Category Archives: Industry

Product Review: Gore Tex Revivex

As we transition from summer into fall and winter our gear choices become even more important. A Gore-Tex or other DWR type outerwear is almost a necessity in the coming months. Keeping warm and dry is good for morale and allows anglers to stay out longer in a majority of weather situations.  DWR stands for “Durable water repellant coating” and it is a chemical surface treatment applied to apparel and other materials which causes the fabric to become hydrophobic which is better known as water repellant. Water will bead off of the fabric and wick away.  Over time this coating will experience wear and deterioration which will cause a wet and clammy feeling since the fabric is not performing at 100%. However a simple and affordable solution is available to make your DWR and other Gore-Tex gear good as new.

Revivex is a water repellant spray that is designed to restore all DWR coated fabrics back to 100% functionality.  It can be used on Jackets, Pants, Hats, Waders and much more.  The spray is extremely easy to use. Anything treated with Revivex needs to be washed beforehand without detergent. The next step after pulling your gear out of the wash is to spray on the Revivex Treatment and then just throw it in the drier. After that your gear should be good as the day you got it.

Pros-

  • Simplicity of use
  • Range of treatment options – I have used this products on everything from Jackets, Waders and Tents
  •  Price – $14.95 to make your outerwear and other gear water repellant is a small price to pay
  • Performance – Treated gear is as good as the day it was purchased

 

Cons:

  • Small amount – 5 oz containers do not last long with all the gear that this spray can treat

 

Overall Revivex is an excellent and affordable solution for all anglers and outdoor enthusiasts looking to extend the life of their equipment. Revivex sure beats investing in new gear.

Buff in use

Product Review: UV Original Buff

Outdoor Enthusiasts of the world rejoice. Sun and weather has met its match in the form of the Original Buff. The UV Original Buff in its simplest form is a tube of lightweight fabric. However if you have never used one you will soon discover it is much more than that.  That simple tube can be better explained as a bandana on steroids.

If one word could be used to accurately describe the original buff it would be adaptable. The straightforward design of the Buff can be manipulated to be worn at least a dozen different ways ranging from headband to facemask, neck gaiter to balaclava just to name a few. In all reality the possibilities are endless. Ultimately the original buff in designed to keep you comfortable and dry in pretty much any situation.

 

Pros-

  • Made from CoolMax fabric to stay lightweight and dry
  • UV protection- CoolMax material blocks 95% of UV rays
  • Versatility- Over a dozen uses.
  • Seamless fabric eliminates chafing and pressure points
  • A multitude of colors and styles are available

Cons-

  • The price of Buff products can be high based on the simplicity of the garment
  • A multitude of colors and styles are available however finding the right pattern could prove to be difficult

That is the Original UV Buff in a nutshell however Buff USA has a huge selection of products for all four seasons that we as anglers will face so whether you are chasing trout in Montana or bonefish on the flats of Mexico or even Canadian chrome a buff will complete your gear selection for the day. A Buff is a must for those looking to avoid sunburn and the other elements we face while on the water.

Product Review: Jetboil Sol Aluminum PCS

How many times during the year as an angler do you wish you had a hot meal while fishing? If that thought has ever crossed your mind, the Jetboil Sol Aluminum PCS (Personal Cooking System) is for you.  In the winter time when the temperatures drop and ice starts collecting on your rod guides the Jetboil can be great for morale.

Pros:

  • Lightning fast boil time of 2 minutes 15 seconds.
  • Light and compact design : After use the PCS breaks down to be stored in the boiling cup
  • A myriad of accessories are available: My personal favorite is the coffee press
  • Fuel canister use- I use the large 450g container which is the largest size available and will boil approx 45 liters of water over the life of the canister. Just to give you an idea I have used this fuel can over the course of the year on many trips and it has yet to run out. The best part is that the Jetpower cans are recyclable using the Jetboil Crunchit tool.
  • No more cold and boring meals while fishing, backpacking, or camping

 

Cons:

  • Size (0.8L) volume is good however other Jetboil PCS models such as the Flash have a larger (1 Liter) boiling cup.
  • Weight – 10.5 oz weighs in as the 2nd lightest PCS made by Jetboil. The Jetboil Sol TI weighs in at a scant 8.5 oz (Note that those weights do not include a fuel stabilizer). For a fisherman those 2 ounces don’t make that much of a difference in my pack on a day of fishing.

