PFD's, Chest packs, beer, what next???


Active Member
ok here is my question. I do not want to drown if I fall in, I want a chest pack with a back pack setup to carry liquids and snacks for those long days, yet I hate having two sets of shoulders traps and feeling like MR GEARMAN. Besides one set of shoudler straps seems to always slip off and I have to keep readjusting it, kind of like a bra ( I sense others are eyeing me in this situation LOL :CLOWN ). What does everyone else do?? Does anyone where a pfd on the river while wading all day??

As for the PFD I have yet to see any other flyfisherman on the rivers with a PFD, fly vest or pack, and food/liquid storage combinations?? I think William Joseph needs to create a quick inflate chest/back pack system?? Any input on this??

dude, that would be the best thing since sliced bread. the closest thing i have seen is the patagonia pack/vest combination. but i dont think they are making them any more, and i could kick myself for not getting one. as far as the flotation thing goes though i dont have a clue. does any one else know where i might find a patagonia pack/vest?

Old Man

Just an Old Man
What do I know---I'm just an old man

Just need to ask. If you are going to carry all of that with a PFD also on your back and you fell in do you think that a PFD would hold you up. I try not to wade in water that is too fast or goes deeper than my waist. In fast water only to the knees. If it is deep and fast I find a way around it or don't go.

If you guys are confused on what to wear...i'll loan you my 2yo's floaties(he wears around his arms for swimming) and my daughters Hello Kitty pink backpack. could leave all the Orvis overpriced gadgets at home, watch where you only really need one fly box at a time...don't you?? :CLOWN Buy a CO2 PDF if you want...

My opinion...that Patagonia pack looks like some Rocket Man's jetpack! geez, what next?


Active Member
Basically im looking at the possibility of wearing an insta-flate type pfd for that emergency situation that may not ever arise, but if it did I would like to think I could make it home to my wife and daughter?? I would hate to think that I would ever put myself in that situation, but somethings just happen.

I would like a pack that I could carry my extra spool, flys and tools, water, a few snacks/lunch, and my rain coat if needed. I am looking at that william joseph pack but was basically posting to find what everyone else did and how they liked their setups.

I fish a lot of rivers and streams that require all day treks and long walks back after the adventure. Water and other essentials are something I need to seriously consider. As far as weight I dont think I am carrying that much that it would overpower a pfd and sink me? The beer comment was more of a sarcastic unrealistic post for my own enjoyment :LOVEIT . I have some buddies who take a brewskie out with them everytime. Sometimes I would give almost anything to have one, but for the most part I dont carry them. I dont think the weight would be an issue, although I never even looked at that side of it. Thanks for the insight.

I would love to see someone go floating by with an auto inflating vest.

I like the pontoon boat solution. Just park it and get out. All your gear is right within walking distance including beer and chips. All you have is spare tippet, floatant, nips and a small flybox in your wader pocket.

This only works on big rivers though. 'Toon boats are cheap now-a-days. I bought mine on pro-deal for $350 4 years ago and now that is how much they retail for.


Active Member
To each his own! Like I said, I was just hoping to gain insight on what others were wearing and if anyone had the same concern as I did about pfd's and making it home to your family. I have personally pulled a flyfisherman, my own brother, from under the water with waders full heading towards the big hole struggling for air without gaining any. It is not incident he would have made it out of if I had not been right there when it happened.

I am usually "leapfrogging" with my partner and thus we are typically out of sight of each other on the river. If I happen to fall in I would like to think I could save myself in a situation where no one else is around.

BTW: I like my Orvis gear :THUMBSUP , with the exception of the junk boots.

thats the one! yes it kind of does look like like a rocket man pack, but i enjoy hiking 10 or so miles into the mountains to do my fishing sometimes. ever wear simms guide waders and boots 10 miles? carry your lunch and a couple of liters of water? maybe a rainjacket? it kind of sucks, just in case there is any questions. you dont really need a pack like that for drive up fishing but it can be great for those who choose to venture off the beaten path. thanks patrick for the link. also could you send a link to the other brand you were looking at? i havent heard of it before.

Bob Triggs

Stop Killing Wild Steelhead!
It's entirely up to you but,ideally, the PFD is to keep you alive and floating face up,or nearly so, if you are unconscious in the water. You could work out the rest of the stuff by priority. There is a statistical correlation between the fact that you don't see many fishermen wearing PFD's and the fact that the greatest number of drownings is amongst boaters,(fishermen and hunters especially), who were not wearing PFD's. This seems to be of greater concern the farther east you go in the uSA but the most deaths occur here in the west and Alaska, where interestingly enough they have the least regulation about wearing PFD's. Play it safe and get a paddlers vest, a good one, and wear it. :pROFESSOR
I have a Stearns inflatable vest (CO2). My wife will not let me out of the house without it. Note to you guys: Always put the vest on prior to calling home to check in.

ME: "Hi, babe. I'm on the river. It's really beautiful up here. You should take up fly-fishing."

WIFE: "Are you wearing your life vest?"

ME: "Yes, dear. Oh, look a mother deer and her fawn."

WIFE: "When will you be home?"

ME: "Probably a little earlier than I had planned. But I will call you if anything comes up. Hey, there's an eagle!"

WIFE: "Am I ever gonna see any of those fish you talk about and for which we've mortaged our children's future?"

ME: "Well, uh, I took a bunch of pictures but, uh, the light wasn't right. Yeah, that's it. The light was bad. Oh, man, you should see the purple lupins."

WIFE: "What's with the purple lupins? You marvel at the purple lupins everytime you call me. Wait a minute - Have you really been wearing your life-vest the whole time?"

ME: [Thinking that the whole time means the whole time we've been talking] "Absolutely, dear."

WIFE: "OK, but you be careful. I don't want you getting out of mowing the lawn again because you turned your ankle on a rock."

ME: "You bet, hon. I'll be extra careful."


I carry the flies I intend to use impaled in my hat, along with a few extras in a small plastic compartmentalized fly box I carry in my wader pocket. I carry all of my tools (nippers, hook sharpener, floatant, knot tool, and pliers) on a lanyard I wear around my neck.

All of my other stuff (tippet, energy bars, bottled water, etc.,) I carry in an inexpensive backpack discarded by one of my daughters.


Piscatorial predilection
I've gone "swimming" a couple of times and it is not much fun! I know for a fact that even in places you've crossed many times, you can loose your footing. I don't wear a PFD, but guess I should, especially in the winter. I do wear a water bottle belt, helps to keep out water too. One thing I do is take my vest off before wading deeper than my waist. I have a note in there that say's "If you find this vest on the bank, start looking for me down river!

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