To stay warm and dry when offshore sailing or fishing, you'll want the finest foulies. With most coats and bibs costing hundreds of dollars, it's a significant investment that shouldn't be thrown away. As production techniques and fabric technology advance, it's becoming more difficult to identify which goods are authentic and which are just low-cost imitations.
A thorough investigation has led us to believe we've discovered the finest foul weather gear for offshore cruising and fishing on the market right now We've also included a buyer's guide to assist you better understand the criteria we used to choose our top picks.
Recommendations for Offshore Foul Weather Gear
1. Helly Hansen Men’s Skagen Offshore Jacket
- The performance of Helly Tech is outstanding. 2 ply fabric structure is windproof, waterproof, and breathable, and the seams are completely sealed.
- Durable water repellency coating, quick-drying mesh lining, reinforced lower back and a detachable hood are all features of this raincoat.
- the European Standard EN 471 High-visibility fabric, a double storm flap, and a profiled high collar distinguish this style from others.
When we put on the Helly Hansen offshore jacket and bibs, we could instantly see how well they protected us. When it comes to waterproof and windproof clothing that is still breathable, Helly Hansen is the go-to brand. These raincoats will keep you warm and dry for long periods of time thanks to their Helly-Tech fabric.
The Skagen is made of heavy-duty materials, so it feels substantial in the hand. As a result, the design drapes gracefully about the human body rather of being worn like a heavy suit of armor. The 34-length jacket is also comfortable and stylish.
Two big cargo pockets with flaps and Velcro closures are located on the front of the jacket. Hand warmers may be made from the fleece that lines the interior. Two smaller zippered pockets are located above the larger ones on the chest. One more small, flapping security pocket may be found on the inside.
This jacket is quite black, which may make it difficult to see in low light. There is a reflective green patch on the hood, but the rest of the outfit is bright green. A fleece-lined collar with a Velcro wind flap protects and comforts the dog's neck.
Once the wrist is fastened with Velcro straps, it is protected by inner seals. The jacket's sleeves include Velcro straps that may be adjusted thanks to the well-sewn tabs. Because of its tiny size, the jacket's front zipper is a little difficult to use when wearing gloves. A Velcro flap keeps water and wind from getting inside. Strong and simple to use, the waist pull cord is a great addition to any outfit.
The Helly Hansen pants are just as tough and well-made as the jacket. There is a heavy-duty zipper on the bib to keep it in place. The waist straps and shoulder straps are both broad and comfy, with the former being adjustable. Two zipped pockets are located on the bib's chest, and Velcro straps are attached to the ankles. It's safe to say that the Helly Hansen gear can handle any weather situation. Even though it's expensive, a life jacket will keep you dry and toasty when the weather turns bad and you're far from land.
2. Grundéns Balder Hooded Fishing Jacket
- Oil- and low-temperature-resistance design.
- Adjustable visor hood with a simple pull string.
- Concealed push buttons are hidden by a double storm front.
The roomy shape and snap-buckle shoulder straps make wearing Grunden's jacket and bibs a breeze. Overall, it was extremely comfortable because to the broad straps that didn't bite into our shoulders. There are no women-specific products from Grundens, so even a lady who normally wears size 6 may discover that XS fits them well.
Especially in the lower crotch and waist regions, this baggy style was visible on both sexes since it restricted mobility. Fortunately, a little amount of slack may be added to the waist. In addition to looking like rainwear, the material of the pants and jacket also had a rubbery feel to it. When compared to other coats that have double-layered zippers, this one has a lot of metal snaps to shut it.
The Grundens jacket also has water-resistant neoprene cuffs for added comfort and warmth. To allow fishermen to wear their broad and tall boots with the pants, there is no ankle seal. The lack of outside pockets on the pants and jacket distinguishes this Grundens set from other sailing foulies. A single, tiny pocket may be located within the bibs, but it's difficult to get to without removing the jacket snaps.
When it came to visibility, the black and orange hues didn't do much to stick out and might have used some more safety reflectors. However, it is visible in daytime and doesn't look embarassing to wear, so you may have to add some of your own.
While the Grundens jacket and bibs had certain flaws, they did a good job of keeping users dry and toasty even while it was pouring rain outside. The absence of pockets and the low cut around the crotch make it a little less than perfect in certain places, but it succeeds at its main goal of keeping users dry and warm nonetheless.
3. Gill OS2 Offshore Sailing Jacket
- The OS2 Jacket, a perennial favorite, never fails to amaze thanks to its ideal blend of comfort, style, and utility.
- It's the perfect sailing jacket for any trip, whether it's on land or in the sea.
