At first glance you can’t help but notice that the Canada Goose Timber Shell Jacket is on a totally different level of craftsmanship. This 3-layer material feels much more substantial than a lot of other jackets, but that’s just the beginning. A closer look reveals a lot of fine details that add up to make one of the best shells I’ve ever tested.
The Timber Shell Jacket is constructed with Tri-Durance 3-layer material, which offers great protection, durability, breathability, and four-way stretch. The fabric feels a lot softer than most shells, and isn’t as crinkly. During testing the fabric did an exceptional job of keeping out the snow and rain, as well as ventilating while I was really working hard. I took this jacket in the backcountry on some very cold days, and even though I worked-up quite a sweat ascending, I never got that clammy feeling once I stopped. This jacket is also fully seam sealed and has YKK aqua-guard zippers throughout.
No matter how breathable a shell fabric is, ventilating is still a very necessary component of a good shell—the Timber Shell jacket offers a couple different ways to ventilate. The underarm zippers and mesh in the side pockets work together to get some good airflow throughout the jacket. I found that no matter how hard I was working, I could keep my shell on to avoid having to stop and take off a layer.
I’m 5’11” and 155 lbs, and I thought this jacket was spot on for a medium. It’s slim fitting, but was definitely big enough for a couple layers. I was really excited about the cuffs of the jacket—not only are they nice and large, but they’re contoured to cover even larger gloves. While it seems like a simple feature, it’s much appreciated on super cold days when you just can’t take your hand out of a glove to adjust a cuff. Another great feature is the long hem in the back, it gives you great coverage, even while skiing or ice climbing.
The Timber Shell has several options for storage; two side hand pockets, a left chest pocket, a left cuff pocket, and an interior security pocket with wire port.
My favorite thing about this jacket is the hood. It’s huge, which I like because ski helmets can get really bulky, but it’s so adjustable that even if you don’t have a helmet on, it provides a great fit. The hood can be adjusted three ways—vertically, horizontally and circumferentially around the face. When the hood is on and the zipper is all the way up, it gave me a sense of comfort and security that no other shell I’ve tested can offer.
While I have a ton of great things to say about the jacket, it did have a couple small issues. First, I thought the velcro around the cuffs was a little thin, a wider strip would ensure that they stay secure. I also had a little bit of trouble getting the main zipper started during the first few outings with this jacket. I’m not sure if it had to be worn in, or if I picked up on some trick to getting it started, but it hasn’t been an issue since.
There is no doubt that this jacket is on the upper end of the price range as far as shells go, but you get what you pay for.
Colors: Black, military green, aurora green, sunset orange, pacific blue, red, amber, jade green
Best used for: skiing/riding, hiking, ice climbing, alpine mountaineering