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Destination Fly Fishing Gear Guide: Part Two
It is freezing in New England, and striped bass are still months from returning. While this may be an awful time for saltwater fly fishing north of the Mason-Dixon line, it is not time to hibernate! After all, we are fly anglers, and the fishing is going off somewhere. Tropical flats fisheries in Belize, the Bahamas, and the Yucatan are perfect for escaping winters' doldrums. If you are searching for bonefish, permit, tarpon, and more this winter, we have compiled a definitive two-part gear guide to help make preparation easier. Click HERE for part one on fly rods, reels, and lines.

Travel Bags

Like traveling for skiing, fly fishing requires specialized luggage to transport precious cargo. While four-piece rods pack nicely, you do not want to throw your Thomas & Thomas Sextant in your old duffel bag en route to Soul Fly. Your 4pc rod could become an 8pc without proper due diligence!

The right pack keeps your reels, spare lines, leaders, tippet, flies, and crucial accessories in check. Don’t show up to your dream destination disheveled and unorganized, looking like the college version of yourself on an ill-fated spring break trip. We’ve made this mistake, so you don’t have to!

Fishpond’s Dakota Carry-On Rod & Reel Case is the game changer that made our fly fishing travel lives much easier. The Dakota Carry-On features a padded fly rod compartment that safely stores four 4-pc rods without needing heavy rod tube holders. There are also dividable attachments to safely store your Hardy, Hatch, Cheeky, and Abel fly reels. The mesh compartments hold terminal tackle, spare lines, and multiple fly boxes.

Fishpond’s Teton Carry-On Luggage is perfect for clothing, toiletries, and non-fishing-related essentials. Of course, there’s room for fly fishing gear, but we recommend keeping them separate to avoid disorganization. However, the Teton Carry-On features a side strap to attach a single rod holder. If you do not want a separate rod case, Patagonia’s Travel Fly Rod Roll safely accommodates four fly rods and will cinch to the Teton Carry-On. 

Fishing Packs

A waterproof pack is necessary for daily fishing outings. It doesn’t matter if you’re wading or fishing from a skiff; your pack WILL get wet. There isn’t anything worse than your daily provisions getting soaked, and saltwater enclosed in a fly box will rust out hooks on those valuable flies faster than we can guzzle a Kalik lager after a day of baking in the sun. 

Backpacks, slings, and hip packs have their advantages as well as their drawbacks. Like stripping baskets, the perfect pack seemingly doesn’t exist, and it largely comes down to personal preference. Hip packs are ideal for wading and perfect for anglers with shoulder or back issues. However, some anglers might find another strap and bulky object around their waist quarrelsome if worn with a stripping basket.

Sling packs are a popular choice since they stay out of the way when fishing and are much easier to access supplies than a backpack. 

With a backpack, you can easily throw everything needed for a daily outing, including multiple water bottles, food, a camera, spare spools, fly boxes, and a rain jacket. You might spend extra time digging through and reshuffling your pack, but it’s the best option for carrying the kitchen sink. We are big fans of Fishpond’s waterproof Thunderhead series, available in backpack, sling, hip pack, and even duffel offerings to cover your needs. 


Now that you’re ready to pack like a pro, it’s time to dress like a seasoned flats veteran. The adage ‘cotton kills’ might be a bit hyperbolic, but you’ll feel like the Grim Reaper is hoovering over the skiff without appropriate moisture-wicking apparel. 

We’re big fans of Patagonia’s Terrebonne Joggers, available in men's and women's. They breathe well, dry fast, and are equally flattering with a trim, streamlined cut. Unlike most fishing pants, wearing the Terrebonne Joggers won’t make you look and feel like Left Kreh in 1978. 

For a top, sun hoodies provide the best UPF protection to help combat those tropical rays beaming down on you like white on rice. We carry a range of Simms Solar Hoodies featuring Kismet Outfitter’s iconic logo. The only thing better than fishing safely and comfortably is looking good while doing it! 

Don't forget to bring a long sleeve fishing shirt that offers sun protection and breathability; preferably one you can wear at the lodge for dinner. Patagonia's Island Hopper shirt has become the unofficial uniform of Kismet's staff.


Fishing sans footwear is the preferred choice of most anglers on the boat since it gives a better sense of feeling the fly line wrapping around your feet. However, wading barefoot is only optimal for those willing to risk the health of their Plantar Fascia from corral, sharp rocks, and various sea critters. Consider picking up the Simms Zipit Bootie to prevent an avoidable and utterly embarrassing disaster. They are lightweight, comfortable, and the next best thing to fishing barefoot.


After reading both blogs, you should be well-prepped for your next destination flats trip. Remember, if you're heading on a hosted trip with KO, you'll receive 10% off any items for the trip! Tight lines.