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15 Best Hunting Vests: Which Is Right For You?

best hunting vest

123rf.com (nikolaihamel)

Looking to breathe new life into your hunting wardrobe and on the market for a new hunting vest this season? Whether you’re looking to replace your current hunting companion or are new to donning a vest in the field, our top list has highlighted options for any and all hunting styles and contexts.

Featuring vests for heightening your stealth and supporting you in the field while actively hunting, low profile insulating layers that won’t impede shooting, and some standard minimalist blaze orange options, we’ve pinned down the best vests for turkey hunting, upland pursuits, deer season, big game expeditions and beyond!

Orvis PRO Series Hunting Vest
  • Versatile vest suitable for several hunting styles built with a plethora of storage for large gear loads
  • Rugged nylon construction is highly abrasion resistant
  • Backpack-style support system to help carry the load
Price: $198.00 Shop now at Orvis Shop now Read our review
Orvis PRO LT Hunting Vest
  • Streamlined design is 42% lighter than the Orvis PRO Series Vest
  • Built with padded suspension with ultra-thin straps for uninhibited shooting action
  • Includes a large capacity, blood-proof game pouch on the back
Price: $179.00 Shop now at Orvis Shop now Read our review
Orvis Waxed Cotton Strap Vest
  • Designed for upland shooting in all seasons, and all weather
  • Wears well over virtually any layering options
  • Orvis-exclusive Easy Entry magnetic closures on the large front pockets for fast one-finger access
Price: $169.00 Shop now at Orvis Shop now Read our review
Filson Tin Cloth Game Bag
  • Built from Filson's classic water-repellent, abrasion-resistant tin cloth
  • Two expandable shell pockets can each carry a box of shells
  • Versatile vest offering a roomy fit - intended to allow room for heavyweight layers underneath
Price: $155.00 Shop now at Filson Shop now Read our review
Orvis Upland Hunting Vest
  • Mesh lining promotes increased air circulation and temperature regulation
  • Excellent capacity - each front pocket includes shell loops, capable of holding 25 boxed 12 gauge shells
  • 270° access, no-leak game pocket reduces strain on your rotator cuff when reaching for it
Price: $149.00 Shop now at Orvis Shop now Read our review
Gamehide Shelterbelt Mid-Weight Upland RipStop Hunting Vest Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Soft and durable 8oz. canvas ripstop fabric for a lighter vest that still offers high abrasion/puncture resistance
  • Convenient front or rear-loading blood proof game bag
  • Oversized to fit over a jacket
Price: $39.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Gamehide Gamebird Ultra-Light Vest Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Minimalist design built from SuppleTuff lightweight burr proof fabric
  • Large bellowed pockets feature a snap-closure and can accommodate a full box of shells (and feature shell sleeves)
  • Blood-proof game bag can be accessed from front, top or rear
Price: $49.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
ALPS OutdoorZ Upland Game Vest Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Lightweight and rugged polyester fabric, blaze orange upland game vest designed for visibility in the field
  • Generously sized wrap around game pocket can be accessed from the front or back
  • Features two oversized shell pockets on the front of the vest with 14 individual shell and choke tube loops
Price: $60.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Badlands Upland Turkey Hunting Vest with 5-Layer Foam Seat Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Camouflage vest engineered specifically for turkey hunting
  • Includes a deployable, 5-layer foam seat
  • Plethora of specialized pockets provide plenty of space for all your essential gear and are designed for quick and easy access
Price: $229.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Nomad Killin' Time Turkey Vest Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 100% Polyester vest engineered for turkey hunting
  • Removable dual high-density foam seat cushion with magnet attachments and seated adjustment handle
  • 28 general and specialized pockets accommodate all of your essential gear and more
Price: $116.63 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
SITKA Gear Ballistic Vest Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 100% Polyester construction featuring a DWR finish to resist light precipitation and wet environments
  • Reinforced foam shoulder pad (interchangeable for wear on either side) makes shooting more comfortable
  • Magnetic buckle easily reconnects for quick layering changes in the field
Price: $99.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
KUIU Precision Hunter Vest
  • Polyester blaze orange vest offering DWR water resistance and compatibility over all base-to-outer-layer configurations
  • High-stretch nylon/elastane mesh side panels for added versatility and comfort
  • Includes two zippered hand pockets
Price: $79.00 Shop now at KUIU Shop now Read our review
KUIU Guide DCS Vest
  • Designed to provide warmth and weather resistance for your core
  • Built with Primeflex Polyester and a micro-fleece backer for serious warmth and comfort
  • Weighs just 13.5 ounces and rolls up tight for compact storage
Price: $159.00 Shop now at KUIU Shop now Read our review
KUIU Axis Thermal Hybrid Vest
  • Outer layer providing warmth at the body’s core and waterproof protection across the shoulders and lower back
  • Combines body-mapped FiberBall® insulation, DownTube® stitch-free woven baffles, and Dermizax® waterproof paneling for maximum insulation at minimum weight
  • High-stretch windproof material and high-loft insulation work together to conquer cold and wet conditions
Price: $189.00 Shop now at KUIU Shop now Read our review
Gerbing 7V Rechargeable Battery Unisex Heated Vest Liner Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Four temperature settings heat up to 135 degrees F
  • Powerful Microwire heating system includes 3 built-in heating panels strategically placed on the chest and back
  • Wind and water resistant
Price: $129.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Orvis PRO Series Hunting Vest

    Price: $198.00
    Pros:
    • Versatile vest suitable for several hunting styles built with a plethora of storage for large gear loads
    • Large hip pockets containing shell loops are placed out of the way, yet easily accessible
    • Extra-large game bag located on the back
    • Integrated water bladder pocket that accommodates 1.5L lumbar-style bladder
    • Extra wide back panel for enhanced support and a four-way sternum strap to find the perfect fit
    • Mesh water bottle holders on either side of the vest
    • Strap design won't inhibit shooting
    • Straps on bottom for storing unneeded layers
    • Rugged nylon construction
    • Ventilated back panel keeps you cool
    • 220 square inches of blaze orange
    • Excellent customer service
    Cons:
    • Expensive option
    • Fairly heavy option
    • Adjustment straps are built a bit long and may hang loosely depending on your size
    • No camouflage aesthetics available

    The Orvis PRO Series Hunting Vest is a rugged, built-to-last option designed with superior support and a large carrying capacity in mind. A wonderfully versatile vest, this option is geared towards, but certainly not limited to upland hunting applications.

