When we go fishing, we do it on lakes and rivers up in the mountains, out on the deep blue sea, drifting across inshore flats, or hiking in the jungles. None of these situations are very tamable environments; one thing is for sure: these environments will either be boiling hot or freezing cold and always rather wet!
This is where having the best fishing guide shirts with you comes into play. Nothing is more annoying than being too hot or cold while you’re trying to enjoy a spot of fishing, and the fishing shirts I have chosen below are designed to solve that.
Columbia Men’s PFG Terminal Tackle UPF 50 Long Sleeve Fishing Shirt – My Best For The Inshore Flats!
Columbia Men’s Bahama II Long-Sleeve Shirt – My Best All-Rounder!
Huk Standard Pursuit Vented Long Sleeve 30 UPF Fishing Shirt – My Best For Offshore Fishing!
Join me as we look at the best fishing guide shirts around so that you can ensure you’re always fishing in comfort, whether in the mountains or on the flats.
Columbia Men’s PFG Terminal Tackle UPF 50 Long Sleeve Fishing Shirt – My Best For The Inshore Flats
This fishing shirt is made from polyester and super soft on your skin, making it a delight to wear. The fit is also excellent as the shirt hangs loosely off you while at the same time looking fitted, and it looks pretty cool when on, too.
You will find these Columbia fishing shirts in a huge range of colors and sizes to suit any size person from XS to 5XL, and the sizes are spot on, so you don’t need to buy a size up or down.
One thing I love about these shirts is that they have sun protection built-in. Columbia’s Omni-Shade fabric is made with a tight weave of UV-absorbent yarns that absorb the full spectrum of horrid UVA and UVB rays. This makes these UV protection fishing shirts UPF 50, and their long sleeves provide excellent protection from the sun.
The Pfg shirts are also breathable and moisture-wicking, two key features to ensure you don’t overheat or over cool. By being breathable and moisture-wicking, these shirts ensure any sweat is quickly removed from your skin and evaporated through the fabric.
By keeping you dry, you are cool in hot conditions and don’t get cold from sweat in cold conditions. The moisture-wicking also ensures these shirts dry very quickly, so after you have released a fish, for example, you’ll be dry in no time.
These are the best fishing shirts for hot weather, not only when fishing on the inshore flats but also when used as a base layer in cold climates. The one annoying thing is the lack of pockets for a fly box or two.
Super soft and comfortable
Excellent fit and lots of sizes
Blocks 99% of harmful UV rays
Wicks moisture away to keep you cool and dry
Breathable and quick-drying
Great looking and come in a huge range of colors
Provide excellent coverage from the sun
Durable and long-lasting
Good for layering when it’s cold
Awesome for hot weather, not so great in colder climates
Sizes: XS – 5X T
Columbia Men’s Bahama II Long Sleeve Shirt – My Best All-Rounder
The Columbia Men’s Bahama II Long-Sleeve Shirt is another great fishing guide shirt, but it’s in a different style to the other Columbia shirt we just looked at. This is a long-sleeved collared shirt, whereas the other was more of a long-sleeved t-shirt.
By being a long sleeve collared shirt, you can wear the Bahama II at the bar after a day of fishing and even to dinner and the country club. The collar also provides better protection against the sun on your neck; you can roll the sleeves up and secure them, and there are two pockets and one attachment point.
I can not tell you how useful a few pockets are when you’re walking up rivers or across sand flats, even if it’s just for your cigarettes or a fly box.
This durable fishing shirt is made from quick-drying, lightweight nylon, has Omni-Shade technology to remove harmful UV rays, and is moisture-wicking. It has a UPF rating of 30, removes 96% of UV rays from hitting your skin, and ensures you stay cool and dry using its breathable and moisture-wicking features.
You’ll also find large vents at the back of the shirt that provide excellent airflow when fishing in hot areas, catching any gusts of wind and cooling you down in the process.
One of my favorite features of this shirt is that it comes with a rod holder that lets you easily carry an extra rod with a backpack. It’s also great for use in hot places or as an extra layer in cool places.
You’ll find this fishing shirt comes in a large range of sizes and colors to suit everyone’s taste, and it’s also super durable.
