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Canada Goose Expedition Parka Review

Canada Goose Expedition Down Parka
Top Pick Award
Price:   $995 List | $994.99 at Amazon
Compare prices at 3 resellers
Pros:  Incredibly warm, many pockets, great features.
Cons:  Bulky, too warm and heavy for most users.
Bottom line:  Ridiculously warm, bulky jacket for the high end user in extremely cold climates and conditions.
Editors' Rating:   
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Manufacturer:   Canada Goose

Our Verdict

Does a temperature of -5 degrees F mean a warm day to you? Do you wake up early to go outside to clear the driveway with a snow blower? If this is starting to describe a typical winter day for you, then you might be interested in what the Canada Goose Expedition Parka can offer. This burly parka offers incredible warmth and function in severe conditions, designed for polar expeditions and long frigid snowmobile commutes in the cold northern latitudes. This is certainly the most niche jacket in our review, and is likely too much jacket for most. Our Editors' Choice winner, the Arc'teryx Camosun Parka, is a more versatile option, but if you are looking for the ultimate in cold weather protection, our Top Pick for Extreme Cold will fit the bill.

Consider Donating to Polar Bears International with PBI Expedition model
The Expedition Parka is also included in a custom line of products that donates a part of your purchase to Polar Bears International. PBI is a non-profit organization that strives to protect not only polar bears, but habitat that is crucial to their survival. For an additional $50 the Canada Goose PBI Expedition Parka comes in a signature royal blue, a Polar Bears International patch sewn onto the right shoulder, as well as your contribution to the future of a vulnerable species.


RELATED REVIEW: The Best Men's Winter Jackets of 2017


Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
Jed Porter

Last Updated:
Tuesday
November 15, 2016

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Weighing in at 4 pounds 9 ounces, the Expedition Parka is the heaviest and bulkiest jacket in our winter jacket review. The reason for this weight is the immense amount of 625-fill-power duck down and the heavy-duty Arctic Tech outer shell material. It's available in eight colors from black to bright red, so you can decide if you want to be more subtle or follow the outdoor travel advice of "Be Bright, Be Seen." Storage is not an issue with a total of 10 exterior pockets, both zippered and Velcroed, as well as one interior zippered pocket. Additional features like a snow skirt and best-in-the-business hood make this jacket one of the most effective dedicated winter parkas out there.

Performance Comparison


The seriously warm Canada Goose is overkill for these early winter conditions in moderate altitude of the Tetons.
The seriously warm Canada Goose is overkill for these early winter conditions in moderate altitude of the Tetons.

Warmth


The Expedition Parka is hands down the warmest jacket in our review, and unless you want to zip yourself into a full body Himalayan down suit, you would be hard-pressed to find a warmer jacket elsewhere. During our review, which saw temperatures from 40 down to 15 degrees Fahrenheit, this coat was comfortable while standing around but bordered on too hot when doing something active like shoveling snow. This warmth comes from 625-fill-power duck down. Although it is not the highest quality down available (see our Buying Advice guide), the amount of down fill is the root of this parka's warmth.


As a full-length parka with a snow skirt and an insulated hood lined with real coyote fur, this jacket does an excellent job at trapping in body heat and keeping cold out. Long rib knit cuffs provide an excellent seal while allowing gloves to be worn over the top. The only cold spots we could find were in the outer pockets, which are non-insulated. While we liked the warmth offered by this model, we felt like our Best Buy winner, Marmot Fordham, is actually a much more versatile insulated jacket, and one-quarter the price.

The Velcro powder and draft skirt really completes the warmth trapping effect of the Canada Goose.
The Velcro powder and draft skirt really completes the warmth trapping effect of the Canada Goose.

Nothing compares to the warmth of the Canada Goose. However, The North Face McMurdo comes close, at a fraction of the price. For this reason, we granted the McMurdo one of our Best Buy awards. The Rab Neutrino Endurance is also fairly warm, and less than one-third the weight of the Canada Goose.

Weather Resistance


The Arctic Tech fabric that constitutes the outer shell of the jacket is coated in a DWR treatment, which is unsurprising given the intended environment this jacket is to be used in. While able to shed snow and sleet, the fabric did begin to show wetting in prolonged exposure to moisture. Again, if it is raining, it is probably way too warm to be wearing this parka. Meant to be used in the coldest of cold climates, it is going to be overkill in areas that have more temperate winters.


If you live where wet weather is a concern, then look for a synthetically insulated jacket or a down jacket with a more robust exterior, like the Arc'teryx Fission SV. The integrated snow skirt keeps updrafts from entering in from below, and an insulated adjustable hood with coyote fur trim keeps the face warm and is less ticklish and more resistant to freezing up than the faux fur trim of the Helly Hansen Dubliner Parka or The North Face Gotham II.

The huge cuff allows for even the biggest gauntlet style mitts to be used with ease.
The huge cuff allows for even the biggest gauntlet style mitts to be used with ease.