    Built with a rugged nylon construction, this vest is highly abrasion resistant and will stand up to briars and wilderness hazards just fine, so you won’t have to be bashful while chasing game through the thick of whatever wilderness you’re hunting in.

    Equipped with a plethora of mindfully placed pockets, the PRO Series Hunting Vest is a great option for gear-heavy hunters. Large hip pockets containing shell loops are placed out of the way, yet easily accessible while mesh water bottle holders flank the sides of the vest. There is also an integrated water bladder pocket that accommodates a 1.5L lumbar-style bladder for those hunts that really require you to hydrate.

    Orvis has also added a zippered stash pocket on the back for stowing personal items, so there’s a designated space for all your essential gear and some. Perhaps most practical of all depending on the hunting context, built-in straps on the bottom of the vest are present for storing unneeded layers.

    An extra-large game bag located on the back provides plenty of room for multiple birds or critters compared to most other vests, so you should always have space for another harvest.

    In regards to fit, an extra wide back panel is employed here for enhanced support while a four-way sternum strap helps to find that perfect position. The back panel is furthermore ventilated to ensure you don’t overheat on particularly strenuous hunts. Not to be overlooked with a hunting vest offering this much gear capacity, a backpack-style support system helps to carry heavy loads so you don’t feel overburdened.

    Featuring 220 square inches of blaze orange, the PRO Series Hunting Vest is only available in one aesthetic, so its applications in regard to stealth and camouflage are limited. 

    Offering an abundance of storage through a coherent, practical pocket schematic as well as a rugged overall construction and comfortable fit, Orvis has engineered a brilliant vest with this one that you can plan on owning for many seasons to come.

  2. 2. Orvis PRO LT Hunting Vest

    Price: $179.00
    Pros:
    • Streamlined design is 42% lighter than the Orvis PRO Series Vest
    • Built with padded suspension with ultra-thin straps for uninhibited shooting action
    • Includes a large capacity, blood-proof game pouch on the back
    • Adjustable hip pocket placement
    • Includes two zippered security pockets, two coated mesh water bottle pockets, and a large hook and loop rear pocket
    • Loads of strap adjustments to nicely accommodate a variety of different layering systems
    • Built with a durable 1680D nylon construction for maximum abrasion resistance
    • 187 square inches of blaze orange
    Cons:
    • Expensive option
    • Complaints about the functionality of the mesh water bottle pockets
    • Shell pockets are secured with noisy Velcro rather than magnets

    The Orvis PRO LT Hunting Vest is a high-speed, low-drag, streamlined option that’s perfect for upland hunters who really like to run and gun. If you like the design of the PRO vest but think it may be a bit cumbersome for your hunting style, this is a brilliant alternative that weighs 42% less! 

    Built with padded suspension with ultra-thin straps for uninhibited shooting action, the PRO LT Vest offers a comparable amount of storage and organization potential to the PRO Series Vest, at almost half the weight. There’s only a slightly lower capacity for stowing birds within the large, blood-proof game pouch on the back, and mesh water bottle holders are present on the vest sides.

    The hip pockets furthermore feature adjustable placement, so you can set them up just where you want them. Two zippered security pockets go on to provide a place for stashing your personal items, while a large hook and loop rear pocket provides you with a place to stuff an extra later (or shed one).

    Built with a durable 1680D nylon construction for maximum abrasion resistance, the PRO LT Vest is engineered to take a beating in the field, so you can put it through the motions without fear for its integrity. It’s a brilliant vest option for targeting pheasants, quail, rabbits, and other small critters that might call for some bush-whacking.

    Featuring 187 square inches of blaze orange, this vest may or may not satisfy your state’s regulations in regard to visibility, so be sure to check before donning this vest without any additional blaze orange.

  3. 3. Orvis Waxed Cotton Strap Vest

    Price: $169.00
    Pros:
    • Designed for upland shooting in all seasons, and all weather
    • Wears well over virtually any layering options
    • Rugged, waxed cotton effectively sheds water and dirt
    • Orvis-exclusive Easy Entry magnetic closures on the large front pockets for fast one-finger access
    • Large rear game bag is designed to hold up to three birds
    • Includes a small zippered storage pocket on the back
    • Spaces for stashing water bottles in the game pouch
    • Sternum strap adjusts horizontally and vertically to find the perfect fit
    • Shoulder straps and belt are built from heavy-duty nylon webbing
    • Available in a classic dark khaki aesthetic, or in blaze orange (258 square inches of blaze)
    • Excellent customer service
    Cons:
    • Fairly expensive option
    • Waxed cotton pockets could be better reinforced - may wear out the front and bottom due to briars and thorns
    • Game pouch is zippered, so accessing it can be difficult on your own

    The Orvis Waxed Cotton Strap Vest is a stellar option for varied climates and changing weather, as it wears wonderfully over all layering options. Built with a classic aesthetic, this is a truly cool heritage-piece that still offers all of the modern features you want out of an upland vest.

    Built from rugged waxed cotton, this vest effectively sheds water and dirt and will handle most of the abuses of gnarly wilderness hazards in stride. There are some complaints about the front and bottom of the pockets becoming worn out when put up against briars, so be mindful of this if you’re pursuing game in particularly aggressive environments. 

