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RobinHood
03-18-2011, 10:57 PM
I am looking for "THE" jacket for backpack hunts. These suckers are expensive and I want to buy a good one and only do it once. I am looking for a jacket that is good in all situations, is durable, and warm. That way I only have to worry about packing in one jacket for the trip.

I have a quality base layer, but struggled with my coat last year. This year I am upgrading. I have narrowed it to three, but wanted some opinions on what everyone is using.

ASAT Outdoors Elite Ultimate Jacket http://www.lancasterarchery.com/product_info.php?manufacturers_id=296&products_id=11989

Sitka JetStream http://www.sitkagear.com/products/open-country/jackets-vests/all-jackets/jetstream-jacket/

Russel APxG L4 http://www.gandermountain.com/modperl/product/details.cgi?pdesc=Russell_Outdoors_APXg2_Gale_L4_J acket&i=414210&merchID=4004&r=view

Any thoughts or suggestions about other jackets are welcome. Thanks

Livesilly
03-18-2011, 11:14 PM
I sure hope everyone has good things to say about the Gale because I just bought one. Its a bit heavy but the fit and quality is great...can't wait to get it out in the weather.

brudno
03-19-2011, 12:19 AM
Really hard to beat Sitka Jetstream or the 90% jacket for backpack hunts in my opinion. I still pack a down jacket for a pillow and for those days when the temps really plummet and im mostly just glassing.

mthuntress
03-19-2011, 01:32 AM
I'd go with any coat from Rivers West.

BOHNTR
03-19-2011, 08:39 AM
I chose a wolfskin jacket made by gray wolf woolens. The BEST choice I've made. Lightweight (wolfskin), wind proof, hood, sheds water in heavy downpours, breaths, and has a draw string to cinch around chest (for bowhunters). Best of all, it comes in Predator camouflage.

www.graywolfwoolens.com/store/home.php

RobinHood
03-19-2011, 10:01 PM
I'd go with any coat from Rivers West.

This looks like good stuff and reasonably priced. What products have you used or have experience with?


I chose a wolfskin jacket made by gray wolf woolens. The BEST choice I've made. Lightweight (wolfskin), wind proof, hood, sheds water in heavy downpours, breaths, and has a draw string to cinch around chest (for bowhunters). Best of all, it comes in Predator camouflage.

www.graywolfwoolens.com/store/home.php

Did you go with a custom made jacket like this one http://www.graywolfwoolens.com/store/product.php?productid=74&cat=20&page=1
or did you go with a different model?

IS that jacket stout enough to take on a bow hunt in August and and elk hunt in November?

BOHNTR
03-19-2011, 11:28 PM
I gave them my dimensions (Outfitter series). I chose the Wofskin unlined jacket with the wind barrier. More than warm enough for me with silk underwear and mountain shirt. I've used in the high-country in Aug/Sep and temperatures in teens in December. The lined jacket is supposedly very warm......but you may cook in it if you're hiking, etc.

300Weatherby
03-20-2011, 12:08 AM
i got the apxg2 gale jacket for christmas. i love the thing. it is very quiet and pretty warm. probably the most comfy jacket i own. i will be buying more apxg2 products befor this next season comes!
Go to lintonoutdoors.com they have the gale jacket on sale right now for $79.99!! thats a screaming deal!!!

mthuntress
03-20-2011, 01:18 AM
I can't remember the model {SORRY}I take the tags off and I've had it for 6 years now.I now it's in the H2P line and it was rated for 35 to 60 degrees but I've had the same jacket on at a -45 with out windchill and walking around with the zipper half way unzipped.The plus for me was that it was waterproof the company ment it As I said I've had it for 6 years and when I'm in the down pour of rain/snow I still don't get wet at all.

arrowslinger21
03-21-2011, 10:29 AM
I'd go with any coat from Rivers West.

I have a rivers west jacket, and I would not recommend it for backpack hunting. They are waterproof, but they also get heavy when they are really wet, and they take forever to dry. If it pours all day, it won't be dry after sitting in a tree overnight, and then when you cram it into your pack the next day when the weather is nice, it will still be wet and it will get the inside of the jacket wet. Then you will have a damp jacket to wear for a couple of days. Also I have one of their "heavier" jackets, and while it is very warm while moving (because they dont breathe) it is not warm while sitting and glassing. I have switched to sitka after being miserable in my Rivers West gear in the backcountry for a couple of years, and the sitka quality is far better, and the gear is far more effective. Rivers west stuff is definately water proof, and I use it for blacktail hunting still, but it is not meant for the backcountry in my opinion.

*******
03-21-2011, 12:37 PM
I second arrowslingers remarks on Rivers West. Great gear for in a tree stand, a blind, or on horseback but not for hiking with. Too much material and hold water like mad.

I'll put my vote behind the Sitka jacket for an all around jacket, but the Russel one for bow hunting. It is just that much quieter in the brush on a stalk.

