10 Best Orange Hunting Vests for Deer, Upland (& Dogs!)

A hunter dressed in camo and a blaze orange hunting vest walks across a field

Best Orange Hunting Vests for Deer, Upland (& Dogs!) of 2022

 

Just because you might be legally required to wear an orange hunting vest for the 2022 deer, elk, big game, or upland hunting season doesn’t mean that vest shouldn’t also be useful.

With that in mind, we’ve taken a close look at all different types of safety vests from around the internet to help you find the best for your needs. We found a wide array of camo, reversible, fleece, insulated, and even orange vests for dogs that all fit specific needs and hunting styles.

Some of the more straightforward options have just a few pockets, while others have blood-proof game pouches on the back for you to stash your small game haul. No matter your specific type of hunting, you’ll find a blaze orange vest on this list to keep you moving quietly, highly visible, and ultra-organized.

Because the best hunting brands make the best orange hunting vests, you can expect all the big names here, including Under Armour, Sitka, and Primos. But you’ll also find some high-quality gear from brands that might not immediately ring a bell, too.

Now let’s get ready to rumble.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
ORANGE HUNTING VESTS

Best Overall Orange Hunting Vest
Sitka Ballistic

Sitka Ballistic hunting top

Our pick for the best orange hunting vest on the 2022 market is the Sitka Ballistic. It isn’t the most full-featured, nor is it the cheapest, but we certainly think this could be the last vest you ever need.

What you get with the Ballistic blaze vest is a durable, snug-fitting, and quiet vest that won’t encumber your movements.

There’s nothing worse than trying to get a shot lined up only to have your safety orange vest get in the way, or worse yet, make noise as you move and scare off that deer or elk. Some vests can fit loosely and get in the way, but you’ll barely even notice you’re wearing this bad boy.

Aside from its fit, you get a few zippered pockets, an adjustable waist, a magnetic closure for quick removal, and a durable water repellent DWR finish that won’t wet out. You don’t get shotgun shell holders, a game pouch, or a license tag holder, but its fit and functionality crowned it the best orange vest of 2022 in our eyes.

If you want a few more bells and whistles than Sitka offers here, check out the Primos Gunhunter’s vest immediately below.

  • Pros: Great fit, zippered and handwarmer pockets, quiet, warm, durable
  • Cons: Expensive, not a ton of storage

Feature-Rich Runner Up
Primos Gunhunter’s

Primos Gunhunter's orange hunting top

If you’re looking for the most full-featured orange hunting vest on the market today, the Gunhunter’s from Primos might rank above all others.

Designed for rifle and muzzleloader hunters, you’ll find yourself equally prepared for both big game hunting and small game hunts alike. That’s because Primos included just about every imaginable loop or pocket you need for organizing your gear. With shotgun shell loops, large pockets to store binoculars, a PVC waterproof lining, and many more helpful features, the Primos Gunhunter’s vest will ensure you’re always ready for action.

This vest doesn’t feature a blood-proof game pouch, but if you want something designed specifically for small game like birds and rabbits, the Gamehide Switchgrass below fits the bill. Some hunters also think this vest fits a bit wide, so make sure you’re ordering the correct size, or consider the Ballistic from Sitka above for a more snug fit.

In all, we think this is one of the best blaze hunting vests money can buy, and if you require lots of storage, it’ll probably be the best option for you.

  • Pros: Tons of storage, well designed, warm, lining pulls down to create a waterproof seat
  • Cons: A bit wide for some, button closures not ideal for everyone, not proper small-game pouch

Our Favorite Full-Zip Safety Vest
Under Armour Hunt Blaze

Under Armour Men's Hunt Blaze

Not everyone wants a thousand pockets to store their stuff like you’ll find in the Primos Gunhunter’s vest. Some of you want a quiet, lightweight option that’ll fulfill your legal requirement and won’t get in the way. Check out the Under Armour Hunt Blaze vest if you’re in that camp.

We love the full-length zipper that keeps it snug, secure, and easy to remove. Its snap dump pockets are also helpful and will keep all your high-use gear close at hand. And, with pass-through hand pockets, you’ll be able to reach through the vest into your jacket pockets to grab whatever you need.

In short, the UA Hunt Blaze vest is a well-designed piece of clothing that’ll keep you safe and legal during big game rifle season. To complete the UA blaze orange combination, pair it with this hat.

  • Pros: Durable, lightweight, quiet, pass-through pockets are a great addition, relatively inexpensive
  • Cons: Not a lot of storage

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Best Orange Vest for Upland Hunting
Gamehide Switchgrass

Gamehide Switchgrass upland vest

The absolute best orange upland hunting vest you’ll find in 2022 is the Gamehide Switchgrass. This thing is made for shooting, and it’ll help you bag all the peasants, grouses, turkeys, and whatever other type of small game you’re after.