    Where this vest really excels is the fact that it’s designed for upland shooting in all seasons, and all weather. If you currently own vest systems for both warm and cold weather hunts, this option will replace them both. Orvis has completed this feat by engineering this vest to layer well over both minimal outerwear, as well as bulkier winter hunting apparel.  The sternum strap adjusts horizontally and vertically to find the perfect fit, so even if you shed a layer in the field, you can quickly snug this vest up and regain that perfect fit.

    The Waxed Cotton Vest features a large rear game bag designed to hold up to three pheasants, so the capacity here is adequate, but not especially generous compared to some options, such as the PRO Series vest. This is more a minimalist style vest in regards to gear and game capacity, but the brand has still outfitted this option with a plethora of mindfully designed pockets.

    Orvis-exclusive Easy Entry closures on the large front pockets enable fast one-finger access to your shells, so you can reload at a moment’s notice. The pockets even hold open due to the integrated magnetic tabs, so you can truly get in and out without having to awkwardly cradle your firearm and use both hands. 

    A small zippered storage pocket on the back offers a space for stashing your phone, hunting licenses, and other personal items, while the game bag provides plenty of space for stashing a water bottle (as long as you don’t mind it getting messy in there!) Some sportsmen are not a fan of the fact that the game bag is zippered because it makes accessing it on your own a bit more difficult, so be sure to consider if this detail is problematic for you. 

    All in all, we find this heritage-inspired option from Orvis to be a wonderfully versatile and dapper vest for upland hunts of all kinds that’s offered at a more than fair price point when you consider the quality of craftsmanship and functionality here! 

  4. 4. Filson Tin Cloth Game Bag

    Price: $155.00
    Pros:
    • Built from Filson's classic water-repellent, abrasion-resistant tin cloth
    • Versatile vest offering a roomy fit - intended to allow room for heavyweight layers underneath
    • Two expandable shell pockets can each carry a box of shells
    • Features a rear-loading, high-capacity game bag
    • Cut/minimalist design for ease of movement and enhanced breathability
    • Adjustable cotton webbing shoulder straps and a bridle leather waist closure for finding the perfect fit
    Cons:
    • Fairly expensive option
    • Minimalist design lacks organization potential and gear capacity
    • Only one available aesthetic means you may need to add some blaze orange to your outfit to meet hunting requirements

    The Filson Tin Cloth Game Bag is a no-nonsense, minimalist-style option geared towards upland hunting applications featuring a timeless heritage aesthetic. If you want to leave all of the bells and whistles behind and are simply seeking a comfortable and rugged vest that offers space for your shells and harvested game, look no further!

    Built from Filson’s classic water-repellent, abrasion-resistant tin cloth, this is the kind of gear you’ll likely pass down to an aspiring hunter someday. The brand has always been known for building gear that lasts, and the Tin Cloth Game Bag is no exception.

    Featuring two expandable shell pockets that can each carry a box of shells, Filson has ensured you’ve got plenty of ammo capacity here. A rear-loading, high-capacity game bag is also of course present on the back for stashing your harvests.

    Offering a roomy fit, this vest allows room for heavyweight layers underneath, so it’s quite versatile in terms of climatic conditions. No matter what you’re wearing underneath, the inherent cut and minimalist design here promote ease of movement, so this vest will never hold you back while traversing tough terrain or swinging a shotgun. When temps are warm, the open face and sides of this vest ensure you can catch a breeze.

    Designed with adjustable cotton webbing shoulder straps and a bridle leather waist closure, finding the perfect fit is furthermore made easy.

    A brilliant no-frills, all-business vest option from a trusted industry leader, the Tin Cloth Game Bag will exceed your expectations when applied in the proper hunting contexts.

  5. 5. Orvis Upland Hunting Vest

    Price: $149.00
    Pros:
    • Mesh lining promotes increased air circulation and temperature regulation
    • 270° access, no-leak game pocket reduces strain on your rotator cuff when reaching for it
    • Excellent capacity - each front pocket includes shell loops, capable of holding 25 boxed 12 gauge shells
    • Zippered, low-profile chest pockets for stowing personal items and smaller pieces of gear
    • No disruption of GPS or dog remote signal due to the lack of magnets in the pockets
    • Plethora of storage pockets as well as low-profile daisy chains across the shoulders for securing additional gear externally
    • Cleans easily by releasing the zipper across shoulders
    • Comfortable, quilted yoke stands up well to abrasions and gnarly wilderness hazards
    • Blaze orange upper (206 square inches)
    • Excellent customer service
    Cons:
    • Fairly expensive
    • Lacks a water bottle holder
    • Only one available color option

    The Orvis Upland Hunting Vest is a brilliant option for sportsmen seeking a highly streamlined and breathable vest that won’t slow them down in the field, while still standing up to unforgiving environments.

    Designed with mesh lining throughout the vest, the idea here is to promote increased air circulation and temperature regulation. This makes the Upland Hunting Vest a solid choice for warm weather hunts where you can expect to break a sweat.

    Perfect for upland environments and hunting contexts, the comfortable quilted yoke stands up well to abrasions and gnarly wilderness hazards. Orvis has not traded weight for integrity with this option despite its liberating fit and mesh design.

    A plethora of storage pockets as well as low-profile daisy chains across the shoulders for securing additional gear externally are present, so there’s no shortage of gear capacity. Utilizing the daisy chains won’t inhibit gun mounts on your shooting side, and makes for a perfect place to stow GPS trackers, radios, and dog whistles across the opposite shoulder. There is furthermore no disruption of GPS or dog remote signal due to the lack of magnets in the pockets, so hunters who utilize electronics such as this in the field will most definitely find a friend here. 

    Arguably most practical of all, each front pocket is capable of holding 25 boxed 12 gauge shells and contain shell loops. This means you can comfortably tote an abundance of ammo into the field without feeling overly cumbersome – an underrated feature, especially on full-day hunts.

