Are you tired of being cold in the deer stand?

Well Sitka Gear has not forgotten you. They even make the Fanatic Jacket for when the cold winds blow.

I got a chance to test out the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket and here is how it performed.

Here in Ohio a deer hunter is subject to every extreme in weather and temperature possible. This all happens in the long archery deer season which includes the muzzleloading and firearm seasons. In September an archery hunter might find they are hunting in unseasonably warm 80+ degree temperatures. A Sitka Gear review for the Sitka Gear New Early Season Whitetail Line proved a winner for hot deer hunts this fall. Another review for the SITKA Whitetail System proved to cover warm weather up through a cold winter hunt. When it gets extremely cold waiting on a blustery winter hunt extra warmth is needed. That is where the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket will prove it’s worth. Can it make the Sitka Gear the go-to for deer hunting clothing all season long? With cold weather on the way it was quickly deployed for hunting. Let’s take a look at what features the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket offers.


The brilliance behind a diagonal zipper cannot be stressed enough. Now there is not a cold metal zipper up against your neck. The also allows the rangefinder and grunt tube pockets to be located in a handy spot.


Treestand safety is always a number one concern. the safety harness pass-through port allows the use of your safety harness underneath your outer garment.


The warmth of the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket cannot be stressed enough. All season long I have used the test jacket and found it by far is the warmest hunting jacket I have ever tested. Those long sits in a frozen ground blind or in a windswept treestand have just become quite more bearable.


During deer hunting you will be rained on. It will sleet and it will snow. The water repellent finish shed all of the above no problem. A dry hunt is much more warmer than a wet hunt. Staying dry is always a goal with any hunting gear that is quality. Sitka Gear once again has lived up to this necessity.


When deer hunting up in a treestand where do you put your grunt tube and your range finder? Well on the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket there are two pockets specially built for both of those items. Once again that was well thought out.


The insulated hand muff pocket has to be felt to be believed. Ditch the bulky gloves and mittens with this feature. With a zipper at each end it can be used as a regular pocket or a hand muff pocket. Warm hands on a winter deer hunt? We all have been waiting for that feature to be on hunting coats to this perfection.

Other features

I love all of the zippered pockets. Hunters are well known for loosing items in the woods from regular pockets. I learned at a young age that a zippered pocket was worth much more that buttons or open slant style pockets. The wallet, knife or cell phone you loose will be your own. Sitka Gear is all about zippered pockets. Well played!

The Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket is quite light in weight. It can be rolled down somewhat smaller to be strapped to a pack and carried in to your hunting spot. When you begin to cool down from your hike in put on the jacket and enjoy being warm.

For concealment the Optifade Elevated II pattern is great for treestand hunting. In snowy conditions the lighter color allows for more break up in profile over darker camouflage at even ground level.

Primaloft and Gore Windstopper keep you warm and comfortable. My only problem with that is it works so well you might want to take a little nap. The trophy bucks sure hope you do.

Final thoughts

I found the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket to be an incredibly warm and well thought out winter hunting jacket. It served me well in rain, snow and sleet in very cold and damp conditions.  If there is one addition I would have like to see would have been an insulated removable hood.

Be sure to check out the Optifade Elevated II Fanatic Jacket and all of the other great Sitka Gear items on their website. You are paying for quality and performance that will greatly outlast any  budget gear out on the market. You truly get what you pay for with Sitka Gear.

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