This entry was posted on 19/11/2021.
By Chris Parkin
There are all sorts of shooting jackets for a variety of seasons and conditions as well as those suited to specific tasks or with unique features, here is a quick look at three to demonstrate key points to look out for.
The Packable jacket from Deerhunter is a superb, ultra-lightweight, thin, comfortable and flexible jacket without bulk to wear either as a backup in cool conditions or to build into the layering system when the winter draws colder. The deep green colour is subtle with front hand pockets and smaller chest pocket for valuables as well as the hood which the whole jacket can be rolled into. There are drawstrings on the hood to cinch it around your face to keep the cold air out and this works well as a general accessory without` shouting out you are a shooter if you want to retain a lower profile. This super lightweight jacket is a brilliant addition and so thin it blends under other jackets without discomfort yet adds those few extra critical degrees of insulation. Movement is unrestricted and although seemingly glossy in appearance, is actually quite matt and unreflective, most importantly with little additional noise signature either. I don’t think any shooter would baulk at this in his kit bag.
Harkila’s Heat jacket is another light/mid layer for intermediate conditions yet shows a key factor rarely seen in the shooting world. This lightweight jacket has internal heating elements that run from any USB power bank (10,000mAh will power the jacket to 52 degrees centigrade for about 7 hours in freezing conditions), stored in the right-side pocket. Immediate intensity control is made easily available by a black rubberised button, just right of centre chest that offers 3 colour coded temperature stages from 38-53 degree to keep away the chill. The Jacket is otherwise lined in a heat reflective lightweight fabric with stretch membranes on the sides and sleeves to ensure freedom of movement. For the smartphone generation, it is also possible to use an app to control the temperature exactly from 30-52 degrees rather than in 3 specific steps but essentially with the simple front button control life is simpler. The heating membranes are sown into the spots most likely vulnerable to the cold between back and lumbar areas. The collar is fleece lined and unlike other technologies, there is no problem folding this jacket or machine washing. Two side pockets, inner pocket and radio pocket on the left chest provide storage and a drybag is included for storage. This is certainly one for the more technically minded who want the latest gadgets to make their shooting life more comfortable, as a mid-layer, it is very good for more sedentary hunts and remains quiet when moving too.
This is a more classical woollen coat treated with Scotchgard™ DWR to make it water- and dirt-repellent on a jacket incorporating a breathable, windproof and waterproof SEETEX® membrane. The Noble jacket has hand warmer pockets on the sides of the chest with straps to clip open the lower spacious cartridge pockets for fast access when reloading. There is a detachable hood with elasticated drawstrings to seal in your face and large game pocket across the lower back. The extended mid-thigh cut jacket shows a full-length button-down storm flap to seal the zipper, which itself runs in both directions so can be left looser at the hem allowing more space around the legs for walking without restriction. Of course, a high stiffer collar protects against the wind yet remains malleable enough to fold into position without affecting your comfortable gun mount which is also considered when realising the Noble has pleated shoulders, an “action back” to further enable flexibility and reach for challenging targets. The subdued blue check lining maintains discreet looks on a coat that will fit in anywhere from the smartest game shoot to a relaxed walked up day. Very much a shooter’s coat in subtle detailing, yet never shouting that out if worn casually.
- Deerhunter Packable Jacket, elasticated closure to draw the hood in close
2. Deerhunter Packable Jacket, folds within it’s own hood for storage
3. Deerhunter Packable Jacket, further elastic at the rear to keep the hood’s face clear of your eyes
4. Deerhunter Packable Jacket, keeps your hands warm too
5. Deerhunter Packable Jacket, valuables pocket on the left chest
6. Deerhunter Packable Jacket, valuables pocket on the left chest
7. Harkila Heat Jacket, a modern addition to your wardrobe
8. Harkila Heat Jacket, a modern addition to your wardrobe
9. Harkila Heat Jacket, heat level 2
10. Harkila Heat Jacket, heat level 3
11. Harkila Heat Jacket, Heat off
12. Harkila Heat Jacket, once plugged in, your Power bank slots in the right side pocket
13. Harkila Heat Jacket, temperature guide
14. Harkila Heat Jacket, valuables or radio pocket on the left chest
15. Seeland Noble Coat, elasticated draw cord around he waist to further wrap up snugly
16. Seeland Noble Coat, game pocket across the lumbar region
17. Seeland Noble Coat, game pocket across the lumbar region
18. Seeland Noble Coat, smart enough for a driven day, practical enough for walked up game
19. Seeland Noble Coat, spacious cartridge pockets feature tags to hold them wide open for fast access
20. Seeland Noble Coat, the long cut keeps the chill at bay when waiting for actvity, the hood is removable
21. Seeland Noble Coat, the long cut keeps the chill at bay when waiting for actvity, the hood is removable
22. Seeland Noble Coat, the long cut keeps the chill at bay when waiting for actvity, the hood is removable
23. Seeland Noble Coat, two way zipper enables more leg movement if required