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Umpqua Rock Creek Chest Pack

- published Saturday, 15 August 2015

90

2015

RATINGS

Organization
8
Comfort
10
Adjustability
10
Ventilation
9
Water-resistance
7
Capacity
6
GEAR INSTITUTE RATING
90

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MSRP
LOW PRICE
$60.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

THE GOOD

  • Neck straps are comfortable
  • Holds a surprising amount of gear, given the small capacity
  • Great net carry

THE BAD

  • Tippet holder is inconveniently placed

THE VERDICT

The Rock Creek sets a new high bar for chest packs. This chest pack uses a meshy yoke that distributes the load evenly and makes this pack truly comfortable for daylong wear.

FULL REVIEW

Organization
The main compartment on the Rock Creek holds two long (9”) fly boxes, and two interior pouches (one zippered, one open) hold a few leaders, weight, and strike indicators. There’s a cord for tippet at the bottom of the pack but it is hidden from view by the rest of the pack. Testers preferred to stash tippet reels in the two open pouches at the top where they are handy and visible (but not totally secure). We also found the hemostat storage to be a bit cumbersome (they’re intended to slide under the fly patch). That prevented the line from getting tangled on the handle, but also made the hemostat tricky to extricate while also holding a netted fish. Stretchy mesh pouches on the sides keep flotant and bug spray handy, and a D-ring on the yoke holds a landing net at the upper back.

Comfort
The wide, meshy yoke makes this pack more comfortable than any other chest pack we’ve tested. It doesn’t chafe the neck or shoulders, nor does it shift about when casting or landing a fish. Thick foam padding keeps items stored in the main compartment from poking into the chest.

Adjustability
The waist straps might not be long enough for XXXL wearers, but everyone from kids to tall guys can achieve an optimal fit with this pack.

Ventilation
The Rock Creek feels cool and breezy in hot weather. The meshy yoke does a good job of keeping clamminess in check.

Water-resistance
The pack rides high enough that most wading situations won’t soak gear. Although the nylon repels a light drizzle, it’s not waterproof. A waterproof case or bag is recommended to protect electronics. If the pack ends up being submerged, it takes a good 24-36 hours to dry, due to the thick backpanel and rugged fabric.

Capacity
This pack is not designed to hold a lot: It is for anglers who don’t want to feel burdened with loads of gear. However, it does manage to contain a surprising amount of stuff in its small space. Everything carried in a traditional fishing vest fits somewhere into (or onto) this pack.

How We Tested It

The packs in this test were used by a team of fly-fishermen (and women) on multiple trips on Rocky Mountain rivers and lakes.

The products featured in this test have been loaned to the Gear Institute. For more on our policies regarding editorial objectivity and sample returns, see here.

About the Author

Kelly Bastone

Kelly Bastone

For writer and outdoorswoman Kelly Bastone, gear-testing is just part of the daily routine: Her home in Steamboat Springs, Colorado puts world-class skiing, mountain biking, and fly-fishing right outside her door. Read her work at kellybastone.com

Shop for the Umpqua Rock Creek Chest Pack

MSRP
LOW PRICE

$60.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

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MSRP
LOW PRICE
$60.00
Support Gear Institute. If you make a purchase after clicking on the links above, a portion of the sale helps support this site.

RATINGS

Organization
8
Comfort
10
Adjustability
10
Ventilation
9
Water-resistance
7
Capacity
6
GEAR INSTITUTE RATING
90

Specs

  • Unisex

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