Robbie Winram of Trout Fisherman Magazine reviews the Airﬂo Outlander Covert
vest backpack and mesh vest – a best selling range of fly fishing clothing that has recently been re-vamped.
Airflo’s Outlander vest backpack and mesh vest have been given a new ‘stealth’ look for this season and are now made of a digitally developed ‘camo’ pattern to help break up the angler’s outline (although the vest backpack is photographed over a high-vis jacket to show it off!).
Both are available in ‘one size ﬁts all’ with adjustable shoulder and waist straps, ideal for a range of body sizes and also means you can clinch them down over lighter garments in the summer, or loosen them off to go over more layers in the winter.
The main difference between the two is weight and storage capacity. The vest backpack has a 25-litre capacity and weighs 2lb 12oz while the 15-litre capacity mesh vest weighs 2lb 1oz.
The vest/backpack (£69.99) consists of a waistcoat at the front and a small backpack at the rear. Padding across the shoulders and raised cushioned sections on the back of the pack add to the comfort, load distribution and ventilation.
Every bit of space on the front of the waistcoat has been utilised and includes eight zipped pockets of various sizes including two drop-down ﬂy trays, plus two small open top mesh pockets. There are eight plastic D-rings, four cord loops, a rod holder, two pigtail retrievers, two quick-release clips and assorted webbing loops. All the zips feature easygrip pull tabs.
There are two closure options – a 10-inch main zip and a quick-release bayonet ﬁtting on an internal elasticated strap, a good choice on a warmer day. On the rear is the backpack set-up that incorporates two double-zipped cargo spaces, both of which have gusseted side panels to prevent contents spilling out when they are open. The cargo space on the front has a couple of internal mesh dividers and an open mesh pocket on the front, while the main cargo space is large enough for a set of waterproofs, a ﬂask and accessories.
The pack will also accommodate a hydration bladder (not supplied). On the inside, there are two horizontal zipped mesh pockets, and two large open mesh pockets with Velcro closures.
One neat little feature of this pack is the expander pocket system: undo a double zip that runs around the outside of the pack to give that extra bit of storage room.
Extra features include side compression straps to tighten and secure the load, three large D-rings on the shoulder yoke, various webbing loops and tabs.
Both vests represent very good value for money and the vest backpack in particular offers a huge amount of storage capacity, capable of taking everything you need for a day’s ﬁshing.
Article reproduced with Kind permission of Trout Fisherman Magazine, October/November 2017 issue. For full details and to purchase the Airflo Covert vests, visit the website here.