    Not to be overlooked, the 270° access, no-leak game pocket reduces strain on your rotator cuff when reaching for it, so if you’re hunting alone you’ll have no issue wrestling your way into your game pouch. When it comes time to clean the game pocket out, simply unzip the zipper spanning the shoulders, turn it over, empty out the mess and wipe clean – easy as that.

    The only feature that we find this vest option lacks is a water bottle holder, so you’ll have to come up with your own hydration system here. We’re also a bit let down that this vest is only offered in the blaze orange aesthetic due to its versatile functionality.

    A stellar choice for a variety of small game hunting applications that’s well worth the higher price point, the Upland Hunting Vest from Orvis is bound to impress! 

  6. 6. Gamehide Shelterbelt Mid-Weight Upland RipStop Hunting Vest

    Pros:
    • Soft and durable 8oz. canvas ripstop fabric for a lighter vest that still offers high abrasion/puncture resistance
    • Convenient front or rear-loading blood-proof game bag
    • Oversized to fit over a jacket
    • Quilted shoulder patches for left or right handed shooters
    • Large snap closure dump pockets feature external shell holders
    • Shell sleeves hold shells nice and tight while still allowing easy access
    • Adequate storage space for bringing along a water bottle, electronics, and other essential gear within the front facing pouches
    • Meets blaze orange visibility requirements
    • Very reasonably priced
    Cons:
    • Only one available aesthetic
    • Complaints about the size of the game pocket on the back - best for smaller game
    • Sizing runs a bit large in order to accommodate for layering, so be mindful if you plan on wearing this vest without a jacket

    The Gamehide Shelterbelt Mid-Weight Upland RipStop Hunting Vest is a wonderful budget option for upland hunters seeking a reliable, but affordable vest for targeting quail, pleasant, rabbits, and other upland species. If you’re seeking a durable vest that ensures you’re visible in the field, provides quick access to your shells, and offers blood-proof storage for your harvests, this is a great go-to worth checking out.

    Built from soft and durable 8oz. canvas ripstop fabric, this is a lighter weight vest that still offers high abrasion and puncture resistance. It’s designed to be oversized in order to fit over a jacket, so be aware of this detail if you don’t anticipate pairing this vest with a cold weather layering system – and be mindful that the material is not terribly breathable.

    Large snap-closure dump pockets feature external shell holders, and customer reviews insist the shell sleeves are nice and tight without restricting quick access. A front facing pouch provides adequate storage space for bringing along a water bottle, electronics, and other essential gear, but any items placed in there will rattle around, so depending on your gear load, you may need to bring along some additional storage.

    Equipped with quilted shoulder patches for left or right-handed shooters, the brand has outfitted this vest with an impressive amount of practical features for the price point.

  7. 7. Gamehide Gamebird Ultra-Light Vest

    Pros:
    • Minimalist design built from SuppleTuff lightweight burr proof fabric
    • Strategic cut outs maximize airflow
    • Blood-proof game bag can be accessed from front, top or rear
    • Large bellowed pockets feature a snap-closure and can accommodate a full box of shells (and feature shell sleeves)
    • Intelligent design carries the weight of birds and shells comfortably
    • Small inside pocket suitable for your hunting license and cell phone
    • Front facing pouches on the chest provide additional storage for more cumbersome items
    • Blaze orange design for visibility in the field
    • Great price point
    Cons:
    • Only one available aesthetic
    • Lacks storage and organization potential in exchange for a minimalist design
    • Recommended to buy a size up if you want to layer up underneath

    The Gamehide Gamebird Ultra-Light Vest is a minimalist option perfect for upland sportsmen seeking a bare-bones vest that offers blaze orange for meeting visibility requirements, storage for shells, a game bag for harvests, and not much else! Perfect for wear over a light jacket, this is a stellar companion for those run-and-gun hunts where you’d prefer to leave the majority of your gear load behind.

    Built from SuppleTuff lightweight burr-proof fabric, the brand has built this vest with strategic cut-outs to maximize airflow, making it an excellent option for warm weather hunts where overheating is a factor. The intelligent design furthermore carries the weight of birds and shells comfortably, so you won’t feel weighed down in this vest even when hauling out a full limit.

    Large bellowed pockets feature a snap closure and can accommodate a full box of shells (and feature shell sleeves), while a small inside pocket is present for accommodating your hunting license and cell phone. Front facing pouches on the chest go on to provide storage for more cumbersome items, such as a water bottle.

    The blood-proof game bag can be accessed from the front, top, or rear – so stowing your pheasants, doves, or rabbits is made easy even if you’re hunting on your own.

    This vest runs true to size, so if you plan on bringing it out for some chilly hunting endeavors and pairing it with a cold-weather layering system, we recommend sizing up.

  8. 8. ALPS OutdoorZ Upland Game Vest

    Pros:
    • Lightweight and rugged polyester fabric, blaze orange upland game vest designed for visibility in the field
    • Generously sized wrap around game pocket can be accessed from the front or back
    • Features two oversized shell pockets on the front of the vest with 14 individual shell and choke tube loops
    • Two zippered chest pockets provide safe and secure storage for your larger essentials
    • Dual water bottle holders flank the vest
    • D-rings on the chest enable you to externally secure additional gear
    • Adjustable buckle closure ensures a more flexible and comfortable fit
    • Very reasonably priced
    Cons:
    • Material is not terribly quiet compared to some other options
    • Only available in the blaze orange aesthetic
    • Some hunters may not like the buckle closure on the vest fron in regards to noise output

    If you’re seeking a reliable blaze orange hunting vest for upland applications, the ALPS OutdoorZ Upland Game Vest should most definitely be on your radar. Featuring a lightweight and high-integrity polyester build and a generous, but coherent pocket schematic to accommodate all your essential gear without feeling too cluttered, this is a solid choice for countless hunting contexts from targeting rabbits in the fall to pheasants in the winter!

