The Best Winter Jackets For Extreme Cold: A Complete Guide

There’s no reason not get out there just because the weather is really cold. Spending time outdoors is great for mental and physical health. Whether you prefer a gentle stroll, a strenuous hike, cycling to work or mountain biking, your options are open once you’re invested in the best jacket for extreme cold you can find.

A selection of the best winter coats for extreme cold    

To assist with your selection, we’ve carefully researched the best warm jackets for winter, for men and women. We have also covered other items including gloves, socks, thermal underwear and boots, which you will need to wear with your chosen winter coat if you want to stay warm all over, all day long.

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See the best warm winter jackets for men and women here


Our overall best winter jackets for extreme cold in the women’s category is the Colombia Heavenly Hooded – a lightweight coat with great looks as well as impressive features.

Why buy the Columbia Heavenly Hooded Jacket for women?

The Columbia Heavenly Hooded Jacket might indeed be seen as a gift from the Gods. You can choose between 16 colors when buying this stylish jacket, and it also packs a serious punch as one of the best jackets for winter.

Women wearing this winter coat benefit from Columbia’s ‘Omni-Heat’ thermal reflective technology, and it also contains synthetic insulation. This highly regarded product has a water-resistant shell and is also ultra lightweight.

>> See the women’s Colombia Heavenly Hooded Jacket


Our top pick among the best men’s winter jackets is the North Face Altier Triclimate jacket. This heavy duty garment is windproof, waterproof and built to last.

Why buy the North Face Altier Triclimate Jacket for men?

The men’s Altier Triclimate jacket is a high quality winter coat that will last, season after season.

There are various features to ensure continued warmth, no matter what the weather is like. The outer fabric is water-repellent yet breathable, windproof and seam-sealed. The North Face men’s Altier is made with top quality 600 fill goose down. There are zippered pockets and an attached hood that is fully adjustable, too.

>> See the men’s North Face Altier Triclimate Jacket

Best Jackets for Extreme Cold Comparison Tables

We’ve included a couple of tables in this guide, so you can see at a glance which might be the best extreme cold weather jacket for you. Key benefits of each featured product are highlighted, and we include the best women’s jackets for cold weather and the best men’s winter jackets . Our best down jackets for extreme cold are also covered.

If you are reading this on a mobile device, you might need to swipe to scroll across.

NameImageFilling &


16 options10CHECK NOW
North Face


6 options9.9CHECK NOW


6 options9.7CHECK NOW


700 fill down6 options9.8CHECK NOW
Mid Length


90% down,
10% feather
5 options9.5CHECK NOW


650 fill down8 options9.6CHECK NOW
NameImageFilling &
The North Face
Altier Triclimate


550 fill down6 options10CHECK NOW
The North Face


13 options9.9CHECK NOW
Primaloft Military


SyntheticNeutral9.6CHECK NOW
Nautica Quilted


Synthetic10 options9.7CHECK NOW
Columbia Delta Ridge


650 fill down6 options9.8CHECK NOW
North Face McMurdo Winter Parka


550% down2 options9.5CHECK NOW

Best Extreme Cold Weather Jackets Categories

Best Women’s Winter Coats for Extreme Cold

If you’re seeking the best women’s winter jackets, look no further. This guide contains all the top extreme cold coats for women and lists our chosen top three. These include 2 Columbia jackets – the Heavenly Hooded and Heavenly Long – as well as the North Face Junction jacket.

Click here to see the best women’s winter coat for extreme cold, the Columbia Heavenly Hooded

Read more options and detailed reviews here

Best Winter Jackets for Men

Are you looking for the best men’s jackets for cold weather? Men’s winter coats that have made this list include a military grade parka plus jackets by North Face and Nautica.

Click here to see the best men’s winter coat for extreme cold, the North Face Thermoball

Read more options and detailed reviews here

Best Down Jackets for Cold Weather                                                

While the best down winter jackets will depend on your exact plans and priorities, we’ve whittled it down to the all-round performance of each product and listed the best jackets for men and women.

Click here to see the best down men’s winter coat for extreme cold, the North Face Altier Triclimate Jacket

Click here to see the best down women’s winter coat for extreme cold, the Marmot Ithaca

Read more options and detailed reviews here

Best Extreme Cold Weather Gear

This section includes our number one items for a range of categories, broken down as the best women’s and men’s options for each. The chosen categories cover various kinds of gloves, boots, socks and thermal underwear.

