3 Best Surf Fishing Backpacks

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Hey there my fellow fishing enthusiasts and welcome to my post covering my 3 best surf fishing backpacks to load up in 2021. In my humble opinion, this is one of the absolute must haves for the surf fisherman as unless you are parking within arms reach of the water, then you are in for an awkward and cumbersome experience when you attempt to carry everything you need to the water’s edge – and you know two trips are not an option. So how are you going to carry all that equipment that you need such as tackle, tools, towel, water, bait and so on with your rod and rod holder as well? A backpack!

My 3 recommended backpacks for surf fishing

I will review these in more detail below but if you just want to get moving without all the carry on, my 3 are listed here for your convenience:

 BackpackPriceGet it
surf fishing backpacks - item 1KastKing Sling Fishing Bag$CURRENT PRICE
surf fishing backpacks - item 2KastKing Fishing Tackle Backpack$$CURRENT PRICE
surf fishing backpacks - item 3Piscifun Fishing Tackle Backpack$$$CURRENT PRICE

What are fishing backpacks?

I like to think of my backpack as my surf fishing ‘go bag’. This is because that due to the daily commitments of my fishing mates and myself, we often find ourselves jumping in the car for a fish at short notice. So rather than having to pull everything together, I can just thrown my rod into the back of the truck with the backpack and I am good to go.

Now, contrary to this post, I am going to be honest and let you know that I personally I just use an old school bag of my son’s. However, there is obviously a large range of proper fishing specific backpacks that contain all the pockets and slots needed for your fishing gear as well as such inclusions as tackle boxes, ‘cold’ sections and even chairs.

And trust me, I am getting very close to swapping over myself as one of my fishing buddies has himself a waterproof fishing backpack. No more pulling wet gear out for him…

What should you be looking for?

Again, the function here is pretty simple in that you are looking for something that will hold all of your gear in the spot and allow you to carry it all at once down to the beach – obviously having it on your back keeps your hands free as well. At the end of the day, there are a number of surf fishing accessories that I believe you should always have with you on your surf fishing expeditions including:

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Now, these are the basics I believe every surf fisherman needs in general. Many also look to other stuff such as chairs, coolers (eskies), lights and other options as well.

So, when looking into a surf fishing backpack, these are some of the options you could consider prior to purchase:

Waterproofing – Based on my experience with a backpack that is not so waterproof, if it is not going to keep everything in it dry, forget it. If you are going to purchase a fishing specific backpack then waterproofing is a must (I think most are by default but still worth a check). I know with mine that even if I put it on soft dry sand it still gets damp on the bottom – especially at dusk – meaning I always have to air everything out when I get home.

Tackle box inclusion– I keep all of my tackle in a larger box in the garage and then just take a smaller sample of what I will need for each trip. That way I am not lugging everything I own down to the beach, and also I am not exposing all of my tackle to the elements every time I go fishing.

Some backpacks come with tackle boxes included and other just have the slots for them. If you have small boxes already all you need to do is ensure that they will fit into your new bag. If not, then I would suggest getting a model with tackle boxes included.

Note: Always read the fine print here. Some vendors display their backpacks with tackle boxes in them. It is not until later that you find out that this is for display purposes only and that the boxes are sold separately!

surf fishing backpacks - man fishing backpack

Tool slots – If you have been fishing for any length of time, you will probably be aware that sometimes tools are needed quickly (line tangles with fish on them for example). Most fishing backpacks come with tools slots for pliers, knives etc. but it is worthwhile checking to see if they are easily accessible in a hurry (and not buried at the bottom of the bag like mine are).

Accessibility – As per the tool slots above, a good fishing backpack has enough sections to keep all of your gear in an easily accessible manner. Fishing can be a messy pastime so a good number of easily accessible pockets and sections can make things a lot easier in the heat of the moment or when your hands are wet and baity (is that a word? haha).

‘Wet’ sections – Again, towels, clothing and equipment can get wet during a good fishing session. Some backpacks come with a section that can allow for storage of wet stuff keeping it separate from everything else. Something to look for if you often end up with wet gear – if not, then of course it can double as a cooler for your ice packs and drinks – or bait!

‘Dry’ section – On the other side of the fence, there are often items we really want o keep dry on the beach – check for a little section where you can keep items such as wallets, phones and car keys etc. where they can be safe and dry.

Other stuff – Like anything, there are some really tricked out options out there. Some come with holders on the side for a rod (multi piece of course), drink holders and coolers (as discussed in out wet section above) and even fold out chairs. If you like to sit a lot, then the convenience of a fishing backpack with a chair might be worth the extra spend here.

At the end of the day, you need something that is not too bulky but big and strong enough to handle all of the gear you wish to take with you along with any extras or comfort items you would like as well.

What Do I use?

I mentioned above, I use my son’s old school backpack and keep in it the basics as mentioned above. It is sufficient for my needs however the problem I do find with it (and the reason I will be upgrading to one of the ones listed here soon) is that with everything in the one area, it is hard to keep everything dry when hunting around for something within it.

It only has a front pocket that I keep my car keys, phone and wallet in and everything else, in spite of my self-assured preparations, just goes south as soon as I get to the beach. I will of course update this post once my new purchase is made.

