Best Fishing Backpack in 2018. Reviews & Analysis

Top Fishing Backpacks Reviewed and Compared


Getting the best backpack for fishing these days can be a tedious task, but it doesn’t have to be. Following our research, which has involved going through hundreds of user reviews and expert surveys, we’ve concluded that the model you ought to consider is the Elkton Outdoors Universal. This choice comes with a good number of pockets and is designed as a vest, which is why you can wear it conveniently and efficiently. The unit has been outfitted with two hard shell fly compartments and eight pockets that can be used for storing various small-sized tackle. In addition to this, we’ve noted that the product is both breathable and water-resistant, so it can keep you dry despite the occasional splash that’s likely to occur when fly fishing. If the Elkton Outdoors Universal is no longer in stock, be sure to give the next best option a shot, the Yuoto Outdoor Gear Pack.



Comparison table




Our top choices


If you haven’t made up your mind just yet, you could at least take some minutes to look at our reviews. The next suggestions consist of some of the most critically acclaimed alternatives that we were able to track down these days.



Best fly fishing backpack


Much like their counterparts, fly fishing backpacks have to have the appropriate size so as to address your requirements. Many models are designed in the form of vests because they can be worn conveniently and efficiently. They need to be made of breathable material so as to ensure that you don’t feel sticky all throughout and at the end of the day.

It’s up to you if you want to get a product that comes outfitted with a portable rod holder. Just make sure that all of the zippers that the pockets are equipped with are made of plastic.



Elkton Outdoors Universal


This vest is versatile and convenient, and it was designed to meet all of the needs of serious anglers. You can utilize it for a plethora of other techniques, and the neat thing about it is that it keeps your gear safe and sound.

The model is outfitted with two hard shell fly compartments and eight roomy storage pockets, so there’s plenty of room you can use for your tackle and other essentials. Don’t hesitate to carry your smartphone in one of those hard shell compartments especially as the vest has been tested and found to be water-resistant.

What this also means is that you will even be able to keep a smaller snack or sandwich in one of the pockets without worrying about it getting soaked.

The model comes with a built-in rod holder, which adds to its overall convenience. Besides, it’s worth adding that the unit boasts two retractable swivel tethers. Finally, the fact that the Elkton Outdoors alternative is outfitted with adjustable straps is another pro you should keep in mind as this feature allows you to customize the fit as per your body.

Click to see the price on Amazon!





Best fly fishing waist pack


Don’t go for a bigger waist pack if you don’t tend to carry a lot of tools and lures with you. If you store too much in it, it will become hefty and less comfortable to wear.

In terms of the aspects you should consider when you’re in the market for such a product, we recommend considering the fabric because you need to ensure that it is reasonably breathable. The number of pockets, as well as the overall build quality, should also be addressed. Last, but not least, you ought to check whether the unit comes with adjustable straps because it needs to go around your waist and needless to say, the waist size of one individual is different from that of the next.



Yuoto Outdoor Gear Pack


Having been constructed out of wear-resistant nylon, this model has a good chance of withstanding the test of time. Besides, it comes with a mesh lumbar padding, which means that you will be able to feel at ease. Since the fabric is mostly breathable, you won’t need to deal with all of the sweat that’s likely to make you feel less comfortable during a whole day of fishing.

The medium size of the waist pack is an advantage in itself as you can utilize it to carry up to two water bottles. What this means is that you will be able to keep your hydration level on par even when the sun is shining brightly in the sky.

The Yuoto product is outfitted with two exterior front zippered pockets, as well as two zippered side pockets. You can use all of these for storing your essentials. Something that we feel compelled to note in relation to this product is that its strap can be extended from 26 to 50 inches, so even if you have a bigger waist size, you can utilize it conveniently.

Given that more than one hundred satisfied users took to the internet to express their views regarding this choice, it’s safe to say that it is worth looking into.

Buy from for ($27.85)





Best fishing tackle backpack


Just how many tackle boxes do you intend to carry in your pack? Make up your mind about this detail before clicking the ‘Add to cart’ button. Keep in mind that no two models are the same, so while you can use various choices only for storing your tackle boxes, the half of others are designed to be used as a typical pack.

As per usual, you need to look at the size of the product, the number of pockets it comes with, as well as whether it can put up with the abuse of the elements and last for a good deal of time, too.



Fiblink Sports Single Shoulder


Fiblink makes some of the most sought after fishing equipment, and so it goes without saying that this pack is made with the needs of serious anglers in mind. It’s crafted of water-resistant nylon that’s capable of putting up with a lot of abuse. What this means for you is that you won’t have to get a new pack for every fishing season.

The ten inner storage compartments that this choice is equipped with allow you to benefit from plenty of storage space. Its exterior pockets are zippered with plastic zippers, so you have nothing to worry about in terms of durability.

