Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Got an opinion?

All right folks here is your chance to help someone in need.

I am looking to buy two things: waders and a walking stick. I have no preconceived notions on any of things so please "throw everything at the wall and lets see what sticks".

Please provide your choices and the pluses and minuses for each item.

Being pre-warned is being pre-armed!



  1. I have never owned a pair of chest waders, or a wading staff.
    I have used many different brands of hip boots.
    Most of the streams I fish really don't require chest waders, in fact many of the streams require hiking boots, for I'll fish from the banks. I will fish larger rivers, like the Farmington, etc. and I manage to do OK with the hippers.
    The brand of hippers I use are Hodgman, which are a reliable product.

  2. For a wading staff, I use a Folstaf 3/4" ..just bought one for my wife for about $100 from LL Bean. I haven't tried others brands but but looking at a few they seem flimsier. I read a lot of reviews and talked to other fisherman and a lot of people recommend folstaf. The only holds together so well it is sometimes hard to take apart.

    For waders I have been using breathable stocking foot waders. I also have some neoprene boot foot ones but they are really only appropriate for very cold conditions. My first breathable wader were cheap...they barely lasted a season...I picked up some nice SIMMS ones at the LL Bean outlet,...they have been great. My opinion is spend as much as you can on wader...they will last much longer.

  3. Simms makes a very nice wading staff for $120. Yes, it's $120 for a stick. But it collapses so it's worth it. ;)

    But seriously, I have a pair of Cabela's neoprene waders, which are great for cooler weather, and if I need a stick I find one where I'm at. In the summer I typically wet wade.

  4. For waders I would go Patagonia. Simms is the best well known but they seem to rip easily. Just my personal experience. As for the walking stick, I don't think brand matters, just one that is comfortable enough for you to carry when your not fishing

  5. I'm with Mike C. I have a Folstaf and waders from LL Bean. My boots are from Cabelas. If you are looking for a good walking stick (not wading) try John at Musings of Murphyfish. Let me know if you need the link.


  6. I've got a set of Simms Gore Tex waders. Hands down the best waders I have ever had. As far as tearing is concerned, I live in some extremely rugged country. Haven't torn them yet. Their customer support is amazing too. The only thing I don't like is that if you have to pee, be prepared to wait. Should have spent the extra money on the zipper... They are pricey, but if you fish enough, they are a worthy investment. Redington and Patagonia are both worthy companies as well, but neither use Gore Tex. Redington makes a million sizes, so you have a good chance of getting ones that will fit.

    I've never used a wading staff before, but I'm not sure I would spend that amount of money on a glorified stick.

    Keep boots in mind too, maybe just spend $20 on the staff and use that extra $100 on some boots. Korkers are great boots and inexpensive.

  7. Mike.....I hope the bad weather bypassed you guys.

    Everybody......thanks for the input so far. I am going to follow up on the suggestions. LL Bean & Bass Pro Shop visits look like they are in the future.

  8. I've had Simms guide waders for several years and love them. However they are very expensive and I won't be buying them again. Hodgeman makes decent products (boots and waders)the price is usually right and I've got an old pair of waders that just keep going. Same with the boots.

  9. Thanks Howard.....I saw that name (Hodgeman) all over eBay and I was going to ask about them.

  10. Ed..the bad storms went south of us so we just got a lot of rain last night.

    My Neoprene waders are Hodgemans. They work just fine...they are just very very warm so I don't use them.

    If you are looking at breathable waders regardless of brand spend as much money as you can (look for deals..the LL Bean outlets are great for this...I got $300 Simms for $100). Before those I bought some cheap ones from a person Ebay and they didn't last more than a season before leaking. It is my experience that the more expensive waders have better reinforced seems and therefore should last longer. Repairing a tear in some waders was pretty easy...repairing a seem leak was impossible.

    There are many places you can get away with wet wading particularly as summer comes a long. I usually stick with waders for all but the smallest streams...but that is a personal preference...I feel the wader protect my legs better from rocks and branches.

  11. I use Simms Guide Waders and have never had any issues...they are more expensive, but I feel worth the price. I burned through three pairs of waders in three years (Patagonia/Cabelas/LL Bean), before I made the decision to bite the bullet and get Simms. Not saying that you wouldn't have a good experience with other brands, but I've had the best luck with my Simms.

    Walking stick, not sure. Will be interested to see what others say.

  12. Mike...I am glad to hear that you didn't get hit like Springfield.

    I am going to Freeport in the next week of two for work so I will check out Bean's Outlet Store there. It sounds like "being cheap" isn't the way to go here.

    I was at Bean in Burlington today and they had a pair for $79 but the waders had no belt. I also saw the walking stick you mentioned for about $90.

    Sanders it seems like Simms is in the lead. I am hoping to grab a pair at Bean's outlet like Mike. Otherwise I will have to bite the bullet and pay full price. Thanks for the input.