Best Fly Fishing Shirts – Top 10 of 2022 – Buyer’s Guide

Leonard Schoenberger
Latest posts by Leonard Schoenberger (see all)

When it comes to fly fishing, nothing’s more important than being prepared for the elements.

Fishing requires effort and a lot of patience. And considering it’s summer, you need to wear something that helps protect you from the sun while being breathable and comfortable. This is essentially where fly fishing shirts come into play. Serious fishermen never go on an excursion without wearing one. The best products are manufactured using fabrics that offer unique features. For example, your fishing shirt should be quick drying, must come with UPF 30 sun protection, should have breathable vents, and must have plenty of pockets to store your equipment.   

There are also fly fishing shirts that are designed with built-in bug repellant. A pretty important feature for people fishing in regions where there are a lot of bugs and mosquitos. You see, with lightweight materials such as casual shirts, t-shirts, and whatnot, bugs and insects will easily bite through, causing a lot of irritation. In light of this, this buying guide will focus on the best fishing shirts money can buy and factors to consider before buying a fly fishing shirt

Back of a fly fishing shirt
A quality fishing shirt offers protection, breathability and dries quickly

Important Things to Keep in Mind When Buying Fly Fishing Shirts

There are a number of factors you should consider before making a purchase. Here are the most important features you should keep in mind when buying a fishing shirt.

Choose the Right Colors

You need to choose the best colors for your fly fishing shirt. Sure, it sounds simple enough and most people would wonder if the color of their shirts will make a difference – we’re here to tell you that it does! Why? Well, you need the right camouflage to trick the fish. Keep in mind that the fish will see you and your silhouette. So you need to blend in. And the best way to do that is to match the color of your shirt with the environment around you. 

So for example, if you’re fishing near a small creek or stream surrounded by overgrowth then wear a color that will complement the background. Remember, this will be your background for the entire excursion. You need to be hidden to fool the fish. If you wear bright colors, the fish will see right through you and will be harder to catch. Here are some tips and tricks to wear the right colors for the right environments:

If fishing near creeks and streams, wear dark or light green with brown undertones

If fishing in open waters, wear sky blue/gray or other light tones

If fishing in saltwater, go with sky blue and/or white

Fly fisherman casting a rod wearing a longsleeve fly fishing shirt
White is a good color for a fishing shirt when fishing in saltwater

Your Shirt Must be Comfortable to Wear

Your fly fishing shirt should be comfortable and the right fit. Remember, you’ll be wearing it for the entire day. Go for a product that comes with the right blend of materials such as polyester or spandex. Moreover, the shirt must also come with dry-fit properties, quickly absorbing your sweat.

In addition, the fly fishing shirt must be breathable allowing your body to cool down and adequately vent the air moving through you. Modern fishing shirts come with built-in air vent meshes at the back. However, you could also opt for a product that comes with air holes designed in the armpits.  

Lastly, always invest in a fishing shirt that comes with in-built bug repellent properties. This can be a great feature to have especially when you’re fishing in an area infested with bugs and insects. You don’t want insects biting you just as you cast or reel the fish in. It can be frustratingly annoying!

Fly fishermen with fly fishing shirts
A good ventilation is key in a quality fly fishing shirt

The Shirt Should be Well-Designed

While this can be strictly preference-based, you need a shirt that feels comfortable, light, and easy to move in. While you could go for more relaxed fits, we suggest trying out more fitted fly fishing shirts. The design should at least be the right size in light of your proportions. So always try the shirt on for size before buying it. 

In addition, go for a product that comes with plenty of pockets. However, if you wear a fishing vest then you could opt for a shirt that doesn’t have a lot of pockets. But either way, pockets are always a good thing for fly fishing. But it’s also important that the design of the pockets should be functional. You need something that’s easy to access and designed in a way that doesn’t hamper your casting or get stuck on the line

We suggest opting for a shirt that comes with vertical zipped pockets. Next up, check if the shirt has additional features such as gear tabs.

The Best Fly Fishing Shirt at Different Price Points

Notice: We take part in affiliate programs. If you click on one of the links in the text and end up purchasing a product we earn a small commission at no extra cost for you. We only recommend products we are convinced of. 

Patagonia Men’s Long-Sleeved Sol Patrol® Shirt

When it comes to comfort and functionality, the Sol Patrol shirt for fly fishing is exactly what you’ve been looking for. Packed with streamlined features and options, the fishing shirt is lightweight and is manufactured with 100% recycled polyester. Moreover, the shirt has UPF 50+ protection, which means the sun won’t bother you. It’s the perfect shirt for long fishing excursions, especially in humid weather. 