The back support boasted by this option is another benefit worth mentioning, particularly when considering that it also comes with an ergonomic shoulder strap. Despite being considerably more reasonably priced compared to other alternatives, the Fiblink model offers good value for the money. After all, there’s nothing stopping you from employing it under other circumstances such as when you go hiking, cycling, or mountaineering with friends and family.

Since the vast majority of those who have opted for this product has nothing but good things to say about it, we say you should consider it if you haven’t decided just yet.

Buy from for ($35)





Best fishing bag


These items can be smaller or bigger, so you need to ensure that you pick the right one for the type of fishing you engage in and your own needs. Most of the options that we have stumbled upon are made from durable materials, which is to say that they were constructed using synthetic fabrics.

Be sure to check whether the bag can be cleaned in a washer as otherwise, you’re going to waste a bit of time hand-washing it. Also, consider the design as some of these bags can turn into waist packs if they are particularly versatile.



Okeechobee Fats T1200


Even though it is remarkably lightweight and easy to use, the Okeechobee model had to make our list as one of the most versatile and convenient alternatives available for sale nowadays. It is made from polyester, which means that it is a durable choice. Besides, it is large enough to accommodate as many as eight tackle boxes, four of which are provided in the package.

The water-resistant fabric ensures that all of your equipment is out of harm’s way. You can even use the bag to store your electronic devices such as your cell phone as you’re probably likely to bring it along in case of an emergency or just for letting others know of your whereabouts and current state.

The model is also equipped with an integrated sunglass case, which means that you will finally be able to store your pair adequately. We all know that polarized sunglasses for fishing can ruin your budget, so it is crucial to care for those you own in order to avoid replacing them ahead of time.

Other features of this model you may be interested in range from four elastic holders and two plier pockets as well as the fact that the front pocket comes with an interior organizer.

Buy from for ($39.99)





Best surf fishing bag


You want your surf fishing bag to be as light as possible so as to allow you to benefit from plenty of freedom. Nonetheless, that doesn’t mean that it also have to come with a limited storage space. If you plan to use it for keeping your tackle boxes, you ought to measure the boxes and then match their size to the dimensions of the product.

It wouldn’t hurt if the product came with rubbery parts so that you can rest assured that it will remain in the same place once you put it there. As is the case with many other models, you need to look for bags that come with padded straps as they are comfortable.



Fiblink Sports Fishing Bag


This model is a water-resistant organizational system that you can take with you everywhere you go. Since it is both convenient and versatile, you can also employ it for other purposes such as hiking or just roaming outdoors. You can even wear it on a daily basis while you’re out and about running your errands.

The main compartment made available the design of this product makes it possible for you to store plenty of items. The zippered pockets that can be found on the front of this choice are roomy, and the water bottle holder is a plus since it ensures that you’ll be able to have a sip while focusing on your fishing performance.

Even though it is marketed as a water-resistant alternative, it is a good idea to avoid dropping it in the water especially if you plan to store some of your electronic equipment in it. Because it is compact enough to be carried by kids, this Fiblink pack is a portable product, especially when compared to others we have seen.

The single shoulder design might be an inconvenience if you intend to carry very heavy gear in this pack.

Buy from for ($34.99)





Best bass fishing tackle bag


Whether you’re getting the product for bass fishing or you plan to target some other species, the fact of the matter is that it needs to be reasonably durable. Since largemouth bass can put up a fight, we suggest opting for a roomier tackle bag that allows you to keep all of your gear.

It goes without saying that, should you go fishing on particularly sunny days, you need a bag that can also use to store your sunglasses. Some models come with integrated cases, so you won’t have to replace your sunglasses ahead of time. And we all know that quality polarized choices can cost a pretty penny.



Flambeau Outdoors Ritual R40D


As a highly functional choice, the Flambeau Outdoors allows you to store angling essentials both easily and efficiently. It’s made from quality material, which is why it will give you the freedom to utilize it time and again. In fact, its design is so eye-catching that you can employ it every day and even keep it in your car for times when you need a handy storage system.

The model comes with side zippered pockets that you can use for keeping various essentials. The two exterior mesh pockets enable you to place a plastic worm so that you have it at hand all of the time.

The neat thing about the 6175TB is that it is made of UV-resistant polyester, so it won’t melt in the sun. It seems that this fabric is entirely capable of keeping the contents of the bag dry and safe. The shoulder strap that the unit has been equipped with is adjustable, so it can fit your body without you making an effort in this sense.

Some of the customers who were kind enough to provide feedback in relation to the Flambeau Outdoors R40D say that it is the perfect mini bag for angling.

