer your clothing.

And let’s not ignore the shocking price of this jacket, which is roughly twice the amount as its competitors. So I guess it’s only worth your money if this jacket has everything you need. A clean, weatherproof winter jacket that keeps you warm when you’re on the move.

But honestly, you can find equally good winter jackets for just half the money, which are much warmer. Maybe you want to take a look at the alternatives.

 

Alternatives

Marmot Montreaux

As I mentioned this jacket a couple of times throughout this article, you should already know that it’s probably the best women’s winter parka on the market. I’m trying to not ‘fanboy’ this jacket, but this one stands above all its competitors.

It’s true that the Montreaux isn’t as tear and weather-resistant as the Patera, but it’s much warmer and equally comfortable and stylish – and all that for half the price of the Patera.

So what’s my point? If you need a jacket to face humid and tear-threatening conditions, you’re better off with the Patera. However, if you need one just to walk home with in very dry and cold weather, the Marmot Montreaux is the best choice for you. If you’re interested, take a look at my detailed review.

Better

  • Warmer
  • Much cheaper

Worse

  • Vulnerable to sharp surfaces
  • Water-resistant and not waterproof

 

Ghost Whisperer 2


Although the Ghost Whisper 2 isn’t a parka, it’s the most favorite choice for people who like to explore nature during the winter. That doesn’t mean that you can’t wear it in town, as you can see in the picture, this jacket is also suitable for casual activities.

So what makes this jacket so good? Pretty much everything since it doesn’t lack any major aspects of a winter jacket. But the most impressive feature must be its weight, which is 8.3 ounces. And yes, that’s lighter than your water bottle.

On top of that, it’s super compressible. You don’t even need to bring a bag since you can pack this jacket into its own pocket! Just stuff it in and zip it up. What’s left, is a tidy package about the size of your water bottle.

It features goose down that underwent a special treatment. It can get wet without losing its ability to insulate, and it dries much faster than untreated down. You can compare it with synthetic insulation, but it just does a much better job at trapping your body heat. However, it can still get wet in heavy rain, so watch out for that!

All in all, this jacket is probably the best winter jacket. It lacks some basic things like a chest pocket and a hood cinch, but scores high in everything you need for a winter jacket.

Warmth, weight, compressibility, comfort and weather resistance, the Ghost Whisperer 2 has it all. Get to know more by reading my in-depth review.

Better

  • Very light and highly compressible
  • Can both be used as a performance jacket and casual jacket
  • Features water-resistant down

Worse

  • Water-resistant and not waterproof
  • No chest pocket
  • No hood cinch

 

Conclusion

The Patera is a great choice for anyone who moves around in the cold. Since this jacket is not super warm, you should wear some extra layers if you want to face extreme cold conditions.

However, since the Gore-Tex makes this parka breathable, you can use it in a wide range of temperatures throughout the year. You don’t have to worry about breaking a sweat when it’s 40 °F outside or freeze to death in case it’s -10 degrees.

On top of that, the Patera is extremely waterproof and can be used in wet conditions where other winter jackets don’t stand a chance.

 

That’s it for this review! I hope that I could help you make a choice. Any feedback is appreciated in the comments. If you have a question to ask, please, contact me through this page.

Stay safe and keep exploring!

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