    ALPS OutdoorZ has not cut any corners here in regard to storage capacity. Two zippered chest pockets provide safe and secure storage for your larger essentials while two oversized shell pockets on the front of the vest with 14 individual shell and choke tube loops ensure your ammo is ready at a moment’s notice. Dual water bottle holders furthermore flank the vest so you’ll never lack hydration, while D-rings on the chest go on to enable you to externally secure additional gear and gadgets. 

    The brand has done a wonderful job here of engineering a vest that has the capacity for high gear loads, but doesn’t feel too cluttered in the event you’re on a more minimalist hunt. The abundance of coherent storage makes it a particularly great vest option for hunters who utilize dogs in the field – offering plenty of room for dog food and extra water, as well as convenient external attachment points for GPS trackers, dog whistles, and more.

    The generously sized wrap around game pocket has plenty of room for a full limit (of most small game species) and can be accessed from the front or back. This makes stowing your harvests on solo hunts much easier than utilizing game bags that are only accessible from the rear.

    Not to be overlooked, the adjustable buckle closure employed here ensures a more flexible and comfortable fit, so you can layer up or down without having to incessantly wrestle your vest adjustments.

  9. 9. Badlands Upland Turkey Hunting Vest with 5-Layer Foam Seat

    Pros:
    • Camouflage vest engineered specifically for turkey hunting
    • Includes a deployable, 5-layer foam seat
    • Plethora of specialized pockets provide plenty of space for all your essential gear, and are designed for quick and easy access
    • Features an expandable rear bird pouch for comfortably stashing your harvest
    • Ventilated back panel helps to avoid overheating during periods of high exertion
    • Built-in removable gear tether for securing more cumbersome pieces of gear
    • Fits Badlands' 3-liter hydration reservoir
    • Compatible with the Badlands Bino Connect Kit - allowing you to attach your Badlands binocular case directly to the vest
    Cons:
    • Expensive option
    • Limited camo options
    • Although the vest is mindfully designed to be low profile, some hunters may find the pocket-configuration to be a bit cluttered
    • some hunters may not like the noise output of the chest clips in the event you need to unclip in the field

    The Badlands Upland Turkey Hunting Vest with a 5-Layer Foam Seat is a brilliant innovation in stealth, comfort, and functionality when it comes to targeting turkeys in the field. While this is a highly specialized vest with a target species in mind, many hunters have found that the Upland Turkey Vest is a wonderfully versatile garment that makes a great hunting companion for all sorts of contexts.

    Equipped with a plethora of specialized pockets, this decked out option provides plenty of space for all your essential gear and more in a manner that’s both coherent and easy to access with minimal movement. The idea here is to remain both comfortable and quiet so you can easily endure long sits while calling in birds. There is even a built-in removable gear tether for securing more cumbersome pieces of gear, such as a pop-up blind or decoys.

    An expandable rear game pouch stays nice and low profile when there’s not a bird in there, while a 3-liter hydration reservoir supports streamlined hydration that won’t force you to reach for a noisy water bottle.

    While this vest is loaded with practical storage capacity of all kinds, the real star of the show is the integrated, removable 5-layer foam seat. If you’re used to posting up on whatever wilderness seat you can find or alternatively, carrying your own seat pad into the field, the Upland Turkey Vest will change the game for you when it comes to comfort on long-duration hunts. 

    Badlands has furthermore gone on to equip this vest with a ventilated back panel to help to avoid overheating during periods of high exertion – because with a gear capacity this high, you might be working hard out there! 

    A brilliant choice for all-out turkey hunters and a variety of other gear-intensive hunting applications, Badlands has engineered a trusty companion with this one that you’ll no doubt be impressed by. 

  10. 10. Nomad Killin’ Time Turkey Vest

    Pros:
    • 100% Polyester vest engineered for turkey hunting
    • Removable dual high-density foam seat cushion with magnet attachments and seated adjustment handle
    • 28 general and specialized pockets accommodate all of your essential gear and more
    • 4 Mesh mouth call pockets
    • Dual water bottle pockets
    • Plethora of external attachment points for gear
    • Roomy adjustable rear game pouch with decoy stake pockets
    • Stow away mesh mushroom stow sack
    • 14 Adjustment point for one size fits most customization
    • Two different camo patterns available
    Cons:
    • Expensive option
    • Some hunters may find the extensive pocket configuration to be a bit cluttered
    • Some hunters might not prefer the buckle closure due to the noise output in the event you need to make adjustments in the field
    • Limited camo options

    The Nomad Killin’ Time Turkey Vest is an extensively outfitted hunting vest option offering a plethora of general and specialized pockets perfect for gear-intensive hunters seeking organization and gear capacity in the field. Designed for turkey hunters, this vest remains an awesomely versatile option for a variety of different hunting styles and contexts.

    This 100% polyester vest features 28 general and specialized pockets to accommodate all of your essential gear and more, so sportsmen who carry a lot of gear and gadgets will find a friend here. Four mesh mouth call pockets, dual water bottle pockets, an adjustable rear game pouch with decoy stake pockets, and a plethora of external attachment points for gear all work together to ensure you have all the storage and organization potential you need. There’s even a handy stow-away mesh mushroom sack in case you also like to forage for wild edibles while in the field.

    Arguably most practical of all, a removable dual high-density foam seat cushion with magnet attachments and a seated adjustment handle provides you with a comfortable place to rest your bottom in the field. This is a brilliant feature for turkey hunters who lay in wait for long stints while calling in birds that won’t be in your way while actively trekking. 

    Not to be overlooked with a highly specialized vest such as this, there are 14 adjustment points for one size fits most customization, so you can find that perfect fit with just a little patience.

