Vanson Leathers Teton Touring Coat
Although a little warm for those 100-degree days, my Vanson Teton Touring Coat is perfect for the three cooler seasons here in east-central Kansas. The coat is beautifully made, using materials that I had no idea could still be sourced in such high quality. The black Firenze Leather outer material is nothing short of confidence-inspiring should an unexpected slide occur, and the customizable placement of CE elbow and shoulder armor offers added security. The fit and finish is every bit as impressive as the jacket’s European-style, hip-length and many dodads and it positively suits my dual-sport/adventure riding style.
Things I like: The jacket has pockets and vents galore! I had no trouble finding an intake and exhaust vent combination to keep me comfortable on my daily commute and on 150-mile or more trips into the Flint Hills or down to Wichita into the low 80s. I really like the Teton’s hip length as it keeps the torso on my 6-foot 4-inch frame nicely covered in different positions. Double leather at the elbows and shoulders, while adding a bit of stiffness, are a clear indication that this is one rugged coat that’s willing and able to take the abuse. I particularly like the waist cinch because it allows me to make more room for a thermal vest or sweater in the winter (I’ve ridden comfortably with this coat down to 28 degrees F) or tightens up when wearing a T-shirt on the hot days. Another great feature of the Teton, which makes it super comfortable in warmer weather, is the RamAir sleeve vents that coupled with the rear vent flow a lot of fresh air. The four deceptively roomy and versatile outer pockets and two inside provide plenty of room for your wallet and phone plus a bit of gear and snacks without needing a backpack or bag. Thanks to the storm and wind flaps, the jacket will block much of the inclement weather when encountered. I have not ridden with it in a hard rain, but 25 miles of heavy sprinkles left me mostly dry — not bad without any other rain protection. The zippers and snaps are a joy to use compared with hook-and-loop systems and like the rest of the coat are of impressive quality.
Things I don’t like: As much of a safety gear guy as I am, I would have loved to see this coat with some reflective or high-visibility components built in. That’s easy to remedy though by wearing a vest over it. I love that the Teton will accept a back pad, but for the price, it could’ve been included. And a small quibble that speaks to the high quality: The jacket is stiff and takes a bit to break in. As a leather wearer, I both love and hate the break-in period. I love that the leather is so thick and strong that it needs breaking in, and I hate that I can’t always wear a new coat or pair of boots all day long, the first day.
Last thoughts: Bottom line, I adore my Vanson Leather Teton Coat. It packs a lot of performance in a premium package that’s entirely worth it. In today’s throwaway world, it’s truly compelling to find an heirloom quality garment ($749) that will easily outlast me and should have one or two more lives barring some total disaster. And what a partner to have on your team should disaster strike as the Teton will take the brunt of the beating so that you don’t. — Hank Will