When the Boonie hat was first created it was intended to be used by G.Is on military expeditions in hot and dangerous places where you needed protection from the sun but also needed to remain camouflage from any enemies that may be about. A wide-brimmed and floppy hat, the Boonie provides protection from the rain, wind, and sun when you’re outdoors.
The Boonie originally had a ‘foliage ring’ which is a band of loops around the crown where you could loop vegetation for camouflage, though you may not need this feature while you’re out on the water. Today all sorts of out-door adventurers use the Boonie hat for protection against the elements, including anglers.
Every angler knows that the water can get very hot, very rainy, and very windy so the Boonie hat is the ideal protection from the weather so that you can keep concentrating on your chosen prey. Finding the right hat that fits your needs, your style and that’ll keep going for a few years can be a challenge, so we’ve put together this handy guide to help you through.
Whatever you’re looking for and however much you want to spend to find it, the right hat is out there. You need something durable that’ll last you a few years and be able to stand up to the elements to offer you the right amount of protection. So let’s have a look at some of the best options out there, and if you still want some more information before making your choice, than make sure you check out our buyers guide a little later on.
Top 5 Boonie Hats
OUR TOP PICK
While out on the water you’re wide open to the elements and in some locations, the best spot for fish can also leave you exposed to the sun, the wind or the rain, not to mention any midges or other insects that may be buzzing around, so headgear that can make your experience more comfortable is always going to be worth investigating, and you won’t find better than the Boonie Safari Sun Hat.
This comfortable and well-constructed option is made from cotton which helps to wick away moisture to keep you cool and dry all day. It includes a fully adjustable drawstring to help make sure the hat stays securely on your head even in the toughest of winds, and for the hotter days, this option is designed to protect you against harmful UVA & UVB rays by offering UPF 50+ protection.
This is a comfortable option with a wide brim to keep the sun from your eyes while your hiking from spot to spot, or while you’re in situ. The hat comes in a range of different colors and the style would suit both men and women, so if you want to feel stylish when you’re outdoors without compromising functionality than this might be just what you’ve been looking for.
This hat is a great all-rounder that is suitable in most environments and is a great way to have with you just in case. It’s designed well and has been constructed to be comfortable to wear and easily adjustable for a secure and sturdy fit. The hat is lightweight enough to be easy to take with you on whatever trip you’re next planning, and beginners or adventurous anglers will love how easy it is to include in a backpack as it crushes flat but keeps its shape when you want to wear it.
- Easily adjustable thanks to sizing strap
- Comes in a range of colors
- Looks stylish
- Provides great UV protection
- The brim is a little floppy
- STAY OUTDOORS LONGER -- Ah, Summer Days are finally here. A fine time to hit the trails, or fish in a nearby lake. Then noon happens, and you can feel the sun beaming straight down your face. Tough right? No worries, though. These UPF 50+ hats protect you from harmful UVA & UVB rays. We've also partnered with The Skin Cancer Foundation to ensure these hats are sun-ready & fit for everyday use. Who's TOUGHER now?
- ALL-DAY COOL & COMFORT - Say it with me: Sweat is annoying. Most hats made with heavier fabrics do very little to help blocking the sweat and sun of a hot summer day. Fear not. These summer hats wick moisture off your head so you can enjoy (and truly experience) the picturesque lake you were just browsing on your phone weeks ago. #seetheworld
- DURABLE & FULLY-ADJUSTABLE - When you’re in the great outdoors you need gear that’s as tough and adaptable as you are. Lucky for you, this nylon boonie hat is just that. From howling winds to searing hot afternoons, this hat adjusts with ease. To get the perfect fit, simply fasten the head cinch followed by securing the hat's drawstring when strong winds arise. Even the Big, Bad Wolf tried to "huff & puff" this boonie hat but ultimately failed.
- TRAVEL LIGHT - When setting off to a great adventure, the last thing you want is bulky, heavy gear. This boonie hat crushes flat in seconds, and won’t add too much weight to your pack. Great when you're carrying light for hiking, fly fishing, or just enjoying a calm day of stand-up paddling with your pooch. Machine wash and air dry for best results.
If you know you’re headed somewhere the sun is always shining, then you’re going to need a hat that can provide you with the best protection while you’re out fishing. This 52% cotton/48% polyester blend option is an excellent model designed for hot weather and is durable enough to protect you on a great many adventures.
The wide brim on this option means that you have 360-degree protection against the sun, and it might even help you sight some fish that you wouldn’t have seen otherwise as a wide brim can help reduce glare from the water. Dorfman-Pacific has been around for nearly 100 years and this option definitely benefits from their experience with features like a sweat absorbing a browband and hat lining to keep you cool and comfortable without any annoying sweat irritation which can occur on a long day fishing.