  11. 11. SITKA Gear Ballistic Vest

    Pros:
    • 100% Polyester construction featuring a DWR finish to resist light precipitation and wet environments
    • Reinforced foam shoulder pad (interchangeable for wear on either side) makes shooting more comfortable
    • Magnetic buckle easily reconnects for quick layering changes in the field
    • Zippered hand pockets
    • The adjustable waistband offer a technical and comfortable fit
    • Fully orange design meets all blaze orange requirements
    • Durable, but lightweight at only 14.4 ounces
    • Fair price point
    Cons:
    • Lacks storage potential other than the two zippered hand pockets
    • No shell sleeves in the pockets
    • Not equipped with a game bag

    Designed for use deer hunting and other scenarios in which you’re required to wear blaze orange, the SITKA Gear Ballistic Vest is a minimalist option that provides your shoulder with some foam padding for more comfortable shooting.

    This vest is built with a 100% Polyester construction featuring a DWR finish to resist light precipitation and wet environments, so it can handle wet hunts just fine. There is no zipper here, you don the vest simply by connecting the magnetic buckle at the chest. This design makes quick layering changes in the field a piece of cake, so when you need to ditch your shell or add some insulation, your vest won’t jam you up.

    An adjustable waistband goes on to offer a technical and comfortable fit, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t feel totally streamlined here.

    The integrated foam shoulder pad is interchangeable in order to accommodate your shooting shoulder, and furthermore won’t impede your motion. It’s a simple, but thoughtful feature that hunters who shoot high-caliber rifles in particular will appreciate.

    Two zippered hand pockets are all the storage the Ballistic Vest offers, so if you’re seeking an option that provides you with loads of pockets and attachment points for gear, this isn’t it. The design is intended to be as streamlined and comfortable to wear as possible while also ensuring you meet blaze orange requirements wherever it is that you’re hunting.

  12. 12. KUIU Precision Hunter Vest

    Price: $79.00
    Pros:
    • Polyester blaze orange vest offering DWR water resistance and compatibility over all base-to-outer-layer configurations
    • High-stretch nylon/elastane mesh side panels for added versatility and comfort
    • Weighs just 6.9 ounces
    • Includes two zippered hand pockets
    • Adjustable extension strap with quick-attach magnetic buckle
    • Webbing loop inside pocket for attaching accessories
    • Vest may be worn under or over a bino harness using the extended strap
    • Purchase in your size no matter how you plan on utilizing this garment - the vest is designed to accommodate all layers
    • Very reasonable price point
    Cons:
    • Minimalist design lacks much storage potential
    • Some hunter complaints that the zipper should come up a bit higher on the chest
    • Lacks a kill bag

    If you’re seeking a high-speed, low-drag blaze orange vest for virtually any hunting context, the KUIU Precision Hunter Vest should absolutely be on your radar. Designed to comfortably fit over all base-to-outer-layer configurations, this is a “one-size does it all” layer when it comes to donning some blaze orange over any base, mid, or outer layer. 

    This is a Polyester, blaze orange vest offering DWR water resistance and high-stretch nylon/elastane mesh side panels for added mobility and comfort. Weighing just 6.9 ounces, The Precision Hunter Vest is intended to wear comfortably no matter what kind of apparel your layering system entails. This makes it a solid go-to for big game hunts, deer season, upland applications, and more.

    This vest only offers a bit of storage potential by employing two zippered hand pockets. It’s not the kind of vest that has the capacity for high gear loads, so keep that in mind if your hunting style involves a lot of on-hand equipment, and either consider a vest with a more extensive pocket schematic, or pairing this option with a reliable hunting backpack. There are however webbing loops inside the pockets for attaching accessories, so you can trek on in confidence that your smaller pieces of gear are secure.

    The Precision Hunter Vest can furthemore be worn under or over a bino harness using the extended strap, so big game hunters actively glassing for targets will find a friend there. 

    The adjustable extension strap with quick-attach magnetic buckle employed here makes donning and shedding this vest a breeze, so when it comes time to add a layer or peel out of your steaming hunting jacket, you can do so quickly and efficiently.

    While there are not many frills to this simple and straightforward vest option, the inherent quality of craftsmanship, wide host of potential applications, and expected lifespan make this a great value purchase in our opinion.

  13. 13. KUIU Guide DCS Vest

    Price: $159.00
    Pros:
    • Designed to provide warmth and weather resistance for your core
    • Built with Primeflex Polyester and a micro-fleece backer for serious warmth and comfort
    • Weighs just 13.5 ounces and rolls up tight for compact storage
    • Features double chest pockets and two hand pockets for essential storage
    • 4-Way stretch and anatomical shaping ensures you retain full freedom of movement
    • Soft brushed-lined collar heightens comfort around the chin/face
    • Material is nice and quiet for stalking applications, as well as impressively durable
    • The brand's DWR treatment effectively resists light precipitation and wet environments
    • Available in a wide array of camo patterns and colors, including blaze orange
    Cons:
    • Fairly expensive
    • Lacks attachment points for securing gear externally
    • Insulation piece that does not include a kill bag or shell holders

    The KUIU Guide DCS Vest is designed as a packable layering piece as well as a stand-alone weather-resistant vest, so the applications here are vast depending on your hunting style. A wonderfully lightweight and packable companion for upland hunts, big game expeditions, waterfowl pursuits, and everything in between – this is a do-everything hunting garment that will become an instant staple in your wardrobe. 

    Built with Primeflex Polyester and a micro-fleece backer for serious warmth and comfort, this garment weighs only 13.5 ounces and rolls up tight for compact storage. This makes it a killer packable layer that can be deployed if and when you need it, so no more crossing your fingers that the forecast doesn’t turn cold and hoping for the best!

    The brand’s DWR treatment effectively resists light precipitation and saturated environments, so the DCS Vest won’t mind a little wetness. The fabric here is furthermore nice and quiet for stalking applications, as well as impressively durable, so you can remain stealthy in the field without worrying about the integrity of this garment.

