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Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2013/12/8 21:26
From Granville
Posts: 741
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I've been using a small L.L. Bean chest pack for a few years now and really like it. Occasionally though I wish I had more space for more fly boxes. I love taking a minimal approach to fishing and generally don't mind being limited but I think I might want something a tad bigger. I almost pulled the trigger on a sling pack today that I mostly liked the features of but the one thing that kept deterring me was how low they hang. Does anyone else feel that this is a major inconvenience? I feel that I would constantly be dunking my sling pack underwater.

Posted on: 2/13 12:57


Re: Favorite way to carry gear
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 2950
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Quote:

jifigz wrote:
I've been using a small L.L. Bean chest pack for a few years now and really like it. Occasionally though I wish I had more space for more fly boxes. I love taking a minimal approach to fishing and generally don't mind being limited but I think I might want something a tad bigger. I almost pulled the trigger on a sling pack today that I mostly liked the features of but the one thing that kept deterring me was how low they hang. Does anyone else feel that this is a major inconvenience? I feel that I would constantly be dunking my sling pack underwater.


There's been a lot of threads about sling packs on here.

Sling Pack Info

Links to more info

Posted on: 2/13 13:04


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2016/6/9 9:49
From Glenmoore
Posts: 88
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I went minimalist for a number of years with small chest packs and an over the Eddie Bauer bag that my wife discarded (it's blue and it's no longer a purse when you hang hemostats and a fly patch on it). Last season i dug out the old orvis vest though and fished the whole season with it. I had fewer "damn I wish I had that other box..." moments.

Posted on: 2/13 16:28


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2008/2/12 16:36
From New Cumberland
Posts: 77
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I switched to the small orvis chest (chip) pack a few years ago. I end up jamming a box or two in my wader pocket, and my shot, paste, etc in my shirt pocket. I am thinking of trading up to the new Orvis featherlite vest. Not quite as minimalist but at least I can throw a sandwich and water in the back pocket. i am hoping to try it on/out at the Lancaster show.

Posted on: 2/13 16:49
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Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2009/5/29 6:40
From harlansburg
Posts: 608
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whenever I can fish close to the truck(within 1/2 mile) I just use a chest pack. When I hike a few or more miles up into a drainage, I take the chest pack, and also a small backpack with some beverages, rainjacket, lunch, maybe extra fly boxes, etc.
Just depends on the distance from my truck I'm traveling.

Posted on: 2/13 19:37


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2006/9/11 13:05
From Reedsville
Posts: 382
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I fish with a Downs chest pack. Depending on the situation I will use one with a back pack and a side pouch. I do use one with just the water bottle holder for hiking-type fishing trips. It's nice to be able to add/remove trays for bulkiness or seasons.

I'f I'm fishing for brookies, I just take a small fly box and some leader material.

Posted on: 2/14 8:21
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Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2012/1/16 19:14
From North east ,Maryland
Posts: 45
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Sling pack, don't look back. I love mine.

Posted on: 2/17 8:10


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2006/9/21 0:02
From Pittsburgh
Posts: 858
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Quote:

sgrim wrote:
I went minimalist for a number of years with small chest packs and an over the Eddie Bauer bag that my wife discarded (it's blue and it's no longer a purse when you hang hemostats and a fly patch on it). Last season i dug out the old orvis vest though and fished the whole season with it. I had fewer "damn I wish I had that other box..." moments.


I think that if I ever decided to ditch my vest, this would be the likely outcome for me also.

I really cherish my time on the stream.
And for me, that always involves a drive of at least 2-3 hours to reach the really good streams. And a few overnight stays.
With all of that time and effort involved, I want to be well prepared for everything that might happen when I finally get on the water.

And I admit that I always have things with me that I usually don't use. And that's fine with me. Still want to have all possibilities covered
I've been wearing a vest from the get go in this sport. And just really comfortable and used to it

Posted on: 2/17 8:53


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2014/5/7 14:23
From Pittsburgh/Brookville
Posts: 50
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Ah, the search for the ultimate way to carry gear. I've been on this search for 25+ years. Here's what I've been through:

Traditional vest: was great when I was in my teens and early twenties but led to me carrying way more stuff than I needed and as a result started to hurt my neck. Also got tired of it getting wet when wading deep and taking forever to dry afterward.

Camelback backpack- I used this for several years after the vest while I was in my adventurous years. It served me well for long hikes and all day outings in remote places. Had enough room for all my fishing gear and room for cooking supplies and plenty of water. The downside was that in more technical fishing where changing rigs is more frequent it becomes a pain to have to take it off to access your gear. Also, when fishing bigger water you need to wade back to sure to take it off and get to your stuff.

