What’s your favorite fly fishing pack?

Gventure

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I also use three different packs, or, at least I have three but really only use two. Left to right are the old Double Haul, the Gunnison Guide, and the Summit Sling.

First, I'll address the Summit Sling that I will part with soon - it's a great sling pack, and I find the size and organization to be really useful, however, it just doesn't do anything for me that the Gunnison doesn't do and I find the Gunnison more versatile. I bought the Summit to compare against the Gunnison and the Gunnison wins so the Summit is out.

Regarding the Double Haul - it's an old design and is the first pack I bought years ago - prior to that I used a necklace and pockets. The Double Haul consists of a chest pack and backpack that can each be worn separately or together as a unit. For me the chest pack is really good in fit and function but just too small to be perfect. It's great for a quick hop down the creek, and has a good layout where main tools have a place and are in easy reach, however for a longer wade session I find the main pocket too small (and I pack relatively light) which invariably leads to things falling out which leads to me leaning over to pick things up when of course the dang pocket is open which leads to, well, you get the picture. Lastly and importantly, the neck sling places the pack at mid-chest which is the perfect position right where my eyes and hands converge. With the backpack attached, I can haul anything and everything for a long day on the river including lunch and a jacket. In sum, although the chest pack is small, I use it as a minimalist pack and add the backpack for long days thus this is a keeper for me.

The Gunnison is my Goldilocks. It's not too small, not too big. The Gunnison holds everything I need for a day on the river with the exception perhaps of the lunch and jacket that the Double Haul will handle, yet, the Gunnison is not too big to be intrusive. Although some people don't like the weight of a waist pack on their hiney, the this pack does a really good job supporting the weight across the hips and waist AND you can wear the wide neck strap so that the pack functions almost like hybrid waist/sling pack. Organization of gear is EASY - there is a logical and easy to reach place for everything. The front fly shelf is handy and well thought out. I am hard on gear and will pick apart poor functionality yet the Gunnison is top notch with no real drawbacks from my perspective. Wait, there is one drawback. The net sleeve on the Gunnison is a pain if you intend to swing the pack around to the front to work, which of course, is the whole purpose of the Gunnison. The result is that you swing the pack around thus swinging the net right into your work area/face. As such, I carry my net on my side suspended from the waist belt.
View attachment 36911
Update - based on info here I bought a FP Switchback Pro - it has easily replaced the Gunnison as my favorite. Lots of room, comfortable, and just plain EASY to use.
 

johanDH

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Good choice, looks like a fine pack! Have you considered the thunderhead when making your choice? It's in a different price range, but submersible.
 

dennyk

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I'm happy with my Fishpond Summit pack. My buddy has an Orvis pack and does not care for it.

I think I'll pick him up a Summit for Christmas.

Denny
 

JGO

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I never thought I'd move from a vest to a pack, but I decided to give the Fishpond switchback pro a try. The genius of the design is enabling the pack to be pulled from back to front, then pushed back out of the way when you are finished with the pack. I now have a second pack, the thunderhead chest pack separated from its harness, mounted on one side of the switchback "rail", and the Nomad mid-length net in the back loop. The mid-length is a bit of a pain to get out, but if you are fishing with a Euro nymphing rod or Trout Spey then the extra handle length is well worth the hassle. Now I can't imagine going back to the vest.
 

Gventure

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I'm happy with my Fishpond Summit pack. My buddy has an Orvis pack and does not care for it.

I think I'll pick him up a Summit for Christmas.

Denny
I don't know if I am breaking the "50 post" rule to sell on this forum but I have a Summit that I am waiting to sell. Just sayin.
 

ghostrider408

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When I need a pack, my favorite is the OPST Rainforest waist pack. Plenty of room for a snack and a water bottle in addition to whatever else the day demands. If I need to wade deep, then this pack is great for keeping everything dry. A lot of the time though, if I'm only fishing for a few hours and it's not hot then I try to leave a pack behind and only bring the essentials and fit everything into my wader and/or jacket pockets.
 

