This may be the most important review I ever
write; it may also be the most important one
you ever read. This is about why the name Mike
Jackson may save your life, literally.
I met Mike twenty years ago. I heard of a
floatation bladder thing he had invented and
as he lived in the same town I did, I called
and asked him to stop into my shop some day
and let me see one. That afternoon a good looking,
swarthy sea-going fellow strode in and introduced
himself. I was impressed with his style, attitude
and forthrightness. I was disappointed though that
he did not have one of the floatation things with
him. I was also embarrassed when he slipped easily
out of the light jacket he had on and said, "Here
it is." It was great looking, nothing like what I
had expected. Inside across the back and shoulders
was the air chamber which, when the CO2 cartridge
was fired, inflated it.
The next day I bought three, one for me, my wife
and my fishing buddy. Since that day, I have never,
ever gone on the water in this region without
wearing it. Here is the key word, 'wearing.' You and
I have been on craft where there have been
'life-preservers.' Cushions, kapok vests or other
devices. These are supposed to be worn 'at all times.'
Ya, right! Usually they start the trip up under the
front and stay there. I guess if we tipped over they
would hopefully float about and we could grab one.
Terrific safety gadgets.
Some years ago Mike was swept overboard on the
Bering Sea from the pitching deck of a crab boat.
He survived and dedicated his life to the invention
of something that a person would wear, not stow!
He did and his company, 'Stormy Seas' company was
There are basically two types of floatation devises,
one which inflates when it hits the water and one
that you inflate. There are good arguments for
instances when each would be the better one to
have had on. My vote goes to this style, the one
I inflate. I hope you agree, if so, the rest of
this may save your life.
I now have one of his vests with the air chamber
just like my coat. No, it does not have as many
pockets as the average 'fly vest,' but it has
enough for me. When I go onto a piece of water
these days I do not need very many pockets. I know
what I will need for the event and take that with
me; box of flies or a leather wallet of them,
leaders, tippet spools, pliers, and maybe a
couple of other small items, clippers etc. This
will hold them well and has a full pocket all
across the back. It is light weight, not restrictive,
comfortable to wear and comes in three colors.
I can see where this would be perfect, yes,
perfect for use in a float-tube, a kick-boat,
pontoon craft. It is short, almost very short.
A good idea in a vest, especially when wading
into the surf or arm-pit deep in a steelhead
Kayaking is really gaining in popularity
and I am glad to bring this vest to your
attention here. The short length and just
the right number of pockets makes it ideal
for them too. The vest is not a new item,
it has been out for some time now and readily
available here in the U.S. as well as overseas.
I know we all value safety, but those other
things are either in the way, cumbersome or
just too much bother to wear. Look for one
at your fly shop, boating dealer, call 1-800-323-7327
or go their web site, StormySeas.com. ~ JC
PO Box 1570
Poulsbo, WA, 98370
Email link: email@example.com
Website: Stormy Seas