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Published on October 14th, 2012 | by Greg


Tilley Times Two: Outdoor Coats For The City And Be

To para­phrase a quote: “You can tell a man by the coat he choos­es”. Few gar­ments are quite as vis­i­ble as a jack­et, and few oth­ers need to be quite so durable, hold­ing up against the el­e­ments, ne­glect­ful treat­ment, and in­fre­quent clean­ing. And to­day’s com­pa­ny is a brand you might not be fa­mil­iar with, of­fer­ing gear that’s made in Cana­da, and orig­i­nal­ly just­ly fa­mous for their hats. Not just any hat, ei­ther- theirs comes with an own­er’s man­u­al and an in­sur­ance pol­i­cy, and the one we test­ed years ago con­tin­ues to hold up in­cred­i­bly well. But they make much more than head­wear, and so we were anx­ious to try out two of their men’s jack­ets, one a stylish blaz­er and the oth­er a wa­ter­proof hood­ed jack­et.

First in the pair was the City Col­lec­tion Trav­el Blaz­er- and now we’re fea­tur­ing the Tilley En­durables Men’s Wa­ter­proof Jack­et. Avail­able in three col­or choic­es, ours was the clas­sic char­coal, though sand and red both seemed like sol­id op­tions. Siz­ing runs from small all the way through 3XL, and felt just a lit­tle bit bag­gy over­all in the small we tried. But at least in the arms and waist, that wasn’t an is­sue, as a draw­string on the bot­tom ad­just­ed nice­ly, and well-de­signed vel­cro cuffs closed them off to the wind as well. In the close­up im­age we took, you can see the some­what un­usu­al fas­ten­er, as well as the zip­per.

Zip­pers get over­looked of­ten, but are a key el­e­ment to many cloth­ing items. We tug, pull, and gen­er­al­ly do our best to try and make life com­pli­cat­ed, but these days most zip­pers are pret­ty de­cent (the vast ma­jor­i­ty are made by YKK, which takes them in­cred­i­bly se­ri­ous­ly). These are, as well, but are the “flat back” style with an in­te­ri­or flap as well, mean­ing that these seal im­pres­sive­ly against Moth­er Na­ture. The pho­to high­lights this clear­ly- we used a flash, but prac­ti­cal­ly no zip­per gleam can be spot­ted through the flaps, a rare feat and one wor­thy of par­tic­u­lar at­ten­tion if you’re look­ing for a jack­et that can with­stand the el­e­ments.

In fact, even against pret­ty se­ri­ous wind, our core didn’t feel drafty. But there’s a se­ri­ous down­side as well- a lack of ven­ti­la­tion that meant a fair­ly steamy, sweaty en­vi­ron­ment. Of­ten, jack­ets like these will of­fer some ven­ti­la­tion around the armpits or back, or use fab­rics that breathe- here, the shell is 100% wa­ter­proof ny­lon, which means that noth­ing gets in but noth­ing gets out ei­ther. We liked the sealed seams- it cer­tain­ly seemed like we could lit­er­al­ly dump wa­ter on them with­out wor­ry­ing about leaks- and the hide-away, roll-up hood was de­cent as well, if a bit big. Roomi­ness has its ad­van­tages, as this hood can cov­er even a Tilley hat. Thumbs up to the siz­able pock­ets, and un­like just about any oth­er jack­et we’ve seen, they didn’t skimp on the zip­pers (they’re the same as the pri­ma­ry one). The mesh lin­ing of­fered no ex­tra warmth, though, and there were sad­ly no hid­den pock­ets in this one- but the large in­te­ri­or one fit a big GPS and some snacks.

Over­all, the Tilley Wa­ter­proof Men’s Jack­et is a sol­id choice- one that is great if you’re in mid-warmth cli­mates or wor­ry­ing pri­mar­i­ly about the wind or mois­ture rather than sheer cold. It will hold up well, and hold out the weath­er well, but we def­i­nite­ly wouldn’t rec­om­mend this one for any­time you’ll be ex­er­cis­ing or any­thing like­ly to make you sweat. Plus, it is a bit ex­pen­sive, and the $250 didn’t quite feel worth it on this one. Avail­able pri­mar­i­ly on­line, di­rect­ly from the man­u­fac­tur­er.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Apple’s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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