Lamarsh

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I'm a waterproof sling pack guy. I have a tendency to dunk whatever pack I carry, so I like them to be waterproof. It's also nice to not worry about stuff getting wet during a rainy day wading or in the boat. I like that I can just swivel a sling pack around my body in front of me to get stuff out of it, and then just swing it back around with out taking it off.

I have both the Fish Pond Thunderhead and the Patagonia Stormfront. Aside from a slight difference in the material, they are essentially the identical pack except the Fish Pond includes a sheath down the back for a net (which I never use). They're both nice. The Patagonia material is a bit more supple.
 

Dodge

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Just purchased the Patagonia Guidewater sling... I wanted a bag that I can use to hike in somewhere that would hold everything I would need including straps for an extra rod... and it's 100% waterproof... I got into a Patagonia mood and recently purchased Patagonia waders, boots, jacket and a bunch of their fly fishing gear... I have to say I have been very happy with everything.
 

RB Warrior

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2 years ago I was considering the FP Summit or Orvis Guide sling packs? I finally pulled the trigger on the Summit, and glad I did. It's perfect for my use, up to a full day's wading! All I wore for many years was a Filson Strap Vest, loved it, but I just got frustrated with bunch gear on my chest all time. I went to an old Finn Army shoulder bag, and I do still love it, but it don't hold enough stuff, and organization was impossible when I loaded it down. The Slingpacks are perfect for my use, out the way, everything about them for me is better! If I was getting into daylong packs into remote mountains, I'd get a bigger one, but I'd stay with a Slingpack!
 

Wet dreams

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I like that Filson, minimal and old school. I am still looking for the ideal pack. Usually I wear a fish pond waxed cotton vest and it too is minimal retro and keeps me from getting too loaded down. I don't like much on my chest as I sometimes snag stuff there when I double haul, but the Filson may be small enough to work.

I have the Patagonia storm front but it is used more as a boat bag as it is too big for wearing all day unless I unload it some. I suggest getting a smaller pack that forces you to pair down the amount of gear you carry.
 

RB Warrior

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We, if you like a vest-stuff on your chest, and not fortune in tackle when you fish, then the Filson is 1st class. I got mine, aprox 1992-93, and it's untelling how many rugged miles I put on it wading some big rivers! Both fly-fishing and spin fishing, and it was perfect. It don't look new today, but its still as good as new function wise! I got several Filson products from back then all still good!
 

airborne 82nd

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It seems we all go through the stages , and eventually land on what we finally find works after years of this or that,buying this ,then that, i myself have become pretty simple and minimalist when it comes from leaving my truck and getting into the river .... i found the Vedavo sling bag works fine for me , i carry at most 2 fly boxes,and a water bottle.
 

PallenHawk

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I'm using a small waterproof backpack or a old simms hip pack. Will buy a new hip pack when simms/fishpond or others create a waterproof switcback hip-pack 😉
 

markmark444

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I'm using a small waterproof backpack or a old simms hip pack. Will buy a new hip pack when simms/fishpond or others create a waterproof switcback hip-pack 😉
Look closer to home at the Guideline sliding waist pack (Sweden) and see what you think. I have the smaller one for when I use a waist pack and I like it.
 

jddietrich

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I'm using a small waterproof backpack or a old simms hip pack. Will buy a new hip pack when simms/fishpond or others create a waterproof switcback hip-pack 😉
If you wanted Fishpond you could always put the Thunderhead chest pack on the South Fork Wading belt. A bit pricey, but flexible.
 

Acheron

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That pack is really impressive. I'd like to see one up close. Nice price point also.
Agree, looks great. However, I don't see a net holder.

I wish the FishPond waist belt net holder moved. Most times it works fine but sometimes I'd like it more on the rear corner of my hip.
 

DGS

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I have the fishpond summit sling. I like it a lot. But honestly, all packs have dis/advantages. Frankly, I’ll fish out of a grocery sack if I can just be out on the water.
 

jddietrich

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Agree, looks great. However, I don't see a net holder.

I wish the FishPond waist belt net holder moved. Most times it works fine but sometimes I'd like it more on the rear corner of my hip.
I believe they have repositioned the net holder on the switchback 2.0.
 
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