In addition, the Sol Patrol shirt also has moisture absorbent properties, which means you don’t have to worry if you sweat a lot. It’s also quick drying and is designed with hidden snaps in and around the collar region.  There are two big, zippered pockets. The zippers are corrosion-resistant. The pockets are big enough to comfortably store small to medium fly boxes

Pros

Made with recycled polyester

UPF treatment to make the fabric breathable yet completely sun-proof

Bigger pockets

Comfortable fabric

Mesh vents for breathability

Cons

Expensive

Fitting will feel a bit weird

Finding the right size will be a bit of a challenge

GET IT AT PATAGONIA

GET IT AT ALS

Simms M’s Bugstopper Intruder BiComp Fishing Shirt

One of the most annoying things for fly fishers are bugs and insects. The last thing you would want are insects constantly biting you while you cast and reel the fish. Well, this shouldn’t be a problem anymore if you opt for the Simms M’s Bugstopper fly fishing shirt. The shirt is top-tier and comes built-in with bug repellent properties, giving anglers a completely relaxed and comfortable experience. In addition, you’ll be pleased to know that the insect repellant technology is for life, you won’t have to change or replace anything, ever. 

Moreover, the Simms M’s Bugstopper also comes with the company’s patented Simms COR3 tech. This basically provides fishers topnotch wicking experience, offering effective moisture absorption. Plus, the shirt is manufactured with odor-free fabric and comes with UPF 50 sun protection.

Pros

Top tier sun protection with UPF 50

Comfortable and lightweight 

Easy to move in, casting is especially comfortable in this shirt 

Anti-odor technology 

Great fitting 

Lifelong insect repellent technology 

Cons

Will need some getting used when new

A bit expensive 

A bit heavy to wear 

GET IT AT SIMMS

GET IT AT TRIDENT

Grundéns Bayamo Cooling Long Sleeve Shirt

Made to withstand the toughest of winds and the hottest of days, the Grundéns Bayamo long sleeve fly fishing shirt is truly a masterpiece. A god-send for anglers that like to go on long fishing excursions in hot, humid, and tropical climates. The shirt comes with two chest pockets and the material is UPF 50 certified thanks to the company’s patented HeiQ technology. 

The Grundéns Bayamo is designed to be thermos-regulated, which means your body will remain cool no matter how hot the climate is. The shirt contains meshed vents to allow air to pass through you. 

Pros

UPF 50 sun-proofing 

Made with company’s patented HeiQ tech

Long sleeve, can be rolled up

Two large chest pockets

Cooling mesh vent for good air circulation

Comes with a sunglass chamois

Cons

Sizing problems

Expensive

Better products available

GET IT AT GRUNDÉNS

GET IT ON AMAZON

Columbia Men’s PFG Tamiami™ II Long Sleeve Shirt

The Men’s PFG Tamiami II by Columbia is another excellent product in the lineup. If you’re looking for an all-around product, it doesn’t get any better than the Tamiami. The fly fishing shirt is packed with features to help make your fishing experience more effective and comfortable. With a great price tag, the shirt comes with UPF 30 sun protection with several add-ons such as multiple hooks and loop closures. 

In addition, there are multiple zippered pockets big enough to store small to medium fly boxes. With quick drying properties, the Tamiami can be a great addition to your fishing gear. 

Pros

Made with company’s patented Omni-Shade technology for prolonged sun protection

Four hooks for additional storage 

Loop-closed pockets to store fly boxes

Built-in rod holder loop 

Comfortable fitting

Mesh vented design for enhanced air flow

Cons

Overly baggy fitting

Can be a bit warm 

Wrinkling issues 

GET IT ON AMAZON

GET IT AT COLUMBIA

Filson Twin Lakes Sport Shirt – Men’s

If you’re looking for something affordable yet packed with the best features, the Twin Lakes fly fishing shirt by Filson may be what you’ve been looking for all this time. Designed for novice and habitual anglers, the Twin Lakes shirt is made with a breathable and comfortable blend of fabrics. In addition, it comes with ultra-violet protection for long fishing trips. 

The Filson Twin Lakes is also designed with integrated meshed vents for enhanced air flow, keeping the body nice and cool even on the hottest of days. It’s perfect for tropical fishing. 

Pros

Sporty design

Meshed vent for cooling 

Comes with a synthetic blend of materials providing quick drying features

Moisture absorbent 

Designed with yoke and eyelets for enhanced breathability 

UPF 30 sun protection 

Anti-odor

Cons

Not for professional or serious anglers

Fitting issues

Lacks enough pockets

GET IT AT FILSON

GET IT ON AMAZON

Huk Tide Point Solid Short Sleeve

If you’re looking for performance and style, then the Huk Tide Point Solid Short Sleeve can be a good, affordable option. It’s a button down shirt with a lot of features. One of the best things about the Tide Point is its style and design, it’s great for fishing but equally good for casual or even formal wear. Manufactured with lightweight fabrics, the shirt comes with quick drying and moisture absorption features. 

