March 05, 2015
Have you noticed turkey vests are less like places to put your calls and more like a way to wrap yourself in your turkey-hunting world?
We took a look at four new vests — some traditional, some outrageous. If you're in the market for one this season, great. If not, it's still fascinating to see what designers are coming up with to make you a better turkey hunter...or at least make you buy their vests. It's hard to go wrong with this rafter of nylon and cotton.
A good vest won't pull the trigger for you, but it will keep you comfortable and organized so you are ready for tom as he steps within the magic 40-yard circle. Plus, you'll have a place to put your calls.
Check out these four new offerings for the 2015 spring season:
Cabela's | Tactical Tat'r II M.O.R.E. Vest
To kill a turkey, you have to be where turkeys are and be able to set up rapidly under a variety of conditions, and you might have to use a variety of calls.
Cabela's Tat'r M.O.R.E. Vest
allows you to do just that. It has a 'speed seat ' that can be pulled down and then flipped back in place. An adjustable 'kickstand ' at the back can be deployed when you have to set up away from trees. Folded, you can sit up against a tree. Pockets for calls are easy to reach and have quiet zippers and clips. -DJ
RedHead | Striker Turkey Vest
If a $300 price tag for a turkey vest leaves you wheezing, the Striker
, marketed under BassPro's RedHead line
, will clear your head.
There's nothing fancy about the vest, but I have concerns about it lasting more than one or two seasons. The seat pad is a little thin. But the magnets that temporarily hold it in the up position are strong enough to do the job. -JG
Tenzing | TP14 Turkey Pack
When the birds roost in thick rows of evergreens or take to high grass fields, finding a tree to post up against can be harder than calling in a wizened tom. With the Tenzing TP14
, you can now reign over any terrain from a portable throne. The pack-vest combo has spring-loaded legs and a padded seat that quickly and quietly fold out into a comfortable ground chair.
For what the Dyneema paneled vest provides, the extra weight is forgivable. A channeled, air-cooled back pad with waist band straps conforms to your frame for a tight, silenced fit. The structured aluminum frame's spring-loaded legs allow you to comfortably assume the position with ease. With the adjustable legs popped out, drop the pad, drop your rear and post up. Need to run and gun? Synch the legs and go afoot. No bells or whistles. You could do it blindfolded in seconds.
If you're the kind of hunter who carries a hardware store into the field, the TP14 is the neat freak's dream: 28 compartments to keep it all organized and easily accessible. The expandable turkey pouch will fit a tom (plus your jacket), making the hike back to the truck a triumphant trek involving less sweat. -CP
Under Armour | Fast Track Vest
Looking for a lightweight, comfortable and adaptable vest? The UA Fast Track Turkey Vest
uses the MOLLE load-carrying system so gear compartments can be adjusted to suit needs.
It has two extremely useful two-slate and two-striker pouches. However, the gear hound — like myself — will fill it up with calls and other equipment and still be looking for more space. The unique seat pulls from inside the vest. A decoy-stake pouch is a nice touch to this already very useful turkey hunting vest. -PR