With padded shoulders, shotgun shell holders, and a blood-proof game bag in the back, you’ll always be prepared to shoot and stash whatever small game you take down. Plus, with its front orange accents and back panel, all of your fellow hunters should have no problems spotting you in the field.

Gamehide constructed the Switchgrass out of a warm canvas material that can stand up to all the rigors of the outdoors, all while keeping your warm and toasty as temperatures drop.

Since this vest is meant to fit over a jacket, it’ll run a bit large, so keep that in mind when ordering.

  • Pros: Durable, warm, functional, inexpensive, looks good
  • Cons: Not much

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Orange Camo for Big Game
Mountain Pass Extreme Big Game

Mountain Pass Extreme Big Game orange camo

Depending on where you live, you may be able to wear orange camo to fulfill your legal requirement. While it won’t be legal in some areas, this Mountain Pass garment makes for an excellent deer, elk, and moose vest for those states which allow orange camo.

Because it’s made specifically for big game, you get all the pockets and loops you need to carry your gear with you for long days in the field. That includes rifle shell loops, a large kangaroo pouch to hold bigger items, handwarmer pockets, and zippered vertical pockets to hold valuables that you can’t afford to lose. It even has a hunter license holder.

Plus, because big game hunting can get downright cold, it’s windproof and will help keep cold gusts from penetrating your jacket below. It does fit true to size, so make sure you order a size up if you want it to fit over a thick jacket.

Some hunters say this vest appears to reflect UV light, which could alert deer to your presence. Aside from that, we haven’t noticed any other downsides. If you want to avoid any chance of a deer seeing the reflected UV light from this jacket, consider the Gunhunter’s from Primos above.

  • Pros: Tons of pockets, hand warmer pouch is great, front zipper makes it easy to take on and off, ammo pockets
  • Cons: Back pouch not blood proof, reflects UV light

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Warmest Fleece for Late Seasons
Sitka Stratus Windstopper

Sitka Stratus Windstopper fleece hunting top

The other vests on this list are primarily designed to keep your stuff organized and help you fulfill legal requirements, but none are meant to keep you super warm. Enter the Sitka Stratus Windstopper vest.

With a GORE-TEX membrane sandwiched between layers of fleece, this insulated and windproof orange vest shuts down gusts of wind before they’ll ever have a chance to chill your bones. And with a durable water repellent DWR finish, light rain should bead off before it wets out.

Its zippered hand and chest pockets will help keep your gear close at hand, so you don’t have to fumble around for your gear during big game hunts in the freezing cold. If you want the warmest cold-weather orange hunting vest out there, the Sitka Stratus Windstopper might be just what you’re looking for.

In short, hunters love the fit, warmth, and how quiet this vest is, but they wish it were cheaper.

  • Pros: Very warm, windproof, water repellent, good looking, great orange color
  • Cons: Expensive, not as feature rich as some other vests

Inexpensive Mesh to Make You Legal
Orange Aglow Lightweight Mesh

Lightweight mesh hunting safety top

Let’s say that you don’t want an expensive vest with a bunch of pockets. Instead, you want a cheap, lightweight, and packable blaze orange vest that makes you legal and fits well. The Orange Aglow brand has you covered.

This minimalist 3-ounce vest is a no-frills piece of safety clothing that’ll make you easy to see in the field. No more, no less. And, with about 600 square inches of hunter orange, you’ll be well on your way towards legality for the 2022 season.

Though it doesn’t have many features, this vest fits well, secures over larger jackets, and can be used in for the warm weather of the early seasons over a t-shirt.

Looking for an inexpensive, lightweight orange hunting vest? You just found it.

  • Pros: Affordable, lightweight, packs down small, 600 square inches of hunter orange
  • Cons: No pockets, insulation, or valuable features

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Our Choice for Reversible Orange
TrailCrest

TrailCrest reversible hunting safety top

Are you averse to orange hunting clothes that are only useful in rifle season? If so, give TrailCrest’s reversible camo and blaze orange vest a close look.

With a full-zip front, you can easily remove this vest and reverse between camo and blaze orange as the seasons and legal requirements change. We also love this vest’s heavy-duty fleece lining, which will help you hunt into the late seasons without freezing your butt off.

That fleece material, while extremely warm, is also very quiet and won’t spook animals as you trudge through the forest looking for your next freezer filler. And, for you out there that want their gear to serve multiple purposes, the camo print is very effective, and the orange on the other side is bright and durable.

Though we love this vest, we wish it had zippered hand pockets. Other than that, we can’t find anything else to nitpick.