The Huk Tide Point Solid Short Sleeve features a two-way fabric design, which means it’s stretchable and breathable. The shirt also incorporates the company’s patented laser perforated design in the underarms, making it even more comfortable to wear.  

Pros

Made with 100% polyester

UPF 30+ sun protection

Great style and design

Underarm vented perforation for enhanced breathability

Microfiber sunglass wipe

Lightweight fabric

Quick drying

Cons

Tight fitting around the stomach

No anti-odor feature 

Not for serious anglers

GET IT AT HUK

GET IT ON AMAZON

Columbia Men’s PFG Slack Tide™ Camp Shirt

The Columbia Men’s PFG Slack Tide™ is another great option. The half-sleeved fly fishing shirt comes with a dual-purpose design. This basically means you can wear this shirt for fishing and for casual outings. The product is made with lightweight and breathable fabrics and features UPF 50 sun protection.

In addition, the Columbia Men’s PFG Slack Tide™ incorporates the company’s patented Omni-Wick technology, quickly and effectively eliminating any moisture, leaving the shirt dry and fresh throughout your fishing excursion.  

Pros

Button down design

Lightweight fabrics

Breathable

Versatile style 

Good sun protection 

Cons

Not the best fitting

Lacks pockets

Not for serios anglers 

GET IT ON AMAZON

GET IT AT COLUMBIA

Free Fly Men’s Bamboo Lightweight Hoody

If you’re looking for something soft and comfortable or want to try something other than stiff fly fishing shirts, then the Free Fly Men’s Bamboo Lightweight Hoody can be a nice change of pace. It’s really lightweight and made with a blend of polyester and bamboo viscose. The materials mimic cotton and offer superior performance thanks to the shirt’s enhanced breathability, comfortable movement, and vented design. In addition, you can also wear this shirt as a casual alternative or as loungewear. 

In addition, the Free Fly Men’s Bamboo Lightweight Hoody comes with UFP 30 sun protection and moisture wicking features. Great for casual fishers. 

Pros

Lightweight 

Made with superior materials 

Good sun protection

Quick drying

Moisture wicking 

Enhanced breathability 

Cons

Not for professional fishers

Prolonged use can hamper fitting 

No anti-odor qualities 

GET IT AT FREEFLY

GET IT AT VAIL VALLEY ANGLERS

Simms M’s SolarFlex Guide Cooling Hoody

When it comes to premium and top-tier fly fishing shirts, it doesn’t get any better than the Simms M’s SolarFlex Guide Cooling Hoody. The shirt is designed for enhanced cooling, thanks to its vented and lightweight fabric. In addition, the SolarFlex comes with 50+ UPF sun protection, enabling you to go on long fishing excursions without breaking a sweat. Moreover, the product has great wicking and cooling performance and is comfortable to wear. The stretchable material allows for unrestricted movement and the product is designed with a gaiter integrated hood that provides sun protection from all angles. 

Plus, the Simms M’s SolarFlex Guide Cooling Hoody incorporates the company’s patented Brrr Triple Effect technology, which means it’s going to keep nice and cool throughout the day. 

Pros

Brrr Triple Effect technology for enhanced cooling effect

Gaiter integrated hood protects users from sun damage, covers all angles including the nose and mouth

Extended cuff lengths for comfortable and uninterrupted casting

Larger zippered pockets to store a variety of fishing items and equipment

Cons

Expensive

GET IT AT SIMMS

GET IT AT TRIDENT

Patagonia Men’s Long-Sleeved Early Rise Snap Shirt

The Early Rise Snap by Patagonia is perhaps one of the best designs the company has launched. The fly fishing shirt comes with a great design and even better functionalities. With lightweight and enhanced fabric technology, the shirt provides relaxed fitting and is easy to move in.  

In addition, the Early Rise Snap comes with superior wicker performance and quick drying functionalities, helping your body remain nice and cool even during the hottest of days. Plus, the shirt has two large, buttoned pockets on the chest with a zippered compartment in each pocket, enough to store a variety of fishing accessories and equipment. 

Pros

UPF 50 sun protection

Material is lightweight

Dual purpose shirt – can be worn casually as well

Two buttoned pockets with zippered compartments

Cons

Fitting issues

Not for serious anglers

Expensive

GET IT AT PATAGONIA

GET IT AT CADDIS FLY SHOP

Bottom Line

So there you have it! Ten of the best fly fishing shirts money can buy. However, always opt for a product that’s in line with your requirements. Go for a shirt that provides maximum value for money, one that comes with a blend of all the best features and materials. 

Notice: We take part in affiliate programs. If you click on one of the links in the text and end up purchasing a product we earn a small commission at no extra cost for you. We only recommend products we are convinced of.