Feathered Friends Eos Down Jacket
$339, 11 oz. (men’s medium)
Sizes: men’s S-XXL, women’s XS-XL
From lunch stops at mountain passes buffeted by cold, autumn’s-around-the-corner winds in Glacier National Park in September, to mornings and evenings in temps in the thirties and forties on that six-day Glacier backpacking trip, another September backpacking trip in Yellowstone, and a four-day August trip in Idaho’s Sawtooth Mountains, the Feathered Friends Eos Down Jacket persuaded me that it’s hands-down one of the very best puffy jackets on the market—and an incredible value at its price. I don’t offer such praise casually or very often. But there are few pieces of outdoor apparel or gear on which your money would be more wisely spent. Read on to learn why.
Made in the U.S. and stuffed with 3.7 ounces of ethically sourced, 900+-fill goose down, the Eos proved ideal in a range of temperatures down to the high 30s with sometimes strong, cold winds, in which the jacket kept me completely warm over just a long-sleeve top. That’s impressive warmth for a puffy jacket that weighs 11 ounces—its warmth-to-weight ratio is as good as any I’ve seen, and possibly only matched by the Arc’teryx Cerium LT, which costs $40 more (and is a hybrid down-synthetic puffy).
While the down isn’t treated for water resistance (which is more common in sleeping bags), it is packed inside a water-resistant, Pertex Quantum shell with a DWR (durable, water-resistant treatment) that sheds light precipitation; short of you standing outside in a steady rain without a rain shell over it, the Eos will keep its down dry. As with any lightweight and ultralight jacket, the 12-denier by 20-denier shell fabric is tough for its very low weight, but susceptible to tears, so be careful with it. The construction is top-notch, though, with sewn-through baffles that prevent down from migrating. While sewn-through baffles help reduce garment weight and are common in lightweight down jackets, they can create cold spots along seams where there’s essentially no insulation. But that was not a problem in the toasty Eos, even in temps in the upper 30s Fahrenheit.
The elasticized hood isn’t adjustable—that would add weight—but has a supremely well-tailored fit that keeps cold air out and even stays put on your head when the jacket’s front zipper is opened halfway, which is remarkable.
The jacket sports two adequately spacious, zippered hand pockets, elasticized cuffs, and a drawcord hem. It packs down to fit in the included, three-liter, 8×5.5-inch stuff sack, a nice size for a camping pillow—compact and light enough that I kept it near the top of my backpack to pull out during snack breaks in chilly wind at high passes in Glacier.
At a price that’s even beats some high-end down jackets that are not nearly as warm (i.e., they’re lighter and made for milder conditions), the men’s and women’s Feathered Friends Eos Down Jacket delivers exceptional quality in an insulated jacket that’s warm enough for camping in temps near or below freezing, and that you could wear around town in winter. When it comes to weighing dollar-for-dollar value, you will rarely spend your money so wisely as on this puffy jacket.
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NOTE: I tested gear for Backpacker Magazine for 20 years. At The Big Outside, I review only what I consider the best outdoor gear and apparel. See categorized menus of all of my gear reviews at The Big Outside.