I'm thinking about getting the Simms G3 convertibles for flats fishing. I usually don't go above the beltline, usually if you do you're wading too deep for the flats anyway. The upper section is always there when I need it... but it zips on/off so it would have to be carried or left behind. The advantage would be the luxury of just having a flats shirt above the belt on hot summer days.
Waist highs are great if you have some sort of boat to get you through deep spots when you're moving around, otherwise for best mobility you've got to have chest waders. I've been using waisthighs for a while now and they're really nice in warm weather but they put sharp limits on where you can go, you'd never want to use them on the bayside flats, Monomoy maybe. When I buy my next waders they will be the fold down type, then you can just pull them up to cross a deep spot.
BTW were you successful in finding some wading shoes that keep the sand out?
Convertibles are either/or, I wouldn't do well with waist only because I hit the label all the time with my chesties.
The search has been exhausting but yes, I have a few candidates. None have everything I want, but some good features. I will report on findings shortly when they arrive, then more so on field test results thru the season.
What I was saying is why pay extra for the zipper?
Ah - vs the fold down, I get it.
Well I like Simms for a number of reasons, most being the alcohol trick. So easy to find even pin prick holes. Plus I get 4-5 yrs per pair which is very economical.
I don't think they make a roll-down, will look again. The zipper doesn't really bother me, I guess it's a trade off between the bulk of the rolled up material vs. the freedom of a shirt-only top.
In either case the suspenders must be independent of the material above the belt-line to make it work.
Headwaters, I've got my eye on them, but my old guides have to make it another year.
Jon - looking at the Simms products the Headwaters comes either in a pant or chest, on which the suspenders are attached at the top per standard chest waders.
The convertible has the suspenders attached at the belt with a removable chest section using their waterproof zipper system.
Under features it says "easily converts to waist highs" not sure of the actual mechanics.