Gore Tex Pro fabric with one way stretch is a godsend - no more binding up during casts, esp. with a pack or sling over your shoulder. The extra bit of movement allows this piece to actually "fit" you without looking like a dumba$$ from Duck Dynasty or some "sponsored" Simms guy with pockets and gizmos hanging all over the darned place!
Can you tell I am esctatic that they designed a jacket without all this crap? Damn straight!
The large inner pockets are designed well, and located in a very "slick" manner: accessed from a thin flap on either side of the main zipper - as opposed to a "bellowed" pocket that's sewn onto the jacket. These are built on from the inside. You can easily hold a Cliff's Bugger Barn in each pocket, plus another 6" of room on the upper section for more. There are small dividers built in and you can use them or not. It's ridiculous how much they can hold.
I disagree with a few comments from a guide about this jacket, and I think my suggestions would improve this excellent piece. 1) Zippers. The main zipper is spec'd well. It's probably a size 5-7 and should take years of abuse. The inner pockets are YKK "Aquaguard" water resistant zippers. These are #5's and the slider is too bulky. It makes the slick pocket flap on the outside bulge outward because the zipper slider is so big. These could easily be #3 or 4 zippers to reduce bulk and weight - something that is always welcome - without reducing durability. All zippers will get "brittle," but a drop of silicone lubricant in any zipper will help them last forever. Reducing these two would stream line the jacket and a smaller zipper wouldn't have any shorter lifespan than a larger one.
1) No back panel pocket... hurray! It's not necessary. More pockets means more stuff. If you're in a boat, what do you need 17 pockets in your jacket for? Most bankie's carry a sling, waist or backpack. Put the bulky items in there.
The recessed cuff design is excellent. I don't like the older Simms jackets or others that simply put a strap at the bottom of the cuff: line and other stuff gets caught on them all the time. Not only does this new recessed design make the jacket look well-fitted, they eliminate line and net snagging on any exposed hook and loop or Fastex buckle, becuase there isn't any :)
The hood is one of the best around. Patagonia designs a great hood as well. The Simms hood is right up there as well. Lots' of adjustability, size, and it sits correctly with a cap or beanie on.
Improvements: in addition to the zippers mentioned above, change the location of the accessory inner pocket so that it can be made slightly larger. Downsize zipper.
Main pocket zippers. The location is great. The pass-through feature excellent. Just use the Aquaguard zippers here too in a #4, not the large 5-7.
Picking on the zipper specs is just that - a bit picky. But it would make an almost perfect jacket just that as well!
Overall, this is absolutely the finest fishing jacket for anyone looking for something simple (it's got more bells and whstles than it looks ;), or who loathe the plethora of over-pocketed, gadget-loaded dorky tech-looking jackets out there. It's 5-hundo, but it it the best damn 5-spot you'll spend on a wading jacket.
(Posted on 8/4/2016)