- Comfort and warmth are provided with a high-cut thermal collar that covers the whole face.
If you're planning on doing any offshore sailing, consider the Gill OS2 jacket and bibs. To begin, it's a breeze to move about in. You will love how it has a warm, fleece-lined high-cut collar with mesh lining at the shoulders and neck for even more comfort in the colder months. If you're worried about being seen, the lime, yellow, red, and graphite hues on the Gill OS2 jackets can help.
This jacket is both windproof and waterproof thanks to Gill's patented 3-dot soft touch double-layered laminated fabric. All seams are completely taped for a better seal to further enhance waterproofness. There is less chafing thanks to the chin guard and the fleece inside collar. The two-way, heavy-duty YKK zipper on the OS2 makes it simple to slip on and take off. With four hand-warmer pockets, two deep cargo pockets, and a zipped security pocket to keep valuables, pockets shouldn't be a problem.
We like the inclusion of a rain-shedding visor on the hood. With a reflective patch, fluorescent properties, and the ability to be stored in the collar when not in use, it's an excellent choice.
The bibs will be our next topic of discussion. With an elasticized waist, it's simple to wear and take off since it's easily adjustable. The ankle closures on the pants are very well-designed. By going through a plastic slide before attaching to a Velcro patch, the strap is more secured and less likely to get unfastened.
Even while we love the OS2 jacket, it does have a few drawbacks. A problem arose with the retractable outside cuff adjuster that was supposed to represent an innovation. Most of the time, it would clump together around the wrist, resulting in irritation and a difficult time sealing with the inner seals. It's possible that this design might have worked better on the ankles of the OS2 trouser.
The shock cord at the hem, on the other hand, significantly increased the jacket's resistance to the wind. Loops on the outside of the collar and on the inside of the jacket make it simple to store and dry the jacket. Sailing or fishing enthusiasts who want to go offshore but don't want to spend a fortune on their gear will like the OS2 jacket and bibs because of its strong mid-range construction.
4. WindRider Pro Foul Weather Gear Jacket and Bib
- WATERPROOF AND BREATHABLE - Comfy in cold or warm weather thanks to its dual-layer construction and mesh inner layer. So, when the weather becomes poor and it's windy and raining...
- DOUBLE ZIPPERS - Double zippers are used on both the jacket and the bibs to keep the garments closed. This eliminates the need to remove your outerwear while using the restroom....
- TONS OF POCKETS - Have too many pockets ever happened to anyone? The bibs and jacket add up to 13 points! The jacket and the bibs are lined with fleece for warmth and comfort...
Any sailor or fisherman will appreciate the WindRider Pro's full-body foul weather gear's effectiveness and convenience. To begin, there's a ton of storage in the form of four chest pockets, two of which are fleece-lined for warmth in your hands. Two thigh pockets provide additional storage for your tools and accessories. There are a total of thirteen pockets on this outfit.
We really like how comfortable the WindRider Pro clothing is, especially on long days. To begin, the ankles and shoulders may be tightened or loosened to suit your preferences. Water resistant and breathable, it allows perspiration to quickly escape while you're working out. It has a long, fleece-lined collar to keep water out of your face and sleeves that have an inside cuff to keep it out of your hands.
Further enhancing its toughness are the WindRider Pro's reinforced knees. The materials in this kit have so far held up well after being used in a variety of challenging situations. To begin with, the two zippers make it possible to empty the bib's contents without taking them off. The WindRider Pro foul weather jacket and bib is a great choice for usage offshore since it's lightweight, breathable, and handy.
5. Navis Marine Pro Offshore Foul Weather Jacket and Bib
- FEATURE: Waterproof, windproof, and amazingly breathable thanks to Navis Marine Tech 2. The use of a ply fabric keeps water out while yet allowing air to flow through...
- REFLECTIVE DETAILS: On the sleeves, shoulders, and hood are areas of retroreflective plastic material, and reflective elements keep you safe...
- OFFSHORE TROUSERS: Adjustable shoulder straps, adjustable waists, and velcro-adjustable ankles keep rain and snow out while providing a custom fit and heat retention...
To begin with, the Navis Marine Pro Jacket and Bib are made with two layers of protection: SERA-TEX Pro fabric and Micro Grid Backer, which are sewn together with synthetic thread. As a result, it's very long-lasting, watertight, and windproof. You won't be hot and bothered since the fabrics are breathable and allow perspiration to escape.
The jacket also has a nylon taffeta inner double zipper with pull tabs. The 3M retro reflective piping on the collar and sleeves is critical for visibility at night or on the water. A multi-layer construction method is used on the jacket sleeves, allowing for more flexibility and movement in the elbows and arms.