Comfort


If you were to wear this in temperatures above freezing, you might not be able to resist the urge to take a nap! This is a very comfortable jacket, thanks to the soft duck down fill and the silky nylon inner lining. We like the recessed rib knit cuffs that provide a snug fit, and the soft real coyote fur trim around the hood. This is a beast of a jacket though, and its bulk makes it tough to sit down comfortably while wearing it.


The size of the front zipper means that not only will it be really durable, but it is also much easier than any of the other jackets to operate with gloves on. Our Editors' Choice winner, the Arc'teryx Camosun, and Best Buy winner, Marmot Fordham, scored the same in this metric, and seemed to be more comfortable over a much broader range of conditions than the Expedition Parka, which is only comfortable until it is uncomfortably warm.

While this jacket is really bulky  it doesn't seem all that bad when wearing insulated pants and winter boots.
While this jacket is really bulky, it doesn't seem all that bad when wearing insulated pants and winter boots.

Features


Features? You name it, this jacket has it. The hood uses a three-way adjustable drawcord to keep the snow and wind from whipping you in the face, and is lined with real coyote fur to provide more protection. The waist also uses a drawcord, although the fabric is so bulky it is hard to cinch tight. A Velcro snow skirt wraps tight around the inside waist, keeping you dry when riding fast on a snow machine or walking out into the whipping snow. Canada Goose put every bell and whistle it could on this parka, and although a researcher in the Antarctic may find use for the 10 exterior pockets, the average consumer will be hard pressed to use them all. The only feature we really wished for is an extra large interior pocket for a thermos, gloves, or other large items.


The only other jacket in our review that approached the feature set of the Canada Goose is the Mountain Hardwear Therminator. The Therminator also has a great hood, a powder/draft skirt, and a good selection of pockets. On the Canada Goose, we wish the hand warmer pockets were more insulated like those on the Arc Teryx Fission SV or that the Expedition Parka had the double sets of hand warmers of The North Face McMurdo.

There are LOT of pockets on this jacket!  Top load  side zipper  you name it  the Expedition Parka has a pocket for it.
There are LOT of pockets on this jacket! Top load, side zipper, you name it, the Expedition Parka has a pocket for it.

Style


This is a jacket which has its own unique style and might have an application in certain casual settings, but this is a functional parka that is designed primarily for cold inhospitable conditions that do not demand a flattering fit. The cut is boxy and allows for plenty of layering underneath, and although it hits mid thigh like the Helly Hansen Dubliner, it does not have any of the elevated fashion of the more casual trench coats reviewed.


Some may find the use of real animal fur unappealing, in which case the faux fur trim used on jackets such as The North Face Gotham II or McMurdo may be a better option. The excellent, non-furred hood of the Marmot Fordham is also nice.

While this jacket offers more overall protection from the elements than any other parka we reviewed  it's not the most "stylish."
While this jacket offers more overall protection from the elements than any other parka we reviewed, it's not the most "stylish."

Durability


The Canada Goose Expedition Parka is a tank, and we did not experience any abnormal wear and tear issues during our test. We ranked this jacket a 10 out of 10 on the durability scale.


The zippers on this jacket are some of the largest on the market and the Velcro closures are burly and held up well to the stresses of the heavy outer fabric. With a lifetime guarantee, one can be assured that their investment is protected.

We loved the burly shell fabric of the Canada Goose for hard-working chores in brutal cold temps.
We loved the burly shell fabric of the Canada Goose for hard-working chores in brutal cold temps.

Best Applications


This parka is designed for inactive users in extreme, cold environments. If this describes your needs then you will not be disappointed with its top notch cold weather performance. If you live in most of the lower 48 states, then this jacket will likely be overkill.

Shoveling snow in the front walkway is almost too much for this jacket. We quickly overheated thanks to the large amounts of down fill. This parka is better suited to more sedentary pursuits in really cold climates.
Shoveling snow in the front walkway is almost too much for this jacket. We quickly overheated thanks to the large amounts of down fill. This parka is better suited to more sedentary pursuits in really cold climates.

Value


At $995 this is the most expensive jacket in our review. Although it is a major investment, this is a jacket that should last for years of use and is likely less expensive than layering two or more lighter weight jackets together.

Conclusion


This is one of the warmest and most burly jackets available, and it will keep you warm and happy if you have to spend extended time outside in the winter whether you live in Fairbanks, AK or Ithaca, NY. Despite being a niche parka when compared with many others in this review, no other jacket can compare when it comes to warmth, which is why we've made this jacket our Top Pick for Extreme Cold. There is a reason why Canada Goose parkas have such a dedicated following, people who swear by its use when the temperatures drop and the snow starts flying.
Jed Porter

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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews


Most recent review: October 11, 2017
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:   
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Average Customer Rating:   
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100% of 1 reviewers recommend it
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
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   Oct 11, 2017 - 04:30am
Nice review. I love the Canada Goose best. No products can keep such warm in winter as Canada Goose. What makes me boring is the high price until i find www.canadagooseller.com can provide much discount.http://www.canadagooseller.com

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this product to a friend.
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