AZ Hunter
03-21-2011, 03:23 PM
I just got the Russell Gale jacket too. The feel/fit/look is quality. I haven't had a chance to field test it yet. i also have the Storm Cloth II hooded jacket. It is waterproof and light weight, but doesn't offer much warmth or wind protection. Also, the useless black fleece patches suck up water and take much longer to dry than the jacket material.

mathewshooter
04-01-2011, 05:35 PM
I think you have to put kuiu in this discussion also. All the reviews so far are great, I can't wait to get mine.

RobinHood
04-02-2011, 10:43 PM
Great!... thought i had my mind made up and you throw another stick on the fire.

I will have a look for sure... thanks for sharing.

Edit: Which jacket did you buy and why?

mathewshooter
04-06-2011, 09:13 AM
Yea I was looking at Sitka and Russell till I heard about KUIU. I sent a pm about my choice.

hoytnut
04-07-2011, 11:58 AM
Avoid Rivers West - too heavy and will not breathe at all. I like my Sitka 90%, but I may have to give KUIU a try as well.

woodtick
04-08-2011, 12:22 PM
I love all my Russell Stuff, Sold all my Sitka stuff and was able to buy the whole line of Russell and still had money leftover to get another pack. The Gale jacket is as good as any thing Sitka makes.

RobinHood
04-16-2011, 10:24 PM
I tried on a bunch of jackets and went on a few good reviews from the net and decided on a KUIU Guide Jacket. The fit is awesome. I am 6'1" 185 lbs and the large is perfect. The tail is long and there is enough room underneath for layering.

Couldnt be happier. It appears to be quality stuff. Here in Vegas it is a little warm to be trying stuff out, but excied to get it out and have at it this fall.

Twojump
04-18-2011, 11:17 PM
I have a Rivers West jacket and I would use it if the weather turned bad... we don't have all that many bad Sept days though... a few from time to time, but in Oregon it's pretty much warm and too dry until late season. The stuff is waterproof for sure. I wear it West side in the rain and it's always done a good job of keeping me dry. Some people say they get real sweaty in it, but I must move slower than most guys I guess. If it was raining or snowing hard enough, I doubt I'd be hiking enough to sweat in the thing.. I don't know...

Most of my trips are Eastern Oregon and drier than a popcorn fart so it hasn't been a problem either way.... but the Rivers West stuff would work in my opinion.

arrowslinger21
05-01-2011, 10:08 PM
I have a Rivers West jacket and I would use it if the weather turned bad... we don't have all that many bad Sept days though... a few from time to time, but in Oregon it's pretty much warm and too dry until late season. The stuff is waterproof for sure. I wear it West side in the rain and it's always done a good job of keeping me dry. Some people say they get real sweaty in it, but I must move slower than most guys I guess. If it was raining or snowing hard enough, I doubt I'd be hiking enough to sweat in the thing.. I don't know...

Most of my trips are Eastern Oregon and drier than a popcorn fart so it hasn't been a problem either way.... but the Rivers West stuff would work in my opinion.

I don't know... I hunt in Oregon as well and hunt up high. I have been snow on during opening week the last 2 years in a row, and gotten snowed on at least once in every bow season I can remember during september. I hunt no matter what the weather is, and I used a rivers west jacket for two seasons before getting rid of it. Absolutely didn't cut it for me, and I was miserable many a time. I moved up to sitka and am in the process of field testing some of their stuff now. So far it has been way better though. I do still keep my rivers west stuff for late season blacktail hunts, but I dont use it in the backcountry anymore.

sjsmallfield
05-02-2011, 02:02 AM
I would have to agree with the Rivers West comments. It's as waterproof as it gets. Great for stand hunting but way to hot for any hiking or packing.

OR Archer
05-29-2011, 11:08 PM
Check out the Under Armour Ridge Reaper gear. I absolutely love this jacket. Has a lot of great features and its comfortable to boot.

spotnstalk1
06-02-2011, 09:13 PM
Anyone reviewed the Sitka Kelvin jacket? Its a down jacket. I tried one on this past weekend. Felt very warm and its obviously very light being made of down. Probably not gonna hold up to a lot of wear and tear but for the weight conscious backpacking hunter it seems pretty slick if you coupled it with a lightweight set of rain gear. Any experienced thoughts on this jacket?

brudno
06-03-2011, 04:26 AM
Anyone reviewed the Sitka Kelvin jacket? Its a down jacket. I tried one on this past weekend. Felt very warm and its obviously very light being made of down. Probably not gonna hold up to a lot of wear and tear but for the weight conscious backpacking hunter it seems pretty slick if you coupled it with a lightweight set of rain gear. Any experienced thoughts on this jacket?

Its actually filled with primloft, there great pieces light, very packable and warm. They'll last along time to I used as intended a insulation piece with a shell over them or an extra layer during stationary periods such as glassing.

Bitterroot Bulls
06-03-2011, 08:23 PM
My go-to backcountry system includes Patagonia Capilene underwear, Patagonia R1 fleece pullover, Sitka 90% jacket, and REI Kimtah jacket with Event fabric.

