Before everyone says I have gone full Sitka fanboy with this review, let me assure you all that I still love my First Lite, KUIU, Smartwool, and Stone Glacier gear. I have wanted to try the Sitka Jetstream Jacket for some time but have struggled with the cost. At almost $350, it was a little painful to click that buy button. I normally don’t hunt with a midweight jacket but was curious how this particular jacket would do on a Midwest deer hunt in my home state of Indiana. The weather wasn’t going to be particularly cold, but it was forecasted to be windy and wet. For all the times the weatherman is dead wrong, he was spot on this week.
Grunt, Snort-Wheeze, and Rattle this to your buddies!
Let’s jump in and look at the Sitka Jetstream jacket and some of its features. This jacket wasn’t necessarily designed for whitetail hunting, it’s intended pursuit is western big game, but I wanted to try it for treestand hunting as I don’t carry a softshell while elk hunting. Let’s look at some general features in the table below and then dive deeper into the important features from my standpoint.
|Pockets||5 (2 Handwarmer, 3 Chest Pockets)|
|Arm Pit Zips||Yes|
One of the big reasons I pulled the trigger is the Windstopper membrane. If the temps aren’t frigid, I don’t get overly cold on the stand. If I can buck the wind, I can stay warm down into the 30’s without the Michelin Man look. This jacket definitely bucks the wind. It was windy the entire week I was in Indiana. The Windstopper membrane does create a bit more noise than other materials, but you gain the functionality of stopping the wind for the cost of a little more noise.
Micro Grid Fleece
f grid fleece for warmth. This jacket is thin, the fleece interior create a barrier on the inside of the jacket to trap body heat. This isn’t going to keep you warm into freezing temps by itself, but when paired with a base layer and a mid-layer you will.
As I mentioned above, the Windstopper membrane inherently creates some noise. I believe this is why Sitka recently released the Stratus Jacket for whitetail hunters in mind. The Sitka Jetstream was again created for western big game hunting. It is a softshell exterior and not made with extreme stealth in mind. If noise is a big concern, I would recommend looking elsewhere for a Windstopper jacket. I want to get my hands on the Sitka Stratus jacket to compare the two. Check back and I will give my thoughts on the comparison and maybe throw a Youtube video out there as well.
As I said, it was windy and wet the entire time I was in Indiana last fall hunting. It absolutely poured on me over two days. This jacket is not waterproof, but it is very water resistant. I had more problems with my fleece baselayer absorbing water into my sleeves than I did with this jacket getting soaked.
To wrap this up, I think the Sitka Jetstream jacket has a place in western hunting. I don’t personally carry a softshell while elk hunting but some do. However, I think treestand hunting is the wrong application. I am working on a comparison review between the Sitka Jetstream and the Sitka Stratus jacket so stay tuned for that.
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