686 GLCR Ether Down Thermagraph ReviewFebruary 17, 2017
- Well priced
- Body mapped insulation
- Stylish looks
- Smallish pit zips
- Face fabric loses weathproofing over time
- A bit heavy
686’s GLCR’s Ether is a warm ski jacket with strategically placed insulation to cut down on weight, though fashion-forward twill fabrics and cost-saving 2-layer fabrics put this jacket on the heavier side of those tested.
The twill face fabrics on the Eather look sharp and timeless but they can loose their weathproofing qualities over time as more texture means more chances for water to seep into the fabric and wet out. The hung liner-construction of the Eather on the interior saves cost, but will begin to tear over time.
The Ether is treated with a DWR coating, which makes it waterproof, though the chemical will wear off in time. If so, be sure to throw the jacket in the dryer on medium, which will re-activate the DWR coating. The very high collar should help keep you dry in blowing snow, and the powder skirt will do the same in the case of tomahawking wipe-outs.
Bells and Whistles
The Ether sports a full compliment of seven pockets, including a drop pocket for extra goggle lenses and a pass pocket on the left forearm. The powder skirt zips off and the wrist gaiters work great.
This coat kept us plenty warm on some downright bitter cold January days in Jackson Hole.
The body-mapped insulation helps reduce overheating, though the hung-liner-type interior doesn’t breathe as well as a three-layer shell or a jacket insulated with a top-shelf primaloft. The mesh-backed pit zips increase circulation to prevent overheating.
Frederick Reimers was the editor of Canoe and Kayak Magazine from 2007-09 and has been writing for Outside, Men's Journal, Skiing and Powder ever since.