The adjustable chin strap means that it’s easy to securely fasten the hat on your head and to adjust depending on the weather conditions that may spring up. The hat is very attractive and if you value combined style and functionality than you’ll enjoy the shapeable brim so you can get the very best protection for your circumstance out on the water and look good while doing it. The hat comes in either black or brown and has a nice weathered look which is very attractive and could give you a confidence boost while you’re out on the water.
The inclusion of cotton in the construction of the hat makes it breathable and easy to wear comfortably for long periods, while the polyester element increases the durability and reduces the likelihood of tears or wrinkles for a more robust product. This hat is a great option for most anglers skill sets, and it’s a great option for those who want a hat that they know once they’ve put it on their head is going to stay there and keep their hands free for more important matters like catching fish.
- Wide brim for added 360-degree sun protection
- Stable and secure fit
- Stylish and attractive with a weathered look and a shapeable brim for individual protection
- Durable and well-designed
- Sweat absorbing lining and browband
- Sizing runs a little large so be careful you get the best fit
- OUT IS IN – It’s not called the Outback hat for nothing. Built for function, this imported outdoorsmen hat is 52% cotton for breathability in the heat and 48% polyester for increased strength and wrinkle- and tear-resistance.
- PROPER PROTECTION – This old western hat isn’t just for show. With a UPF 50+ rating, this brown outdoor hat provides premium protection against harmful ultraviolet rays.
- THAT’S NOT A HAT – THIS is a hat. With an interior brow band and lining that absorbs sweat, you don’t need to worry about drenching your hat with perspiration on a hot day. The band and lining also provide a smooth surface to avoid skin irritation.
- YOUR KIND OF SHADE – This broad 2.7” rim is shapeable to provide you with the exact kind of shade you need. Give yourself 360 degrees of shade, or bend the brim how you want for maximum comfort and protection of your face, ears, and nape.
- GOES WHERE YOU GO – This hat can protect against more than just the sun. Wind, rain, and Mother Nature’s other woes can strike at any time too, but an adjustable chin strap ensures your hat stays put no matter what.
This 100% nylon with the GORE-TEX fabric option is an excellent hat designed with fishing and anglers needs in mind so that it can provide integrated protection while you’re out on the water. Every angler knows just how quickly the weather can change while you’re on the water and that uncertainty can make it hard to choose the best hat to take with you for the maximum amount of protection from the elements.
You don’t want to take more than one hat with you, and that’s where this option from Outdoor research comes in. With over 40 years of experience in what outdoor adventurers need to keep them safe and comfortable outdoors so they can make the most of their chosen activity. This option includes hook/loop tabs on the brim and dome where you can keep fishing lures, and it’s features like these that make this hat the perfect option for fishing.
Keeping the tools you need close to hand is an issue that every angler has to overcome and this innovative feature on this option is something that most anglers will love.
The nylon outside and polyester lining combination keeps this hat breathable and waterproof, so you can wear it for long periods comfortably. The brim provides plenty of shade from the sun in hot weather, while in rain the brim is designed to direct water away from your face to keep you dry enough to concentrate on bagging the best fish you can.
The hat is fully adjustable thanks to the chin strap, which can also be removed when it’s not needed and locked in bad weather to keep your hat securely fasten to your head. This is a great option that does a great job of blocking the sun but is well prepared for sudden weather changes that can be at the worst dangerous and at best uncomfortable so that you can stay dry and protected while you focus on bringing in the big fish.
- Award-winning option
- Wide brim offers excellent sun protection and is designed to direct even heavy rain away from the face
- Adjustable chin strap which can be removed or locked depending on the situation
- Hooks/loops on the brim for keeping fishing lures
- Well-constructed and durable
- No ventilation panels
Another nylon and cotton blend this stretchable and breathable option is a great pick for a weekend or beginner anglers looking for something durable and well-constructed, but easy to maintain. The hat is easy to securely fasten thanks to the soft drawstrings and is designed to stand up to tough environments and a variety of different weather conditions so that you’re as well protected as possible.
The drawstrings have been designed not to irritate your skin or obscure your vision, but they help to keep the hat in place even in high wind. This is a good option to wear while hiking from location to location and it’s lightweight enough for you not to notice it after a while. The hat is available in a range of different sizes and colors and is another good option for those who like to feel their Boonie hat is stylish as well as practical.
The hat is easy to take care of, as all you need to do to make sure it retains its shape during cleaning is to stand it in warm soapy water and then run it under the cold tap for a clean hat ready to take on your next trip. The hat takes very little time to maintain, which makes it a great choice for beginners or weekend anglers who may not have the time or inclination for a hat that requires more maintenance.