The panels that line the upper back, on the other hand, provide the torso more flexibility. The broad velcro adjustment band on the bottom sleeves allows you to add an additional 1.5" of room while still ensuring a good fit. There are two zippered pockets on the exterior and two on the inside of the Navis Marine Pro jacket. You may keep your money or smartphone safely tucked away in the inside pockets. Another useful feature of this neck seal is a velcro patch that adds even more warmth and security. The collar is really comfy and toasty, however if it gets wet, it may become unpleasant.
A 6"x1" reflective patch runs the length of the hood from the center to the top of your head, making it ideal for nighttime use. Afterwards, the shock cord performs well, and the hood is a breeze to put on and take off. It's foldable and cinch-able when not in use.
The trousers are made from the same material as the pants, but they have a non-perforated nylon taffeta lining as well. They are built from the same material as the pants. For further durability, the knees and seat of the trousers have been hemmed with Cordura fabric reinforcements. There are 1-½” elastic suspenders included with the trousers, and they fit well and remained put. We repeatedly sat and stood to check whether they twisted or if there were any other problems.
One front pocket on the right side measures 7.5" x 9", which is standard for most jeans. Above the top of the pocket is a useful plastic key holding loop. For more locations to store your stuff, look below the trousers for a similar loop. The stitched inside crotch flap, which may make it difficult to take a leak, was one of the things we didn't like.
Buying Guide for Foul Weather Gear
When it comes to foul weather gear, there are three levels: inshore, coastal and offshore. Inshore gear is usually not recommended by us. Foulies have two purposes: keeping you dry and keeping you warm. Instead of keeping you dry and warm, inshore gear will leave you damp from perspiration and eventually leave you chilly.
Coastal gear is the bare minimum for any kind of sailing. Whether you're cruising the coast or fishing offshore, you'll want reliable offshore foul weather gear. Storms may develop even if you're just a few miles out to sea. Staying dry and warm is critical when you're so close to the coast and all of its hazards. It's possible that being uncomfortable, cold, and wet may impair your judgment at a time when you need it most, and your clothing will help you cope with this circumstance more comfortably.
It may be difficult to choose the ideal product due to the large number of manufacturers and options available on the market. Depending on the manufacturer, sizes may range from extra big to just a large. You'll need to spend a lot of money on bad weather gear, but it will help you get through the worst of it. It will become more irritating and perhaps hazardous depending on the circumstances in any places where it is absent.
In order to get the best fit for your foul weather gear, think about where you'll be sailing or fishing the most. Considering you'll be in warmer areas most of the time, you can get by with only a T-shirt and shorts. But if you're going farther north, you'll need to account for the additional weight and space that comes with wearing long trousers, thermals, and several shirts and sweaters on top of that.
To do this, check to see whether the sleeve is long enough to cover your wrists and if there is an adjustment for your wrist to accommodate various layers of clothes, such as a light sweater or simply a sleeveless shirt.
Additionally, some coats designed for bad weather include elasticated cuffs. In order to make it less tight, you'll need to cut the seam open using a riggers knife to prevent it from being overly restricting. In other words, the less you have to fiddle with your gear, the better. After all, it's no fun to break a $400 piece of gear.
Make sure the jacket can zip up over your numerous layers of clothing, since this has to be stated for the record. Another sign that it's too tight is if you have to yank the zip all the way closed before it will zip. The only choice is to close it completely, since if you leave it open you will get wet and that would undermine the objective.
The length of the front and back is one of the most critical considerations when purchasing foul weather clothing. Bad weather coats often feature extra-long rear portions to keep your backside dry. If you're a shorts wearer, consider how long your shorts are and if your jacket has a back portion long enough to cover your shorts while choosing a jacket. The bottom of your shorts will become wet if you don't roll them up to keep them dry.
In the same way, you should choose your foul weather trousers, and you will most likely need a different size pair of pants than your jacket. The only time you may need to wear foul weather gear trousers in the summer in a hotter environment is when it's chilly and wet while you're out on the lake.
In order to keep your torso dry in wet weather, foul weather trousers usually feature a bib-style overall construction. Many sailors only use their paints while sailing in rough waters or in situations where they would be exposed to salt spray but not rain.
To avoid digging into your shoulders or twisting into rolls, make sure the shoulder straps are broad and comfortable. The seat should be wide enough for you to sit comfortably when helming the vessel, and make sure the legs are long enough to cover your ankles while sitting but not so long that they impede your movement on deck. Be sure that all of the snaps and zippers on your top are simple to shut and smooth.