Buy from for ($34.5)





Buying guide


In the market for a good fishing backpack? If that’s so, perhaps you should take the time to read our detailed and comprehensive buying guide. It’s packed with all of the essential aspects that you ought to give some thought to before finalizing your purchase. Check it out below.

Decide on the right type

The best waterproof fishing backpack should, first of all, have all of the features you require. However, since there are so many choices available for sale out there, it might be hard for you to make the right decision.

There are several designs you may want to check out. Typical backpacks are worn on your back, but you also have the freedom to go for a vest fishing backpack if you don’t need a model that you can use for storing your tackle boxes. Waist packs should also be borne in mind if you don’t tend to rely on too much gear.

Besides, there’s another product you may have to take into account, and it’s the fishing bag. Whether they are made for fishing in the surf or bass angling, these models can be worn across your shoulders or just carried conveniently in one hand. So, which one will it be?


Storage capacity

It’s one thing to go for the best fishing pack that can hold up to eight tackle boxes, and it’s another to look for a lightweight alternative that you can carry conveniently. Otherwise said, the needs of anglers differ largely from one person to the next. That’s why you should try to assess the storage you require before anything else.

The interior of a bag or backpack needs to be modulated in such a way so as to allow you to store as many items you wish. Of course, with extra-roomy alternatives, you can expect the backpack to be quite bulky. Since the chance of you leaving it empty is next to null, the product will end up being heavy.

Aside from the aspect pertaining to the storage, you should also make up your mind about whether you’d rather use a backpack that comes with an integrated rod holder or one that doesn’t have this feature.



Many fishing backpack reviews advise against getting a model made with natural fabrics, and that’s understandable. While materials such as cotton, for instance, will keep you dry even if you wear the pack or vest at all times, they don’t do a good job of withstanding the test of time.

Our recommendation is to search for units made with combinations of fabrics or just synthetic materials. As long as these synthetics will allow you to clean the pack using a washer, they’re perfectly capable of making the product last for as long as possible.

Since the backpack is very likely to come with plenty of pockets, you should look at the way you can close them. Zippered alternatives are to be preferred because they always keep your items safe and sound. In case you want to have your smartphone at hand to be able to get in touch with friends and family, a zippered pocket is a way better choice than one outfitted with a button.

However, when it comes to durability, you need to make sure that all of the zippers are made of plastic. Metal choices look nice, and there’s no point in arguing that, but they have a high chance of rusting over time. What this means is that, with a corroded zipper, you won’t be able to use that pocket any longer.


Breathability and water resistance

If you’re into fly fishing, there’s very little you can do to avoid the occasional splash. You can, however, opt for quality fishing waders if you want to stay dry at all times. Some backpacks are water-resistant, which is to say that while they might not keep you out of water’s way, at least they will be able to protect your essentials.

As for breathability, if you want to go for a vest, it’s pretty clear that the material that it was made of has to be reasonably breathable. Otherwise, you’ll sweat, and you’ll end up being sticky all day long. Mesh compartments, particularly those that come in direct contact with your body, are to be preferred as they allow your skin to dry naturally.

Look for this kind of information in the product details made available by the manufacturing brand, but take it with a grain of salt. It’s a better idea to read some consumer reports if you’re searching for a reliable source.

Size and comfort

As mentioned earlier on, the size of the pack has to be matched to the variety of fishing tools and tackle you want to have with you. Keep in mind that the whole ensemble could get rather heavy, so if you are not particularly strong, we would suggest opting against very big alternatives.

If you’re planning a day trip where you’ll spend over ten hours on the water and in some of these, you’ll have the pack on, it needs to go well with your body. What this means is that, since most options come in universal sizes, you should see whether the straps that the product is outfitted with have an adjustable length. This feature will enable you to set the right size as per your body shape and requirements.

The placement of the straps on your shoulders should be as wide as possible. Besides, it is a better idea to go for a model outfitted with padded straps as you won’t feel like they cut through your skin.



How much are you willing to spend?

Sometimes it all boils down to your budget. While some fishing tackle bags can be as affordable as thirty dollars, even though they are made to last a lifetime, others can go well beyond fifty. Of all of the choices we have come across, fishing tackle backpacks seem to cost a pretty penny, and that’s because they are typically larger than their counterparts as they need to accommodate as many boxes as possible.

What’s more, some of these choices are so versatile that you can use half for your tackle boxes and a half for anything else.




Things you should know about tackle boxes


Since you can’t do your angling without any gear, we thought we might put together a section devoted to tackle boxes, as well. It’s actually likely that you’re searching for a backpack that can accommodate several.

Most models you may encounter while doing your research can be split up into two categories. Some are hard, and others are soft. Soft tackle bags are made of fabric, so they are lightweight and come with plenty of pockets that you can utilize for keeping various things. Many units even come with removable trays, so you can customize the storage space as you deem fit.

