Best wading/hiking boot?

Discussion in 'Camping, Hiking, Cooking' started by Jason Rolfe, Mar 13, 2006.

  1. Jason Rolfe Wanderer

    Posts: 1,178
    the beach
    Ratings: +372 / 0
    I'm in the market for a pair of boots. I want to ideally get a boot that will be good for rivers like the Snoqualmie and Yak, but also good for hiking into places.

    Anyone have any suggestions or reviews of boots that they use in this way?
    Or do people find that it's just best to pack their wading boots?
    This will be my first pair of wading boots.
    LL Bean has some new boots (I think they have what they call the "aqua stealth" sole). Anyone used those, or have any opinions about them. They don't look like they would be very good on a stream like the snoqualmie which, in my limited experience, is slippery as hell. But they look like they would be good for hiking.

    PS--I know these posts show up a lot. I couldn't find much by searching though.
  2. crobarr New Member

    Posts: 74
    hillsboro, oregon
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    auquastealth soles are good for streams/rivers that have no moss and algae on the bottom (like in late winter/early spring. studded aquastealth soles are pretty good all over.

    a very good thing about the aquastealth soles is they are easy to clean and don't carry parasites so bad from river to river (still need to clean the rest of the boot of course). they also don't pickup snow as bad as felt.

    if you don't like the ll bean boots, you can always send them back/trade them for felt/studded felt.
  3. Brian Scott Member

    Posts: 45
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Check out the Chota STL Plus Wading Shoe: I have these and love them. Quick lace system, replaceable cleats, stitched soles, these are the best and easiest to use. You'll love the cleats. Well worth the $$$.
  4. mr trout Trevor Hutton

    Posts: 545
    Yakima, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Depending on the hiking you plan on doing, get a pair of wading boots and clip them to your pack with a carabiner. Much better than hiking in wading boots. They really aren't made for hiking, they are made for wading. But it can be done with one pair of boots. Or get sandals. I like sandals...A lot.
  5. mdjm66 Member

    Posts: 200
    Cloverdale, BC
    Ratings: +3 / 0
    A buddy of mine picked these up awhile ago and really likes them:


    I still have my old hodgmans


    We always hike and wade, but it is usually not long distances, no more than a mile or two. If it was, I might consider packing them vs wearing them, I like to be a minimalist when wading though, less stuff to weigh you down, but, I am still fairly new to this stuff (4 yrs)....

  6. chadk Be the guide...

    Posts: 5,057
    Snohomish, WA.
    Ratings: +41 / 0
    I wouldn't recomend 'real' hiking in wading boots. A mile or 2 tops is probably fine. But much longer and you're wearing out the felt. And if you are wearing your neopreme booties - those will take a beating too. I'd buy a good light weight pair of wading boots and hike in regular hiking boots - especially if you are prone to blistering, then you'll really want good fitting hiking boots.

    Studs\spikes\cleats aren't that fun if you do a lot of hiking and walking on rocks and or pavement\sidewalks.

    You could also try Korkers convertables...
  7. Freestone Not to be confused with freestoneangler

    Posts: 2,337
    Ratings: +1,172 / 0
    I have the Chotas also and while they are the most comfortable boots I've ever tried, I can't imagine hiking in those cleats. And while the cleats are removable, they are very time consuming to install so it's not practical to take them in and out. I installed them at home with a nut driver and it took me forever. Now, I just save them for when I need the extra traction and use my plain felts for everyday.

    I agree with Chad and Trevor; for serious hiking, unless your budget allows you to replace your boots and waders often, get both light hiking and wading boots or consider the Korkers.
  8. Jason Rolfe Wanderer

    Posts: 1,178
    the beach
    Ratings: +372 / 0
    Thanks for the help guys.
    I think I have an idea what to get.
  9. earlsmith Member

    Posts: 499
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I would look at Cabelas back country wader, I do a ton of wet wading in the warm weather and these have performed outstandingly. I accompany them with the neoprene sock, and my ripstop nylon pants act as the gravel guard and dry in 5 minutes

    Earl Smith
  10. custodyboss New Member

    Posts: 10
    Vancouver, Washington
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I have a set of the LL bean, aquasoles with carbide studs. I like them so much I use them to duck hunt in also.

    no slip, anywhere anytime.

    worked for me.............
  11. Happy Gilmore New Member

    Posts: 233
    Vancouver, BC
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Anyone with experience with the L2 aquastealth boots?