 Learn what the best gear is and read detailed reviews here

Frequently Asked Questions About Extreme Cold Jackets

How much will a good winter coat cost?

As with most outdoor items, you can spend as much or as little as you choose to. Some cheaper jackets will do a good job of keeping you warm, but they may not be as well made and thus as long-lasting as those from top outdoor clothing brands such as North Face or Columbia.

It all depends on your priorities, what you plan to do and how often you’re likely to wear the coat. It could well be worth paying extra if you plan to wear if often, or for prolonged periods of time.

How do men’s and women’s cold weather jackets differ?

The main differences between men’s and women’s winter jackets are concerned with style rather than substance. Such jackets have similar properties to protect the wearer against the cold, but some men’s jackets may be more rugged in appearance while women’s might be more feminine. The range of colors offered can also vary.

Why buy a down winter jacket?

When it comes to the best winter coats for extreme cold, men and women have the option of purchasing a down jacket or one with a synthetic filling. The former can be more expensive, but offers incredible levels of insulation while being very lightweight indeed.

What else creates warmth?

Some of the jackets featured here include each company’s own insulation system to complement the synthetic filling. Columbia jackets, for instance, have ‘Omni-Heat’ thermal reflection to retain body heat, while various North Face products use their synthetic ‘Thermoball’ filling to beat the cold.

What else do I need to stay warm?

As well as an insulated jacket, you may need some additional items. In terms of footwear, a good, study pair of winter boots can ensure your feet stay warm and dry. The right gloves, thermal underwear and socks can also complement your winter jacket by adding an extra dimension of warmth to keep your core or extremities protected.

Best Women’s Winter Coats for Extreme Cold

North Face Tamburello Jacket

This women’s North Face coat is again among the best women’s jackets for extreme cold.

There are 17 color options – testament to the popularity of this winter jacket for women. The Junction jacket is as suited to the city as it is the ski slope, and like the men’s non-down options it features revolutionary ‘Thermoball’ technology.

This uses a synthetic filling to hold warm air in small pockets, keeping you warm all day long. A water repellent cover, contoured cuffs and high zipped neckline work together to retain heat, too.

Read additional reviews for the women’s North Face Tamburello Jacket

Columbia Heavenly Hooded Jacket

This product might just live up to its name. If you want the best women’s coat for extreme cold that looks good, feels great and even comes in 16 colors, this one might be for you.

As well as a hood, this warm winter jacket for women features thermal reflective technology that makes the most of your body heat – as well as synthetic insulation to ward off chills. This highly rated product is lightweight and has a water-resistant shell.

Read additional reviews for the Colombia Heavenly Hooded Jacket for Women

Columbia Heavenly Long Jacket

A top pick from the best women’s long winter coats for extreme cold is also from Columbia.

This best winter jackets for women choice is ideal for those who would like a longer coat for cold weather. Like the hooded jacket, the heavenly long jacket has Columbia’s ‘Omni-Heat’ technology to reflect the body’s warmth right back at the wearer.

Comfort cuffs, zipped hand pockets and a fleece-lined hood also help keep you toasty. This jacket comes in a range of 6 colors.

Read additional reviews for the women’s Colombia Heavenly Long Jacket

Best Men’s Winter Coats for Extreme Cold

North Face Thermoball Jacket

This is the best men’s North Face jacket for extreme cold if you’re looking for something other than a down jacket.

Instead, this insulated, water-resistant jacket contains an innovative filling known as ‘Thermoball’. The synthetic filling can capture heat within tiny air pockets, ensuring warmth is retained, and independent research has proven this to be as effective as pure 600 fill goose down.

The hand pockets are covered and there is a cinch-cord at the hem to help keep you warm. This jacket can also be packed down into one of its own hand pockets.

Read additional reviews for the North Face Thermoball Jacket for Men

Primaloft Military Extreme Weather Jacket

This military style coat is one of the best jackets for men: even the most extreme winter weather is no problem with this army-issue parka.

The no-frills design is all about offering a superb level of protection from chilly, windy or wet weather conditions. It is also lightweight, and features multiple, useful pockets for storing your outdoor essentials.

Read additional reviews for the Primaloft Military Extreme Weather Jacket

Nautica Quilted Hooded Jacket

Nautica is a leading brand name when it comes to outdoor clothing, and this is one premium quality product.

This men’s winter jacket comes in 10 color options and attracts great reviews for its practicality and good looks. There is a wind-blocking hood, zip pockets, water-resistant fabric and heat-retentive quilting to insulate your body during any kind of cold weather. Happy owners report that this jacket is very warm, lightweight and comfortable to wear.

