What to Put on a Fishing Vest

What to Put on a Fishing Vest
The fishing vest is a great tool for spin and fly fisherman. The vest allows the angler to be mobile while carrying gear in accessible pockets. The properly loaded vest also distributes weight evenly on your upper body and reduces strain. Although the fishing vest has numerous pockets for gear, it is common for anglers to attach tools to the outside of the vest for quick access. The tools you put on the outside of the vest will depend on the style of fishing you do and the tools you most often use.


Retractors can be clipped to the outside of the vest to hold tools within reach. Several types of retractors are available, with the small pin on models being ideal for attaching small, light items to the vest and the coil models being great for heavy tools. The coil models also last longer as the retractable cables on pin-on models tend to fray with heavy use. Heavy-duty retractors are also available for connecting a net to the d-ring on the back of most vests.


Lanyards are used to connect items to the vest and prevent loss. Nets are often attached to the vest with a magnetic connection but are free once separated. With a lanyard attached to the net, you can handle the fish and drop the net without losing it in the river or lake. Lanyards with a quick release are ideal for removing the attached item when necessary. Lanyards can also be used on boats and in float tubes.


Several tools are commonly attached to the outside of a fishing vest. Most tools are connected to a retractor or lanyard, but items like a floatant have special holders that keep the tube in an inverted position. Clippers are one of the most common items attached to the outside of the vest. Clippers are used frequently while fishing and are easily lost if dropped. Forceps or pliers are another important tool that can be attached to the outside of the vest. Forceps and pliers can be used to pinch barbs and release fish but can be easily lost if not attached to the vest.

Article Written By Zach Lazzari

Zach Lazzari is an outdoor writing specialist. He has experience in website writing as well as standard newspaper writing. He wrote an outdoor column for the Silver World in Lake City, Colo., and articles for Colorado-mountain-adventure.com. Lazzari is currently completing his bachelor's degree online through Arizona State University and lives in southwest Montana.

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