I am thinking this hiking shoe with built-in gaitor is a good candidate for stocking foot waders in striper country. I would add a neoprene sleeve, or use a wader with a good gaitor baffle in combination and I'd bet it would be nearly impenetrable for sand particles.
Looking for closeouts in my size, will keep you posted.
Especially in tandem with a stretch gaiter like this:
My experience has been that when the boot is constructed with a high-stretch gaitor integrated one-piece with a high rise of the boot then it is the most impenetrable.
On top of that, if the wader had a built-in gaiter (like the ones I am testing now) and the boot had a high-stretch riser, the two could be interlocked with a fold and a snap buckle and the result would be 100% sand free except for insignificant quantities of sand particles coming in through drainage vents.
One can dream can't he? :D
Another possibility I am pondering is the Muck Boot (thanks to Pete Readel and others who suggested it).
Not the farm and field model but they have one made for fishermen. Not sure if it has adequate support for long walks but because it's a slip-on I could have a neoprene high stretch sock sewed on to the top edge thus creating a high-stretch seal built into the boot.
One thing to think about is that if the shoe has no ability to let water in and out through mesh ventilating ports it will pump water in through the top and sand will come with it no matter how many dams you put up to stop it. Those boots don't appear to have any ventilation and I would consider that a problem. My .02.
Good point and something that needs to be kept solidly in mind.
I have enjoyed several yrs of carefree wading with a hightop stretch no zipper boot foot / sole prototype LL Bean ordered and decided not to carry, and they had no mesh vents or vents of any kind.
My guess is after a few steps any air pushes out and there is a state of suction negating the pumping action which would require an exchange of volume in/out of the boot cavity.
Maybe because the whole boot was stretch neoprene down to the side guards and full sole, whereby using just a top-seal as I suggest would in fact be susceptible to the sand pump problem you point out.
The eventual downfall was that the neoprene delaminated from the hardy rubber sides and sole.
Also if this becomes the only issue it would be easy to aquaseal a durable fine nylon mesh vent in somewhere. But I'm just not that foolish/optimistic... it will probably take some experimentation before arriving on a carefree solution.
My theory on your old boots is the same as yours I think, that there was no space at all between the wader bootie and your boot, so there was no pumping, that won't be the case with anything else that isn't a stretch fit.
05-30-2011, 11:53 AM
I love the idea of the stretch gaiter. the thought of a comfortable shoe free of sand just makes me giggle. I'm currenlty using a wading flat boot with a zipper. I keep a pair of pliers in the trunk to use to pull the zipper down due to all the sand in the zipper. Waiting for the zipper to break anytime now. Maybe some duct tape would help :)
And I still get sand in my boot.
At this point I am going to do some experimenting with neoprene 'tubes' integrated (probably sewn in by cobbler).
This is one of several ideas I will be testing over the summer. I'll keep posting my results.
BTW - recent brainstorm, an interlock. 100% sand-free. Getting the components together, testing shortly.
06-03-2011, 11:30 AM
I've tried many types of boots ,sandals and flats shoes to defeat the creeping sand under your arch problem,nothing works,unless the shoe is permanently attached to the wader as in boot foot waders or those with built in lace able shoes.No matter how tight or sealed you may think they are seperate wading shoes will have leaks that allow fine sand to penetrate.If you find a set up that works ,I'm all ears.:D
Paul I know you as a very discriminating angler and when I get this done I'll have you do a design review for me :) No holds barred.