Monday, August 31, 2009

Where have all the vest gone? Part Three

The backpack comes in everything from a small, lightweight pouch to a massive rear compartment that can store all your fishing and camping gear. Many fly fishing manufacturers make a backpack specifically for fly fishing gear; it has rod holder pockets and smaller zippered pockets to organize all your equipment much like a vest would just in the rear rather than in front. The backpack like the sling often comes with accessory pockets/attachments on the straps to hold all your VIP gear while the majority is held behind you, meaning that you do have to take off the pack access it.
The combination of the chest and back pack has truly completed the line up for vest alternatives. The backpack offers all the storage of a backpack but with convenience of having a compartment in front for essential tools, fly boxes and tippet. But as we complete the circle of vest alternatives really we are arriving back where we started, the backpack/chest combination is heavy, weighs entirely on your shoulders and offers no real advantage other than it actually can hold more gear than a vest!
I was once told that the vest is the most important element to an anglers gear, it’s their filing cabinet, the tool box of fishing. Though I personally think a rod, line and fly are equally as important, it is a valid statement. A vest or its alternative is an essential element to the sport of fly fishing, it shouldn’t be purchased lightly or without much thought. I truly believe that every angler has different requirements of their gear and some will be better off with a backpack over a chest pack while others will be much happier with a traditional vest. Whatever route you decide to take, ensure that you spend sufficient time evaluating your requirements of the gear and which will work best for you.

And with that the Where have all the vests gone? series is complete. Finally!

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