Many of us have jumped into the light weight backpacking movement, which has pushed us into finding gear that can serve a dual purpose. I often (daily in most cases) find myself trying to find dual purposed items, including clothing. I have been on a journey to find a solid jacket and a pair of pants that I not only can wear daily but also during my hunts. My journey has taken me all over the various hunting and non-hunting companies. When I first found out that the crew at Stone Glacier was diving into the clothing market, I was curious and rather excited. I have been a huge fan and supporter of their packs since they first came out and recently bought one. Now a couple hundred field-miles later, I still love my pack and wouldn’t change anything. Due to this confidence, I couldn’t wait for the day Stone Glacier released their clothing line. The De Havilland Jacket and Pants caught my curiosity.
De Havilland Jacket
I have had this jacket for a good while now and have been wearing it as a daily jacket in temperatures from 50 degrees down to 0. The lightweight, shell-type, spandex-blend jacket is perfect for cooler days. On true Wyoming winter days (reaching -15 with windchill), this jacket is thin enough to fit comfortably as a layer under a puffy coat. Overall, this jacket cuts the wind well. The pit zips have some draft to them on the windy days. When using the jacket as a layer with a heavier coat, I was comfortable in the below zero temperatures.
During snowshoeing trips, the De Havilland jacket did really well in the mid teens while completing the physically demanding activity. I wasn’t able to feel any hot spots in the jacket, even while wearing a pack. Completing intense physical activities such as snowshoeing, I was able to wear a base layer and just the jacket.
A feature of the jacket is the pit zips. While hiking, this feature is really beneficial as it helps regulate your temperature so you do not get too hot. This is a great feature so you don’t have to stop and take off your pack and jacket to cool down. As mentioned above, they do have some draft to them, which make them less wind resistant in the underarm area. No matter what type of hunting you like to do, sometimes you end up sitting for a period of time. These zips are convenient for quick cool downs while still being able to focus on hunting.
The jacket excels in staying put and not riding up your back like many other jackets. I attribute this primarily to the athletic fit of the jacket. This fit makes it ideal for layering. However, the athletic fit of the jacket is tight around the waist when wearing multiple layers of pants. It does have an elastic waistband adjustment to make the fit custom to each person.
De Havilland Pants
We are blessed to have all the choices of pants that are catered towards hunting. The De Havilland Pants are a force to be reckoned with. I was able to try on a pair of pants at the Stone Glacier headquarters in Bozeman, Montana prior to receiving them via mail. After researching the sizes on the website and trying them on in store, it is evident they are overall true to size. I measured my inseam and waist and found my size was Medium-Tall. I am 5’10 and my typical jean size is 32X30. These pants were comparative.
I prefer having my pants go over my boots, without being too tight. These pants served just that. As I tried my pants on for the first time, I was happy and they were very comfortable. One of the main advertising features of the pants is the contour waist. Stone Glacier advertises this as a feature that allows the user to configure the pants to different scenarios and clothing layers. While this feature is new to me, I feel it will have great benefit during hunting season. The customized zipper feather has great potential. The fit of these pants is very similar to Sitka, First Lite, and Kryptek. However, Stone Glacier designed the De Havilland Pants specifically to sit higher on the waist line. They chose a blend of spandex/polyester/nylon, and consequently, this material does not make the higher waist line design uncomfortable.
The De Havilland pants do not come with a tangible and removable belt. They do, however, come with an attached adjustable strap/buckle in the front. This is a feature that is beneficial for active hunters. It is convenient and easy to adjust without having another piece of clothing to have to keep track of. It doesn’t give a large range of adjustment, however it’s just enough to make a perfect fit.
The pants are very similar to my old Sitka Mountain pants but are slightly heavier and not as slick feeling. Similar to the jacket, the pants are more of an athletic fit with the stretchy material. The pants have a side zipper to help breathe. I tested this feature on a recent snowshoeing trip. There were moments when I became warm. After unzipping the side zips for a few minutes, I was cooled down and ready to continue my activity. The temperature was around 20 degrees. Overall, the pants held up to my expectations. I was comfortable wearing a base layer underneath and didn’t feel they were restricting or too tight.
The ultimate durability test for pants in the West is good old Wyoming Greasewood
After multiple trips rabbit hunting through greasewood, the De Havilland pants still look brand new! I never felt poking from the greasewood burrs nor could I find any pilling on the pants. I almost always wear gaiters to both protect my legs as well as prevent moisture build-up on my pants. Most pants can handle gaiters just fine, but for this test, I wanted to see if the pants caused constriction of movement while wearing gaiters. The De Havilland pants really excelled here as I didn’t even notice my gaiters or any bunching of the pants.
The De Havilland pants have four front pockets, two hand pockets (resembling those of jean pockets) and two pockets that lie right above the knee. These have button closures, which are great for stealth. There are also two pockets on the backside. They have a simple yet effective flap closure. While testing these, I had my iPhone Plus in the front pocket above the knee. It fit well and did not get in the way of my activity. One thing to note is these pockets are not made to hold a ton of stuff. If you overfill them, the pants start to become somewhat restrictive.
While there is not the option of camo, the De Havilland pants and jacket bring a level of dual purpose I haven’t found on the market thus far. Due to the simple colors, I feel it reaches not only the hunting clientele but also the outdoor enthusiast. They can be worn as a set or individually. The jacket is one of my day-to-day go-tos, and I am pleased with the sharp and simplified design. While there are small details that I am still growing accustomed to, I feel the De Havilland pants and jacket are well designed and I look forward to continue testing the Stone Glacier apparel.
You can comment or ask Jared questions here.