Product review Columbia winter jacket

Product Review/Clothing 


Columbia Carabineer II Parka


We’ve found a light, comfortable all-use jacket that beats cold and wet


ProPickup editor Bruce Smith comfy in a Columbia Carabineer II Parka.

Very few things make a day on a jobsite longer than being cold and wet.

Probably doubly so for company owners and field managers who run from one location to the next, getting in and out of their pickup as they go about conducting business. 

Being comfortable both in my pickup as well as working and pursuing my outdoors hobbies are high on my clothing priority list.

So I was quite pleased with how the Columbia Carabineer II Parka performed over the past couple months of winter weather. 

I’m all for being warm and dry. But I dislike wearing jackets and parkas that make me look and feel like the Michelin Man in the process. Or the need to wear four layers of shirts and LJs to stay warm.

That’s why I’ve grown quite fond of the new Columbia parka.

The lack of bulk and the tapered fit makes me feel good, and the high-tech materials it’s made from do a wonderful job of keeping the elements out and the heat in.

Omni-Tech outer shell is waterproof while the the inner shell is lined with Omni-Heat material to reflect your body heat inward. Inner liner zips in so parka can be used year-around.

The long and short of this particular parka is it’s a two-piece jacket.

It has a zip-in inner liner made from down incorporating a special heat-reflecting material called Omni-Heat sewn on the inside. 

Wind and rain are kept out with a waterproof shell  made from a material called Omni-Tech.

Omni-Heat reflects your body heat inward while the Omni-Tech outer shell keeps out the wind and wet; it’s a great combination for those of us who work and play in the outdoors.

The other aspect I really like about the Carabineer II Park is it’s comfortable to wear in the cab. It doesn’t feel bulky at all when you’re behind the wheel.

And should you get too warm (and you will at times!), there’s a zippered opening under each arm to vent heat.

Speaking of zippers, Columbia has designed pockets in all the right places to keep a cell phone, wallet, keys, sun glasses, gloves and so forth. It has pockets on the outside and inside, some deep, some shallow.  

I have been wearing this parka for several months this winter. It’s seen near-zero temps, snow storms, rain and wind. I’ve worn the inner liner by itself. It’s been worn on jobsites, to business meetings and around hunting camps.

And, my wife’s been stealing it to walk the dog and run to the super market.

That should tell you all you need to know about how well the Columbia’s Carabineer II Parka is liked around our house. – Bruce W. Smith / Editor, ProPickup