Did you know our vests could do this?!
This is a photo from this year's South Dakota pheasant opener. It was very warm, but we found our limits every day! I enjoyed seeing Chief Upland vests all over the fields every day, between our group and others. It got me thinking...our vest design is so packed with technical features, that I don't always do a great job of explaining them all to everybody...so here's 8 of them (and this is certainly not all, but it's a good start!):
1. Waist/Hip Belt - Ideally, you want this riding on your hips and not your waist. This allows the weight of your shells, gear and birds to be ergonomically carried on your hips. To help achieve this, all of our vests have a belt that can be moved higher or lower, between two "routing tunnels". Choose whichever belt tunnel runs closest to you hips, not your waist. Trust me, this will save your neck, shoulders and back a lot of unwanted fatigue and soreness!
2. Shoulder Straps - You can move the shoulder strap attachment point more forward, or further back along your hips. Use this to further dial in your fitment for ideally ergonomics and comfort.
3. Backpack + Hydration Storage - Two different areas on your vest! The rear vertical zippered storage is meant to be backpack storage for any of your miscellaneous gear, first aid kits, snare cutters, multi-tools, jackets etc. There is a dedicated hydration bladder hanging/storage area inside the game bag portion of the vest. This allows you to carry a hydration bladder PLUS still have all your rear backpack storage.
4. Rear Cinch Strap - On the upper back of your vest, there is a single adjustable strap with a buckle...this is a cinch strap for rolling up a jacket and carrying it externally. If the day warms up and you want to shed a layer, you can carry your jacket here instead of in the backpack storage area. If you don't want/need this strap, you can easily remove it.
5. Front-Loading Birds - there are two things you can do to loosen up the game bag for loading birds. Unclip the "J-clip" from the side, and also unclip the smaller side-release buckle on the front navel area. This smaller buckle on the front is the "game bag tensioner". It helps to hold everything high and tight, and when loading birds, unclip this to allow your game bag sides to open up wider.
6. Heavy Duty J-Clips - Speaking of the J-clips in your game bag, we've recently released an upgraded option of Heavy Duty J-clips. These are able to carry even more weight and take even more of a beating. Click here to see them on our website.
7. MOLLE Weaving of Pouches - Once in a while, we hear from a Chief Uplander who lost a pouch in the field. 99% of the time, this is due to not having the MOLLE pouches properly attached to the vest. MOLLE pouches are an amazing invention, but they have to be technically understood in order to benefit from them. Click here to watch a video I made about how to properly attach MOLLE pouches.
8. Carrying an Injured Dog - We would never wish this to happen to anyone, but should you ever need to carry an injured dog out of the field, you can place the dog through the game bag of the vest, with the dogs legs hanging out both sides of the vest (yes, I've tested this with our 80lb lab!). To load the dog, you can unzip the horizontal zipper at the top rear of the vest, place the dog across the game bag, then re-zip it up. Cinch down your waist belt and shoulder straps, and hike your dog back to the truck quickly.
We build gear that goes beyond expectations. I hope this helps to create an experience worth sharing!
See you out there,
-Jake Lindemann, Founder