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Need help finding a REAL winter jacket!

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  • Need help finding a REAL winter jacket!

    I have relocated to where winters are quite harsh and need a real winter jacket where I can survive -10°F days. I would like it to be the outdoorsy type of jacket as it will be my every day jacket for also doing barn chores and riding. Being water proof is a must. I would like to pay not much more than $200 if at all possible though the cheaper the better.. really needs to be durable since it will be worn in the barn practically every day. My next thing is I am rather small and I don't want a jacket that makes me look like I am shaped like a box. I went to L.L. Bean and tried on some of their jackets and I felt like I looked like a big box. So perhaps there are warm jackets that are fitted in existence?? Suggestions, anyone???

    I am running out of time..... winter is coming SOON.

    You only have to let the soft animal of your body / love what it loves
    "Wild Geese" by Mary Oliver

  • #2
    Have you looked at Carhart?

    I also have a Mountain Horse jacket that I love. It's really warm and easy to move in, it's not waterproof but I can be out in the rain for quite a while before I feel damp on the inside.
    My blog: Crackerdog Farm


    • #3
      It will be tough to find a single jacket that does it all well. Layers work best, like Under Armour base, wool sweater and down vest for either riding or chores, and a waterproof outer shell. Try EMS for quality outdoor gear if LL Bean doesn't work for you. If you're in a really cold area, where you get more snow than rain, water repellent, like a soft shell jacket can work well for you.
      Even more important will be warm wool socks and gloves and waterproof glove shells, and a really warm hat!


      • #4
        Carhartt coveralls are the BEST for really cold temps!


        • #5
          I second Carhartts!! I am very cold blooded and always look for cozy coats. DH bought me a long/over the butt Carhartt a couple of winters ago and it has proven itself, very well. It is a bit bulky, so I have a second string coat...best ever was a clearance on a Harry Hall riding jacket cost about $25 on sale. Love it!! Zipper finally broke, but I keep wearing it on wet days with bandage pins holding it closed. Never found another like it!! My best trick is a down vest under the coat. A down vest with a down jacket or Carhartt is almost too warm.
          Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma


          • #6
            Smartpak Alpine Jacket for around $99
            I've worn it on windy 20* days and get too hot. It's not bulky and you can get custom embroidery
            chaque pas est fait ensemble


            • #7
              Another Carhartt fan. If you are super cold blooded, go with the bibs and jacket or coveralls to trap all your body heat. It just makes going to the bathroom a pain (and cold). Their women's stuff actually has a tapered waist. But really, anything keeping you warm is going to make you look somewhat boxy unless you are 6'4" and 100 lbs.
              Originally posted by The Saddle
              Perhaps I need my flocking adjusted.


              • #8
                I have an LL Bean Ladies Jacket, and I love it! It's not boxy? Actually kinda fitted, like ladies shirts tend to be, though, admittedly, not a concern for me.
                It's waterproof with a zip out lining. The outer shell has a hood.

                The zip out is one reason I chose that jacket. Even when I lived in Maine, I would have to layer, because when doing chores I would get too warm.

                My blood has thinned from being in FL! I have already worn the outer shell over an under armour shirt a few times.
                I\'m not crazy. I\'m just a little unwell.


                • #9
                  Layering is your best bet, not just a single jacket. If you are doing any work, you will get way too warm in a jacket that keeps you comfortable sitting on the tractor at -10F. So removing the top layer helps prevent getting sweaty, then chilled while moving around.

                  I love my Carhartt Bibs, but only wore them once last year, just not cold enough.
                  I usually wear a T-shirt, sweatshirt, then a hooded, double layer sweatshirt outside and am plenty warm when working. Fleece or down vest over, for the more cold days. Lined jeans, flannel or fleece are REALLY warm, for cleaning stalls with both ends of the barn wide open for the tractor. They were under $20 at our Meijers box store. Daughter loves her lined jeans when it isn't cold enough for her Carhartts.

                  You really can't avoid the "well-rounded" look when dressed appropriately for the very cold weather. I would rather be warm than dressed in fashionable clothing for winter chores. All these suggestions are not light weight to wear, but you can move to get things done. We don't get a lot of "wet" weather to need waterproof daily coats. That is going to add poundage to canvas type clothing. Think how heavy the Aussie type, oilcloth raincoats are for riding! My Carhartt coats do keep me dry a very long time in mist or light rain. I always hang them to dry, since cotton shrinks in the dryer.

                  Good boots are also a must. If my feet are cold, nothing will keep the rest of me warm. Gander Mountain offers a lot of selections, with big sales after deer season ends. They have a lot of ladies models. Don't get anything tight, your feet get cold faster in tight boots.