    4-Way stretch and anatomical shaping ensure you retain full freedom of movement during periods of exertion or while swinging your firearm, while a soft brushed-lined collar heightens comfort around the chin and face. Sportsmen with burly beards in particular will appreciate this feature.

    Equipped with double chest pockets and two hand pockets for essential storage, the DCS Vest offers adequate storage for most hunting styles but is not as extensively outfitted with gear potential as some alternatives. 

    Available in a wide array of camo patterns and colors, including blaze orange, you can put this vest to work in an abundance of different environments. Whether you’re chasing big game for days at a time in the backcountry or out for a half-day upland hunt, the DCS Vest is a stellar go-to option offering nearly unparalleled versatility.

  14. 14. KUIU Axis Thermal Hybrid Vest

    Price: $189.00
    Pros:
    • Outer layer providing warmth at the body’s core and waterproof protection across the shoulders and lower back
    • Combines body-mapped FiberBall® insulation, DownTube® stitch-free woven baffles, and Dermizax® waterproof paneling for maximum insulation at minimum weight
    • High-stretch windproof material and high-loft insulation work together to conquer cold and wet conditions
    • Zippered hand pockets and interior pocket offer storage for essential gear
    • Waterproof seam-taped neck and lower back
    • A raised collar, elastic bound armholes, and adjustable hem cinch ensure you can keep the draft out
    • Effectively breaks the wind
    • Available in a variety of camo patterns and earth tones
    Cons:
    • Fairly expensive option
    • Lacks storage potential
    • Insulation piece intended for adding warmth to your layering system that therefore lacks a kills bag and shell holders
    • No blaze orange color option

    Here’s another insulation piece from KUIU that combines the durability of a soft shell with the warmth of a down garment. The Axis Thermal Hybrid Vest is intended for conquering variable cold and wet conditions, so if you’re seeking a lightweight (13.6 ounces) and WARM companion for those blustery, raw hunts, and don’t require a plethora of on-hand storage potential for your vest, this is a great go-to.

    KUIU has combined body-mapped FiberBall® insulation, DownTube® stitch-free woven baffles, and Dermizax® waterproof paneling for maximum insulation at a minimum weight with this piece. The idea here is to provide warmth at the body’s core, and waterproof protection across the shoulders and lower back. It wears nice and low profile and is the perfect layering piece for adding potent insulation without worrying about restricting your freedom of movement.

    While this is far from a fully waterproof garment, it very effectively resists windy conditions as well as precipitation and wilderness wetness. A waterproof seam-taped neck and lower back lock out water, while the raised collar, elastic bound armholes, and adjustable hem cinch ensure you can keep the draft out.

    KUIU recommends this vest for outerwear, but in the event the rain really starts coming down and you’re worried about wetting out the down, we think it will perform wonderfully as a mid-layer as well.

    Equipped with zippered hand pockets and an interior pocket, the Axis Thermal Hybrid Vest offers storage for your essential gear, and not much else. Sportsmen seeking a layering system that offers an abundance of storage and organization potential will want to go with a more extensively equipped option, or perhaps pair this vest with a hunting backpack.

    Available in a nice selection of camouflage aesthetics and a few solid earth tones, matching this vest with the landscape you hunt in is made easy. Without a doubt a stellar insulating piece from KUIU that will accompany you on loads of hunts and outdoor endeavors.

  15. 15. Gerbing 7V Rechargeable Battery Unisex Heated Vest Liner

    Pros:
    • Heated vest liner for adding warmth to your insulating system
    • Powerful Microwire heating system includes 3 built-in heating panels strategically placed on the chest and back
    • Heats for up to 8 hours
    • Three temperature settings heat up to 135 degrees F
    • Touch-button control technology
    • Wind and water resistant
    • Powered by a rechargeable Lithium-ion battery pack
    • Lifetime microwire warranty
    Cons:
    • Control button is located on the chest, so you will have to unzip your outer layer to access the controls
    • Lacks pockets or any storage potential
    • Gerbing Vest liners are designed to fit snuggly - buy a size up if you're unsure of your exact size

    The Gerbing 7V Rechargeable Battery Unisex Heated Vest Liner is a brilliant solution for adding some potent warmth to your insulating system during cold season hunts. Perfect for long sits in the tree stand or duck blind, this heated garment will change the game when it comes to persisting in the field through bitter cold temps.

    Featuring four temperature settings that heat up to 135 degrees F, Gerbing has employed a powerful Microwire heating system here that includes three built-in heating panels strategically placed on the chest and back. Simply power the vest on when the chill starts to invade, and feel the potent heat in just moments! 

    Powered by a rechargeable Lithium-ion battery pack, the vest offers up to eight hours of run time on one charge. If you strategically turn the vest on and off as you need it, you’ll be able to really extend its battery life in the field.

    While this vest is best employed as a mid-layer in order to really keep the generated heat trapped within your layering system, Gerbing has designed this garment to be wind and water-resistant, so it won’t mind being exposed if you feel the need to.

    The only real downfall here is that you need to expose the push-button on the chest in order to control the heat settings, so if you’re wearing this vest underneath a layer or two, exposing the controls might force you to break the silence. 

    All things considered, this is a wonderful garment to own for all sorts of cold weather hunting applications and beyond, so wise sportsmen and women will consider how and where they might utilize a heated vest such as this! 

Selecting the Right Hunting Vest

Most hunting vests are designed with a particular purpose or hunting style in mind, so it's important to consider what exactly you want out of your vest before making a purchase. 

-Are you seeking an outer layer for upland hunts that offers solid abrasion and puncture resistance and storage for all your essential gear?

-In need of a bare-bones, minimalist vest option that simply provides you with quick access to your ammunition and a secure place to stash your harvests? 

