Choosing a fishing vest might seem like a simple enough purchase to the inexperienced fisherman. Find something that fits and has pockets, right? Wrong! There are multiple factors to consider when choosing a brand. The right vest will help to make your fishing experience that much more productive and enjoyable. And while purchasing a low quality vest won’t necessarily ruin your entire excursion, it will certainly contribute to an unorganized and uncomfortable day on the river.
What to Look For
So, what should you look for when in the market for a fishing vest? Obviously, as with any attire, you want it to fit properly and feel comfortable. They can become surprisingly heavy and if your vest doesn’t have proper weight distribution, then you will likely feel tired and weighed down. Another factor that contributes to comfort is the material that the vest is crafted from. Being out on the water all day, your vest is likely to get wet. In order to keep your comfort level high, you want to look for a product made from breathable materials that dry quickly to ensure that you don’t spend your day feeling waterlogged.
The next, and some feel most important, element to look at is the pockets. Ultimately, the purpose of a fishing vest is to hold and store a variety of items that you need to access throughout the day while fishing. So it’s important for a good vest to offer a multitude of different pockets. How many pockets should your vest have? Well, this is a longstanding question in the fishing community and there really is no right or wrong answer. In general, the consensus is that a solid vest should offer around 10-20 different pockets. This should provide enough storage without having so many pockets that you spend half of your time searching to find what you need.
Aside from looking at the number of pockets, you want to pay attention to the type of pockets that are in place. A variety of sizes, both large and small, are always helpful since you will likely have different sized items that need holding. Also, look for a vest that offers at least a few pockets with zipper closures to keep your belongings from falling out as you move around.
If you are in the market for a new vest, then check out the list of items below to help you narrow down your choices and gear up for a successful fishing excursion with a high-quality vest.
The Maxcatch is our number one recommend brand. It’s an innovative product because it combines the best features of a fishing vest and a fishing backpack. With a multitude of pockets in varying sizes, the vest features two large shell pockets with fly patches to allow you to carry larger items if needed. Aside from the variety of pockets, it also provides a rod holder to keep your hands free to perform other fishing tasks.
By looking at this vest you might think it has the potential to be quite heavy, but Maxcatch has solved the problem by providing a mesh back that not only distributes weight evenly but also helps to dissipate heat. Made from a durable synthetic material with a mesh liner, this vest is rugged yet breathable. It’s also adjustable, guaranteeing the perfect fit for any size.
While the Maxcatch vest pack is the most expensive option on our list, you will not regret spending the extra money. This product will not only keep your fishing items organized, secure, and accessible, but it will keep you cool and comfortable for the entire day.
2. Master Sportsman
This vest give you plenty of pockets, 26 to be exact. While some might feel that 26 pockets is too many, the Master Sportsman fishing vest has done a remarkable job of distributing these pockets in a way that makes for easy access and organization, with a bigger pocket positioned in the rear and removable fly patches. The vest has a front zipper closure so that it will stay close to your body and not flap open throughout the day. Even if you choose to keep the vest unzipped, your items will be safe and secure thanks to the zippered closure featured on all of the pockets.
The vest is crafted from a blend of 60% cotton and 40% polyester allowing it to dry fairly quickly while still being machine washable. A bonus feature that some fishermen may find appealing is the included rod holder that frees up your hands for tying knots or dressing flies.
As one of the most highly rated vests on Amazon, you really can’t go wrong with this brand, especially for the affordable price tag that it comes with. Your will be comfortable, organized, and ready for anything!
If the 26 pockets that the Master Fisherman brand offers seems like overkill to you, then you might want to check out the Redington Clark Fork Mesh fishing vest. Offering 9 pockets that all feature a zip or Velcro closure, this vest is best suited for a more decisive fisherman who knows exactly what items he needs in his vest.
Made from a cotton/polyester blend, this vest features a quick-drying mesh layer to ensure that moisture does not accumulate so you are kept dry and comfortable all day long.
Although this brand does not offer a rod holder, it’s priced similarly to the Master Fisherman and boasts excellent reviews, making the Redington a high-quality, durable choice that will surely enhance any fishing experience.