There are a few common features on foul weather jackets: elasticized waistbands, adjustable tabs, an inside drawing, or flared hips or a nipped-in waistline, for example. They're not frills, but methods to keep your jacket from flinging about and obstructing your vision while you're not wearing it.
You're at the bow, dealing with a dragging anchor, when your jacket gets caught in the wind at the incorrect angle, and you're drenched and distracted. Imagine the rain is pouring and you are at the bow. Unintentional soaks and fly-ups will be a thing of the past with these features in place. You may also access your foul weather trousers and sit down comfortably by wearing a foul weather jacket with zippers that unzip below or above the waist.
To be effective in bad weather, your foul weather clothing must be distinctive, but not in a fashion-forward way. You want to be as noticeable as possible to others around you while it's dark and stormy outside. However, even though my first pair of foulies were a hideous neon yellow and a shockingly bright orange, they were robust, long-lasting, and kept me dry. However, despite my apprehensions, I continued to wear it since it served its purpose. I wore it for years, waiting impatiently for it to start peeling, shedding, delaminating, or leaking somewhere. It never did, and in the end, I simply purchased a new set and stored the old one away for safety's sake.
It's not meant to be a fashion statement, but you do want to stand out in foul weather clothing (for safety reasons) and you're going to wear it frequently, so who can blame you for wanting both functionality and excellent looks from it? Who wants to be bombarded by enormous fish logos all the time, after all? A foul weather jacket is likely to be one of the most costly coats you ever purchase, and the circumstances in which you'd wear one are not ones in which you'd find photographers shooting beautiful photos of you with your equipment.. Don't choose your jacket only on the basis of looks; instead, ensure that it will keep you visible even in low-light situations.
You have to make a statement once again, this time using color. However, this does not imply that your bad weather clothing should be a jumble of bright colors. To be seen by your crewmates if you go overboard with your gear that mixes in with the color of the waves, foam, and scud, you must be extremely conspicuous.
After becoming dissatisfied with my first foul weather suit due to its ugliness and sturdiness, I opted for one that had a stunning mix of off-white, blue, and teal. I was smitten by the way it looked until I realized how perfectly it merged with the sea, and if I fell overboard, no one would be able to see me.
I only wore the garment in calm circumstances, mostly on land or aboard big, broad sailboats offshore, but never in a dangerous situation. I'd be placing my life in severe risk if I tried to sail offshore for long periods of time.
Although bright red is more apparent than white or blue in foul weather, it is still less visible than bright orange, neon green, or yellow in foul weather. I'm not in the mood to go back to it right now. If someone were to fire a strong Q-beam at you at night, you want your jacket to reflect the light back to them. Reflective tape may help you stand out if your jacket doesn't have any of it already. It's an excellent measure of security.
Keep your head dry, even if you don't like the hood on your jacket. Your head may cause your body to lose up to 10% of its body heat. A jacket is ideal in my view if it meets all of your requirements and also includes some firm material on the headgear's front. A lot of the time, the hoods on bad weather clothing are so thin and fragile that they just fall off your head. I despise this and have discovered a method to give your hood some definition.
No, tightening the drawstring won't help since it will reduce the hood's openness even more. Wearing a visor or ball cap is the answer, and it's beautiful in its simplicity. To keep rain off your face and make it less fragile, a visor is a great addition to your hood.
Furthermore, a visor's plastic brim will keep the hood from sagging while you drive. As a result of this "improvement," you may securely pull the drawstring tighter without worrying about blocking your field of vision. It seems to be more durable and performs better in general.
You should have plenty of pockets on both the inside and outside of the jacket. It is likely that the outer pockets will not be utilized for holding your hands if they are just flat rectangular panels accessible only from the top. They're hardly ergonomic, but they come in handy for holding items like a rigging knife that you want to keep dry and close at hand.
It's a good idea to put gloves and mittens in any pockets below the ones that are accessible from the side since these pockets typically have extra space for them.
There's no such thing as having too many pockets, and having pockets on the inside is an excellent addition. Even if your ideal jacket doesn't have all the features you want, you may still add inner pockets by sewing them yourself or hiring a sailmaker or seamstress. Just be careful not to create any holes in the waterproofing on the outside.
Additional Points to Consider
Make sure you always have a pair of gloves in your pocket while you're not wearing it. So you don't have to worry about forgetting your gloves; you should always have a pair with you when you go out. If you're wearing a "land" jacket, you may get away with wearing thinner gloves, whereas with your offshore foul weather gear, you should carry a pair of your thickest and warmest gloves. As a result, you'll be well-equipped no matter what situation you find yourself in.
