fly fishing chest pack

Best Fly Fishing Chest Pack

When you’re heading out for a day of flyfishing, there are a few essential tools and supplies that you’ll want to have close to hand at all times, so you’ll need some kind of storage bag.

There are lots of different options available, from a fly fishing fanny pack to a sling pack, waist pack, chestvest or more, but we really recommend chest packs as the best fishing storage solution.

In this article, we’ll discuss the fly fishing chest pack vs vest or hip pack issue, explain exactly why a chest pack is a top pack to have with you out on the water, and dig into reviews of the best fly fishing chest pack fly fishing options on the market now.

Top Pick
Fishpond Medicine Bow Chest Pack, Cutthroat Green
FishPond Thunderhead Chest Pack, Shale
Fishpond Medicine Bow Chest Pack, Cutthroat Green
FishPond Thunderhead Chest Pack, Shale
Top Pick
Fishpond Medicine Bow Chest Pack, Cutthroat Green
Fishpond Medicine Bow Chest Pack, Cutthroat Green
FishPond Thunderhead Chest Pack, Shale
FishPond Thunderhead Chest Pack, Shale

The Benefit of the Chest Packs 

The best fishing packs are lightweight, easy to access, and have lots of storage space for all your flyfishing essentials. The best fly fishing chest pack offers all these advantages while being comfortable to wear.

Fly fishing chest bags aren’t bulky, and they shouldn’t get in the way of casting, but still allow you to carry everything you need. You won’t have to worry about a hip or waist pack getting soaking when you wade deep out in the river with chestpacks, or having to pull a sling bag around to your front every time you need to grab something.

Chest packs often are the best fly-fishing solution. They sit high on your chest compared to a fly fishing fanny pack, so your gear will stay dry. It’s quick and easy to get your hands on anything you need, a great advantage when you’re already holding your rod, wading staff, and/or net in deep, flowing water.

Fly Fishing Chest Pack Vs Vest

You might be weighing up whether to invest in a vest or fishing chest pack fly fishing. 

Vests have traditionally been used for fly fishing, but they can feel bulky and cumbersome, particularly over thick winter layers or waterproofs. You can feel sweaty and start overheating in little time, plus the big pockets can get in your way when you’re trying to cast. 

When you’re fly fishing, you want to feel free to move however you like, without having your mobility restricted. The best chest pack feels light, breathable and comfortable while giving you full freedom of movement.

Things To Consider When Buying a Fly Fishing Chest Pack

While you’re shopping for the best fly fishing bag options, there are a few different factors to keep in mind so you have the best fishing experience. We’ll explore these different factors now:

Storage Space:

How much gear do you tend to carry with you when you’re fishing? Do you carry the bare minimum, just your flies and a handful of other necessary items? Or do you like to pack for every eventuality, and take a hearty lunch with you too?

These are things you’ll need to consider when deciding what will be the best chest pack for you. Fly fishing packs come in a range of sizes, from tiny, minimalist packs right up to sizable packs to carry everything but the kitchen sink. A good tip is to get everything you normally carry on a day 


Chestpacks are often worn for long periods of time, so comfort is a necessity. Look for padded straps that share the weight ergonomically and equally across your body to avoid an achy back or neck at the end of the day.

A good fly fishing pack will be made from breathable fabrics or even have mesh areas, to help you stay cool on the hottest days.

best fly fishing chest packs


A top fly fishing pack will stand up to frequent use and last years, so you can enjoy your fishing trip without worries. It should be made from strong, durable fabric, with sturdy zips, buckles, etc to keep your equipment safe.

The last thing you want is for your pack to rip or a zip to break while you’re in the water, emptying your supplies out into the river.


Some fishing packs can be worn either on the chest or threaded through a waist belt for greater versatility. If you use a boat, see if your chosen chest pack can be secured safely to your boat.


It goes without saying that the best fly-fishing bags are waterproof, to keep your gear dry all day. This is especially important if you like to carry your smartphone or camera with you. But take care, as some packs will be water-resistant rather than waterproof – make sure you note the difference.


Of course, price will always be a factor any time you’re shopping for something. Are you an avid fly fisher who gets out on the water every weekend for most of the year, and you’re happy to splurge on a more expensive fly fishing chest bag that will last you a long time?

Or are you searching for functional fishing packs at an affordable price that will do the job? There are some great budget options out there 

chestpack for fly fishing

Best Fly Fishing Chest Pack Reviews

Fishpond Medicine Bow Review

This handy little chest pack by Fishpond looks small, but looks can be deceptive. You’ll be amazed at how much you can fit into it. You’ll easily be able to carry enough for a full day of fly fishing, whilst feeling free and unrestricted by a hefty backpack or awkward sling pack. 

With comfortable, padded straps, you’ll be able to wear it all day without feeling those aches and pains. It is really adaptable and so it’s suitable for almost anyone to wear, no matter their shape or size. The Fishpond Medicine Bow Chest Pack looks great and it’s waterproof too. 

Even the zips are water-resistant, so even if you’re wading in deep water, you don’t have to worry about your phone, camera or other gadgets.

The Good

  • Made from fully recycled materials, this innovative chest pack is environmentally friendly.
  • Plenty of storage to accomodate your fly box and other items
  • Comfortable padded straps for more support on those long days out on the water 

The Bad

  • If you're not a minimalist or you prefer to carry a lot of gear (or snacks!) you might struggle to fit it all in this fishing pack. 
  • If you don't tighten the waist straps enough, you could risk some neck strain after a full day of use.