  • Pros: Reversible and functional, very warm, fits well, reasonably priced
  • Cons: No zippered hand pockets

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Youth Hunter Safety Orange Vest
TrailCrest Front Loader

TrailCrest Front Loader kids hunting safety top

Don’t think we forgot about the young whippersnappers out there! Kids also need to wear safe orange clothing when they hunt, just like their parents and grandpappys.

This safe, warm vest has all the features you’d expect from a high-end adult orange hunting vest — but for kids. It features quilted shoulders, shell loops, holes for a hunting license, and even a blood-proof rear game back that can act as a waterproof seat when conditions get soggy.

With the right fit, you can expect your little ones to put this vest to use from the early to late seasons. If you want your young hunter to feel like they’re geared up just like mom and dad are, grab one of these excellent youth vests from TrailCrest.

  • Pros: Comfortable, full-featured, blood-proof game pocket, affordable
  • Cons: None to report

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Best Orange Dog Hunting Vest
Carhartt Pet Harness

Under Armour blaze orange dog hunting vest

If you’ve got a bad-to-the-bone dog that you take on your waterfowl, duck, upland, or any other type of hunt, you might wonder if there are blaze orange vests out there for them. There are, and the best option of 2022 is from Carhartt.

This water-repellent safety jacket will help keep ol’ Fido warm and dry even when he’s out working hard. That’s because it’s made with Carhartt’s Quick Duck canvas and a water-repellent coating to insulate and trap heat while shielding your dog from the harsh elements. Plus, it comes with a pocket, so Fido can stash some cash and pay for his own dinner for a change.

In terms of comfort, it comes in sizes from small to XL, and its hook and lined straps at the chest and waist will ensure that your pup is ready to tackle whatever comes next. This vest comes in all types of colors, too, so if safety orange isn’t your thing, you still have plenty of options.

  • Pros: Reflective tape is great for nighttime, repels water well, pocket is handy, durable
  • Cons: There are more full-featured dog harnesses out there

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What We Considered When Analyzing Orange Hunting Vests

Sitka Ballistic blaze hunting safety top against a camo background

There’s a lot to consider when picking our your next orange hunting vest

 

Like all other products in the world of hunting gear, not all vests are created equal. So, we kept our eyes on a few specific factors to ensure that we indeed have found the best of the best.

Here’s are five of the most important considerations we analyzed when making our choices.

Fit

Maybe the most important factor we considered is how the vest will fit a hunter. Floppy, ill-fitting vests are uncomfortable and will get in your way, so the product you’re after should fit snugly over your clothing and make you easy to see. Simple as that.

Materials

A vest’s materials can make or break its effectiveness in the harsh conditions of late-season hunting. For this reason, we require that all vests on this list utilize durable materials that stay quiet as you move about the field. They should also avoid snags, help protect you from the elements, and have a bright orange finish.

Warmth

Some, but not all of the vests on this list, are made with insulating materials, like fleece to help keep you warm in the late season. Some also utilize GORE-TEX to help repel water and block harsh winds, too.

If you want your vest to help keep you warm, we recommend the Sitka Stratus Windstopper above all others.

Hunting Styles

Each of the best orange hunting vests we’ve recommended has features that fulfill specific needs. For example, the Mountain Pass Extreme Big Game vest has rifle shell holders and an elastic shooting stick holder. If you’re upland or waterfowl hunting, the Gamehide Switchgrass vest has shotgun shell holders that make for a great addition to the garment.

All styles are welcome here, and it was our goal to include something for everybody, even the kids and dogs among us.

Organization

We wanted to ensure that all our fellow gear heads out there had various features to choose from when it came to organizing their gear inside their orange vest. If you use your vest to carry a rangefinder, binos, shooting sticks, or more, we wanted to include an array of products that can help you organize it all.

Which Orange Hunting Vest Will Keep You Safe (& Legal) in 2022?

A hunter wearing a camo jacket and an orange safety vest facing away from the camera

Orange vests are a legal requirement in many states during rifle season

 

Whether you’re hunting big game like deer and elk or upland hunting for small game, you need one of 2022’s best orange hunting vests to fit well, remain quiet, stay legal, and not give your position away.

Aside from these basic requirements, we made sure to include products with features that’ll elevate your hunting experience, no matter what you’re after. Whether your future vest has the warmth and insulation of fleece, sports tons of practical pockets, or is reversible with camo, we hope we have helped you find the perfect fit.

And, though many of the vests we feature are made for big game hunters, we also made sure to include 2022’s best upland orange hunting vest with a blood-proof game pouch in the back. So, whether you’re after deer, elk, duck, quail, or whatever else, there’s likely a rough-and-tumble piece of gear for you on this list.

Regardless of what you’re hunting or which brand you prefer, we hope you get your hands on one of 2022’s best orange hunting vests to help keep you legal, highly visible, and well-organized in the field.

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