Recently I received a new wind jacket by Hunters Element, the ‘Sabre Soft Shell’. Traditionally I have always used the ‘Rugged Bush Coat’ for my wind coat, one that I still use extensively on the farm especially out and about on the motorbike. What I liked about the look of the new Sabre Jacket was its packability. I wasn’t disappointed. I like to roll it into its hood which gives me a small, warm wind coat to slip into my day bag and I know that if an unexpected shower was to show up, it will keep most of it off of me.
I first tried this coat out on a Chamois hunt. It was a miserable cold southerly day. The moment I stopped walking and wanted to have a glass around, the Sabre came out of my pack. Instantly I was warm, it is amazing just how harsh that wind-chill is. I got a nice photo of a Doe Chamois that day, a cool memento of the trip.
The next trip I took it on was a meat harvesting trip into Tahr country. It was hot, and not a breath of wind…but I put the Sabre into my pack anyway, and I didn’t need to pull it out once, well not until I wanted to put the meat on the bottom of my pack! That is the beauty of it, as a “just in case” jacket-it fits inside a day pack without any drama.
I really wanted to put it to the test before I wrote about it though, so I wore it out whilst harvesting rabbits and hares for a pet food company. I rode a quad until 2 am each night wearing only a T-shirt, a mid-layer fleece and my Sabre Top. I was impressed, I especially liked the snug hood which I wore my head torch over the top of, and the zip up pockets stopped me from losing my spare magazine for my .22. For a lightweight wind proof top, it certainly did its job. I don’t think it would handle the barbed wire fences like the Rugged bush coat though, but hey it’s a completely different concept. All in all, I’m impressed and I’ll be using the Sabre a lot more, it will certainly have a spot in my pack on my alpine hunts.
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