Gear test: Filson Feather Cloth shirt

When I think of what makes a great shirt for spending the day on a river, the first attributes that I look for are functionality, fit and color.

Functionality, because I want pockets that accommodate fly boxes, fit because I want sleeves with adequate length, and color because I have a hard-enough time not alerting wary trout to my clumsy presence without adding in a flashy color.

When I first saw the Filson Feather Cloth shirt, my first take was that the olive and earthy colors would be prefect for a day on the water, where grasses and branches rim our local creeks. Pleased with that first impression, it was time to put functionality to the test. Before leaving the parking area on an impatient walk to rising brown trout, I already loved the spacious front pockets which are wide and deep enough to fit a decent-sized box, and button easily over smaller boxes. I was also pleased with the fit of the Feather Cloth shirt since it was true-to-size with a sleeve length that felt neither too short or too long.

The added bonus that didn’t occur to me until after my day of fishing was complete, was the versatility of this shirt. As I often do after a successful (or not so) day on the water, it was time to eat. Not that fashion should play a role in choosing your fishing apparel, but after removing my waders and donning more comfortable footwear, I walked into the restaurant looking as if I just left a casual day at the office and not a day on the water.

Maybe I was a little too sun-kissed and sweaty for a day at the office, but you know what I mean. At $88, the Filson Feather Cloth shirt is a sound investment due to its performance and versatility.

— Scott Criqui

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