During the 2012 Wyoming Elk Season, I had a chance to test out the new Badlands Impact Jacket. On the hunt we traveled from 7500 to 9900 feet in elevation in temps that were at a high of 65 degrees F in the beginning down low and as low as 10 degrees F on the final days of the hunt.

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The Badlands Impact Jacket is a fleece jacket featuring Badlands proprietary Fusion Fleece. Basically this is layers of materials of different densities and putting them where needed. Breathable thinner layers under the arms and wind resistant thicker insulation on the body portion to conserve heat. The Honeycomb fleece on the inside gives more warmth without bulk. It traps warm air in the voids without being “puffy” like down. When the mountain wind kicked up, The impact Jacket didn’t let the chill through the way “old style” fleeces used to.

One of the things I liked best was the collar design. No hood meant I could wear my felt cowboy hat without feeling it bind on the back of my neck with a pack on. The beard guard on the top of the zipper kept my “hunting goatee” from snagging in the zipper.

Another feature I enjoyed was the sleeve design. The athletic cut and stretchable nature of the fabric meant no annoying velcro straps or elastic bunching needed to keep the cuffs from flapping while allowing room for a wrist release for archery. The edging is a tough but quiet material that should withstand wear quite well.

I found the Cut and Fit to be perfect for my body type. I wore an XL size and it seemed to fit true to my 35″ arm and 17″ neck, and didn’t creep up and expose my back when I bent over. I’ve found other athletic cut sportswear to be perfect for more lithe, less blocky type body types, but this suited me well.

I think the Impact jacket has replaced a couple of camo hunting jackets in my line up. For Early Fall pursuits in the 11 Western States, this Western Wanderer will be taking an Impact along.

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