fast-tac vest from 5. 11

Reviewing the Fast-Tac Vest from 5.11

📅 May 17, 2024

In a Rush? Get the Fast Facts

  • 13 pockets
  • Two-way zipper
  • Adjustable side cinches
  • Vented seam in the back
  • D-Ring on the breast pocket
  • Locker loop
  • Self-fabric loop on shoulder

There are hundreds of tactical vests available for purchase, each with its own unique design and features. The Fast-Tac vest from 5.11 is set apart due to its quality craftsmanship, versatility, and comfort. Due to the numerous pockets, the Fast-Tac vest is perfect for several outdoor activities. In this review, we will focus on three of the most common: hiking, fishing, and tactical. Here’s what you need to know before buying the Fast-Tac vest from 5.11 Tactical!

Features of the Fast-Tac Vest

The Fast-Tac vest from 5.11 is a versatile utility vest perfect for numerous activities. The vest is crafted from a durable polyester fabric and offers several features to the wearer. Features include:

  • 13 pockets
  • Two-way zipper
  • Adjustable side cinches
  • Vented seam in the back
  • D-Ring on the breast pocket
  • Self-fabric loop on shoulder
  • Locker loop

While these features are impressive on their own, it’s important to see how well they perform in various activities. Here’s a look at some common uses for the Fast-Tac vest, and how it performed in each!

5. 11 Fast-Tac Vest


When it comes to hiking, trekking, backpacking, camping, or any other similar outdoor activity, it’s crucial to find quality equipment that serves a purpose and will withstand the rugged outdoor lifestyle. If you’re considering this vest for your camping arsenal, here are some pros and cons to consider.


The pros for hiking are as follows.


The Fast-Tac vest is lightweight, weighing in at around 8.7 ounces. When hiking long distances, you generally want your gear to be as light as possible. It’s easy to forget you’re even wearing this vest after a whole. It’s lightweight and extremely comfortable.


Another key feature of any outdoor wear is durability. This vest holds up well, resisting snags from branches or scratching from rocks. Unless you’re belly crawling through gravel, this vest will last for years.

Pockets Everywhere

Space is always a problem when backpacking. This vest solves that issue by providing 13 pockets to carry various gear and equipment. From snacks to flashlights, from bear spray to emergency medical supplies, there is a pocket for everything. There are even two packets in the back for water bottles, offering quick access to a necessary item. 


The cons for hiking are as follows.


For a hiking vest, $90 is a little steep. While it’s important to remember that it is a quality product, and there are several other activities you can use it for, if you’re looking for something strictly for hiking, this won’t be your most affordable option. 

Heavy in Rain

While the Fast-Tac vest offers a small amount of rain resistance, if you get caught in a downpour it will become soaked and quite heavy. This can be alleviated with a rain poncho, but that will also make it more difficult to utilize the pockets. 

Use Diminishes with Backpack

While the pockets on this vest are perfect for day hikes, if you’re planning something overnight where you’ll have to wear a backpack, that will diminish the use of your extra storage. While wearing a backpack, it is difficult to reach the pockets on the vest, and anything you’re carrying will be squished into your body. 



Tactical vests are a great way to carry ammo, medical supplies, and other gear. This vest is perfectly suited for that purpose and is a great option for anyone looking to carry a loadout in an organized and easy-to-reach fashion.


The pros for tactical are as follows.


Being a lightweight vest with numerous pockets, there are several ways you can outfit this vest for tactical use. Maybe you want something you can grab if something goes bump in the night. Throw some magazines in the side pockets, a flashlight in the front, and a knife in the back and you’re ready to go. Or perhaps you want something to keep in your trunk loaded with medical gear. There’s plenty of space for that as well. No matter what your tactical needs are, you can customize this vest accordingly. 


While a little pricy for a hiking vest, tactical vests can run a pretty penny, and the Fast-Tac is among the more affordable options. If you’re looking for something that won’t break the bank, is stylish, and is extremely practical, then this is your answer


The cons for tactical are as follows.

No Molle Webbing

Most tactical vests offer molle webbing for greater customization. With the Fast-Tac, you’re limited to the pockets provided by the manufacturer. 

Limited Protection

Weapons are only half the battle. In any SHTF scenario, it’s crucial to protect yourself. This vest offers little to no protection on the tactical front. There is no place to put plates or Kevlar inserts, and it won’t offer the same knife protection as other Kevlar vests on the market. 


Truly a great pastime and an important life skill, fishing doesn’t require much. However, utilizing a fishing vest makes the day significantly more enjoyable as you don’t have to lug around all of your equipment in a box. Simply wear what you need and spend the day relaxing by the water. 


The pros for fishing are as follows


Anyone who has spent a hot day fishing knows how swampy it can be. With this vest, you can stay comfortable thanks to its vented back seam, which offers a nice breeze and keeps your body cool all day long. 

Space for Tackle

Walking around the bank with your tacklebox can be cumbersome. By putting pre-made leads, lures, and other tackle in the various pockets of your Fast-Tac vest, you can essentially wear your tacklebox, freeing you up to focus on what matters most. Fishing. 


The cons for fishing are as follows.

Difficult to Clean

While this vest can be machine washed, it must be done with cold water and mild detergent. Following the washing instructions, you may have a hard removing fish blood, guts, red clay, or other fishing-related goop. 

Not Quick-Dry

Many vests made specifically for fishing utilize quick-dry material. Let’s face it, any fisherman worth their salt is going to get a little wet. This vest will likely stay wet longer than you’d like, especially if it’s overcast or sprinkling.

Is it worth it?

So after analyzing all the applications of the Fast-Tac vest from 5.11 Tactical, the question remains. Is it worth it? Our answer is YES! The Fast-Tac is essentially three vests in one, offering multiple applications at an affordable price. The versatility and customization of this vest are its strongest features, and if you’re in the market for even one of those applications, then this vest will suit your needs just fine.

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