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The best ski jackets are those that can make the harshest environments seem pleasantly enjoyable. It’s a nice bonus if the jacket looks good, and it gets even more points if the company has a philosophy you can stand behind.
Out of the box, I was pleased with the unique color scheme and feel of the fabric. The material is soft, and seemed thick and durable for a shell. The main zipper was sturdy and easy to use, even with my thick mittens. I tried it out in varied weather conditions in Colorado Ski Country, and I was very impressed with its overall performance. Cold, powder, wind in the trees or barreling down the groomers all were no match for the Cotopaxi Kumari.
Cotopaxi Kumari Ski Jacket Fit
The jacket has a regular to slim fit. Cotopaxi’s website advises sizing up if you plan on layering. Seeing as this is a shell, it’s perfect for working the backcountry or layering as needed when taking the cold windy lift rides at the resorts. Hence, I layered the Cotopaxi Sambaya Fleece (in small) underneath with a sweatwicking baselayer and found the size small to work well for me. I had room for good range of motion in the arms and shoulders for skiing aggressively on bumps and cruising through several inches of powder. Having a bit more length in my midsection, I seek out jackets with good coverage, and this jacket was just right. If you like a little more room, then you should probably size up as recommended.
Cotopaxi Kumari Ski Jacket Features
The jacket is made of Polartec® NeoShell® fabric, which is 100% waterproof and breathable. I had zero moisture seep through this jacket when the snow was beating down, and not a hint of wind got through this baby. My husband and I went out one morning when it was -14 at Copper Mountain and I was actually quite comfortable skiing in this jacket. Needless to say, I didn’t require the underarm zip vents, but they will be nice when I get out in some warmer spring weather.
The 3-way adjustable hood was useful on that frigid day to keep out the wind, and it fit over my helmet perfectly and didn’t require any adjustment. If you don’t want to use the hood, you easily can cinch it down.
Pockets: There are lots! I thought I had lost my chapstick because there are so many of them. There are two zippered pockets for your hands, two at the chest, and internal media player pocket, and my favorite, the forearm pass pocket. You will have plenty of room for your neck gaiter, energy bar, and flask. As an added bonus, the zippers were easy to grab with my big, clumsy mittens.
Wiping out is the worst, and the integrated powder skirt that kept out the snow (and cold) when I ate it on a fluffy run. It stayed put and didn’t ride up on me at all (which is a huge pet peeve of mine).
There are several drawcords around the bottom and the hood for a custom fit, allowing you to make it as snug as you want. The arm cuffs are nice and wide and easily cinched with velcro strips.
Cotopaxi Kumari Ski Jacket Summary
This jacket is tough, fun, and moves well. It kept me happy in a wide variety of conditions on the slopes. It is perfect for anyone looking for a stylish technical shell with all the bells and whistles to allow you to enjoy Mother Nature’s harshest conditions. And you can feel pretty good about supporting a company that has a global conscience. Cotopaxi’s “Gear for Good” concept provides support for global humanitarian causes. With each purchase of this jacket, Cotopaxi provides a month of schooling for an underprivileged child in Nepal.
This jacket retails for $389 and comes in 2 colors: Khaki Capri (tested) and Dark Shadow. See more at www.Cotopaxi.com or www.amazon.com/cotopaxi.