This breathable hat is a great option for those headed towards sunny skies but who want to stay as cool and comfortable as possible. Even beginners will find negotiating the sizes available on this product easy, and the wide range of colors available makes it a great choice for those who want something a little more in tune with their personal style.
- Well-constructed and durable
- Wide range of sizes and colors available
- Good for beginners or amateur anglers
- Breathable with a lot of sun protection
- Fully adjustable
- Best washed by hand
- ADJUSTABLE BOONIE HAT: These stylish hats that meet US military specs are constructed from 65/35 poly-cotton rip-stop with an flexible drawstring chin strap with cardlock for an easy fit
- EFFICIENT DESIGN: Comfortable hat with brass screen vents keeps you dry; The wide brim hat provides extra protection from the sun and comes with a built in internal map pocket
- HIGH-PERFORMANCE HATS FOR ADULTS: Outdoor boonie hat is perfect for camping, hunting, fishing, hiking, military exercise or as a daily wear
- MULTICOLORED BOONIE: Hat available in 7 different colors: Black, Olive Drab, Coyote, Navy, Khaki and camoflouge colors such as Desert Digital, and Woodland Digital
Finally, we have this brilliant fully waterproof option that also provides stellar sun protection all in one easily wearable package. Any serious anglers know they need to be prepared for changeable weather, and this option lets you do that without any hassle; constructed from 100% textured nylon poplin this hat offers the outstanding weatherproofing and is very water repellent so that even in heavy rain you can just focus on the fish.
Fish can be more active during a downpour because of the rain hitting the water and igniting their instincts. Being prepared to fish in rainy as well as fine weather is a great way to move your skill levels up and experience some different aspects of angling, the wide brim of the hat and the mesh section provides excellent sun protection and keeps you safe from heatstroke, sunburn, or sunstroke so you can just enjoy your day on the water and be prepared for anything.
The included Omni-Wick sweatband stops sweat from distracting you even on the hottest day and helps keep you cool and focused. The mesh portion of the hat gives a great boost to its breathability and the hat is fully adjustable thanks to the drawcord to ensure the best fir and the chin strap to securely fasten the hat even in very windy conditions.
The hat is very weatherproof and can dry quickly if you’d like to take advantage of a sunny spell before moving on. This hat would suit most anglers, and it offers a great range of protection from the weather.
- Durable and well-designed
- Very weatherproof and water repellent
- Omni-Wick sweatband keeps you cool and dry even in hot conditions
- The adjustable chin strap and draw-cord ensure the best fit possible
- Mesh vents for added breathability
- Very floppy brim
Best Boonie Hats Buying Guide
Hopefully, you now have a better idea about the kind of Boonie hats that are available on the market and the sort of features you need to look out for to get the best possible hat for you. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed still the next section should help you out a bit. We’re going to take you through a few of the most important factors to keep in mind before picking your hat.
Try to keep in mind what you’re looking for, like what sort of weather you expect to face most often, or how well you need your hat to fit to make sure it’ll stay on your head. Remembering this sort of factor will help you make the best choice.
Most Boonie hats come in a cotton blend with Nylon or Polyester or are 100% cotton. Cotton is breathable, lightweight and has the added benefit of being machine washable which many anglers both beginners and more seasoned find useful after a long day on the water. Cotton is very comfortable to wear for long periods, but it can shrink when it’s wet.
A cotton blend with something a bit more water-repellent is a great idea if you’re worried about the weather or know that rain is a high likelihood. If you end up with something 100% cotton try going half a size or so bigger to combat shrinking, and don’t throw it in a dryer but let the air dry it.
People are often surprised that this is something that’s worth thinking about, but a reversible Boonie is useful for a few reasons. First, it gives you 2 wearable designs for the price of one, and second, it can help increase your vision and protect against the sun. Dark brims mean that the sun won’t bounce into your eyes, and reversible brims are even better because the underside won’t be lighter and reflect light to blind you while you’re out angling.
Most boonies have a chinstrap, but not all do, and if you want your Boonie to be adjustable and easy to secure in the wind than this is essential. Not all chin straps are adjustable either so it’s an important feature to watch out for especially if you’re likely to be hiking from spot to spot and need your hat to be sturdily secured to your head.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will my Boonie have a foliage ring?
Probably not unless you’re going hunting or into combat! You only need a foliage ring for camouflage and it’s unlikely that this will do you too much good against fish.
Why should I get a Boonie hat?
They offer excellent protection over a wide array of areas including neck and face, they’re easy to secure and they’re easy to camouflage if that’s your thing.