We searched the aisles of Orlando’s Surf Expo looking for new apparel that may interest central Florida anglers. Hidden among the thousands of Hawaii shirts, surfer baggies and khakis were clothing gems; shirts, shorts, pants and hats made from advanced fabrics with technical designs to shield you from the sun, cool you in the heat, hold essential gear, shed stains and dry quickly. Here is a summary of the best fishing apparel we found at the September Surf Expo.
Mojo – Mojo Sportswear is a relatively new company that is hitting the fishing apparel market in a big way. They have a broad range of clothing that should appeal to the taste of just about any fisherman. My two favorites are the Flats Camo shirt and faceguard and the Super Tec shorts. The Flats Camo shirts and faceguards are made from breathable, quick drying, UV blocking technical Poly Microfiber. They come in three shades with the camo pattern made from game fish silhouettes that should break up your image and make you less visible to fish. Super Tec technical fishing shorts are made from 100% RipStop Supplex Nylon and include a feature I’ve been wanting for years. Plenty of fishing shorts have a Denier lined pliers pocket with a lanyard attach loop, but the Super Tec includes them on both sides. Now you can carry two tools and fly fishermen can switch their pliers to the side that is out of the way of their stripping hand. The shorts also include an adjustable waist with the adjustment tabs on the inside of the waistband so there is nothing sticking out to get in the way of a fly fisherman’s stripping line.
Sunday Afternoons – Anglers need a good hat to shade their eyes and protect their head from the sun. Sunday Afternoons offers a huge selection of hats tailored to the outdoor enthusiast. Many include a broad brim, ear and neck covering cape and strategically placed vents.
Native Outfitters – Native Outfitters makes short and long sleeve fishing shirts made from moisture wicking, UV blocking Microfiber Polyester. The shirts include a fish logo on the front available in a wide variety of species ranging from largemouth bass to sheepshead to blue marlin.
Bluefin – Offshore anglers are probably familiar with the Italian company Alutecnos that manufactures high quality big game fishing reels. The company has now branched into the clothing market with its Bluefin line that includes high quality, Italian designed technical apparel ranging from foul weather gear to fishing shirts, shorts, pants and hats. One of their most innovative products is the Carbon Tech Tee made from a proprietary fabric that incorporates carbon fiber into the weave. Like other fishing shirts the Carbon Tech Tee is quick drying, UV blocking and moisture wicking, but Bluefin claims the carbon fibers transport heat away from the skin making the shirt cooler than other fabrics.
Croakies – Everybody needs a good belt. Croakies, the eyeglass retainer company, has a line of stylish Nylon web belts that are impervious to water and salt. They are available in a huge variety of fish and fishing related patterns to appeal to anglers who pursue everything from bluegill to blue marlin.