The best part is that the Jetboil does way more than boil water for freeze dried meals, soup, and ramen. I have heard that it can be used to cook everything from hard boiled eggs to omelets and even baking chocolate cake.  I must say I have not been that adventurous in my use of my Jetboil but the possibilities are endless.

Simply put the Jetboil Sol Aluminum is the perfect addition to any angler’s arsenal of tools. Whether you find yourself Steelheading in the pacific northwest or looking for golden trout in the high sierra’s and everything in between the Jetboil Sol Aluminum is a must.

Let me finish up by posing the question. What is the best thing you have cooked in your Jetboil?

 

Simms Taco Bag - Closed

Product Review: Simms Taco Bag

The Simms Taco Bag can really be described in one word. Simplicity.  The bag can be unzipped and laid on the ground in a large circle (a proverbial wader bag  tortilla) to provide an excellent place to stand when getting in your waders at the beginning of the day. When the time has come to call it quits the design of the taco bag keeps your wet boots and waders from dripping into the interior of your car.

Pros:

  • The mesh vents at the top of the bag help to prevent mold and mildew buildup.
  • The 40”x 20” dimensions are large enough to hold at least two sets of waders and boots
  • Price: At 29.95 this bag is an affordable solution for anglers looking for inexpensive wader storage.

Cons:

  • Since the bag has no sections it is hard to keep dry gear separated from wet gear.
  • Once zipped up the inside of the bag tends to get quite dirty from the waders themselves. However if you are diligent in cleaning your gear this does not really make a difference.

Overall this bag cannot be beat for anglers who are looking for a simple and practical way for storing waders and other wet gear.  This is just another example of why Simms is considered one of the best when it comes to fly fishing equipment.

Product Review: Griffin Odyssey Spider Fly Tying Vise

If you are looking for a fairly in expensive fly tying vise than the Griffin Odyssey Spider Vise is the one to get. This vise has a nice smooth rotary feature to get your wraps uniformed. The clamp is nice and snug and I have tied hooks anywhere from size #4-22.

I have been tying on this vise for about 2 years now and have not come across a problem with it yet. Its functionality is perfect for what I need to tie flies. I am no pro but wouldn’t call myself a beginner either.  The Griffin Odyssey Spider  Vise has a long stem and comes with a C clamp to attach your vise to the table. It’s all very easy to use and very easy to adjust the tension of the rotary on the vise. One of the best things about this vise is that the hooks don’t pop out of the vise while you are tying like some cheaper vises do.

Pros:

  • The price, simplicity, rotary, the secure feature for holding the hooks in place.

Cons:

I would recommend this vise to anyone that has found they like tying more than they thought they would and have grown out of the beginner tying kit vise and don’t want to break the bank.

This vise is adaptable to a pedestal base also and I would recommend one if you like to travel with your vise from trip to trip. But that’s another review in itself. Go out and try it for yourself. You won’t be disappointed. Trust me.

Umpqua Magnum Midge Fly Box

Product Review: Umpqua Magnum Midge Fly Box

The Umpqua Magnum Midge Fly Box is one of my new favorite fly boxes to own. Its slim design is nice so you can stuff more boxes in your pack. This box has so many slits in the foam it’s hard to fill the box up with all your small dries. This box has 2 large magnet spots to through your old flies or really small flies that you can’t pick up out of the foam.

The pros to this box is simple. Thin, see through sides,  Zerust strips, water proof, magnets, and its fly capacity.

The cons to this box is I don’t own more of them. I haven’t found any cons to this box yet, other than if I get another one I would like to buy it in other colors to tell the two apart from just looking in my pack.

I would give this box a 5 out of 5 because for a small dry fly box, or very small nymphs, and emergers. This is the box to own.

