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Apparel Review


STORMR STRYKR Jacket and Bib, Armor from the Elements (continued)

Price and Applications: When it is cold, windy and wet the STORMR STRYKR jacket and bib is at its best, keeping anglers warm and dry and out in the field doing what they enjoy doing the most. However when conditions are more on the warm and rainy side the gear can feel a little like overkill and standard Gore-Tex Paclite jackets and pants feel more breathable and and are lighter and easier to move in.


The STRYKR Bib is very flexible, just make sure to get the right size, the medium size was short for me

If you are constantly travelling to fishing destinations the STORMR jacket does take up more room in your luggage and also weighs more, so if portability is a primary concern over warmth then this gear is not the right option. Interestingly the further north we journeyed up the coast the more the STORMR gear made sense. When we fished in Oregon and Washington we surveyed anglers and were surprised by how many professional guides not only knew of STORMR but had purchased the STRYKR gear for their own use.


The shoulder straps are adjustable and the bib also moves very well thanks to the 4 way stretch material

Multiple guides told us about how they had tried just about every type of rain gear and the STORMR offering was the one that kept them the driest and none of them had experienced any failures with the jacket whatsoever. It was interesting that while this apparel is not yet very well known among bass anglers that so many salmon and steelhead anglers in the Pacific Northwest had already started employing this product for their applications. When asked about how they had heard about the product most of them simply replied, ďword of mouth.Ē


Guides in the Pacific Northwest had a lot of positive things to say about the STRYKR gear

One guide told us that while he liked the Gore-Tex based garments for fishing on the Columbia when he took his business to the Olympic Peninsula or Alaska those same garments simply were not robust enough to handle the increased amount of rain, or provide protection from the low temperatures, it was then that he became a true fan of the STORMR STRYKR jacket and bib.


Washington State Guide Ron Holt purchased the STRYKR and uses it to shield himself from the rain and cold on the Columbia and Lewis River throughout the entire season

Another interesting attribute of the STORMR STRYKR gear is that it adds buoyancy, for example the STRYKR jacket adds about 5lbs of positive buoyancy so that in the event you fall in the water the jacket will actually help you, versus feeling like it is fighting you. How many other foul weather jackets and bibs can claim that? 


The reinforced areas provide extra protection yet still remain flexible

The STORMR gear is considered a premium foul weather offering and you might expect to pay a premium for the truly differentiated features but the company has priced them in line with the competitionís high end offerings. The STRYKR jacket currently retails for $299.95 while the bib retails for $259-$289.95 depending on size, this is just about the same as the Simms Contender Series and significantly less than the Simms ProDry Series.


Even after a drenching the jacket kept me completely dry and in the field

In terms of availability the STORMR STRYKR jacket and bib are available now at e-tailers including Amazon.com but we expect more and more retailers that cater to bass anglers to start carrying the lineup as well. We have confirmed that in the next few weeks Tackle Warehouse is planning to bring the line on and the STRYKR series will be available just in time for winter fishing.


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)

STORMR STRYKR Jacket Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Excellent construction and build quality, from the neoprene core material to the well constructed seams which are double reinforced 9
Performance Though the jacket may look bulky it is actually very comfortable and is easy to move in when fishing. Protection from the elements was very good 8.5
Price A great price for a premium foul weather jacket, especially one that is truly differentiated 8
Features Lots of unique features including plenty of storage, quality zippers and a well designed hood, but what makes this jacket so unique is the neoprene core construction 8.5
Design (Ergonomics) Though it doesn't feel heavy when it is worn the jacket is actually heavier than many competing shell type foul weather jackets and will not pack down as small as many competing garments 7
Application Great for fishing in foul weather, especially in extremely wet and cold conditions. Not as good for applications that require you to constantly pack to travel and fish or for conditions where it is rainy and still warm, like the Amazon for example. This is a great choice if you are facing constant barrages from rain and it was interesting to get a lot of positive feedback from Pacific Northwest guides 8

Total Score

8.16
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

+ Excellent wind and rain resistance - Physically heavier than competing jackets and doesn't pack down as small
+ Is warm in cold conditions - Can be overkill in light wet conditions, especially warm environments
+ Feels like true armor from the elements  
+ Provides buoyancy in the water  
+ Reasonable price for a premium foul weather jacket  

 


The STRYKR Bib has plenty of pockets for waterproof storage

 

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)

STORMR STRYKR Bib Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Like the STRYKR jacket the bib is well built out of high end materials, exactly what you expect in premium foul weather gear 9
Performance More so than the jacket it is very important to get a STRYKR bib that fits correctly. Unlike other bibs that run very large, with the intent to be easy to use in layering situations, this bib tends to fit tighter on your body due to the neoprene construction. Once you get the right fit this bib provides excellent protection from the elements 8
Price Retailing for around 289.99 this bib is reasonably priced against the competition and is a perfect fist for the STRYKR jacket 8
Features Plenty of storage, reinforcement in key wear areas, and the ability to keep you warm and dry in both windy wet conditions are all in a day's work for the STRYKR Bib 8.5
Design (Ergonomics) Though the bib features thicker material it is actually very comfortable and easy to move in once you put it on. The STRYKR bib offers much more storage than your average foul weather bib 7
Application Like the STRYKR jacket the bib is a great choice for hardcore anglers that do not need to pack light to hit their next fishing destination 8

Total Score

8.08
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

+ Great protection from the elements - Does not pack as small and light as some other competing options
+ Warm in cold condition - Fit is critical with this garment, make sure to get the right size and length
+ Easy to move in and do not feel heavy when worn, also provides some positive buoyancy in the water  
+ Plenty of storage  
+ Reasonable price for high end foul weather gear  

 

Conclusion: In a sea of sameness STORMR isnít willing to just ride the tide and their unique take on foul weather gear is refreshing. The worse the conditions the more the STORMR STRYKR jacket and bib make sense, and when it comes to providing additional warmth on cold wet and windy days this is one of the best pieces of kit we have tested to date. If you are constantly fishing in cold and wet environments the STRYKR is a winner, and it is easy to see why so many of the guides we talked to up North swear by this gear.

 


If you are looking for hardcore foul weather gear that excels in cold, windy and wet conditions the STORMR gear is definitely worth a look

 

All of this protection does come at a cost however and the neoprene based construction creates garments that are heavier and will not pack as small as thinner competing foul weather gear. If you are just driving to your favorite fishing destinations, like in weekend warrior or guide applications for example, the STRYKR will serve you well.

 


STORMR offers anglers quality armor from the elements

 

Though the garments may appear bulky they offer exceptional range of movement once they are put on due to the materialís flexibility and I was surprised that I didnít feel burdened at all while casting or moving around the boat. While many other jackets and bibs provide a shield from the elements the STRYKR gear feels more like a complete suit of armor, ready and willing to take on anything Mother Nature throws at you while you pursue your next trophy catch.

 

 

 

 

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