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Howard's Plunge, Payette River, ID
Family paddle boat trip- three Vista Life jackets and one old high float.
I'm trying to decide between the NRS...
I'm trying to decide between the NRS Vista and Clearwater. I am a recreational kayaker/canoer and tired of the conventional PFDs that restrict movement and feel uncomfortable when in my kayak. What are the main differences I should consider between these two PFDs? I see there's a slight difference in adjustment points and cost and a significant difference in warranty.
The Clearwater is likely going to be a more comfortable PFD due to the mesh back and higher rear flotation. As a result, you'll find the Clearwater allows for more freedom of movement and doesn't add bulk behind you on a high rise seat of the kayak. Also the front flotation is not as high/bulky to prevent restrictive movement as well. The Vista is also a great PFD, that has a more durable fabric (Vista is 450 denier and Clearwater is 200 denier PU coated).
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
My 16 year old, 180 lb, son uses this and really likes it. Has more than enough lift and fits properly with no inconvenient rise when landing in water. We kayak regularly (1 -2 times per week) and he reports no rubbing on arms, chest, or back. Says he really likes it and would recommend to others. Priced right for quality, normal wear and tear occurs as expected.
Big bang for your buck
- Gender: Male
I used this LJ for my first and most of my second years of commercial guiding and recreational kayaking on the colorado before upgrading to a more expensive but heavier duty Astral PFD. This jacket will not last as long as some of the more expensive ones I have owned and used but is very comfortable and versatile. The large, easy-to-access pockets were very nice and the placement of the knife holder kept it out of the way better than some other jackets. The zippered front entrance was is very convenient if your find yourself taking the jacket on and off but though I never had a problem with it unzipping when I didn't want it to, I have come to prefer the security of a side-clip or bottom entrance type PFD (which would be a pain if you are constantly removing and putting it on). The material gets more and more comfy as you use it but it does rub a tiny bit on your inner biceps but never enough to irritate the skin. You typically get the durability you pay for but after almost 2 hard seasons of abuse I still use it to occasionally "sponsor" friends that don't have their own gear. Again great jacket for the money.
Comfy and cheap
NRS Vista Personal Flotation Device
Took it out for the first time down a class 3, got knocked in the water a few times and it worked great to keep me above the water. Solid construction and highly adjustable so any shape can get a good tight and safe fit.
Pretty nice for the price. We got a bunch for our instruction program and they seem to be working well. Easy to adjust, dourable ect.
If I was going to get a personal PFD I would go with something that was a bit more comfy. Like the Astral Willis..if you have the cash.
Great Life Jacket!
I do whitewater kayaking on Class 2-4 and this jacket has suited me well so far. :) Very Please with NRS.
Which one should I get or are they similar....
Which one should I get or are they similar. The Vista Life ofrthe Clearwater. I want to fish in the kayak and need the one more comfortable. Judy
The Clearwater's back flotation is up high and the lower back is just mesh while the Vista has the flotation up the whole back. The Clearwater is designed specifically for kayaking. If you don't kayak, there's really no need to get the Clearwater.
They are both for kayaking. The clearwater has a mesh lower back for use in touring boats with a high seat. So the flotation is moved up to your shoulders. If you are fishing I would think the clearwater would be more comfy if your seat back comes up high. But both should work.
Is this vest light weight and good for the...
Is this vest light weight and good for the beginner. also is this good for men or women or both?
It depends on what activity you're doing with it. This jacket is relatively lightweight and is a simple, no frills jacket. It would work well for rafting, whitewater kayaking, sea kayaking, sailing, or just about any other boating you might be interested. This jacket is a unisex jacket so it will fit both men and women well, however women may be more comfortable in a jacket with a little more sculpting like the Kokatat MsFit.
Technically it is unisex but a few larger-breasted friends of mine say it is a little restrictive and prefer the woman specific PFDs. The jacket is light weight (actually lighter wet than the one I use now when wet) and is a great beginner jacket.