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Apparel Review


HUK Takes Foul Weather Protection to the Next Level (continued)

Design and Ergonomics: The NXTLVL jacket and bib check off all the boxes when it comes to performance and one of the features that we havenít addressed yet is the cut and style of the garments themselves. So often with rain gear the look and feel of the garments are an afterthought, but this is certainly not the case with the Huk NXTLVL. This setup features a more modern cut that looks quite stylish, and the Kryptek pattern gives the garment an edgier look. While there are many competing garments on the market Huk has probably done the best job creating a jacket and bib that blend form and function and are instantly recognizable and stand out from the competition.


The NXTLVL offers such great freedom of movement it can easily be employed for other outdoor sports

Though striking in design the modern cut on the jacket makes it something that I am totally comfortable wearing for other sports, or even just wearing when making a grocery run on a rainy day. For example Iíve worn the jacket out in the rain to the archery range a few times and every time Iíve either been complimented or someone has inquired about the jacket.


One of the things I really liked about the bibs were the large suspender straps which distributed the weight of the garment very comfortably

Though the Kryptek helps you blend into your surroundings both the NXTLVL jacket and bib also have reflective welding and branding in key areas for safety. The Huk logo can be found on just about every corner of the garments, and while some anglers may feel like a walking billboard, most will likely wear the Huk brand proudly. Huk may not have as long a history as some of the other competing brands but what it absolutely has going for it is technology, styling, and a strong following among the younger generation of anglers.

Design & Ergonomics Ratings for Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bibs

Aesthetic (1-5)

Oversized
Sizing
(1-3)

Available Colors (1-3)

All Day Garment (1-3)

Packable
(1-3)

Total

Possible

Rating (= Tot/Pos *10)

5

3

1

3

2

14

17

8.23

The material sits loosely but comfortably around my narrow wrists.

Application: There is rain gear and there is foul weather gear, the main difference is that garments like the HUK NXTLVL which fall in the latter category are designed for more than just rain, they are designed to shield anglers from all the ever-changing elements. While I used to just bring my foul weather gear with me on days where the forecasts called for it I now have them on the boat at all times. On cold early morning runs the NXTLVL jacket and bibs provide an excellent shield from the wind, and that extra bit of warmth helps keep you comfortable and ready to fish.


These days I keep the foul weather gear on board at all times, being ready for whatever Mother-Nature brings has kept me out fishing longer

I also often travel with my foul weather gear and in this application the NXTLVL gear packs down nicely, but is not as small and light as the Simms ProDry, nor does it cost nearly as much either. The Huk NXTLVL Bibs retail for $349.00 and the NXTLVL Jacket also costs $349.00. Together seven hundred dollars for a set of foul weather gear may seem like a lot, but these days it kind of is par for the course for a complete set of premium class gear. In comparison the competing flagship gear like the Under Armour Ridge Reaper suit costs $750 dollars ($850 for the UA Ridge Reaper hydro), the Stormr STRYKR retails for $625 dollars, and the Simms ProDry jacket and bib costs the most at $1000 dollars.


Fish slime? No problem. It was easy to keep the NXTLVL suit clean and a simple rinse with the hose after each use was more than enough

Application Ratings for Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bibs

Top Layer (1-5)

Mid Layer (1-5)

Bottom
Layer
(1-5)

 Casual
Wear
(1-5)

Other
Outdoor
Pursuits
(1-5)

Total

Possible

Rating (= Tot/Pos *10)

4

4

4

4

4

20

25

8.0

 

Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide)

Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bibs Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Excellent construction throughout. Both the jacket and bibs exhibit quality stitching and are taped very nicely 9
Performance Excellent waterproofing, wind proofing, and breathability, this set of foul weather gear handles wet and windy conditions well but we did notice that it takes longer for this garment to dry than some competing offerings 9.2
Price $700 dollars is still a lot to pay for foul weather gear but compared to other premium offerings it is actually reasonably priced 8
Features Very good assortment of features and the storage on both garments is well thought out. the removable hood is a very nice touch 8.75
Design (Ergonomics) Great overall ergonomics this is among the most comfortable set of foul weather gear that I have ever worn 8.23
Application Great for both freshwater and saltwater anglers the Huk NXTLVL jacket can also be used for other sports as well. The stretch material doesn't restrict movement at all 8.0

Total Score

8.53
Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Very comfortable, does not restrict motion - Does get a little heavier after long rain and takes longer to dry than some competitors
+ Modern styling and edgy Kryptek patterns - Only available in one color/pattern
+ Removable hood  
+ Excellent breathability  
+ Reasonable price for a premium set of foul weather gear  
+ Great for more than just fishing  



The Huk NXTLVL is great for bass anglers but is certainly robust enough for saltwater use as well

Conclusion: More and more anglers are sporting Huk branded apparel and it really is no surprise. The company has delivered a rare blend of performance and style. Huk apparel is not designed for anglers that want to blend in to the crowd, their functional apparel screams passion for the sport and the use of Kryptek patterns in their gear is genius. With styling and Kryptek patterns anglers feel like they are gearing up for battle with the elements and fish, and it gives them the confidence that they are properly shielded from whatever Mother Nature has on the menu.


Checking off all the boxes the Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bibs are a real winner when it comes to performance and comfort

The Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bib performed beautifully through our tests really delivering when it comes to being waterproof, windproof, and breathable, but what makes this suit so good is just how comfortable it is to wear all day long. The high stretch material makes the suit feel much less like a rain shell and more like just a pair of comfortable pants and a trusted hoody. Loaded with features Hukís second attempt at apremium foul weather suit is an absolute home-run. Huk takes things to the next-level with their new suit and the NXTLVL Jacket and Bibís feature-set absolutely matches the performance level, making this suit an easy pick for our Editorís Choice Award. Looking for a premium set of foul weather gear that you will look good wearing? Hukís NXTLVL has got you covered (literally).

Looking for the Huk NXTLVL Jacket and Bib? Try Tackle Warehouse

 

 

 

   

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