Umpqua Rock Creek Review

The Umpqua Rock Creek ZS was designed with comfort and simplicity in mind and could run for the title of the best fly-fishing pack around. They’ve foregone the potentially tricky neck strap, which can become uncomfortable. 

Instead, this pack has a supportive back panel and mesh straps which hit the balance perfectly between support and ventilation. You can wear the Umpqua Rock Creek ZS chest pack all day without suffering with aches and pains, but you won’t risk overheating either. 

It’s compact, but you can still carry all the essentials with you if you pack carefully. Team it with a backpack for a full day of hiking to mountain rivers or lakes if you need to carry a ton of supplies.

The Good

  • The clever back panel makes this fly-fishing chest pack a joy to carry
  • Lots of pockets on the inside and the outside for simple organisation of all your fishing supplies
  • Abundant storage space
  • Keep all your tippet spools handy and neat with the cord tippet holder
  • Adjustable for the perfect fit
  • Durable and lightweight

The Bad

  • The zips are water-resistant rather than waterproof, so take care if you don't want your gear or phone to get wet
  • On the smaller size

Allen Boulder Creek Fishing Chest Pack Review

The Allen Boulder Creek fly-fishing pack is a strong contender on any list of the best fly fishing packs on the market now. This fishing chest bag has an attractive design in olive green shades, and even more importantly, it’s durable, hard-wearing and strong. 

It will stand up to loads of heavy use, and it’s got all the pockets and attachments you could ever need to carry all your flies and other gear. 

We’d recommend this good pack for anyone, but it’s especially appealing if you don’t want to break the bank; it comes in at around $39 – an impressive price for everything you get.

The Good

  • Affordable price - great if you're on a budget
  • Amazing capacity - you can carry anything up to 6 fly boxes easily!
  • Strong, durable zippers that can even withstand corrosive saltwater
  • Several internal pockets make organisation easy - you'll always be able to find what you need in no time at all
  • Ample storage space without being bulky or getting in the way

The Bad

  • The shoulder straps can get diggy if you load up the fishing pack with lots of heavy gear
  • The zippers can be stiff to open and close
  • It can be tricky to get the fly fishing pack to sit comfortably on your torso

Umpqua Overlook Fly Fishing Chest Pack Review

The Umpqua Overlook pack is a top pack from the medium price range for chest-packs. It looks stylish and cool, with tons of handy features like tippet and accessory pockets and D-rings for attaching your net.

You’ll feel cool all day thanks to the mesh fabric on the straps and on the panel that sits on your front and back. It even comes with a small backpack that you can clip onto the back panel for extra storage on those long days out.

The Umpqua Overlook fishing chest pack fly fishing bag offers more than your average basic pack without breaking the bank.

The Good

  • Attractive but simple design
  • Impressive capacity
  • You can attach a net with the d-rings and web loops

The Bad

  • One negative: As it's more expensive, this might not be the best choice for occasional use

Fishpond Thunderhead Chest Pack Review

The Fishpond Thunderhead chest pack is ideal for those who are passionate about fly fishing and like to have all their gear handy, without it weighing them down.

It’s adaptable – you can wear it together with any of the Fishpond backpacks for long days out when you need a lot of supplies, or attach it to your boat to keep it secure, no matter what the water conditions are. You can even mount it on a wading belt, so versatility is a huge plus with this fly fishing pack.

It’s on the higher end of the price scale, but it’s excellent quality and does the job well. All your supplies and gadgets can stay safe and dry within the fully waterproof main pocket – perfect if you like to carry your camera with you to snap some shots of the gorgeous scenery or your whopping catches!

The Good

  • One main pocket is completely waterproof, so you can carry your smartphone or camera without worrying about a splashes or even submerging your bag
  • The integrated net slot makes it easy to carry your net around without it getting in the way when you're casting
  • Helpful interior pockets include a pocket with a zipper closure and a clear pocket for small items, making them quick and easy to find

The Bad

  • You'll need to splash out around $170 dollars for this beauty of a chest pack
  • The front zipper pouch is not very deep
  • You need to use both hands to open the main pocket
  • The buckles are stiff and sometimes difficult to open 

Aventik Fishing Chest Pack Review

If you’re on the hunt for top fly fishing chest packs on a budget, consider getting the Aventik fly-fishing chest pack. It’s a steal, coming in at a jaw-dropping $32, and it will get the job done.

Sure, it may not look or feel as luxurious as some of the more expensive brands, but if you’re all about getting the most out of your fly fishing hobby without breaking the bank, who cares? The fish certainly don’t! 

The Good

  • The cheapest option on our list - great for beginner fly fishers or those shopping on a tight budget
  • Large zippered main pocket has plenty of space for fly boxes and other items
  • You can adjust the neck and waist strap for a personalized fit

The Bad

  • A large fly box might not fit in this chestvest pack, as the capacity is lower than some larger chest-packs 
  • A small fishing chest bag compared to other brands
  • Not waterproof, so you'll need to take other protective measures if you want to carry a phone, camera or other devices

Wrap Up

A good fly fishing chest pack is such an essential fly fishing accessory to have, making it easy to carry and access all your tools and necessary items without having to lug around a heavy backpack or sling bag.

The best fly-fishing packs are lightweight, waterproof, and comfortable, with plenty of pockets and attachments for all your supplies. You’ll be all set with any of the recommended fly fishing packs from our list. Think through exactly what your own individual requirements are, such as when, where and for how long you’ll be wearing your chest pack, to find the perfect pick for you.

We hope you’ve found this article helpful in narrowing down the search for the best fly fishing packs. As always, leave your comments and questions and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can!

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