    I'm looking to get some new wading boots shortly and would like something suitable for small hiking distances to rivers (ie. a mile/tops to start fishing), and then both sand bottoms/slabby rock bottoms and then softball sized rock bottoms.

    L2's or?? Don't mind spending some dough to get best of as many arenas as I can.
  12. fredaevans Active Member

    Posts: 3,115
    White City, Oregon, USA.
    Ratings: +118 / 0
    Rather surprised no one has mentioned the Korker boots with the 'swap out' soles. These have become very popular here in southern Oregon with the 'boat guys.'

    Only takes a few seconds to swap out the boot bottoms and off you go.:ray1:
  13. Randy Knapp Active Member

    Posts: 1,132
    Warm Springs, Virginia, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
  14. Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

    Posts: 7,136
    Not sure
    Ratings: +1,224 / 0
    There've been quite a few posts about AquaStealth soles. Try typing it in as a single word instead of separated into two.

    I've got Simms Guides with studded AquaStealth soles and they're great for all kinds of streams. If you're hiking in a mile or less, they'll be fine.

    But nonetheless, they're no substitute for purpose-designed hiking boot. If you're contemplating anything longer and over rocky, rugged terrain, think hiking boots, not wading.

  15. Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

    Posts: 3,076
    Missoula, MT
    Ratings: +13 / 0
    I just have said to hell with it and have used simms boots, and replaced the soles every 5 or so months. Right now a good bit of the felt is gone so they need new soles. However I love them and am not gonna give up hiking to find fish just cause it wears out soles.

  16. Dylan D Member

    Posts: 323
    West Seattle
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I came to the same conclusion, only with Patagonia boots, which for my freakishly wide foot, are amazingly comfortable, even after hiking a few miles.
  17. Clay New Member

    Posts: 4
    Ft. Lewis, WA
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Check out the Korkers Wetlands... They are easy to convert and offer pretty good support for a wading boot. I have regular width feet and bought mine one size larger and they work great with a regular hiking sock. I'm kind of pickey about boots after several years in the Army and these are working out fine. I'm hard on boots too and so far they have taken the beating well. Very affordable as well. Good luck.

  18. sss New Member

    Posts: 109
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I bought a pair of Korkers Outfitters from PSFC a month ago. I wore them out of the box on Tuesday for a 14 mile r/t hike to an Alpine lake. Yesterday, I switched to the felt soles for a all-day float trip on the Yak. The boots were great, the 2 different soles both worked outstanding.

    Now if my old ass body could keep up with the boots, I'd have something :beer1:
  19. Flyfishsteel New Member

    Posts: 565
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Yeah, I'm thinking of the Korkers konvertibles. They look solid with lots of protection and support and supposedly superlight with high qualilty materials.

    My cheap hodgemans with studs have ZERO ankle support are killing the bottom of my db.bawling:
  20. wadin' boot Donny, you're out of your element...

    Posts: 2,013
    Wallingford, WA
    Ratings: +1,555 / 0
    I use a 5mm windsurfing or surfing boot. I go through a pair every two years or so, the last pair met a bad end, a rat ate a hole in them when I had them stored under the porch. That rat is now dead.:thumb:

    If things are too slippery for the rubberized sole, or if there's meaty boulders, I strap on a pair of tevas a size bigger for some extra grip. I hike with the Tevas on. And if you end up swimming, it doesn't feel like you're stuck in a workboot.

    The downside is you gotta dry em out pretty quick otherwise they smell like my avatar.