Sitka Gear has partnered up with W.L. Gore to provide some of the best concealment gear to today’s demanding hunter.(article on this partnership) has been a fan of the Sitka Gear System since day one. We purchased a set of their clothing within the first several months of Sitka coming to market and their gear has been on our backs through numerous hunts and adventures from the high country of Idaho to the cold flats of the InnerLake region of Manitoba. We have used this gear for everything from Hunting Turkey to Elk with Antelope, Bear and Whitetails in between.
Over the last several months we have been testing the new Optifade camo in both the Sitka StormFront Jacket and Pants as well as the new 90% Pants and the Traverse Shirt and Celsius Vest. In the next several months these products will be coming to market in outdoor stores across the country and they are absolutely worth checking out. This gear is so new it is not even on their website at the current moment and I expect it will be a hot topic in the outdoor press. New camo is always a hot topic.
Storm Front System with Jacket and Pants
The StormFront Jacket and pants that I used were excellent. I got the opportunity to take them out on a rainy October day during the height of deer archery season in a pouring rainstorm. It was not pouring when I started out at 3pm but drizzling and I felt that this hunt would be the perfect opportunity to check out this new set. I walked about a half mile from the truck en route to the stand the heavens opened up and it began to pour. It was about this time that I had the opportunity to spot a doe off in the distance at about 200 yards so with a quick dive to the ground and a quick jog around a hedgerow I was able to come out at about 100 yards from her.The rain was coming down in sheets and the bow was soaked. I was dry, eerily dry and this gear was absolutely the reason. I continued my stalk six inches at a time into the field.
The grass is about 2 feet tall and I tried to keep a low profile as the sheets of rain were pounding down…moving forward as the doe had her head down or was meandering away from me. I was at 75, then 50 and then inching up on 40 yards and drawing on the doe as the rain came to a swift stop and I felt the breeze across my face… Trying to concentrate on getting the pin on her vitals as I heard the snort as she bounded off to live another day. It is these hunts I remember as much as the ones where game is taken.
The Optifade system allowed me to get in close and the rain assisted as well. This doe never saw me but she did catch me because of the wind and I was busted quick. I was also dry and I wouldn’t of been in the field had it not been for the quality of this gear. Great rain gear is essential to getting you into the field on days where you might not of otherwise gone and this rain gear is exceptional.
Optifade 90% Pants, Traverse Shirt and Celsius Vest
Hunting Spring Turkey in the Optifade made me a little bit nervous to be honest. This gear had been created to conceal hunters from ungulates not for the amazing vision of the Eastern Turkey. Concealment while turkey hunting is of the utmost importance as most shots are taking place between 10 and 30 yards. Turkeys can see 270 degrees and are extremely wary. From the moment a turkey is born everything in the world is working towards hunting them.
The 90% Pants and the Traverse shirt and vest are perfect companions for the cool Virginia spring mornings chasing these magnificent birds. The cloth is comfortable and the wealth of pockets are well laid out and convenient. The Pants come with lightweight rubberized suspenders and I tried them on a couple of times and suspenders are just not my deal so I took them off. Leaning up against a tree with the bark the Optifade blends extremely well.