Pinewood Wild Boar Extreme Jacket and Trousers - test & review
- Credit: Archant
Wild boar hunting can be challenging, exciting... and dangerous! Chris Parkin tests this Kevlar-reinforced suit from Pinewood, designed to remove some of the risk
PROS: Reassuring protection; Quiet comfort; Plentiful storage; Orange blaze for high visibility; Proper buttons for waistband and braces are worth their weight in gold
CONS: Trousers are heavy reflecting the sturdy build, so not for extensive walking
OVERALL: Pinewood clothing is one of the less well-known names yet shows excellent manufacturing standards and an ideal cut/sizing system for most shooters. The reassurance from the Kevlar reinforcement is a serious matter that will play on your mind when in heavy foliage or a ground stand with boar lurking around you
Water column: >10.000 mm (water resistance)
Respiration: 22.000 g/m2/24h (ASTM: 8.000 g/m2/24h) (breathability) Available in Suede Colour: Brown/Orange (250)
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SIZES AND RRPs
Jacket: S-3XL, £251.99
Trousers: C44-D124 (C52 is approx. 34” waist, 32” leg), £345.99 (there is far more Kevlar protection on the trousers and this reflects in the price)
As travelling to hunt for boar becomes more popular with each season, perhaps it’s time to have a look at some of the more specific clothing that will aid your physical comfort and appease some safety doubts in your mind.
Pinewood’s Wild Boar Extreme jacket and trousers are a matched set of dark brown outer clothing, with plentiful orange blaze highlights to alert your hunting companions to your position. Don’t take for granted that people can see you through foliage (through which a bullet would have no problem traversing). Although hunting in the UK is considered very safe, the same standards cannot be guaranteed on all your travels, with multiple unknown hunters and rifles on unfamiliar land where spacing between Guns is measured in tens, not hundreds of metres.
The second safety factor to consider is the boar themselves. When you come face to face with one, either walking to a stand or when watching from a ground blind, there is no guarantee that a rifle in your hands will always protect you from serious accidents, which do happen. Boar are dangerous animals and seem to be taken for granted a little. They might not crush you and pound you into the floor or toss you yards into the air, but their tusks can and will cut open your legs, which would be a life-threatening accident.
Pinewood has addressed this with the addition of Kevlar reinforcement to their Wild Boar Extreme clothing, the trousers especially carrying the physical weight of their protection. My size 52 totted up 1.5kg alone. The material meets high standards for puncture, cut and tear protection. The protective layers of Kevlar wrap the outside of the legs – and the inside legs from the calves up to the crotch, where powerful blood vessels are located, are further reinforced with extra layers of protective material to complement the Kevlar.
The seat doesn’t show Kevlar but is instead reinforced with a tight-woven polyester fabric that is water-repellent. This is particularly useful when sat in a high seat in the rain for long periods. Bulk does not mean discomfort though, and the material is soft and flexible, feeling slightly like you are wearing long johns in addition to regular trousers. The inner core feels close your skin with the outer layer feeling as if it is spaced away and padded to keep those sharp teeth away from your skin.
All seams are taped, and the elasticated waist carries a rubberised band on the inside to grip your shirt and prevent slippage. I especially like the waist button with an additional popper just for back-up – this won’t pull out after a heavy lunch! Buttons are fitted for secure attachment of braces without annoying bulky clips, and as well as belt loops there are ventilation slots in the thighs for extra air flow and heat emission.
The trousers are dotted with practical features like an elasticated ammunition band within the right thigh pocket, a knife holder on the back of the leg, and a D-ring on the right side for a keychain, with a thankful lack of endless inner dividers in which to lose smaller items.
Zips all ran smoothly with neat stitching. Adjustable leg grip fasteners are at the ankles, above which a small pocket contains additional blaze orange leg wraps fastened by Velcro. Pinewood treat with Bionic Finish Eco for extra water- and dirt-repelling characteristics, and show full pressure test details for water resistance and breathability from the 100% polyester structural build within the polyamide and Kevlar.
Given that if you are attacked you are unlikely to remain on your feet, the jacket pairs well, with a similar construction with Kevlar at the forearms and multiple pockets to keep your kit handy and hands warm. The ribcage pockets take care of the latter with quick draw access to grab hold of your rifle, and more mundane storage for ammunition etc is taken care of by the triple pocket assembly either side of the waist.
These all show Pinewood’s distinctive zipper tags for use with gloved fingers, and there are additional small pockets in the inner lining and left side of the chest for flatter valuables like wallets or licences. The central zipper has an overlaying poppered zip that rises all the way to your nose with additional reinforcement, if you want it, from a removable hood that will wrap high onto your chin if the cold wind and rain are really biting at you. These do deflect gun mount a bit, but shielding your eyes from rain will at least allow you to see and react to boar.
This suit is definitely more suited to sedentary situations because of the heavy insulation/protection, particularly the trousers. I liked the cut, which was spacious, especially in the shoulders and arms of the jacket for any dynamic shot situations.
I took the kit to Italy for a boar hunt where the cool mornings walking out to the stands didn’t get me overheated, but I stayed warm while stationary through the 10°C air temperature of the day. The windproof warmth was superb for standing around watching and waiting in 3-4-hour intervals. Regardless of this, overall comfort was better than I had initially expected because the promised breathability, especially in the jacket and its liner, were excellent. When walking, I opened the leg zippers too for a bit of additional cooling.
The fabric has low noise output, so movement was never limited through fear of scratchy distractions from opening a pocket or swooshing noises with every stride. A radio pocket is sited on the left collarbone, although there is no antenna hole and it will disrupt the gun mount for a left-handed shooter.
Travelling to a hunt in a new location can hold many unknowns, so it was great to feel a little extra bit of confidence – which thankfully wasn’t needed! – while still looking smart with plenty of orange blaze to stand out from the other Guns.