Smart-looking collared shirt
Comes in a range of sizes and colors
Looks good and good for the country club
Multiple pockets and attachment points
Includes a rod holder
Pit vents for better airflow
Breathable and moisture-wicking
Keeps you dry and cool
Good sun protection
Works well in cooler weather, too
Thicker material than some others
Sizes: S – 5XL
Colors: 6 to choose from
Huk Standard Pursuit Vented Long Sleeve 30 UPF Fishing Shirt – My Best For Offshore Fishing
These shirts are incredibly lightweight while being durable and super soft on your skin making them perfect fishing shirts as they are comfy as can be. They are made from a blend of 90% polyester and 10% spandex, meaning the shirts are a little stretchy, ensuring a great fit.
The shirts come with many different features that ensure you stay comfortable, whether it’s hot or cold. There are mesh-vented sides for breathability and moisture-wicking fabric to remove any sweat from your skin and evaporate it into the air. This keeps you warm and cool to match what your body needs.
The fabric is built with stain resistance, too, making it easy to clean, and is rated at UPF 30 to ensure excellent sun protection. Combined with the long sleeves, you only need a buff and a hat to ensure great sun protection.
The only drawback to these fishing guide shirts is that some people find the sleeves a little bit too long.
Protects you from harmful UV rays
Fits very well and comes in a large range of sizes
Durable, long-lasting, lots of color options
Moisture-wicking to keep you dry
Vented and breathable so you stay cool
Stain-resistant for easy cleaning
Works well as a layer on cooler days
Sleeves can seem long for some people
Sizes: S – 5 XL
What To Look For In A Fishing Guide Shirt
Material, Fit, & Comfort
In my eyes, it’s always materials and fit that come together to produce comfort, and comfort is even more important when you’re doing your favorite hobby. The fishing guide shirts featured in the article are all super soft on your skin and offer a great fit, so you’ll be able to enjoy fishing as much as possible
As fishermen & fisherwomen, we have to think a lot about sun exposure as it’s probably the only unhealthy thing about our addiction. Always pick a shirt with UPF 30 or above. You might feel the need to get a UPF 50, but it’s unnecessary as UPF 30 blocks just a few % less UV than UPF 50.
You should also ensure the fishing shirt you choose has long sleeves for extra protection, and a collar can always be a useful addition.
Having the best sun protection clothing for fishing is extremely important.
Breathability & Moisture Wicking
Ensuring your fishing shirt has both Breathability & Moisture Wicking technology built into the fabric is key to your comfort. Sweat left on your skin in hot weather makes you hot, and sweat left on your skin when it’s cold makes you cold.
By having a breathable, moisture-wicking fishing shirt, sweat will be taken off your skin, absorbed by the fabric, and then quickly evaporated away. This ensures you’re warm or cool when you need it.
If the fabric has these great features, it will also be quick drying, meaning you won’t be walking around in a wet shirt for more than a few minutes.
What Does PFG Mean?
PFG stands for ‘Performance Fishing Gear’. PFG fishing shirts protect and keep you cool, dry, and screened from the sun whilst out on a fishing boat, the fishing flats, or any other fishing expedition.
Which Fishing Guide Shirt Should You Choose?
Fishing shirts come in all colors, sizes, and styles. However, the main criteria are to feel comfortable and, at the same time, get full protection from the sun. (It also helps by looking cool as well!)
Long sleeve shirts give the best protection, as short sleeve shirts can leave you with sunburnt arms. Also, the other benefit is that in cold weather fishing, you can wear the HUK Pursuit and the PFG Columbia options underneath, which acts as an underlayer or baselayer. Pick any of the fishing guide shirts above, and you’ll be good to go fishing anywhere in the world.
With multiple color options available, you can always buy more than one if you fish very often or for multiple days.
Thanks very much for reading my article; I hope you enjoyed it and know everything about finding a great lightweight, long-sleeve fishing shirt. Just choose one of my tried and tested options above, and you won’t be sorry.
Growing up fly fishing on trout streams in Kenya and the UK, Jamie has traveled the world in search of fly fishing nirvana. From his time managing bonefish lodges in the Bahamas and running fishing safaris in East Africa, all the way to guiding on the flats of Seychelles, there aren't many species or environments he hasn't experienced firsthand.