Softshell Jackets

Elk2008

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Butte, MT
Hi all! I had quick question I wanted to throw out there for all you guys who use softshell jacets. I have read alot of good things about the Sitka 90% and Russell APX. So, I picked up a Russell APX gale jacket the other day on a heck of a deal. I threw it on over a Sitka vest last night and took a stroll around the block. It was about 25 degees out, an honestly, the jacket wasn't that warm. So I compared it to a light fleece jacket I have (wich is pretty light), and honestly the lightweight fleece over the vest was alot warmer. There was a slight breeze and I could definately feel the breeze more through the Russell jacket.

I get that this is a layering system, but if my lightweight fleece is warmer and better in the wind, why wouldn't I just layer with that. Now granted its February in Montana, I don't expect this to be a winter jacket. I just wanted to see how others like the softshell jackets they have and if they'v had similar experiencse with warmth and how much are you using these type jackets.

Mike
 

Travis Bertrand

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Definitely not the warmest. I have the 90%. I layer it with an insulation layer (Patagonia nano puff) and it works well for me.
 

Matt Cashell

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the orginal 90% jackets were much warmer than the newer models.

I have/had softshells from Patagonia, Marmot, TNF, Sitka, and Kuiu, and the Kuiu Guide Jacket is my favorite.

Great wind resistance, and a little more added warmth than most softshells. Excellent breathability also.
 

Slim Jim

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I had the same Russell jacket in the past and I didn't like it. It wasn't an athletic fit and wasn't very warm at all.
I wanted to get the 90% Sitka. How do you like yours Travis?
 

jherald

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Alaska
I had some Russell apx stuff when it first came out. It came apart at some of the seams during normal hiking, just up and down hills and mountains, not a whole lot of thick brush. The buttons were cheap plastic and wouldn't stay buttoned up anymore down at the leg bottoms. I had the apx bibs which were basically softshell with fleece backer. Not windproof at all either, at least mine weren't. I thought it was just cheap junk copies of Sitka in the end. I'll stick with my Patagonia, Kuiu and Sitka stuff.

Seems like you can't hardly give the russell stuff away either. Most of it comes from china these days but the level of quality between the russell gear and the major brands is not even up for comparison.
 

Travis Bertrand

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I had the same Russell jacket in the past and I didn't like it. It wasn't an athletic fit and wasn't very warm at all.
I wanted to get the 90% Sitka. How do you like yours Travis?

It's ok, could be a tad warmer. I like it though. I think there is better for cheaper though.
 

Yellowknife

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I get that this is a layering system, but if my lightweight fleece is warmer and better in the wind, why wouldn't I just layer with that. Now granted its February in Montana, I don't expect this to be a winter jacket. I just wanted to see how others like the softshell jackets they have and if they'v had similar experiencse with warmth and how much are you using these type jackets.

Mike

I've tried a few different softshells and have thus far been underwelmed. A windstopper type fleece is warmer, breaths better, is more comfortable to wear (softer hand), and quieter in the woods. The only real advantage that I see to a softshell is that it sheds snow easier than fleece.

I'm fairly convinced that softshells are mostly just a import from the outdoor sports industry that truthfully doesn't translate all that well to hunting.

That's a minority opinion obviously.

Yk
 

shaun

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the orginal 90% jackets were much warmer than the newer models.

I have/had softshells from Patagonia, Marmot, TNF, Sitka, and Kuiu, and the Kuiu Guide Jacket is my favorite.

Great wind resistance, and a little more added warmth than most softshells. Excellent breathability also.


X2 on guide jacket
 

Ross

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I upgraded to the guide jacket from KUIU when my sitka jacket got the stink..........I wear my guide jacket frequently throughout the season and it does why I ask of it....it sheds water, it is not water proof, water resistant, it helps break the wind, it sheds snow well and the pit zips are nice, but I need to use them more I see it is getting the stink as well....I will order another Guide Jacket when the times comes.
 
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ckleeves

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Looks like the have them in stock now so it shouldn't take long at all.

I like softshell jackets, but I'm usually hunting pretty dry environments. I love the Sitka 90% for early season and wearing while hiking. I'm glad it isn't any warmer than it is it's the perfect morning jacket that you don't overheat in during archery season. It isn't much, but its perfect for the right conditions.

The guide is a awesome jacket and it is warmer than the 90 by quite a bit IMO. Put a puffy under it and it's a great system for colder weather. I get a little hot in the guide during archery season here in Co unless it's a unusually cold day or later in the season.
 

sk1

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anyone have any idea how the core4 element jacket stacks up against these? i have the kuiu guide dcs jacket and love it, especially the pit zips, use it all the time.

i have a friend trying to get good gear on a budget, i had my eye on the element jacket for a softshell, but it looks like it might be heavier than the standard jacket
 

RUTTIN

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Kamas, Utah
The Element jacket is a great soft shell jacket, I wore mine on a November Mule deer hunt with the temps in the 20's and snowing most of the time. As long as I was moving I would stay warm with just a merino top and the Element jacket, If I stopped to glass I would have to put on a vest. The DWR finish on the jacket is great at repelling the snow. And if you get a little hot you can un-zip the pit zips to let in a little air. I have a review on my blog about the Element jacket at www.gffadventures.blogspot.com if your interested.
 

Slim Jim

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I've tried a few different softshells and have thus far been underwelmed. A windstopper type fleece is warmer, breaths better, is more comfortable to wear (softer hand), and quieter in the woods. The only real advantage that I see to a softshell is that it sheds snow easier than fleece.

Yk

What brand of fleece has wind stopper?
 

Craig4791

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Prescott Valley, AZ
Guide jacket has treated me very well but i will admit if you want real warmth you will need a puffy layer under it.

Guide jacket material is tough as nails too!!
 

Yellowknife

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What brand of fleece has wind stopper?

Pretty much every fleece manufacture makes some form of windblocker fleece. Polartech WindPro, Gore WindStopper, etc etc.. And pretty much every major outdoor brand uses some version. I'm currently using a nice earth toned North Face version. Mountain Hardwear makes a few good ones. Cabelas makes several versions in various camo's. Outdoor Research, Arc'Tyrex.... pretty much you name it.


Softshells look pretty sharp when worn on the street, and I'm sure that's where the majority of them are used. Also great for snowsports in warmer climes than mine, but how the heck they became hunting wear, I'm not at all sure... Maybe they are awesome in some climate that I obviously don't hunt.

Yk
 
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ozyclint

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Queensland, Downunder
I've tried a few different softshells and have thus far been underwelmed. A windstopper type fleece is warmer, breaths better, is more comfortable to wear (softer hand), and quieter in the woods. The only real advantage that I see to a softshell is that it sheds snow easier than fleece.

I'm fairly convinced that softshells are mostly just a import from the outdoor sports industry that truthfully doesn't translate all that well to hunting.

That's a minority opinion obviously.

Yk

absolutely x2 yellowknife.
if it's not layered insulation or a rain shell it's not in my pack. i love windproof fleece. if the weather turns ugly the rainshell goes over the top. honestly i can't see the point of pants or jackets that are neither waterproof or insulative on a mountain hunt. maybe i'm missing something?

slim jim- check out the range of clothing from stoney creek. it is standard in new zealand. awesome gear.
http://www.stoneycreekshop.com.au/index.php?controller=home
 
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