I’m always on the hunt for the perfect foul weather boating jacket and I think I may have just found it: Stormr Typhoon Jacket. A favorite of Northeast commercial crabbers are serious striper anglers and surfcasters, the Typhoon, I can say from experience, is equally at home along the Pacific coast.
Neoprene Core Technology
At the heart of the Typhoon jacket is what STORMR calls “Neoprene Core Technology,” which features a super thin layer of neoprene that is sandwiched between moisture-wicking fleece and a durable nylon outer shell that is coated with an extra water repellant shell (all layers are 4-way stretch). The result of which is a coat that is waterproof, windproof and also has positive buoyancy…which will help you, rather than drag you down, should you go into the water.
At first glance, you can tell by the burly zippers, heavily taped seams and waterproofing that this jacket is bulletproof!
Here’s a close up of the waterproof pockets..
When I initially put it on, the coat felt a bit stiff but after a few days, it broke in and is now really comfortable. In fact, I’ve actually been wearing it around on dry land too – while working in the back yard and in the garage on cold nights.
The STORMR folks say that the coat is perfect for wearing while engaging in “normal” activity levels up to about 60 degrees and up to 40 degrees if you are working hard and sweating. I’ve been wearing it while rowing the drift boat on my winter steelhead guide trips and the temps have been ranging from 30-60 degrees and I’ve been comfortable – even when rowing back up on stuff repeatedly to make more passes on productive runs. The cool thing is I’ve just been wearing a shirt under the Typhoon and have not had to put on a bunch of layers. I start out with it on in the mornings and then unzip it as the temp gets to about 55 and then go with just the shirt when we get into the low 60’s.
One thing I was initially concerned with was the fact that the coat isn’t breathable – however, I have not yet had any issue with sweating inside the Typhoon. I think there is enough room inside between the garment and your skin so that you don’t get sticky. Plus the inside is made up of wicking (and soft!) fleece.
When we finally got some(cold) rain here in California last week, I was able to test the jacket during inclement weather. The outer shell had no problems with the downpour – the water beaded up and ran off and I stayed cozy inside the Typhoon. While the cuffs are pretty snug and I didn’t experience any “arm trickle,” I still would prefer some way to lock down the wrist openings a bit more – just in case on those crazy days when the rain is blowing sideways at 40 knots.
A couple of things that I’m really picky about with my rain gear: The size of the hood and how comfortable (or not) the chin area of the hood is when zipped up tight. As far as hood size goes, I’m a minimalist. Keep me warm and dry but don’t make me feel like I’m in a cave! I’ve had several coats in the past that I couldn’t stand because it was hard to see out of them – the hoods were too deep. I’m happy to report that I have great peripheral vision while snug inside the Typhoon – it has just the right about of coverage.
I’ve also owned quite a few rain coats that were not at all comfortable when the hood was on and the zipper all the way up — typically, some rough edge or part of the zipper would poke or rub my chin. Or, the zipper would catch a stray whisker now and then…ouch! Well, the STORMR gang though of everything and the inside of the hood around that area is padded and soft to the touch. And the zipper is covered so no unwanted facial hair pluckings!
With the full set of features, durability and comfort, I think the STORMR is a must for winter steelheaders in drift boats – but I’m also using it on the jet sled, blasting around the Delta on cold foggy mornings. I bet it will also be perfect for the cold days of salmon fishing off the coast when the weather’s damp and chilly – and surf fishing too! I may even give ‘er a go snowboarding sometime this winter.
Retail on the Typhoon is around $200-220 but considering it should give you many years if faithful service, it’s pretty reasonable.
For more information, visit STORMRUSA.COM
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