-On the market for a specialized, highly technical vest for targeting turkeys, big game, or deer? 

-Seeking a reliable insulating layer that packs light and won't restrict your motion?

-Perhaps you simply need some blaze orange to satisfy your local visibility requirements while actively hunting or scouting.

  • The point is - each hunting vest included here has been selected to satisfy a particular hunting style, so be sure to think about what features and materials best suit your hunting endeavors.

Upland Hunting Vests

If you're seeking a companion for targeting pleasants, doves, quail, rabbit, and other upland species and small game, there are some hunting vest features you should most definitely have on your radar while shopping.

-A blood-proof game bag is a must-have feature for stowing your harvests without making a mess, so be sure to check that box.

-Many upland hunting contexts require you to wear blaze orange, so be mindful of your local visibility requirements and purchase accordingly. 

-If you're a gear-intensive hunter or bring a dog or dogs with you into the field, you'll likely want a vest that offers a high degree of storage and organization potential. Coherent, easy-access pockets and external attachment points for your gadgets are your friends in the field.

-Quick and smooth access to your ammunition via shell loops or mindfully designed pockets is arguably the most pivotal feature of an upland vest when the action starts.

Our top picks for upland vests that check all the boxes include:

Turkey Hunting Vests

If you're an avid turkey hunter, you likely already have a dialed system for targeting Toms. Turkey hunts oftentimes call for a fair amount of gear - shotgun chokes, several calls, optics, and more, are frequently utilized, so your vest should be able to accommodate all your essentials.

Depending on how you target turkeys, an integrated, removable seat cushion could be a pivotal feature for your hunting vest. Long sits while calling and waiting for birds to come in can become uncomfortable if you don't have a place to rest your bottom - so consider the relevance of a cushion-equipped vest for you.

Our favorite turkey vests include: 

Deer Hunting Vests

Deer hunting of course spans a wide spectrum of different cervid species and subsequent habitats, so there's no such thing as the perfect deer hunting vest.

That being said, many deer hunting styles involve long sit times in a blind or treestand, so insulation is oftentimes a factor. There are also lots of deer hunting scenarios in which you're required to wear blaze orange, so a minimalist vest that offers a bit of storage capacity and weather resistance can be a great way to satisfy visibility requirements.

Some of our top picks for deer hunting vests include:

Big Game Hunting Vests

Pursuing big game often involves multi-day expeditions into the backcountry in search of your quarry. If you are seeking a vest to support you on big game hunts, you'll likely want an option that is highly packable and equipped with some features for supporting your gear load.

Integrated binocular harnesses in order to keep your optics on hand, and external attachment points for gadgets such as GPS units or rangefinders can be handy depending on the context, so carefully consider which features are most practical for you. Blaze orange also may or may not be required based on where/what you're hunting, so be sure to keep that in mind as well.

Big game hunting styles are truly vast, so similar to deer hunting, there is no ideal vest for the job. A few of our top picks that hit a lot of the standard bases include: 

Blaze Orange Hunting Vests

If you are shopping simply to satisfy your state or province's blaze orange visibility requirements, there are loads of options on the market. 

We suggest the following models for those on a budget who don't require much out of their vest other than the necessary square inches of blaze orange:

Our recommendations for more technical hunting vests with specialized features include:

Hunting Vests for Insulation

It's no mystery that a vest is a brilliant layer for keeping your core warm. The sleeveless nature of vests furthermore ensures you retain full freedom of movement, especially in regard to swinging and shooting a firearm. Vests also of course pack lighter and more compact than most other jackets and mid-layers, so they make for excellent packable warmth.

If you already have a trusty hunting jacket or backpack that serves the purpose of weather resistance or carrying your gear load, then consider the benefits of adding a high-quality insulating layer to your hunting apparel. 

Some of our top hunting vest picks for keeping warm in the field without compromising mobility include:

Heated Vests

If your hunting vest search has everything to do with keeping warm, be sure to explore some heated apparel options. Long, motionless sits in the treestand or duck blind can become unbearably cold depending on the climatic conditions, so bringing a battery-powered heated garment very well might change the game for you in regard to all-day comfort. 

Some of our top picks for heated vests that will pair nicely underneath a hunting jacket include:

Hunting Jackets

Your hunting jacket is arguably your most important piece of gear in the field. Depending on the context of your hunt, your outer layer provides you with insulation, weather resistance, camouflage, scent control, and storage for your essential gear. A trusty hunting vest does not count for much if your jacket fails to properly conceal you or effectively keep you warm and comfortable in the field, so be sure your layering system is on point for the task at hand if you want to ensure your best chances for success. 

Our list of the best hunting jackets has pinned down our top picks for all hunters and hunting styles, so whether you're targeting waterfowl or bull elk, there's something there for you.

Hunting Pants

Your bottom half is oftentimes neglected when it comes to hunting apparel. Hunting pants have just as much to do with your comfort and stealth in the field as your jacket or vest, so if you don't own a reliable pair of pants that are specifically geared toward your hunting tactics, you're missing out big time. 

When you think about it, your pants take more of a beating in the field than anything else. Trekking through briars and brush, kneeling and crawling over variable terrain, and actively trekking all put a lot of wear and tear on your pants - trust us when we say owning a layer that offers great freedom of movement and high integrity is well worth it. 

Our lists of the best hunting pants and waterproof hunting pants have highlighted some stellar options for all environments and applications, so be sure to take a thorough pulse on your wardrobe and consider if your bottom half is lacking adequate apparel. 

Hunting Backpacks

If you're shopping for a vest with a focus on storage and organization potential, perhaps you'd be better off with a new hunting backpack. There are countless models on the market designed with specialized applications in mind, so selecting a pack system that precisely suits your hunting style is easier than ever. 

Be sure to check out our list of the best hunting backpacks to take a look at our top picks for virtually all hunting styles. 

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