Legendary Whitetails Anchorage Parka Review
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Legendary Whitetails Anchorage Parka
Check Price at Amazon
$249.93 at REI
$118.93 at REI
Check Price at REI
$65.97 at Amazon
|Pros||Affordable, trim cut is flattering, large and comfortable hood||Incredibly warm and weather-protective, deep hood, amazing pockets||Warm, comfortable, simple, inexpensive||Great price, lightweight, flattering cut, comfortable||Inexpensive, comfortable, decent waterproofing, quite warm|
|Cons||Lack of quality control, not very warm, not waterproof, odd pockets||On the bulky side, face fabric holds onto water||Shallow hood, no internal pockets||Not as warm as other options, less weather protection||Short, no wrist cuffs, questionable quality|
|Bottom Line||This inexpensive jacket looks good and works in mild winter weather but won't hold up to serious conditions||A beast of a winter parka that took on arctic blasts and trips around town with ease||Cute, streamlined, and warm enough for almost any winter weather, this jacket is a great value||This lightweight, flattering jacket is great for shoulder seasons or milder winters||This low-cost winter jacket is warm and waterproof but much shorter than others we tested|
|Rating Categories||Legendary Whitetail...||Fjallraven Nuuk - W...||REI Co-op Norseland...||Columbia Heavenly L...||Wantdo Waterproof Snow|
|Weather Resistance (25%)|
|Specs||Legendary Whitetail...||Fjallraven Nuuk - W...||REI Co-op Norseland...||Columbia Heavenly L...||Wantdo Waterproof Snow|
|Insulation and Fill Power||Polyester synthetic fill||Supreme microloft (100% polyester)||650 fill duck down||Polyester synthetic down||Unavailable|
|Hood||Lightly insulated||Insulated with detachable faux fur trim||Fleece lined||Insulated||Detachable, insulated hood, with removable faux fur trim|
|Pockets||7 external pockets including two hand wamer pockets||6 external - 2 chest, 2 hand warmer, 2 catchall. 5 internal - 2 zippered, 1 button, 2 mesh catchall.||2 zippered hand warmer||2 zippered hand, 1 zippered interior||2 zippered hand warmer, 2 internal - 1 zippered chest, 1 drop-in pocket|
|Weight (size small)||2.4 lbs||3.7 lbs||2.0 lbs||1.5 lbs||2.5 lbs|
|Weather Resistant Features||Waterproof claim disputed by test||Waterproof, windproof||DWR treatment||Water resistant fabric||Waterproof|
|Sizes Available||XS to XXXL||XXS to XXL||XS to XL||XS to XXL||S to XXL|
|Social or Environmental Certifications||None||Fluorocarbon-free impregnation||Responsible Down Standard (RDS), 100% recycled polyester lining, Bluesign approved||None||None|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Anchorage Parka stands out for its relatively low cost. It's not the warmest, most waterproof, or notably well-made, but it does offer a layer of warmth and enough style to make it a tempting option that will save you quite a bit of cash.
Legendary Whitetails claims to use 130 grams of synthetic, polyester insulation in the Anchorage Parka, and we can see that the chest is lined in super-soft sherpa fleece. The result is a thin jacket that does not do enough to keep you warm in weather much below freezing.
During our temperature tests, we stood still in each jacket for 10 minutes in 20-degree temperatures. An internal thermometer showed that this jacket held the least amount of warmth during the test, dropping down to 71 degrees. We wouldn't have wanted to spend much longer in the elements without moving around.
The insulated and detachable hood is deep enough to protect the sides of the face from wind without obscuring the vision. The faux fur trim also helps to cut the wind, though it is much smaller and less effective than the other versions we've tried. Soft wrist gaskets, which seem to be made of polyester, feel great against the wrists and keep drafts out. However, if they get wet, they don't dry quickly and will steal warmth.
Two handwarmer pockets are placed outside of the jacket's insulation, meaning that there is just a layer of face fabric between you and the cold. They aren't very deep and do little overall to keep the hands out of the cold. There are better jackets to have on a day you forget your gloves.
This jacket's shell effectively cuts the wind, and the sherpa lining helps insulate the body's core. However, the hood is not deep enough to keep a side wind off your face, and the thin faux fur ruff does little to improve this. The collar only comes up to about the chin, so the jacket does not protect the face very well if caught in the elements.