My Sitka 90% is the older, thicker version with the zip-off hood. I prefer it to the new, thinner model. It is my shell most of the time, until it really poors, then the REI Kimtah comes out. The Kimtah is awesome: super light, totally waterproof, and unlike any GoreTex jacket I have tried the Event fabric actually, really breathes. It doesn't have pit zips, because you don't need them. Some hunting clothing company needs to jump on the Event bandwagon, and soon.

The R1 pullover has the highest warmth-to-thickness ratio of any garment I've tried. It is really warm, but still thin enough to easily layer. I actually have several of the pullovers and the pants. They are awesome.

dp1077
06-05-2011, 12:29 AM
The KUIU guide jacket

SDbowhunter
06-05-2011, 09:15 AM
I have the KUIU guide vest, awesome piece and if I didn't already the Sika jetstream and Celsius jacket, I would own the guide jacket !

RobinHood
06-05-2011, 10:44 PM
Tested my jacket this weekend on my first scout trip. It was 17* outside at 4:30a with new snow. Put the jacket on and took off on the quad.
Windproof indeed, couldnt feel the breeze through the jacket as I was screaming down the roads to make first light
With a base layer and that coat I was perfect at 5am when the sun broke while glassing on the side of the ridge.

Umpqua Hunter
06-20-2011, 01:39 AM
I have Arteryx and love it, but it is not camo. The recent rave reviews seem to be going for the gear from Kuiu for ultralight hunting gear.

RobinHood
06-21-2011, 09:25 PM
The recent rave reviews seem to be going for the gear from Kuiu for ultralight hunting gear.

and for good reason. There stuff is quality.

SDbowhunter
07-06-2011, 07:12 PM
their pack is good, I have an arcteryx jacket as well that I can layer under my camo if I need extra warmth

Bitterroot Bulls
07-06-2011, 08:49 PM
Agreed.

Arcteryx is quality stuff too.

elivingston
08-23-2011, 01:13 AM
I have invested a lot of time and money on gear over the last couple of seasons, looking for that perfect layering system, and unfortunately, I haven't found it in any hunting clothing system from a given company. The best layering system/philosophy I've found for backpacking is this one (http://promountainsports.com/index.php//clothing_systems), from Pro Mountain Sports in Seattle. In summary, it breaks down like this:


Wicking layer - merino wool
Light-weight, breathable, non-insulated wind-cutting layer (pants & jacket/pull-over)
Puffy down insulating layer (Jacket - use when needed)
Lightweight rain gear (use when needed)


This system is great, considering the goals of the typical person in the back country, e.g. lightweight, versatile (works well when active or sedentary), safe (protects from all the elements). However it misses two goals that are important for the hunter: quiet & color (camo or earth-tone). Also, if you didn't guess it, the second layer is the hard one to find for hunters.

So, after investing in a bunch of stuff from Sitka, FirstLight, Grey Wolf, Rivers West, etc., Here's what I came up with:

Early Season (30-70 degrees):


Merino wool base layer (Icebreaker Tech-lite T or FirstLight Llano)
First Light Gila Pants & Grey Wolf Wolfskin Pull-over
Browning 700-fill down jacket
Cabelas Pack-light rain gear


I also bring along a second, heavier 1st layer of Merino Wool stuff, too, e.g. FirstLight Chama/Alegheney, for two reasons... I use a light 30 degree sleeping bag so it's nice to have some "long johns" for sleeping, and also just in case I need it if it's extra-cold or if I get really soaked for some reason. The Chama shirt can also be worn in place of the Wolfskin pull-over, since it's both warm and it breathes well.

To sum up, be clear on what your goals are and what is required of your gear. My list isn't the only way to go, and I still haven't found the perfect second layer. I could easily substitute Sitka gear for much of the list above (core/traverse base layer, mountain pant, kelvin vest, etc.), too.

Finally, I can say that FirstLight (merino in ASAT - awesome) IceBreaker (the best merino t-shirts & hiking socks), Sitka (Optifade + top-notch designs) and Grey Wolf (hand-made to your spec) make some amazing gear. You really can't go wrong with any of it.

dhershberger
08-23-2011, 09:25 AM
I like first lite merino wool also but it sure is hard to beat the great qualities of the Sitka Jetstream, both are excellent products!

hoytnut
08-25-2011, 04:41 PM
I have a green Marmot primoloft jacket that I layer under my Sitka 90% if I need to.

8750
08-25-2011, 09:53 PM
You cant beat the Marmot Driclime jacket for weight vs warmth.

*******
09-01-2011, 01:14 PM
I'd say the Russel or the Sitka. I am not a fan of rivers west for backcountry because they get so hot and breath so poorly. Second to the comment about Rivers west holding water on them when wet.

Moodie64
03-09-2012, 12:01 AM
I used Kryptek gear on my last hunt into the Montana backcountry and throughout the Montana hunting seasons. I had the cadog jacket and pants as well as the koldo jacket. All of these garmets have pit or thigh zips to allow proper ventilation. The koldo jacket is 100% waterproof and very quiet. The cadog jacket and pants are warm, quiet, and resistant to staining (I was hunting in a burned area). This clothing line is tough. It did not rip, snag, or tear while hunting through thick brush and trees. I was very pleased with the performance of these products throughout the hunting season.