Saltwater and breathable waders [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Saltwater and breathable waders

12-03-2003, 09:15 PM
Anyone care to comment on the general life expectancy for decent breathables in the salt? BTW, this excludes the occasional strafing of a clouser or any other such pointy object as it sails to and fro past your nether regions :hehe: .


12-04-2003, 06:32 AM
I was into my fourth season on my Orvis Silver Lables when they started leaking in the crotch area. Orvis was kind enough to replace them for the cost of shipping. I would think, with care they might stand up for 4 or 5 seasons, without excessive patchin. Me, I keep them bunched in a clump in the trunk all season and I will sit down on the sand once in awhile. I'm not abusive, but I'm certainly not anal about wader care. They do get a bit ripe after a couple of seasons.

12-04-2003, 08:24 AM
I only got one year out of the Cabela's boot foot waders. They were the cheap ones. The inside lining ripped. They replaced them for me twice, but I gave up on that brand. However, recently got a pair of Proline boot foot waders which are far superior in construction. I was told by the Goose Hummock that are their best selling waders and that they have had no complaints.
Did not want to go the stocking foot route. There are many threads as to the pro and cons of each style of wader. I simply want to put on my waders and not have to worry about gators ect. The key to a good boot foot wader is make sure it fits well. If it does not it will ware out faster than normal.

12-04-2003, 08:34 AM
Some things you can save on... stripping baskets, bluefish wire, etc.

Some things you can not. I buy only Patagonia, Simms, etc when it comes to waterproof breathables. Saving some money in this area is "penny wise, pound foolish" as the ol' New England saying goes.


12-04-2003, 09:13 AM
They should last as long as with freshwater usage.

Ditto what Juro said.

Warning: if you buy Orvis ones - there is a huge difference between the budget version and the top of the line.

Unfortunately none are clouser-proof :devil:

12-04-2003, 09:30 AM
At the moment I'm torn between simply getting a pair of lug-sole boots to go with my stocking-foot breathables, or looking into a pair of 3.5mm neo boot-foot waders. L.L. Bean has such a pair. Looking for something to fish the NY/NJ coastlines (mostly estuarine, little surf) between Spring and late Autumn, and I'm a bit concerned that neo will be too hot for much of that period. Also, being a diver, I know that I hold up pretty well to cool water temps but traditionally don't fare well with excessive warmth. Hence the thought that perhaps a pair of lug-sole boots would do the trick. Is this logical?

12-04-2003, 09:49 AM
I wear stockingfoot breathables year round including steelheading in Dec.

All you need is a pair of Polartec 300 weight pants and boots
that can accomodate thick socks.

I sport a beat up old pair of wading boots with gravel guards when wading SW. Some guys go nuts with ducktape etc., trying to keep the sand out. I don't find it to be a big deal - even over miles of wading.

Neoprene is not a great idea if you want to wear them in the summer or do much walking.

12-04-2003, 10:24 AM
Yeah, that's what I thought. I honestly don't expect to be walking up and down the beach much, as I spend most time on the bay-side of barrier islands where the environment is more like a bass pond than it is a beach. I own Polartec pants as well as silk long johns, and I haven't gotten cold yet wearing these under my waders when in some pretty frosty creeks and rivers early and late in the year. I think I'll go with a pair of boots for my stocking-foots. Even at $125 or so, they'd be half the price of a new pair of waders. Thanks all for your input.

12-04-2003, 12:20 PM
To coin another saying "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"... referring to sand in the boots, in my humble opinion. I guess it all depends on how you fish and how long you want your wader feet to be leak proof. My ability to walk the beach is inversely proportional to the amount of sand in my boots. Also, debris inside the boot is one of the biggest factors in stocking foot wear, tear and ultimately leakage.

I've found an outer boot design recently that is exceptionally resistant to debris, almost perfect combined with slip on gaitor use. Aesthetics left something to be desired but I modifed them. They are stretch neoprene gusseted 360 degrees around with hard sport soles.

As an early duct tape adopter the reason for using it is often confused as being a replacement for the gaitor. That's incorrect, the reason for duct tape is to prevent the gaitor (required) from getting torn off the ankles by the surf, or if one-pc slipover then to prevent it from rolling up like an old sock thus rendering it useless in preventing sand invasion in the pounding surf or a ripping tide change. To that end, it's very effective and for me has been the difference between a care-free day and well... a day with sand in the boots.

But BigDave, I know you and you and the Ironman don't need no schtinkin' waders anyway! :devil:

Race you guys to the blitz?

12-07-2003, 05:46 AM
Don't bother with Hodgman boot foot breathables....I've gone thru two pair, first lasting less than a full season. They were replaced "free of charge". 2nd pair didn't make it thru a second full season.
They are especially prone to leaking at top of boot seams.

12-07-2003, 06:25 PM
I have a pair of silver labels that are four years old and still in good shape, I rinse them in fresh water after every use.

12-08-2003, 01:34 PM
Two seasons ago I decided not to use my stockingfoot waders in the salt. Instead, I put on an old pair of 3mm neoprene L.L. Bean waders over which I put an old pair of $79 bootfoot L.L. Bean lightweight nylon waders. While I did a bit of sweating, the combination worked very well, although it was a little clammy.