Once you own this box look into the other great Umpqua boxes they have to offer for every combination you can think of.

Sage Circa Fly Rods – Prepare To Be Impressed

We only had a short time to spend with these new rods, but from what we saw…we were very much impressed.  Our first thoughts were, “Oh great, another sloppy, slower action rod” and boy were we wrong.  With the new Konnetic technology, these are crisp, smooth, full flexing beautiful fly rods.  When we picked up the 5wt, we thought for sure that it was a 3wt because it was so light in hand and the diameter of the blank was so narrow.  We are excited to get these rods in and available to you!

Sage posted a nice article about them and an accompanying video:

If you’re a devotee of the casting nuances of the slow action fly rod, a student of its historic ties to our sport, or just like the thrill of moving in close to actively feeding fish, consider our new CIRCA rod a reward for your years of dedication.

But be warned: the CIRCA does not mimic the type of slow action that has so far defined the category – overly soft, willowy and flat. Instead, thanks to Konnetic technology’s ability to compact and align more carbon fibers into a smaller diameter blank, we were able to design a radically narrow taper throughout the length of the rod, resulting in consistently slow, yet responsive action from butt to tip. Our new CIRCA rod is a technologically advanced slow-action fly rod that honors your slower, more deliberate casting style, yet is every bit a Sage.   Read more…

Product Review : Simms Guide Waders

A Simms classic has been reborn in the form of the reintroduced Simms Guide Wader.  For anglers looking for frills and luxuries (aka front zippers, hand warmer pockets and built in retractors) these may not be your cup of tea. However what these waders lack in gadgets they make up for in pure angling function.

These waders feature a 3 layer GORE-TEX fabric from the legs down and when the temperatures drop staying warm is paramount.  My favorite feature on the Simms Guide Wader has to be the front stitched seams. In my extremely humble opinion that is huge because they do not experience as much wear as traditional seams. That is where a majority of anglers experience leaks within their waders due to constant friction from hiking and wading.  Overall these waders are an excellent value for anglers who don’t want to break the bank when looking for new waders.

Pros:

  • 3 Layer GORE-TEX fabric which makes these waders highly breathable and leaves the angler feeling comfortable and dry.
  • Built in gravel guards to provide extra protection while wading
  • Front seam construction increases longevity of waders.

Cons:

  • In my experience these waders can be quite hot as temperatures rise during the summertime.  That can be attributed to the quality materials used to keep the angler dry.

These waders have served me quite well over the year and a half I have been using them. I have heard  that it is not uncommon for an angler to get 5-10 years out of a pair of these Simms waders.  These waders are not cheap but if you fish 70+ days a year or just want to be as comfortable as possible spending that little bit extra will pay off in the long run.

Product Review : The Simms Guide Wading Boot

As many anglers know Simms Fishing Products makes a wide variety of high quality products. The Simms Guide Wading Boot is no exception.  As a person that has a difficult time walking as it is wading can be a challenge for me. Having a boot that can give me the optimal mix of support, traction and comfort is paramount.

The Guide Boot is an excellent boot for anglers looking for a little bit more support while wading.  The Guides utilize a full Nubuck leather upper that makes them extremely tough and durable. For me one of the most important features of this boot is the molded rubber toe cap. It provides excellent protection from rocks and all other obstacles faced while wading.

Pros:

  • Full Length EVA Midsole for added cushioning
  • Molded rubber toe cap for added protection in the toughest of wading conditions
  • Molded rubber heel cup design provides excellent ankle support
  • Felt and Vibram Streamtread Rubber Soles to meet the needs of any angler

Cons:

  • The Nubuck leather makes these boots on the heavier side weighing in at over 4lbs
  • Brass hardware utilized within the lacing system will, over time, wear out laces
  • Leather within the boot does not dry quickly. These boots will stay wet longer than other boots.

This boot has become a favorite of not only me but a majority of the staff here at Fishwest. This boot provides just the right amount of support, cushioning and traction. Overall these boots have so far withstood the test of time for this unsteady angler.