OBN’s favorite gear prompt got me thinking about some of our gear; the gear we love and the gear that proved to be not-so-awesome. Waders are a source of that not-so-awesome gear. Below are reviews of the waders we have owned to date.
Dustin had a pair of Bass Pro waders that lasted him 6 years, with not a hint of a leak. These waders survived walking through dense brush every year. Last spring, they finally decided to seep a bit of water, and we replaced them with the exact same style. We also bought this style for me as well. Unfortunately, they leaked. I am not talking a little bitty leak, but a LEAK. Back to Bass Pro they went. Dustin was so disappointed, as was I because these waders were super comfortable, and quite breathable.
After much thought, we decided on another offering from Bass Pro, these were a little more expensive at an $149 price point. The other options were nice, but we could not bring ourselves to spend $400 on waders, especially with just one income. Well, we chose poorly. Dustin and I each had three pairs of these waders. His first set leaked, my first and second set leaked, and on the third leaky set we said to hell with Bass Pro brands.
Right before we left Kansas City, we exchanged our waders, for what we hoped the last time. After damning the Bass Pro brand, we tried our hand at the Freestone Waders by Simms. Surely, Simms waders won’t leak right? I mean, Simms is supposed to be THE fishing brand. Not in this case; my first time on the Poudre, I had wet legs. What was even more disturbing, I was hardly in the water at all; if they leaked this much at the seams under nearly zero stress, what happens when I wear them in a rip-roaring stream? Heck, the whole side seam might bust out of them then! Talk about a very unhappy little girl. Not to mention, these were the most uncomfortable waders I have ever had on in my life. The one pocket on the front also blew. I was not as unhappy with the three sets of waders as I was with these. Major disappointment!
At this point, I am beginning to think I have razors that spontaneously protrude out of the side of my legs of which I have been completely unaware. The razors are specialist feeders because they only prefer waders. My hiking pants, jeans or sweats have not had the same fate. In fact, the jeans I have on at this moment have survived the spontaneous leg razors for five years.
Long story short, we are without waders. A rather problematic situation since we want to fish in the immediate future. Our quest for the right wader continues this weekend. The thought of spending gads of green on two sets of waders makes me cranky, but I fear we have no choice. I really liked the Redington Chena Waders, but upon closer inspection, I didn’t like how the socks and pants came together; too much room for bunching. Further research has us looking into the Simms Guide Series and William and Joseph’s Drynamic offering. Of course, we will let you know what works or doesn’t work out.