Read additional reviews for the Nautica Quilted Hooded Jacket

Best Winter Down Jackets: Women

Marmot Ithaca Puffer Jacket

When looking to buy one of the best winter coats for extreme cold, women might well want to consider the Marmot Ithaca.

This puffer jacket contains 700 fill down for superior warmth, and is also treated to offer moisture resistance. The stylish jacket comes in a selection of 6 colors, and the hood has a detachable fake fur trim. Warm, comfortable and lightweight, the Marmot Ithaca can withstand wind, rain and snow.

Read additional reviews for the Marmot Ithaca for women

Orolay Mid Length Down Jacket

It may not be produced by the biggest outdoor brand, but this Orolay winter coat makes the grade as one of the best winter jackets women’s options.

The reviews are great and the price tag attractive, yet this long line parka has an all natural filling, comprising 90% white duck down and 10% feather. It can be machine washed on a cold cycle and resists snow, wind, rain and dust.

Read additional reviews for the women’s Orolay Down Parka

Columbia Delta Ridge Jacket

Another Columbia winter coat makes the grade as one of the best women’s winter jackets.

This one contains 650 fill down, yet can also be machine washed. The range of 8 colors includes something for everyone, whether you prefer dark, light, bright or neutral tones. Omni-Heat technology once more makes this jacket super warm and cozy.

Read additional reviews for the Columbia Delta Ridge jacket for women

Best Winter Down Jackets: Men

North Face Altier Triclimate Jacket

The best North Face jackets for winter are among some of the best down jackets for extreme cold in the world, and the men’s Altier Triclimate jacket is no exception.

While the price tag isn’t low, the investment is well worth it as this superior men’s winter coat should really last. There are all sorts of clever features to ensure you stay warm and dry no matter how windy or wet it gets. These include a storm flap covering the zip and a breathable, seam-sealed shell made from 100% windproof, water-repellent fabric.

The Altier also contains high quality 600 fill goose down and has an attached, adjustable hood as well as secure, zipped pockets.

Read additional reviews for the North Face Altier Triclimate Jacket for Men

Columbia Delta Ridge Jacket

The men’s Delta Ridge is a lightweight jacket from Colombia containing 650 fill down.

Again this one also has ‘Omni-Heat’ technology to reflect and retain your own body heat. At the same time, the breathable fabric can wick away unwanted moisture. If you want to go outdoors, then this Columbia product is one of the best down jackets for extreme cold men’s options on the market. It is available in 6 colors, including blues, black, grey and green.

Read additional reviews for the Columbia Delta Ridge Jacket for Men

North Face McMurdo Winter Parka

Among the best parkas for extreme cold is the North Face McMurdo for men.

This longer line, hooded jacket is great in cold weather as it contains 550 fill goose down. We love the warmth this men’s North Face winter coat offers, and it might surprise you to discover that despite this it is feather-light. It can stand up to wet weather as well as freezing cold, making this a top pick for men who would like a down-filled winter parka.

Read additional reviews for the men’s North Face McMurdo Winter Parka

Best Extreme Cold Weather Gear

So what’s the best way to dress for extreme cold weather? Once you’ve chosen your winter jacket from the top picks listed above, you’ll also need some footwear and accessories to go with them. These include thermal underwear, socks, boots and gloves.

Best Winter Gloves for Extreme Cold

The best gloves for extreme cold weather include thin gloves as well as men’s or women’s winter gloves. All the gloves listed are in fact unisex, so would equally suit male or female hands.

Best Thin Gloves for Extreme Cold

According to our research, the best thin gloves for extreme cold are Cevapro’s touchscreen gloves.

These gloves are thin enough to allow you control, while being warm enough to protect your hands against strong, cold winds.

The silicone printing enhances grip and dexterity, while the fleece lining ensures warmth.

Read additional reviews for the Cevapro unisex winter gloves

Best Women’s Winter Gloves for Extreme Cold

We’ve chosen the Tough ski and snow gloves as the best women’s gloves for extreme cold.

These waterproof, windproof gloves include wrist leashes so you don’t lose them, and have a faux leather palm for grip. The breathable membrane even allows excess moisture to escape.

Read additional reviews for these Tough unisex gloves

Best Men’s Gloves for Extreme Cold

The top men’s gloves for cold weather are the five-star-rated Carhartt insulated synthetic leather gloves.