Legendary Whitetail claims that this jacket's shell is waterproof. When we stood in the shower for two and a half minutes for our water testing, the 100% polyester shell soaked up quite a bit of water. Even more concerningly, a ton of water soaked through the seam below the sherpa lining on both sides of the jacket. We do not consider this coat to be waterproof.
At 2.4 pounds, the Anchorage is not the lightest jacket in the test, but we never feel weighed down when wearing it. Since it's thinner than many others, it's also far easier to tote around to the office or the store. The cut is flatteringly slim but still broad enough in the shoulders to allow for a full range of motion — even with multiple layers underneath. Several of our testers have broad shoulders and never found a cause for complaint. The jacket's length helps provide warmth and gives you some insulation when you sit down on a cold park bench. The hem is also wide enough to allow for easy walking, with or without the zipper closed.
The soft sherpa fleece lining the upper section of the Anchorage is teddy bear soft and very comforting. You generally can't feel it through a shirt, though, so it adds more to the jacket's warmth than to its comfort. The wrist cuffs are soft, and the hood won't block your field of vision.
One of our few comfort complaints with this coat is the collar. It's on the tight side, and when you zip it all the way up, the zipper juts into the bottom of the chin. The zipper and collar are padded in microfleece, but that doesn't make this less annoying. The effect is even worse when the hood is on since it holds the zipper against your chin. We don't like the hand-warming pockets either. They are low and are not angled to welcome your hand at a natural angle. They run straight up and down the jacket, forcing your wrist to bend uncomfortably. They also aren't very deep and are uninsulated, which is not a great combination.
A trim cut, pretty colors, and subtle herringbone patterns on the jacket's 100% polyester fabric give the Anchorage a pleasing style overall. That said, superfluous details and unnecessary pockets detract from the otherwise classic appeal.
Finishing touches can add a lot to the appeal of a jacket. We aren't bothered by the branded shoulder patch of a white-tailed deer on the right shoulder or by the two likely unnecessary elbow patches. But the faux leather stripes on either side of the waist and the large zippers opening to oddly sized and difficult-to-access pockets on both arms and sides of the chest seem silly. It feels like there are more zippers to break and more places to misplace your ID, credit card, or lift ticket.
Our other gripe is with the faux fur ruff, which is not removable, though the hood itself is. This is the least appealing and least useful ruff we've tested, and it is very thin. Since it offers much less protection from the elements, it's also far less useful, making it far less appealing.
We drug the tip of a paperclip along the outer and inner fabric and across the seams of this jacket. The outer fabric didn't flinch. The liner fabric showed some wear but didn't puncture or snag, and the seams held.
The zippers seem sturdy, but the double zipper on the front of the jacket got sticky quickly and would sometimes catch and refuse to move. This is a little concerning. Our larger issue, though, is with quality control.
This jacket came with one improperly stitched cuff, causing our hand to pull it out of place every time we pulled it on. Eventually, the few stitches left holding it together broke. One of the hood cinches was also incorrectly attached to the jacket, leaving a messy pile of stitches and some white fabric on the outer fabric. Not ideal.
Should You Buy the Legendary Whitetails Anchorage Parka?
The Anchorage Parka is an affordable winter jacket best suited to milder and drier winter weather. Its thin insulating layer, flattering cut, and subtle herringbone fabric details earn style points, while a sherpa fleece lining around the jacket's chest adds warmth and helps cut the wind. If you spend little time outside in wet weather or temps much below freezing, this option could work.
Some folks really like to shop local. If that's you, you may have noticed that Legendary Whitetail advertises that the Anchorage Parka is designed in the US, making it the product of a small American business. The jacket is manufactured in China, though, like many of its competitors in this test.
What Other Winter Jackets Should You Consider?
The Wantdo Waterproof Snow Jacket is another budget option that will save you money if you're willing to compromise on comfort. It's waterproof and warmer than the Anchorage Parka, though it's short and does little to keep your lower half warm. If you have a little more money to spend, you could consider the REI Co-op Norseland Insulated Parka. With 238 grams of 650-fill duck down, it's quite a bit warmer than the Anchorage while also being lighter. It does have a different look, with a bulkier, puffy silhouette and disproportionately small hood. It also has a thin and likely less durable face fabric. If you can shell out a bit more and want to be really cozy, check out the Outdoor Research Coze Down Parka with its 240 grams of 700-fill down.
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