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Simple and streamlined whitewater protection.
The YTV Personal Flotation Device is Astral's most minimalist whitewater PFD, designed to strike a powerful balance between protection and mobility. The foam panels sit low and close to your chest and back, wide arm openings ensure full range of motion, and ripstop materials feel feathery light for easy paddling. Tp truly simplifying the YTV, Astral didn't even consider a front-zip opening, opting instead for a pull-over design that saves a few extra ounces.
As with any properly executed whitewater vest, you'll find a couple of pockets and the essential lash tab, so you can secure a knife or rescue strobe to the chest. Astral also included six size-adjustable straps (two each at the sides, shoulders, and waist) to ensure a precise and comfortable fit for every individual.
- Unisex design
- USCG Type III PFD
- 16lb buoyancy
- Torso Lock fit platform
- 400D ripstop fabric
- Gaia and PE foam
- PolyPro webbing
- Acetal plastic and stainless steel hardware
- Self-locking YKK zippers
- Item #ASL001E
- Q & A
Great, Low Impact PFD
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
This jacket is an excellent jacket for those that need plenty of room to move around and still have high flotation. I have used this jacket for whitewater kayaking (river running), rafting and SUPing (some whitewater). Although I do not personally play boat, many of those I know that do love this jacket. For river running or SUPing I have been pleased with the performance of the jacket. There is so much room around your arms to move around, it almost feels like you are not wearing one.
If you are looking for more storage out of a PFD go for the Astral Sea Wolf or grab a dry box/bag. This jacket cannot even fit a clif bar but I normally carry a dry bag where ever I go on the river to keep some snacks.
Great Minimal PFD
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
Picked up the Astral YTV because we were short a vest for an upcoming trip. It arrived and I was curious so I threw it on. It was super comfortable; so much so that I ditched my older PFD. I've since used it paddling a couple rivers and a ton of flat water. It's now my go-to vest.
- Comfortable fit for long stints on the water;
- Clean minimalist styling;
- Dries quickly;
- There's a little space just below the shoulder straps to tuck in excess webbing so it's not flopping around your chest.
- Two side pockets are a bit on the small side (don't expect to stash a ton of gear in these; a protein bar is about all that will fit);
- "Hidden" lash tab was a bit of a challenge to mount a sheath onto.
Also, to address another reviewer's comment - yes, the vest does have a shelf, of sorts, between the lower and upper sections on the front. Does this make it a "women's vest?" No, I don't think so. In fact, I found it to be rather nice; it makes the vest feel more flexible and roomy even when cinched down tight. Would this feature also be of benefit to women? Yep, probably. Is it a feature that exclusively benefits women? Nope, not at all.