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Apparel Review

Sporting the Orange and Black, Simms Premium Pro Dry Rain Jacket (continued)

I had another opportunity after the battery of lab tests to use the ProDry in a different application while fishing with Mark Knoch, the Owner and President of AC Plugs at Lake Pyramid, Nevada. It doesnít rain much at Lake Pyramid but it does get cold and windy and on this particular trip I had forgotten to bring my wading jacket.


Fishing with Mark Knoch of AC Plugs


The ProDry Jacket isnít designed for wading as the long cut is much more suited to shielding bass anglers from the rain then getting in the water, but I needed more wind protection and tucked the jacket into my waders. Like my experience bass fishing with the ProDry Jacket, the garment effectively shielded me from the elements well enough to keep me fishing longer, and at Lake Pyramid you can sometimes make a hundred casts between fish, but when you land that Lahontan the sheer beauty of the fish makes it all worthwhile.


The ProDry Jacket provided extra warmth and wind protection


Price and Applications: Now that we have established just how well this jacket performs we can address the elephant in the room, price. Retailing for $499 dollars this jacket is expensive, ok it is very expensive. A lot of the cost in this jacket comes from the use of Gore-Tex material, and similar to premium ski jackets that use the branded material these jackets are considered an investment. A complete kit of both the ProDry Jacket and Bib will set you back a whopping 900 dollars, but for hardcore anglers it is worth every penny.


Releasing Cutthroat trout back into the lake


The ProDry jacket does provide a little extra warmth, but you will still want to layer up on those very cold days. This jacket is also extremely lightweight and packs down small so it is easy to keep the jacket in the back of your truck or even in your boat locker at all times. You just never know when you might need that extra layer of wind or water protection. The ProDry Jacket is available in three colors Delta Green, Steel grey, and Fury Orange. The green and gray colors are much more stealthy but I personally like the orange for three reasons, because it provides extra visibility for anglers on those grey rainy days and also because Simms just does a great job incorporating this signature color into their garments, and I get to wear the colors of my beloved SF Giants (which rocked it tonight in Game 1 of the World Series).


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)

Simms ProDry Rain Jacket Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Built out of high quality premium materials, this jacket is built to perform and last 9
Performance Excellent performance in all weather conditions. Not too warm to wear on normal days when you need extra wind protection and great on rainy wet days. An extra layer is required on consistently cold conditions 9.5
Price At $499 this is a serious investment and designed for hard core anglers 5
Features A ton of features including stretch fabric for comfort, plenty of storage, watertight cuffs and microfleece lined hand warmer pockets... this jacket is loaded 9
Design (Ergonomics) Extremely comfortable and packs down small and light, a great jacket for travel 8.5
Application great for bass anglers and can be used in other applications where wet weather protection is needed. Not a wading jacket but useful in a pinch. 8

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:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Excellent rain protection + A very costly investment any way you look at it
+ Excellent wind protection + great for rain but you still need to layer up for cold conditions
+ Very comfortable to fish in, allows for full range of motion  
+ The best rain jacket bass anglers can buy when cost is not an issue  


Conclusion: If you go fishing just a few times a year or prefer fishing only on those days with favorable conditions this jacket is going to be overkill. If you are a die-hard angler that likes to fish rain or shine or travels all over the country to bass fish this jacket is more justifiable. Combine the ProDry jacket with the bib and you have an expensive, yet highly effective, shield from the elements. Even in a complete downpour fishing with the ProDry is easy, amazingly comfortable, and will help you keep your lines in the water enabling you to boat more fish.


The Simms ProDry Rain Jacket is for so much more than just "rain" and is the best jacket anglers can buy (if money is not an issue)


As the name implies this jacket can address Pro Angling applications, and like the companyís waders this garment is designed for anglers that depend on their gear to make a living. Though this jacket is designed with enthusiasts in mind it also is stylish and comfortable enough to wear on a run to the store in bad weather, as long as you donít mind being a walking billboard for Simms. All in all the ProDry jacket is a dream come true for anglers seeking the best that money can buy in rain protection and is simply the best wind and rainwear jacket that I have purchased to date.


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