The problem with some soft tackle bags is that they might not be made of water-resistant materials. As such, they cannot keep your tackle safe from any moisture. Since most of your fishing tools are probably made to withstand a bit of saltwater, that’s not even the main issue. The aspect that should concern you is whether or not the zippers and any other compartments might break down over time because of prolonged exposure to water.

Hard tackle boxes have a myriad of pros. The plastic they are made from can usually ensure that your tackle is kept out of water’s way. What this means is that the product is durable and waterproof and can withstand the test of time. Some brands allow you to customize the storage space, but you’ll see that many of these plastic models come with pre-designed organizational options.

However, in terms of customization, you can always opt for a model that comes with a removable drawer. Last, but not least, you should never purchase a tackle box if you have the means to organize a toolbox you’re probably the owner of.

As there are pros, there are also disadvantages of using hard tackle boxes. Some models can be heavy and awkward to fold. If you’re into ice fishing, getting such a model might be an inconvenience because it doesn’t tend to put up with extreme weathers as the plastic can become brittle and break as easily as fabric.

Plus, since many of the compartments can be rather tiny, you might have a bit of trouble cleaning them properly. Needless to say, if you want to use your tackle box for storing live bait, things are bound to get sticky and messy. So, you need to make sure that you can clean and sanitize the unit conveniently and quickly.


To make it a bit easier for you to go for a tackle box, we’ve put together a list of the crucial factors you should keep in mind.


Organizing systems

You don’t have to go for a product that comes with as many drawers and compartments as possible, especially if you do not tend to use a lot of tackle. Some fly fishers require little to no equipment other than their rod and reel, so aside from a couple of flies, line, and maybe a quality fishing knife, you won’t need all that much organization.

However, if you’re into various other techniques, you probably tend to utilize a bit more gear. If that’s your case, we suggest opting for a tackle box that comes with a decent number of storage compartments.



The bigger the box, the more likely you are to fill it up with items. Believe it or not, this is an entirely natural tendency for most people, so if you get the box first and then purchase the rest of your gear, you’re bound to purchase a lot more than you might need.

If you’re an experienced angler, you’re probably aware of what you tend to use most frequently. Get the box in accordance with your needs. Unless you want to purchase a backpack that can hold up to eight tackle boxes so that you can keep the gear and tackle used by your entire fishing team, there’s little to no point in getting a super-large one.



Not all products are manufactured in the same way, and not all are made with the same materials. Some plastics are better than others, and the same goes for those made of fabric. Look for details like a durable construction, a handy design, as well as large, easy to craps zippers and clasps.




Best fishing backpack brands



From spinning rods to travel kits and a lot more, you name it; Fiblink has probably made it. This brand is one of the most reputable manufacturers in the industry of fishing equipment. Its rods and reels are sought after because they offer excellent performance even under the most challenging circumstances.

Fiblink tackle bags and backpacks are made with durable material, which is why they’re likely to serve you for many angling seasons to come. They’re versatile and come with sufficient storage pockets and compartments where you can keep your items and devices.


Elkton Outdoors

Unlike other manufacturing companies that are primarily focused on designing top-notch angling equipment, Elkton Outdoors plans to offer the best in terms of storage and organizational systems for those who like to spend time in nature.

The brand makes anything from inflatable fishing kayaks to tactical hard gun cases, archery targets, as well as shooting bags. Therefore, Elkton products are made for hunters, fishers, as well as hikers and mountaineers. Every item is crafted from durable fabrics and materials so as to ensure a superior number of uses.



If you ever want to purchase a quality bike or reel, one of the first names that ought to cross your mind is Shimano. The company makes a broad variety of products designed for outdoor and indoor use.

Their products are convenient, efficient, and easy to use, but that mostly applies for those that are not designed for cycling. You may have to deal with a steep learning curve if you want to learn how to work with a Shimano derailleur.

Having been in the industry for more than eighty years now, the engineers at Shimano definitely know what they’re doing.



Many CLC products receive praise from amateurs and professionals alike, and for a good reason, too. With an experience of over twenty-five years, the brand focuses on designing some of the best work gear, gloves, and cold weather products that have ever seen the light of day.

Wild River is a unique sub-brand developed by the company that comprises a plethora of tackle bags and backpacks made with quality fabrics. The pockets and zippers that these units are outfitted with are durable and easy to use.



As is the case with some of the other names we’ve mentioned in this article, Maxcatch makes plenty of fishing equipment. You can choose from the broad array of combos, reels, rods, as well as lures and attire made by Maxcatch.

One of the most popular choices that we have tackled in some of our other pages is the fly fishing wader and boots combo. Available for both men and women, this pair of waders is sturdy and water-resistant, yet breathable and lightweight.



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