To be warm when it’s cold outside is very nice indeed. Unfortunately, many women’s winter jackets don’t let you feel warm and fashionable at the same time. That’s not the case with the Outdoor Research Womens Sonata Ultra hooded down jacket. I’ve worn the coat in the field and the city, and it’s done a great job in each setting. The jacket looks svelte in town yet keeps me warm even in the snowiest and windiest conditions.
As with many down jackets, the Womens Sonata Ultra is lightweight and can be packed down into one of its pockets if needed. That packability doesn’t come with a sacrifice to comfort. The jacket’s comfy without being too tight, yet the body’s not overly bulky. The hood seems large, though that’s both because it’s filled with down and is built to accommodate a helmet. Still, even when it’s sized-down with the pull string, the hood does makes me feel somewhat silly if it’s not on my head.
I’m willing to overlook that. In fact, the Outdoor Research Womens Sonata Ultra is quickly becoming one of my favorite jackets because of its warmth. The 800 down-fill power is a great insulator whether I’m just standing around outdoors or hiking around in the ice and snow. The Pertex Quantum fabric does a fair job of blocking the wind, and it makes the Sonata highly water-resistant as well. I’ve worn this jacket in extremely rainy conditions, and the water has beaded up and rolled off. Many lesser down jackets I’ve had in the past have not been so water-resistant, creating the problem of having to add an oversized outer layer to the mix. The Sonata has eliminated that problem completely.
It sounds silly, but one of the features I love about this coat is the zippers. I’ve struggled with zippers on many jackets, either because fabric gets caught in the zipper or the actual zipper is just problematic. The Outdoor Research Womens Sonata Ultra zips very easily and reliably every time. This is true with both the main zipper and with the pockets. And because it’s designed for cold winter weather, the jacket has zipper pulls large enough to easily maneuver with gloves on.
Other than the very puffy hood, which is a necessity for wearing a helmet, I have no complaints about the Sonata. It has quickly become my late-fall and winter coat of choice, and I enjoy wearing it every time.
The Outdoor Research Womens Sonata Ultra hooded down jacket was provided for review. All opinions and words are my own and honest, and the article contains no affiliate links.
Outdoor Research Womens Sonata Ultra Hooded Down Jacket
- Very warm, but not so blistering it's too hot for late Fall
- Zippers are easy to use and snag-free
- 800 fill-power down is nice and lightweight
- Great insulation without being too bulky
- Hood is bulky if you're not wearing a helmet