Columbia Powerfly (Women’s) ReviewNovember 22, 2013
- Great value
- Warm and comfortable to wear
- Works well with a pack and fits nicely under Gore-Tex shell
- Soft brushed treatment in hand pockets
- Stretchy “comfort cuffs” keep sleeves in place and add warmth
- Down doesn’t feel as lofty as other jackets
- Dark feathers can show through fabric
- Sounds loud when exterior fabric rubs against itself
If you get cold easy and could use extra body-heat retaining technology along with 800-fill down and want it with a non-bulky and slenderizing fit with some comfort features, then the Columbia Powerfly is for you. It’s not as lightweight or compressible as some, but at $220, it’s a solid, warm jacket and a good value.
There really is something to those tiny silver dots that line the Powerfly’s interior. It’s called Omni-Heat and the reflective qualities of the dots retain body heat. The jacket is a touch warmer than the other non-hooded jacket in the test, the Marmot Jena, mainly because the Powerfly has a snug-fitting neck, so no drafts.
I appreciate the long neck so you can hide inside of it. The jacket lifts a bit at the waist with arms raised, but the double adjustable draw cords at the hem help with that. The jacket has narrow channels and a slenderizing contoured fit so it doesn’t look bulky at all. It works nicely under a Gore-Tex shell or with a pack. The 3” stretchy “comfort cuffs” keep the sleeves in place when arms are in motion.
It fits into a stuff sack about the size of the Patagonia Hi-loft Down Sweater Hoody, or about as big as a Quaker Oatmeal round box. It’s very packable.
On my scale (with the stuff sack), the Powerfly weighs 11.8 oz., similar to the Marmot Jena Jacket.
The Powerfly has Columbia’s Omni-heat, in the form of visible silver dots in the interior that reflect and retain body heat. It also has an adjustable hem and lined chin guard. Columbia’s “comfort cuffs,” have an accurate name for the stretchy 3” long inserts that holds the sleeves into place and keeps wrists warm. The jacket has substantial zippers and glove-friendly pull tabs as well as two interior sunglass–sized non-zippered pockets.
This is an excellent non-hooded down jacket for the price ($220). It’s comfortable, sleek, warm and packable. It can standalone or layer well under a shell. All in all, this is a great value for an 800-fill down jacket.