I had been looking for a new summer jacket for some time when a friend of mine showed me his new jacket – the Lowlander made by Thistle, Scotland I decided to have one. After not much deliberation I bought one and took it with me on our holiday in Poland. I tested it in all weather conditions both there and here in Scotland and must say I am quite pleased with it. It is extremely waterproof, non-insulated so can be worn on warm days and really breathable. It also has a couple of nice features and I will try to list them here.
Lightweight and packable
This is one of the first things you notice when you get the Lowlander jacket. It is very light, even lighter than a thin fleece jacket. It basically weights nothing. For me it is quite important as I already take too much equipment with me and my roe sack is half full and actually there is not much space for a roe carcass 🙄 But because I decided to film all my stalks I carry tripod, camcorder, lens, etc that I would not normally take with me… So it is important for me that any additional equipment is lightweight. The jacket can be also packet to very small size, similar to Cabelas packable jacket that fits into its own pocket. You can do the same thing with the Lowlander.
Waterproof and breathable
This is probably the main feature. The jacket is made of Porelle material which is extremely waterproof, windproof and breathable at the same time. I had it in torrential rain and was still dry. The rain is just bouncing off and running down the jacket, it is quite amazing to see. To be completely honest I also managed to got wet in the jacket after dragging a roebuck through the chest high wheat, but it was not a fair test. From my experience, it would happen to any waterproof material ( Goretex, etc) and even my Goretex boots give water in after some time of “rubbing” them through wet grass (that is why you need gaiters…), that was what I effectively did when I dragged the buck through the wheat… 😆
I quite like the idea of watertight chest pockets. In Scotland I carry my firearms certificate inside a foil bag in order to keep it dry. In case of this jacket this is not necessary. Two chest pockets and both bottom pockets can be zipped and are truly watertight. There is also inside pocket which is even better for this purpose.
Hood and collar
Collar is very nice and comfortable with fleece lining, nothing to rub against your neck which I find annoying in other jackets I owned. The collar holds quite large hood. I managed to wear it on top of my hat, so not too bad and draw strings make it easy to adjust and keep on your head even in strong wind.
This is something they call neoprene “storm cuffs”. They can be fastened and make the jacket even more waterproof. One thing which I find a bit annoying was sitka spruce needles catching with Velcros, but only because this was my only jacket on holiday and I was wearing it both stalking and… shopping… otherwise it would not bother me 😆
To be completely honest this is one of the features I was not sure about. I generally dislike typical waterproof jackets with all the noise you make with every move. The Lowlander is not as quiet as fleece and makes some noise. However, I decided to give it a thorough testing and worn it on holiday in Poland on all stalks. During our stay there I worn it stalking and managed to shoot three wild boar and three roebucks, some of them from quite short distances. Particularly after stalking and taking a single wild boar from no more than 40 meters, I am now convinced the noise the jacket makes is negligible. For anyone who does not stalk wild boar, it is quite easy to stalk into a group of pigs, but a single animal is particularly difficult to approach and they are very wary. I would also do not worry to wear the jacket in Scotland where almost always is some wind to cover the noise and waterproof jacket would come handy.
To summarize, the Lowlander jacket is well thought out. It is comfortable, made of good materials and really good looking. This is a jacket that could be worn shopping and the colour is quite unusual and not immediately associated with shooting. All ladies in the family noticed it and liked the colour a lot 😆 When it gets wet it changes colour slightly and appears to be darker. It is waterproof and breathable, so no sweating in warmer days. It is long enough to cover your bum when sitting on wet highseat. So, if you are looking for waterproof summer jacket, packable and lightweight, the Lowlander might be the right choice for you.