                  • #10
                    Lakin McKey makes a rancher's jacket made for horse people: windproof canvas, quilted plus sherpa lining, detachable hood, storm cuffs, AND shoulder pleats to allow for free shoulder movement on horseback; also has box pleat on the sides for easy mount and dismount. Best part is it is under a hundred bucks. worst is finding a place that handles them but I know you can find them online. They are as tough as Carhartt but half the price. I got one last winter and liked it so well, I checked the store here that handles them and found and bought a nice fleece jacket as well. Next time, looking at their coveralls.
                    Founder of the Dyslexic Clique. Dyslexics of the world - UNTIE!!

                    Member: Incredible Invisbles


                    • #11
                      Land's End makes a Squall Jacket and a Squall Parka. One is lighter and the other heavier. I just ordered a parka for $150 for this winter as my old jacket gave it up finally. It is waterproof and has an optional hood. I can't say if I'll like it or not but it seemed like a good value.


                      • #12
                        Look at skiing catalogs. The clothes have to be warm, waterproof, and free enough to be active outdoors in. But they also have more of an idea of tailoring for women (or at least designing to give the illusion of tailoring) than most other outdoor markets do.

                        And as others have said, think layers. I liked (living in Alaska, temps down to -10/-20 in my area) a waterproof shell with zip-in wind-resistant liner, and I bought it large enough that I could fit a thin sweater and vest under it. That provided *plenty* of layering options for a range of temperatures, especially when I added high-quality long johns in the coldest weather.
                        She Gets Lost


                        • #13
                          As Goodhors notes layering is the key.

                          Start with your feet. Get some good quality wool socks. Make them better with silk sock liners. Cabelas has both.

                          Make sure your boots are waterproof. If they are not then add something like SealSkins.

                          Next, long underwear. You can go "union suit" or drawers and top. For women, that's probably a better choice. Make them either silk (for you, maybe the silk-wool blend) or the modern "fleece" type garments.

                          Then trousers appropriate to the task. Overalls work well. Get a smooth, "duck-type" fabric. Water resistant is best.

                          Next would be a cotton or wool-cotton blend shirt.

                          Over this get a jacket appropriate to your task (riding or working). Don't overdo the weight of the jacket. Remember that you've got two, good layers under the jacket (underwear top and cotton/wool shirt). A lighter weight jacket with a liner would be a good choice. Again, a smooth, waterproof fabric will be best. A belt on the jacket is a Good Thing as it will reduce heat loss.

                          Some folks like hoods; I don't find them comfortable and prefer a hat and scarf. Make sure you have ear protection.

                          Last, gloves. Working or riding you're better off to stick with the layer concept. Get some silk glove liners and then a good pair of winter riding or working gloves. Make sure that work gloves are waterproof.

                          Silk and silk/wool garments can be had from Cabelas. Their quality is good and the prices fair. I've used them for years!

                          Air is the best insulator you can find; layering helps trap that air next to your body so your heat loss is minimized.

                          Sadly, warmth and fashion don't go together very well. Be prepared to look like either Bib or the Dough Boy.

                          Good luck in your purchases!!

                          Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão


                          • #14
                            The hands-down warmest jacket I've worn was a down jacket. Sure, I look like the Michelin Man, but when it's -30F/-35C, I don't really care! That jacket was a thrift-store special, $10.

                            On that note, the warmest mitts I've ever worn were down-filled with a leather outer. They were my grandmother's.

                            As for socks, my absolute favourite is SmartWool, they come in different weights. When it's super-cold out, I wear thin silk socks, a cotton pair on top, then a thick SmartWool pair, all inside my Sorrel boots.

                            You never know what kind of obsessive compulsive crazy person you are until another person imitates your behaviour at a three-day. --Gry2Yng


                            • #15
                              Lots of great advice above. Goodhorse & Guilherme are right on.

                              With horsie coats I have always appreciated a zipper that you can open from the bottom so you can open it a bit for room when you ride

                              I usually end up wearing heavy wool sweater (they last indefinitely, have several old old ones. You can get sweat deals on ebay or Goodwill) under my Mtn Horse rain coat. Depending on temp, weight and number of layers under sweater changes. Believe it or not, for most of the winter, even in MN, this is all I need on the top, if I am working/riding. NOT the case if I am just standing around, though.

                              Keep your neck & head warm. Neck gaiters are good b/c you can take them off if you get hot. As for long johns, wool & silk blend are my faves. You can get good deals on Sierra Trading Post or sometimes sales at Wintersilks site.

                              Toes get cold, not matter what I do. I, too, like layers of smart wool or bridgedale socks. Again, good deals on sites above. Google around for discount codes. I have friends at REI who hook me up every Christmas, so I luck out in the sox dept. Blizzard boots from Dafna are great and CHEAP.

                              Mittens are warmer than gloves.

