The Best Fishing Shorts

We show you the top choices on the market

May 20, 2018

Staying comfortable on the water starts with a great pair of fishing shorts. Among the qualities we look for are quick-drying, stain-resistant fabrics, pockets in all the right places and the durability to last for years while still looking great. So whether you prefer colorful, surf-inspired boardshorts or more traditional fishing shorts, we have you covered in style.

grundens gaff short

Grundéns Gaff Short

Available in six colors, including burnt orange (shown). Jon Whittle Photography

Stand out from the crowd with the Gaff Short. High-tech construction includes a quick-drying, water-shedding fabric as well as a lined tool pocket, zippered cargo pocket and fly, and more.

aftco cloudburst fishing shorts

AFTCO Cloudburst

The charcoal heather color is shown, with gray heather as a second style. Jon Whittle Photography

The Cloudburst fishing shorts are built tough, with four-way stretch fabric and Afguard to help release those heavy-duty stains. They have a Cordura-reinforced pliers/utility pocket as well.

huk next level shorts

Huk Next Level

The performance fabric has high stretch, plus it’s also quick-drying, anti-microbial and resistant to stains. In addition to the dark blue shown, there are five additional color options. Jon Whittle Photography

The Next Level 10.5-inch shorts are designed for action, with a gusseted crotch and perforated rear yoke for maximum mobility and comfort.

simms surf short

Simms Surf Short

The Surf Short is available in tundra, cobalt and gunmetal (shown). Jon Whittle Photography

With a streamlined style and traditional fit, the Surf Short fits the bill for those long, hot days in the cockpit. The front-tie closure and UPF-50-rated quick-drying fabric match the durability and easy-wear construction that make this one a winner.

tormentor waterman board shorts

Tormenter Waterman

The Waterman comes in eight color patterns, including blue camo (shown). Jon Whittle Photography

The Waterman series of boardshorts has triple-stitched seams for durability in a stylish 10.5-inch-inseam design, plus multiple pockets for fishing pliers, tackle, cellphones, wallet and more. A front tie keeps them secure on deck.

hook and tackle driftwood hybrid shorts

Hook & Tackle Driftwood Hybrid

The Driftwood comes in four great-looking solid colors, including porpoise gray (shown). Jon Whittle Photography

The Driftwood Hybrid fishing shorts are a top choice for anglers thanks to a highly breathable lightweight fabric, durable construction and fishing-friendly features such as a dedicated pocket for your mobile phone.

Salt Life Topwater hybrid performance board short

Salt Life Topwater

The Salt Life Topwater hybrid performance board short is made from SLX-QD four-way vapor stretch fabric for a comfortable fit in or out of the water. Salt Life

The SLX UVapor QD fabric is mega-soft, ultralight, quick drying, and moisture wicking. These boardshorts feature front slant pockets, front patch pockets, and a Cordura-lined plier pocket.

pelagic hyrdo lite pro boardshorts

Pelagic Hyrdo-Lite Pro

Long a favorite brand among offshore anglers, the Hydro-Lite Pro boardshorts feature two front and one back zipper pockets and a right-hip pliers pocket. Jon Whittle Photography

Constructed in Pelagic’s signature quick-drying eight-way mechanical stretch fabric, and with its patented Stain-Repel and Hydro-Repel coatings, these shorts are available in two new prints: Scales and Hexed (shown).

Bluefin usa camo board shorts

Bluefin USA Camo

With UV protection in a breathable microfiber fabric that is also anti-microbial and anti-pilling, the Camo boardshorts look great in the cockpit. Jon Whittle Photography

The traditional boardshorts style has one side-cargo and one back pocket, with front-tie closure. It’s also cut to allow for maximum freedom of movement on board or in the water.

Columbia pfg offshore camo boardshorts

Columbia PFG Offshore

There are six great camo fade designs available. Jon Whittle Photography

The PFG Offshore camo fade boardshorts are one of Columbia Sportswear’s signature bluewater styles. They feature sweat-wicking fabric, UPF-50 sun protection and even a built-in bottle opener near the cargo pocket.


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