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Apparel Review

SIMMS New ExStream Jacket - Is It Enough? (continued)

Features: An interesting feature of this jacket is the fact it's 3-point cinchable hood is removable. That's the good news, the so so news is that while you can crush it down and stick it in one of the zippered front pocket, it still takes up a bit of room in there because of the loftiness of its insulation. Also, once removed, there is no provision on the jacket to conceal the other half of the zipper left at the base of the collar.

The hood is removable, but there are no provisions to conceal this zipper once the hood is removed.

There are actually five pockets on this jacket. Three are accessible from the outside and all securable via zipper. The two pockets on the inside have large openings but are not secure pockets. Their chambers run between those of the outside pockets and the exterior of the jacket.

A look at the soft lining inside the collar.

The front zipper is a YKK® Corrosion Resistant Zipper for added durability against the elements, and the jacket's cuffs are adjustable via a Velcro strap. The jacket's PrimaLoft® Synergy, synthetic insulation provides a fair amount of loft and insulation, and unlike down, is water resistant, but the warmth factor is no where near as much as down.

Features Ratings for SIMMS ExStream Jacket

Convertible (1-5)
Fastened Pockets (1-5)
Water Proof or Fast Drying Fabric (1-3)
Adjustable Cuffs (1-3)
Insulation or UPF Rating (1-5)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)

Design & Ergonomics: The SIMMS product photos of this jacket hint at a slightly tailored fit and flattering lines. But once you put it on, it feels like a big, bulky jacket. The sides come down relatively straight so I wouldn't consider it a fitted jacket, but it's not an entirely relaxed fit either. Fortunately, the movement this jacket allows eventually makes you forget how big and bulky it feels when you first put it on.

We did a quick test back at TT HQ to see how the outer layer holds up to water.

The ExStream is available in sizes up to XXL, but is only available in one color. The jacket rates about average on its all day wearability and thanks to its synthetic insulation, the convenience of packing this jacket in your bags for travel, on a hike, or somewhere in the boat when it warms up is just average.

Design & Ergonomics Ratings for SIMMS ExStream Jacket

Aesthetic (1-5)

Oversized Sizing (1-3)
Available Colors (1-3)
All Day Garment (1-3)
Packable (1-3)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)

Application: Perhaps the best feature of the ExStream jacket by SIMMS is its versatility to be worn as an outer layer or mid-layer underneath a waterproof shell. The PrimaLoft© Synergy insulation delivers good warmth without excessive bulk so when worn as a mid-layer, movement is not severely restricted. As for applications outside of fishing, if the styling is "you", there's no reason it couldn't be worn as a casual jacket or even out in the snow or on a chilly camping trip.

We let that big droplet soak for about five minutes, them moved it around to see if there was any evidence of infiltration.

As you can see, water began to soak into the fabric - this is what we expected because the nylon of this jacket is water resistant not waterproof.

Application Ratings for SIMMS ExStream Jacket

Top Layer (1-5)
Mid Layer (1-5)
Bottom Layer (1-5)
Casual Wear (1-5)
Other Outdoor Pursuits (1-5)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)



Just the same, wipe that water away, and the shell begins to dry almost immediately. A good sign for light rain, drizzle, or the occasional splash. Just don't expect this jacket to keep you dry in a torrential downpour.



SIMMS ExStream Jacket Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality SIMMS makes a quality product and this jacket is no exception 9.0
Performance It performs well for what it is. The jacket's best feature is the mobility it affords you while fishing 8.0
Price A bit pricey for a product that's only water resistant and not water proof 4.5
Features Pretty solid across our features check list but nothing that stands out either 7.14
Design (Ergonomics) Overall, just a bit bulky for my taste 6.5
Application Can be worn as a top layer, but really best suited as a mid layer garment beneath a waterproof shell 6.4

Total Score

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:


+ Versatility as either a mid or top layer garment - Cost to acquire is a bit high
+ Insulation won't bog down if wet so it will still keep you warm - Fit is bulkier than I'd like
+ Water resistant is better than nothing at all  


Conclusion: Normally, when SIMMS makes a product, they hit the nail squarely on its head. In general, the ExStream jacket is a very good product, but ultimately, it's the retail price that brings its score down together with above average but not outstanding scores for design and application. Truth is, if you're looking for a good mid-layer coat, there are a lot of similar PrimaLoft® insulated options from the likes of North Face, Mountain Hardware and more. What the ExStream jacket has over the competition is the water resistant shell, but what the competition has in its favor is a fit that's more snug and tailored and therefore less bulky.

Headed out in cold and a little inclement weather? The ExStream jacket by SIMMS might be a something for you to consider!

If a good outer layer is what you're after, well, then the ExStream can fit the bill as long as you're not expecting a big rain. You'll need to pack along a waterproof shell for that which ultimately brings us back to the discussion of mid-layer options. For conditions most fisherman will encounter and endure before seeking reasonable shelter, the ExStream jacket will perform nicely and without the extreme expense of a fully waterproof coat. For me, this jacket makes more sense as a mid-layer garment and for that, I'd prefer a snugger fit.


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