Sling pack- I found them uncomfortable and awkward. Seemed the thing was always on the wrong shoulder and swinging around to the front was a pain and was hard to access.

Currently, I'm using the Umpqua Overlook chest pack and seem to like it for now. It's nice to have most everything on the chest and easily accessible. It also has a good-sized backpack that you can attach for stowing a jacket, food or a large cliff box of streamers.

I'm sure in a few years I will switch again.....

Posted on: 2/17 10:16


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2013/12/7 0:10
From SE Pa
Posts: 514
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I've been full circle but have gone back to what I started with 45 years ago. My pockets. I've added a lanyard a few years back. Everybody talks about the thrill of catching trout on flies they tied. Why no love for catching trout with what you have in your pockets.

Posted on: 2/17 11:39


Re: Favorite way to carry gear
Moderator
Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 2950
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Just some tips for using a sling pack that work for me:

I hang my tippet spools, nippers, forceps, floatant attached to the loops on the strap, keeping them up-front and handy. I also hang up-front a small working fly box with flies I plan to use for the day. The fly box is a compartment box and I also carry some split shot, strike putty and indies in it. I rarely have to access the sling pack since everything I need to fish is carried up front.

All the bulky stuff to remains behind me and out of the way like a raincoat, extra fly boxes, spare tippet spools and leaders, headlight, water bottle, lunch, etc. I clip the second strap to keep the sling pack in place and often forget it's even back there. To me, it's almost like fishing without a pack. In fact, when I tighten the waist strap, the pack rides tight in the small of my back giving me support.

One feature I really like is I often fish early and wear a light jacket or shirt, when it warms up I take it off and have a place to store it out of the way in my sling pack. And the opposite, when I fish in the afternoon, I can stuff a shirt or light jacket in my pack and put it on when it cools down in the evening.

As far as wading, my sling pack, when properly adjusted rides higher than just about any vest. Plus the entire bottom of it is made of waterproof material so it can be dipped in the water when deep wading. You can't fish in chin deep water, so when crossing in really deep areas, I simply sling my sling pack over my shoulder and cross.

For hike-in fishing, I can carry my seven-piece rod and reel in my sling and put it together when I get to the stream. Plus I can carry everything I need for a long hike in.

As far as size, a larger pack can be left empty, ride flat and filled only when needed; while a small pack cannot carry what you need on an all day trip far from your vehicle, especially water, which you should never be short of on a trip way back in.

Finally, I really hate to change things over, with multiple packs and fly boxes. I like to have everything I need with me. I use the same pack all the time and can literally close my eyes and find anything I need. Everything I need is in my pack...I just grab my sling pack, rod outfit and wading stuff, throw it in the truck and I'm all set to hit the stream.


Posted on: 2/17 14:52

Edited by afishinado on 2018/2/17 15:15:32
Edited by afishinado on 2018/2/17 15:18:07


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2007/5/29 14:32
From SE PA - Montgomery County
Posts: 228
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I hire a Sherpa to carry all of my gear for me.

Posted on: 2/21 15:29


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2008/12/14 11:31
From South Central PA
Posts: 57
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Went through a period also where I was trying to reduce weight.

A fly weighs, what, 1/32 oz and my vest was probably 30 lbs.

After chest packs, fanny packs, etc., my best solution was a Fishpond waxed Vaquero vest. Still a vest, but only straps, no upper chest pockets.

I do not like having a lot in front of me to tangle and get in my line of vision. A Simms guide vest and a chest pack stick out too far for my taste.

Posted on: 3/4 10:03


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2013/1/27 10:24
From Sweet Valley
Posts: 167
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Sling packs are uncomfortable when fishing from sun up to sun down. They are usually designed to rest on a right handed caster’s casting shoulder which isn’t a good design.

Maybe they have changed them by now but this led to me wearing it on the opposite shoulder for periods of the day so my casting shoulder/neck wasn’t getting rubbed all day by the strap. For a couple hour trip it wasn’t a problem though.

I have orvis, Simms and Patagonia sling packs that sit in a closet now. The Patagonia one was the best designed as the strap had room for a medium sized fly box, frogs fanny, split shot and have convenient places to hang clippers and forceps out of the way.

The only time I had to sling it around is if I was changing up my fishing method and needed a different fly box or reel.

Posted on: 3/5 7:07


Re: Favorite way to carry gear

Joined:
2008/6/14 23:22
From Penns Creek Canyon
Posts: 538
Offline

I wear a sling pack and fish 3-4 days a week and sometimes sun up to sun down and extreme hiking sometimes never was a problem for me wearing a sling pack just carry what you need don't overload it with weight.

Posted on: 3/5 12:18
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