What is the Patagonia Mass Sling pack?
The Patagonia Mass Sling is a "messenger" style sling pack with a more open shape than many other sling packs, which allows you to squeeze nine litres of stuff inside. Although not specifically designed for fly fishers, George has been using the Patagonia Mass Sling as his main fishing bag for a couple of years. It's worked well and it still looks as good today as it did the day he got it.
What pockets does it have?
The Patagonia Mass Sling is designed to carry laptops and tablets, so the main pocket is large and robust with a padded back panel. It's very spacious and George can fit a waterproof jacket, a bottle of water and a couple of fly boxes inside with ease.
There are also a small front pocket, which is big enough for sunglasses, tippet and leaders, and a secondary pocket which can take fly boxes and other things. This also includes five or six compartmentalised pockets and zip up pockets to take a multitude of other bits and pieces, making it really handy for fishing stuff.
What's it like to use?
As the Patagonia Mass Sling was not designed specifically for fishing it doesn't include some of the other features you find on fishing sling packs, such as attachment points for nippers and forceps. However, as George uses a lanyard (the Guideline Ghillie Lanyard) he has these to hand anyway.
It holds plenty of stuff, he says it's comfortable to wear. Both the strap and the back panel are heavily padded. It's been really hard wearing given the regular usage it's seen in the past couple of years.
How do you use it?
As with other sling packs, the Patagonia Mass Sling is designed to be rotated under your arm when you want to access the pockets. They're all facing upwards, so you can access the contents easily from the top without anything falling out.
Are there any drawbacks?
The only drawback with it - which might be specific to very small or slim people - is that it can fall off your shoulder when you bend down. Especially if you don't fasten the additional attachment strap under the arm.
Often, when netting fish, the pack will drop off George's shoulder so he has to keep adjusting it. However, I suspect those with broader shoulders would probably be OK. On the plus side, it doesn't really impede casting that much.
How much does the Patagonia Mass Sling cost?
The Patagonia Mass Sling costs around £45. It's now been discontinued, but Patagonia make a number of similar sling packs that would probably perform just as well. The Patagonia Atom Sling is a good alternative and can be picked up for around £35, which is around half the price of their fishing specific pack.
Available from: Amazon