If you love hiking in a winter wonderland, the right
cold-weather gear — including a good jacket — can help you stay warm and comfortable while you enjoy the great outdoors. The best winter hiking jackets are insulated for warmth but lightweight enough for you to move comfortably, making it easy to get some fresh air and exercise even when the weather is cold and wet.
When choosing a winter hiking jacket, you have a choice between
synthetic and down insulation. While both these fillings are light, down offers more warmth for its weight, and it packs easily for convenient storage in your backpack. The drawback? Down won’t offer much warmth if it gets wet — not ideal if you get caught in a downpour or wet snow. (If you do opt for down, look for a water-resistant shell that can help keep your jacket relatively warm and dry.) Jackets with synthetic filling or fleece lining, on the other hand, offer great moisture resistance, but they tend to be a little heavier and less packable. But if you plan to hike in wet conditions, synthetic will be your best bet. Other aspects to consider: If you need a jacket for extreme cold, consider a heavier ski coat with reflective thermal insulation, or if you live in a rainy region (looking at you, Pacific Northwest), opt for a totally waterproof rain jacket with a fleece lining for extra warmth.
As far as style goes, most of these options come in multiple colors and patterns, from classic black to hot pink, so you're sure to find one you'll want to wear all season long. With that in mind, read on for the best winter hiking jackets on Amazon in a range of styles, weights, and colors.
The Fan-Favorite Columbia Jacket
Materials: Polyester shell and synthetic down fill Why it’s great: This quilted Columbia jacket has earned a stellar 4.8-star overall rating from Amazon reviewers, thanks to its non-bulky silhouette and cozy warmth. The fill offers great insulation, while the reflective lining helps retain body heat and the fleece collar protects your neck from the frigid air. The shell is water-resistant, so the jacket will hold up in snow and light rain, and the extended cuffs with thumbholes keep your hands toasty. There are two exterior zippered pockets, along with a zippered security pocket inside the jacket — perfect for stashing a granola bar and some lip balm before you hit the trails. An enthusiastic reviewer: “This jacket has nice long sleeves and the back is longer then the front so perfect when I have my pack on. Very warm with the right base layers for hiking in 25 degree weather.” Available colors: 4 Available sizes: X-Small — 3X 02
An Ultra-Lightweight & Packable Down Jacket
Materials: Nylon shell and Responsible Down Standard (RDS)-certified down fill Why it’s great: Down is known for being both lightweight and warm — making it a great option for cold weather hiking — but it usually comes with a pretty hefty price tag. This winter jacket, though, is a surprisingly affordable (and very worthy) option. It features a water-resistant shell that'll have you covered in case you get caught in some light rain, but keep in mind that it'll lose its warmth (and take a good amount of time to dry out) if you get caught in a downpour. Elasticized cuffs and a high collar add extra warmth, and there are two exterior zip pockets and two inner pockets. Plus, this jacket is super easy to fold down and pack inside the included carrying bag, making it a great choice if you're looking for something you can stow in a backpack. An enthusiastic reviewer: “I needed something extremely small, packable yet warm for my Iceland trip and this met all 3 of my needs [...] This jacket was perfect because it's so light, that if it becomes warm as you're hiking you can easily take it off and wrap it around your waist or stash it in your bag.” Available colors and styles: 10 Available sizes: X-Small — 3X 03
A Warm Jacket With A Thermal Reflective Liner
Materials: Polyester twill shell and fleece lining Why it’s great: If you're looking for something that pulls out all the stops, this warm jacket with a zip-off hood is a fantastic option. The shell is fully waterproof, and the thermal reflective liner helps retain body heat. The drawstrings on the hood and hem are adjustable to help block the chill. The exterior cuffs are adjustable, and the stretchy interior cuffs with thumbholes help keep the cold from sneaking through. And if you happen to get hot while you hike, there are underarm zippers you can open for ventilation. This jacket also has the most storage options, boasting two hand pockets, zippered sleeve and chest pockets, and interior mesh-lined and zip pockets for your valuables. An enthusiastic reviewer: “So excited to have found this Andorra jacket that checks off all of my criteria. Lightweight and super comfortable [...] And when you do need some cooling down, unzip the underarm zippers. Lots of pockets in nooks to zip away safely your little gadgets and even some snacks on hiking trails." Available colors and styles: 8 Available sizes: Small — X-Large 04
