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Suggestions for Spring Waders?


chrisserafin
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As like many of you, I can't wait to get in the middle of a river and start fishing. I'm trying to pick out some waders what will help keep me above hypothermia, and wondering if anyone has suggestions and/or things they would do differently now that they already purchased their waders.

 

Hopeful requirements:

 

-Keep you dry/warm in cold spring water

-Be basically durable. Not going to be bushwackin'

 

Any comments appreciated,

 

---Chris

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I wear boot foot waders to fit arch supports make sure they're not too tight. Bought a pair of the heavy duck hunting waders from Cabalas this year. They are very heavy to wear but I haven't been cold. A few times I've spent 3-4 hours waist deep in 40 degree water no problem. Wool socks and fleece help.

Phil F

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Stocking foot breathables w/ seperate boots year round. Buy bigger to allow layering underneath. Polypro socks below wool socks. Polypro pants-shirt w/ underarmour combo below that in needed. Fleece is good but havn't gotten around to new pair yet.

 

Too many birthdays, I know I wrote an article about cold weather fishing but can't remember right now which issue it was in.

 

I prolly do as much cold water wading as any smallie guy in the midwest. I don't like neoprenes and bootfeet waders are too heavy for me. Go as light as possible, pack as little gear as possible.

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You should always buy waders with a lot of room in them not just to provide room for extra clothes, but to give you room to move. Most of the damage to waders comes from putting stress on the seams when moving around and climbing up steep banks.

 

I also like breathables with separate boots. You only have to get one pair that you can use year round. Neoprenes are warm for cold water, but you'll die when the temps come up. Separate boots also give you much better support. You are less likely to twist an ankle with well fitting boots.

 

You can spend over $500 on waders, but you can get pretty good ones for $150. Don't go cheap on the boots. A $50 pair of boots probably won't last one season, but a $120 pair could last 4 or 5 years depending on how hard you are on them.

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Just as no one rod will be sufficient for all kinds of fishing so too with waders.For cold weather wading 5mm neoprenes are best.Very durable,inexpensive($60 Cabelas) & no need for multilayering.For cool-warm weather lightweight non breathables.Inexpensive($50 Cabelas) & much less likely to leak than breathables.For hot weather an old pair of fast drying pants which will keep you much cooler & more comfortable than you'd be in any kind of waders.If you're squeamish about wet wading & the non breathables are too uncomfortable in the heat reserve a pair of breathables for summer wading.Despite being many times more expensive they're more prone to leak.By wearing them only when really needed they won't have to be replaced as often & when they inevitably leak at least it'll be warm.While stockingfeet are best in general bootfoots are good for short distance wades.Studded soles are best & should be a must for the rubber based soles that are replacing felt since they won't provide as much traction as felt did.

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Either you don't fish when air/water temps are in the 30's/40's or you're one hot blooded caballero.

 

 

Ron, It is easy to get hot winter fishing, even with the temps in the 20's. A long walk to your spot will have you sweating in no time. Properly geared that heat can be kept in pretty well.

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Ron, It is easy to get hot winter fishing, even with the temps in the 20's. A long walk to your spot will have you sweating in no time. Properly geared that heat can be kept in pretty well.

Depends on how fast you walk & whether you stop along the way.The vast majority of spots don't require a long hike.Not everyone is as "type A" as you about their fishing Brenden.I recall in at least one of your past posts you referred to covering 6-8 miles on foot.Yikes!That's a long way even by yak.

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Ron, It is easy to get hot winter fishing, even with the temps in the 20's. A long walk to your spot will have you sweating in no time. Properly geared that heat can be kept in pretty well.

Depends on how fast you walk & whether you stop along the way.The vast majority of spots don't require a long hike.Not everyone is as "type A" as you about their fishing Brenden.I recall in at least one of your past posts you referred to covering 6-8 miles on foot.Yikes!That's a long way even by yak.

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Ron, It is easy to get hot winter fishing, even with the temps in the 20's. A long walk to your spot will have you sweating in no time. Properly geared that heat can be kept in pretty well.

Depends on how fast you walk & whether you stop along the way.The vast majority of spots don't require a long hike.Not everyone is as "type A" as you about their fishing Brenden.I recall in at least one of your past posts you referred to covering 6-8 miles on foot.Yikes!That's a long way even by yak.

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Remember, the water you're standing in is over 32 degrees. Two weekends ago, I spent the entire weekend trout fishing in NE Iowa. Wicking long johns, fleece wader pants and breathable stocking-foot waders. It was two degrees when we got up on Sunday, and only low teens when we hit the water. The cold was never an issue, even when glued to one hole for 45 min. or an hour.

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I too have fished Iowa for trout in 20 degree temps. Wicking long-johns and wool socks, fleece wader liners for the bottom half. Top half is wicking long-johns, mid-weight wicking shirt, fleece sweater, and my light wading jacket. Fished for over 5 hours in breathable waders & Simms boots. Never was bothered by the cold, even though my line was freezing in the guides!

 

Another indispensible item I picked up was a fleece neck gator. I think I got it at Dick's Sporting Goods for around $9. That thing made a world of difference! Also, Simms fingerless gloves.

 

Brian

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Ron,

 

Ask any woman, she'll let you know I'm one hot dude.

Norm

I did.She said she could not verify.

Brian & Jude

Glad you were able to stay comfortable in those severe conditions.A $60 pair of 5mm neoprenes would've kept you as warm or warmer & as I said in my original post they're more durable,less leak prone & wearing them in cold conditions would allow you to save those $200-$300+ breathables for hotter weather when they're needed instead of putting unnecessary wear on them by wearing them when they're not.

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$50 breathables and polypro work for me, neoprenes simply a waste of money to hang in the garage for 9 months of the year.

$50 breathables?Those neos don't deteriorate hanging in your garage & you'll do fine with just a pair of good old fashioned cotton long johns instead of having to multilayer with expensive polypros.

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Ron

 

The point is why buy neoprenes when you don't need them in the first place, waste of money.

 

I've got 4 stints and take lots of meds than affect the way my body works now. Polypro is worth the investment.

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Ron

 

The point is why buy neoprenes when you don't need them in the first place, waste of money.

 

I've got 4 stints and take lots of meds than affect the way my body works now. Polypro is worth the investment.

You keep missing my point even as your argument makes it for me Norm that point being that what's a waste of money is putting unnecessary wear on expensive breathables($50 ones notwithstanding) by wearing them in cold conditioms when THEY'RE NOT NEEDED instead of much cheaper more durable 5mm neos which were designed for & are more suited for those conditions than breathables designed for the opposite conditions.

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Ron

 

My point is why buy two pair of waders, one of them only good for part time use, when one will do. It's not like I only use the polypro for fishing in the winter, I use it for other activities as well. Therefore polypro is a worthwhile investment as it has multiple uses. The neoprenes being used only a couple months of the year are an unnecessary expense when I already have gear that I can use. Then you add in taking up storage space for most of the year, the CFO asking why you bought them things and never use them and there is no upside.

 

I am quite comfortable in my breathables year round and at the rate I go thru waders, I'm buying a new pair every year anyway.

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RonK and Norm,all very valid points but in this case I'll go with Ron's suggestion.If I could only afford one pair I would agree with Norm but I would rather split my time between them and also extend the usefull life of both.

On the other hand,you could forgo the cold season (like I did this year)build up some brownie points with the Mrs.

Now both pair are hanging in the garage,how ridiculous does that sound.

Never mind-I'm going fishing.

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