We’ve been all about trucks around here for a while and I’ve been meaning to get a gear review up here now that I’ve had a chance to get out on the water a few times with my new Vedavoo Spinner Day Pack & Chest Pack add-on.  In the spirit of full disclosure, I did win this pack as part of a contest, and subsequently purchased the chest pack.  Boy am I glad I was the lucky winner!  I’ve been carrying around my fly gear primarily one of two ways…a chest pack/sling from Fishpond and my Orvis Pro guide wading jacket.  Both have served me well, but I never realized how uncomfortable those were the way I was using them.

Once I got the pack, it was a mission to strip the gear from the old pack and get it just right on the Spinner Day Pack.  There are so many places to stuff things that you have to really think about how you will use it…that’s not a bad thing.  Before with my chest pack, it was primarily just fly boxes, extra reels and all the usual stuff one takes with them.  But on cold, wet days, the chest pack wasn’t really working for me (bulky, hard to get into, etc.), so I’d end up shoving everything into the pockets of my wading jacket, which wasn’t exactly comfortable. Another annoyance for me with the chest pack was that because it was so bulky, I never wore it as a chest pack, but rather a shoulder sling so that I could push it off to the side.  That made it ride pretty low and if I waded in too deep, my pack would be in the water.  That’s the kind of thing that would get my thermal undies in a kink I tell you.

Now with the Spinner Day pack, I’ve got enough room to carry all the essentials, plus I can roll my jacket into the pack along with a bottle of water and a snack for the afternoon, with plenty of room to spare. That’s a HUGE thing for us here in WA where it can be sunny one minute, and turn grey, cold and wet the next. Nobody ever wants to hike back to the truck for the jacket.  When I’m on the water, the pack is up high and out of the water leaving me the ability to wade in deeper if I need to without worrying about getting my gear soaked.

As for the comfort factor…at first glance, I was taken back at the simplicity of the shoulder straps. I was actually concerned that it wouldn’t feel comfortable because there was no padding built into the web straps.  I couldn’t have been further off base.  The pack is actually extremely light and adjusts quite easily to whatever I’m wearing.  It’s not the typical bulky packs we have seen time and time again.  The real hidden gem in this pack is the optional chest “pack.”  I put that in quotes because it really isn’t a chest pack per sé, it’s a chest plate reminiscent of the kind I used to wear in my body armor in the military and as a cop.  When you aren’t on the water, it attaches seamlessly to the pack with the clips provided on the pack.  When you are ready for action, you take it off the pack, attach the provided strap, hang it off your neck and go.  This chest plate packs an amazing amount of stuff into a very small, compact and comfortable form factor.  All the stuff I need to get to while on the water is easily accessible leaving the other gear on my back and out of the way.

Like with any other backpack, wearing it while you cast is a concern.  Most of them block your range of motion and nothing will piss off a flycaster more than goofing up their cast and getting all knotted up.  Happily, this wasn’t the case with this pack.  It’s well out of the way and due to those light straps, casting was no different than without it.  I’m not too sure I would have run out and bought a backpack because of the this concern, but the Day Spinner did not disappoint.

To wrap things up, there is an insane amount of attachment points/loops on this pack.  With some standard carabiner rings, you can hang all sorts of stuff from the pack if you are hiking in somewhere.  I prefer to keep things light, but it’s nice to know I can sling some gear on there if I plan to be out for more than a few hours or have to hike a good distance from the truck.  If you are in the market for a new pack and haven’t taken a look at the Spinner Day Pack, definitely give it consideration as I’ve found it invaluable since I’ve started using it.  It’s my go to pack and has a permanent spot in my gear stash now.