Featuring a ‘Gore-tex lining on the back of the hand to stop any wind penetration, these gloves can even be worn while using touchscreen devices. These lightweight, insulated gloves are ideal for cycling, running, walking, hiking and other outdoor pursuits.

Read additional reviews for these Carhartt men’s gloves

Best Glove Liners for Extreme Cold

Under Armour’s liner gloves can be worn either alone or as an additional layer during extremely cold weather.

They come in 4 sizes from small to extra large, and are capable of repelling moisture while retaining breathability. Tech Touch print on the fingers makes using a touchscreen while wearing them realistic.

Read additional reviews for these Under Armour’s liner gloves

Best Gloves and Mittens for Kids

If you are going skiing with your kids, check out this guide to buying the best skiing gloves and mittens for kids.

Best Boots for Extreme Cold Weather

The best winter boots for extreme cold covers women’s and men’s footwear.

Best Women’s Winter Boots for Extreme Cold

Our winner as the best women’s boots for extreme cold are Dryshod’s Arctic Storm.

This pair of ladies’ all-weather boots is dry all the way up, and they have a water-repellent coating. Foam insulation keeps feet warm, while 4-way stretch allows freedom of movement. The design of the lugs guarantees great traction, and you can even choose between 3 color options.

Read additional reviews for the women’s Dryshod Arctic Storm boots

Best Men’s Winter Boots for Cold Weather

Some of the finest men’s winter footwear is made by Muck Boots – including this pair of neoprene outdoor boots.

The Arctic Extreme product feature a synthetic ‘Vibram’ outsole to ensure comfortable walking and reduce shock. Multi-directional lugs and grip pods on the outsole offer advanced traction, while a soft fleece lining makes for all-day warmth.

Read additional reviews for the men’s Muck Boots Arctic Extreme

Best Socks for Extreme Cold Weather


For women, the best wool socks for extreme cold are these Ebmore wool socks.

Each 5-pack contains plain or mixed colors, and they are 70% Merino wool. The super soft fabric is breathable yet ultra warm and cozy, and the classic styling means they look every bit as good as they feel.

Read additional reviews for these ALS wool socks for women


The best thermal socks for extreme cold are made by workwear brand Dickies.

This trusted workwear manufacturer offers a range of pack sizes and colors – from a 6-pack in heather grey or with hi-viz detailing to a pack of 18 pairs of plain black, grey or white socks. A bestseller, these cotton-rich socks are breathable as well as warm.

Read additional reviews for these Dickies thermal socks for men

Best Thermal Underwear for Extreme Cold

The best thermal clothing for extreme cold comes from Thermajane and Thermajohn.

Thermajane is the ladies’ version of the best long underwear for extreme cold, while Thermajohn is for men.

Each set comprises a fleece-lined set of long johns in a soft, breathable fabric with 4-way stretch. The female version comes in 12 different colors, while males can choose between 6 shades. Both types attract equally great reviews from satisfied wearers.

Read additional reviews for the Thermajohn thermal underwear set for men

Read additional reviews for the Thermajane women’s thermal long johns set

Which is the best winter coat for extreme cold for you?

I rate all the extreme weather coats and other essential winter wear listed here very highly – as do numerous satisfied owners. To read more reviews, click on the links below each product listing. What the best extreme winter coat for you is will depend on factors such as just how extreme the cold is and what fabrics you prefer. 

Don’t forget to pick up socks, boots, gloves and underwear at the same time.   

No matter where you are headed for this winter, we hope this guide makes the selection process a little simpler and faster.

Get out there and explore – and enjoy winter!

Do you have any other extreme winter jackets that you highly recommend? Join my private Facebook group National Parks Collectors and comment and let me know.

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About the Reviewer

James Ian Yosemite

James Ian is a national park, camping and hiking expert.

He has dedicated his life to travel, visiting more than 80 countries, all 7 continents and all of the main national parks in the United States. With over 35 years experience in the travel industry, James has worked on cruise ships, at resorts and hotels, and as a travel planner who’s helped hundreds of people plan successful trips to US national parks. 

Based on his experience visiting our national parks multiple times, in-depth research and expertise as a travel planner, James has published detailed itineraries for most of the major national parks in the US. These itineraries, as well as in-depth park guides, comprehensive camping and hiking gear reviews and buying guides, and helpful packing lists and gift guides will help you have your own incredible trip to US national parks without stress and hassle.

As a national park expert, James has contributed to many publications, including Time Business News, Savoteur, Best Trip, and Wired.

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