                              Today was first legitimately cold day here. 14 degrees with wind & damp. I started with layers on top, after vigorous curry they were just about all off. I rode around the corn field with my coat zipped all the way up, neck protected & I was fine. It helps that we ride furnaces...

                              I also discovered zipper on coat is shot I want to get it fixed by tailor but not sure I can get away without it for a week.

                              Not horse related, but if you are new to very cold climes, when it gets to be bitterly cold (windchills 20 below kind of cold...) I have found the best thing to wear to work is a wool kilt, wool tights or long johns & boots. Warmer than any pants, maybe for same reason that mittens are warmer than gloves.

                              good luck! Just think of the winter as good for building character.


                              • #16
                                For me, overalls are too hot.
                                Get insulated pants or long johns and on top LAYER.

                                For a barn jacket, I found a $10 navy men's jacket at Wally a few years ago that is still like new and, over warmer clothes, gets me thru our bad blizzards just fine.
                                I kind of wish it died, so I can look for some other, prettier one.

                                My problem is that I am short and so anything wide enough for layers in women's sizes ends up almost to my knees.
                                I need a jacket that is no longer than the arms.

                                For just getting around or riding in the very cold, down is hard to beat, light and fluffy looking, but really warm without getting so stuffy.

                                It is about 18 this morning and, without much wind, a hoody and that old jacket, earflaps and gloves will be fine for feeding, cleaning and breaking ice this morning.


                                • #17
                                  Agree with others regarding using layers, definitely the best way to stay toasty. My favorite winter barn coat of all time is my very heavy Carhartt. It is OLD but still intact and very toasty. Here in Kentucky, I generally only wear it a few times a year but in the midwest, I lived in that thing from November until March. It is not waterproof, but frankly if you are dealing with temps below freezing you are not going to have much in the way of water to deal with!


                                  • #18
                                    Agree with the layering. You don't want one heavy jacket that does it all.

                                    I live in Buffalo and I wear the Land's End classic marinac jacket to the barn. Yep, that little thing.

                                    It is windproof and water resistant.

                                    Underneath on super cold days I have a polarfleece turtleneck, polarfleece quarter-zip henley, polar fleece sweater, and over top if it is REALLY cold a down vest. That has kept me warm into the negatives.

                                    I love it because the whole kit and kaboodle is machine washable and with the several layers I can customize throughout the day.
                                    The Noodlehttp://tiny.cc/NGKmT&http://tiny.cc/gioSA
                                    Boy Wonderhttp://tiny.cc/G9290
                                    The Hana is nuts! NUTS!!http://tinyurl.com/SOCRAZY


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by meupatdoes View Post
                                      Agree with the layering. You don't want one heavy jacket that does it all.

                                      I live in Buffalo and I wear the Land's End classic marinac jacket to the barn. Yep, that little thing.

                                      It is windproof and water resistant.

                                      Underneath on super cold days I have a polarfleece turtleneck, polarfleece quarter-zip henley, polar fleece sweater, and over top if it is REALLY cold a down vest. That has kept me warm into the negatives.

                                      I love it because the whole kit and kaboodle is machine washable and with the several layers I can customize throughout the day.
                                      That is what my jacket looks to be and it cost all of $10 at Walmart.
                                      It really is wonderful for a top when layering and fine alone over a shirt too.
                                      Washes well many times, a bonus for a barn jacket.
                                      Mine has stood some downpours and is fine in snow, but would not work as a rain jacket.


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by meupatdoes View Post
                                        Agree with the layering. You don't want one heavy jacket that does it all.

                                        I live in Buffalo and I wear the Land's End classic marinac jacket to the barn. Yep, that little thing.

                                        It is windproof and water resistant.

                                        Underneath on super cold days I have a polarfleece turtleneck, polarfleece quarter-zip henley, polar fleece sweater, and over top if it is REALLY cold a down vest. That has kept me warm into the negatives.

                                        I love it because the whole kit and kaboodle is machine washable and with the several layers I can customize throughout the day.
                                        I wear a softshell like this as well, in Northern VT. I wear a long underwear top, hooded sweatshirt, and then a softshell. For days that I'm just holding horses for the farrier or not doing a lot of physcial activity, I switch the softshell out for my beloved Carhartt.

                                        I worked a few Standardbred sales in NJ in January and my Carhartt bibs were my best friend until I set them on fire. They still work fine, but all the fluff is falling out.

                                        My biggest thing, though, like everybody else said, make sure your hands and feet are warm. I have Artic Muck Boots and LOVE them. Never had cold feet. I hate working with gloves on, but have found a no-name brand of ski gloves that I can work with. I usually top it all off with a baseball hat and fleece ear cover thing. Beenies make my head TOO warm.

                                        It's quite the balancing act to dress just right in the wintertime!