An Insulated But Breathable Softshell Jacket
Materials: Polyester-spandex shell and fleece lining Why it’s great: If you're planning to work up a sweat on your hike, you may want to consider this water-resistant softshell jacket. Although softshell jackets tend to offer less moisture protection in heavy rain or snow, they're generally more stretchy and breathable, so they're great when you're on the move and working up a sweat. The hood, hem, and cuffs are adjustable for the perfect fit. Plus, the zippered side pockets and hidden inner pocket are great for storing essentials. An enthusiastic reviewer: “I'm between a large and extra large but since I wanted to use this for layering when hiking, I got the extra large and it's just a little baggy so I can fit layers under. I'm sure it'll be good for running errands around town too. Winters are cold in western New York and I think this will be great!” Available colors: 4 Available sizes: Small — 3X 05
A Cozy Puffer Jacket That's Under $50
Materials: 100% polyester Why it’s great: This winter puffer jacket is lightweight water-resistant, and best of all — wallet-friendly. The quilted coat features contoured seams for a fitted silhouette that won't get in the way while you scale any mountains, and there’s a hood you can pull up for extra warmth. Elasticized cuffs keep the wind and cold at bay, and the two zippered side pockets are great for keeping hands warm or storing essentials. Plus, when you’re not using the jacket, it packs up neatly into the included carrying bag — but since it's synthetic, it won't be quite as lightweight as down. An enthusiastic reviewer: “I took it on a road trip through AZ in April was great in the chilly days while hiking in the morning and did well in drizzle rain. Kept me nice and warm and dry even with wind in an open air jeep.” Available colors and styles: 20 Available sizes: X-Small — XX-Large 06
A Soft Fleece Jacket With 30,000+ 5-Star Reviews
Materials: 100% polyester fleece Why it’s great: If you’re hiking in mildly cold weather or want to wear layers, this fleece jacket is a wildly popular choice that comes in a wide array of colors, including black, canyon blue, and winter mauve. It features a high collar and zippered exterior pockets where you can warm up your hands and carry a few essentials. However, this jacket isn’t waterproof, so it’s not the best outer layer when hiking in rain and snow. An enthusiastic reviewer: “I now have 7 of these in different colors! [...] They are warm, wash beautifully, and hold up great. Perfect for around the house, easily dress up with a scarf for errands, and pack light for travel and hiking.” Available colors and styles: 70+ Available sizes: X-Small — 3X, including petite and plus sizes 07
A Fleece-Lined & Waterproof Jacket For Rain
Materials: Nylon shell and fleece lining Why it’s great: If you're looking for something that'll stand up to cold and rainy conditions, look no further than this sherpa-lined rain jacket. Made with a lightweight shell and a plush interior, it features a hood, elasticized cuffs, and a drawstring hem to block out moisture. The sleeves are not insulated — so it may not be the best choice if you're dealing with extra frigid temperatures — but it's perfect if you're planning a demanding hike on a rainy day. An enthusiastic reviewer: "Love this jacket. It’s waterproof enough for me to wear on hikes in the rainy PNW and I’ve always stayed dry. The Sherpa lining is great because it keeps me warmer than other rain jackets I’ve owned in the past." Available colors: 10 Available sizes: X-Small — 3X 08
An Affordable Lightweight Jacket That Also Works As A Mid-Layer
Materials: Nylon shell and recycled polyester fill Why it’s great: This versatile winter jacket is great on its own or as a mid-layer under a heavier coat on extra chilly days. The quilted, water-resistant jacket is insulated to help keep you warm and there’s an adjustable drawcord hem that helps you find the perfect fit. Exterior and interior pockets let you warm your hands and stash a few must-have items, though keep in mind — this option isn't as warm as other jackets, but it's great for brisk days or layering. An enthusiastic reviewer: “I bought this for our trip to Alaska, the weather was going to be low of 30's and high of 50's [...] This jacket was just perfect. I wore it almost every day over several layers of clothes so I could take off as needed. It was warm but extremely lightweight and the zippered pockets were very handy and easy to reach.” Available colors and styles: 10 Available sizes: X-Small — X-Large Don't miss a thing
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