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Gray's Best 2011

Expeditions and Guides 2011
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Sure, we’d all rather hunt birds under a Dresden blue sky wearing little more than a shooting shirt and a strap vest. But sometimes hunters must prepare for less than idyllic conditions. That’s why Filson, a longtime manufacturer of premier bird-hunting apparel, created its Wingshooting Jacket ($295). Made of waterproof, breathable nylon twill, this new jacket is one of the company’s recent forays into “technical” wear, yet it retains that classic Filson styling. Yes, we understand that Filson fans have expressed everything from lifted eyebrows to outrage that this “Made in the U.S.A” icon now offshores some of its product line (with the notable exception of its heavy wools and signature waxed cottons). But at the end of the trail, a hunting garment either is great or it isn’t. This one, while imported (and these days you have to ask yourself, What isn’t?), upholds the Filson motto, “Might as Well Have the Best.” Waterproof pit zippers keep you cool in muggy, rainy conditions, and the lined pockets and neck keep you toasty when the north wind pushes that front through. Bellows pockets with brass-snap tab closures are pure Filson, and inside you’ll find a security pocket as well as left and right shoulder pockets to receive an optional recoil pad. For hunting, hiking, or simply running around town, this jacket wears comfortably and does its job in style.

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