Keep a sturdy glasses case in the inner pocket of your jacket if you use sunglasses or prescription glasses to see. You must have it with you at all times when you need it. For the simple reason that severe weather may arise suddenly, and you won't have the luxury of searching for your glasses case below deck in time. Furthermore, if you carry your glasses in your pocket without a case, you run the chance of them breaking.
Keep an extra pair of glasses on hand if you need them to see the instruments or charts. As a result, even if you blow it, you'll still have a backup plan in place. If your only pair is stolen, will you be able to use the chart plotter or sail the boat without them?
Cost Per Wear
Wearing an expensive item often is one method to make sure you get the most value out of your purchase. For those who only use their foul weather clothing once or twice, the expense per use may seem exorbitant. Good foul weather clothing is something you'll need both on land and at sea.
Additionally, consider how much you'd have to spend at the marina's laundry to dry wet clothing from a shoddy foul weather jacket. Using coin dryers will soon be more expensive than buying a good rain jacket because of inflation. Foulies aren't a waste of money. You're already spending money, so you may as well get something in return.
For those who live in wet climates, foul weather jackets are a must-have accessory. Whenever someone mentions or compliments my "expensive rain jacket," I'm taken aback. On land, it's definitely unnecessary, but because I also like to sail, I'll make do with what I've already had. If you live in London and don't have a good rain jacket, investing in a foul weather jacket may not be such a terrible idea after all.
Foul Weather Gear Maintenance
Your foul weather gear is a costly investment, therefore it's critical that you know how to care for it. You should let your jacket air dry completely after you wear it, then turn it inside out so the inside can finish drying. If you don't have access to sunshine, consider hanging it inside in a dry, well-ventilated area to expedite the drying process.
As well as protecting your jacket, drying your jacket fully will also prevent you from being sunburned. If you have sensitive skin, wearing a moldy jacket may cause outbreaks or rashes. Even if you just have to wear your jacket back-to-back once, you may need to alternate between two or more coats to keep one bone-dry at all times.
If your jacket has discolorations or odors, it's time to clean it completely, dry it, and consider re-waterproofing it. While the inside of your foul weather jacket may keep you dry and seem to need little care, the neck, bottom, and cuffs may still be damp from the weather. Additionally, sweating causes moisture to build up inside, so you should always go through the whole cleaning procedure.
Finally, make it a habit to check your pockets often. Old candy bars and torches are among the oddities I've discovered in there throughout the years. Make it a habit to empty all of the pockets before washing the jacket rather than attempting to recall what was in each one.
Fixing Up Old Gear
Re-waterproofing your old coats can help you get the most value out of your purchase. Before learning about this trick, I was always shelling out cash for new coats when my old one just needed a little TLC. After that, I discovered a water-repellent product (part number B07V5NGWC6) that was a lifesaver!
I didn't want to spend money on anything else when I might have used it to partly cover the cost of a new jacket instead. Even so, I figured why not try the treatment out on a dry day to see what it might do for me at a fraction of the price of a new jacket on sale. My old jacket also functioned like new again, which was a nice surprise. I re-waterproofed all of my old coats as soon as I could to give them new life.
Keep Old Gear Around
If my short story above taught you anything, it's to hang on to your old stuff in case anything happens to it. When your primary jacket is broken, destroyed, or ruined, and you urgently need a replacement, just pull out your old trusty jacket, the one that served as your "major.". Using a water repellent spray on it may help, even if it doesn't keep you quite as dry as it formerly did.
As an added bonus, you may use the previous jacket as a loaner. Other people's bad weather coats may malfunction from time to time. Someone may be caught off guard, therefore you can be the hero by lending your extra. Whatever the case may be, having a safety net is a comfort.
Even if it's raining or foggy, you don't always have to wear heavy-duty foul weather gear to be safe. The ability to switch into a lighter water-resistant garment is useful in situations like these, particularly in warmer climes. Purchasing new jackets does not need much effort on your part. Give some of your lighter windbreakers the same treatment as your heavier ones using the water repellent spray I described above and you'll have a great lightweight alternative. As a result, you now have a wide range of jackets to select from for almost every scenario.
Sea boots should be about two sizes too large to fit over thick woollen socks beneath, similar to how foul weather coats should be designed to fit over several layers of clothing. To be honest, there should be enough room left over for a little sloppy fit. What gives?
Your boots are the first item you want to discard if you ever find yourself in trouble and find yourself overboard. Sea boots that are too tight will make you suffocate. You want to be able to kick your way out of them with ease. Wearing your sea boots ashore is likewise a bad idea. If you use these shoes on rough terrain, they will be destroyed since the soles were not made for that kind of use.
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