Update

I have upgraded! I went out and purchased myself an Abu Garcia waterproof ‘sling’ style fishing backpack. It is completely waterproof and light enough for both the beach and kayak. It is not a huge option but large enough to keep some tackle, spare leader, tools and lures as well as a drink bottle and my head lamp beanie. It does have the capacity to add plastic tackle boxes however I use little containers so I didn’t get any at purchase.

It’s specifications are as follows:

  • Waterproof: Yes – rubberised polyester material
  • Tacklebox number and size: Holds up to two (2) 3600 size lure boxes – I didn’t get them however
  • Dry Storage: Yes – Front pockets designed for dry storage of wallet, phone, keys etc.
  • Total number of pockets: 2
  • Tool slots: Three front mounted molle straps for quick and easy access

Other

  • Drink holder
  • Padded and adjustable shoulder sling

My three recommendations broken down

There are literally hundreds of fishing backpacks available online (with a large range in price points) so I have chosen the following three in an attempt to give you options taking into consideration the information above. Based on this, I recommend the following options:

1. KastKing Sling Fishing Bag

This first one is a great option for those looking to get themselves a decent fishing backpack for a decent price. It obviously doesn’t have the storage space of some of the others however if you are someone who doesn’t fish a real lot or likes to travel light then this option may work well. Specifications as follows:

  • Waterproof: Yes – 600D polyester material
  • Tacklebox number and size: Holds up to two (2) 3600 size lure boxes – NOT included
  • Wet Storage: Yes – two front pockets designed for either wet or dry storage
  • Dry Storage: Yes – as above
  • Total number of pockets: 4
  • Tool slots: Four front mounted molle straps for quick and easy access

Other inclusions:

  • Drink bottle holder on side
  • Mesh storage on side with key ring attached
  • Single adjustable padded shoulder strap

Why have I chosen it?

I like this one purely for its versatility and inclusions for the price. It will fit most gear for general surf fishing and great for those who want to travel light their destination. It is light weight, easily stored and I think a good option for the budget minded.


2. KastKing Fishing Tackle Backpack

Our next option is good for those looking for a few more storage options or need to lug their gear a little further or over rougher terrain. It comes with padded back pads and shoulder straps as well as an adjustable waist belt for greater comfort when on the move. Its other main specifications include:

  • Waterproof: Yes – 420D rip-stop nylon material
  • Tacklebox number and size: Holds up to four (4) 3600 size tackle boxes – NOT included
  • Wet Storage: Yes, – two front pockets designed for either wet or dry storage
  • Dry Storage: Yes – as above plus fleece lines pocket for sunglasses (or phone, wallet etc.)
  • Total number of pockets: 6 plus multiple external mesh slots
  • Tool slots: Yes, via internal slots in front pocket plus 3 external molle straps for easy access

Other inclusions:

  • Fishing rod/reel holder with side bungees (multiple piece rods only)
  • Removable false bottom
  • Mesh pockets rubber coated

Why have I chosen it?

Put simply, this is the best one I could find with the most inclusions for the best price with the best review scores. In terms of fishing, as mentioned above it provides greater comfort for those who need to travel a bit further or need a little more wet storage. It has space for all the basic needs above plus a little extra. The only thing I can see that it doesn’t have is a drink bottle holder… it should fit inside though.


3. Piscifun Fishing Tackle Backpack

The third option I have chosen is a little more expensive however for those who venture far and wide in the surf fishing endeavours, it is well worth the price. It comes with high quality materials and zippers with so many storage options I feel the only problem will be how to fill them all up. Specifications as follows:

  • Waterproof: Yes – 1200D high density nylon fabrics, paired with durable KAM buckle and SBS zippers
  • Tacklebox number and size: Holds up to four (4) 3600 size tackle boxes – Included
  • Wet Storage: Yes, – two front pockets designed for either wet or dry storage
  • Dry Storage: Yes – dedicated plastic dry pocket for phone and wallet plus hard case for sunglasses
  • Total number of pockets: 11 with adjustable clap board in main compartment
  • Tool slots: Yes, via internal slots in front pocket plus external mesh straps for easy access

Other inclusions:

  • Padded back pads
  • Adjustable drink bottle holder
  • Waterproof backpack cover attached
  • Rubber bottoms for extra stability

Why have I chosen it?

This is a great one for those looking for a little quality over price with specifications that make it a very versatile option for most conditions and needs in all fishing environments – especially if you are fishing with wetter areas, in the rain or off rocks.

 

Conclusion

And there they are – my 3 best surf fishing backpacks to load up in 2021. I hope it has been helpful and as usual, please let me know of your experiences with them.

Also, please do not hesitate to comment below if you have any questions, concerns, corrections or would like me to check anything else out for you.

Until next time

Have fun

Paul

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Hi, I'm Paul

I am a passionate fishing hobbyists who researches, tests and educates around issues and equipment relevant to fishing.

I am by no means a professional however my passion is to assist you in making informed decisions about buying and using awesome fishing gear that will give you the best chance of catching a fish for the best price.

Please get in touch if you have any questions.

Paul

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