Fishpond Gear Review

Here on Colorado’s western slope, it is no secret that float fishing is the best way to cover more water and catch more fish for the majority of the angling season. The designers at Fishpond have created several pieces of gear to keep float fishermen prepared, no matter the river or season. Whether you are in a drift boat on the lower Colorado, or a raft on the upper Roaring Fork, there are a couple of pieces of essential boat-specific gear that will keep you comfortable, organized, and catching fish whenever you jump into the boat.  

*Please note some of these products may no longer be available to purchase*

Westwater Boat Bag

Boat Bag

The Westwater Boat Bag is without a doubt one of my favorite pieces of Fishpond gear. Its rigid walls and molded top and bottom keep it standing up tall when it is full of gear and make access to tackle quick and easy, which comes in handy while rigging and rowing at the same time. The TPU welded fabric construction is totally waterproof so that my flies, tools, tackle, and emergency gear stays dry and rust-free – even in big waves or pounding rain. The interior dividers are adjustable and let me easily separate fly boxes, first aid kit, and other on-the-water necessities. Whenever I am fishing from the boat, the Westwater Boat Bag comes with me, whether i am in the drift boat, raft, or skiff.


Nomad El Jefe Grande Boat Net

El Jefe


The Nomad nets from Fishpond could be the strongest and lightest nets in the world, and if you are fishing from a boat, there are a couple of great sizes to choose from. My favorites are the El Jefe Grande and the Nomad Boat Net. Both have long handles and large hoops so that I can reach fish from the rower’s seat without standing up and letting go of the oars. The clear rubber bag vanishes under water and reduces the amount of damage done to a trout’s protective mucus coating.


Fishpond Chaco Flips and Z2 Sandals


Chaco Sandals have long been the choice of river professionals everywhere, fly fishing guides included, during the warm months of summer. The Fishpond Chaco Flips and Z2 Sandals feature a Vibram sole made with an ultra sticky rubber compound that gives you a solid grip on wet, moss covered rocks and slippery boat floors. As an added benefit, for each pair of Fishpond Chaco sandals sold, Fishpond sends five dollars to Western Rivers Conservancy, an organization devoted to protecting outstanding river ecosystems through land acquisition. When you buy a pair of Fishpond Chaco Sandals, you are helping to protect many of the places we fish.


Fishpond Sushi Roll

Sushi Roll

The new Sushi Roll from Fishpond is one of the coolest big fly storage systems available today. I use it for streamers and love how easy it is to open, close, and pick out flies. It keeps my big bugs organized and even more importantly, allows them to dry out when they get wet. I no longer have to dump the entire box out onto the kitchen counter after a day of chucking streamers in the rain.


Westwater Large Rolling Duffel

Rolling Duffel

Fly fishing travel can be difficult without the right luggage, which is why Fishpond created the Westwater Large Rolling Duffel. This 6400 cubic inch monster lets you protect and carry everything you need for long expeditions to any fishing destination on the planet with ease. The rugged wheels and retractable handle make airport navigation a breeze, and the TPU coated fabric keeps water out for good.


Whether you are looking to gear up for an upcoming fishing trip or a long season on your local river, consider these durable, high performance, and easy to use pieces of gear from Fishpond. As always, if you have questions about any of the Fishpond products we carry at Vail Valley Anglers, feel free to call the fly shop at (970) 926-0900 to talk to one of our fly fishing experts.

Andy “Otter” Smith, Guide and Content Writer