Simms Guide boot vs Orvis Pro?

#16
Thanks again for all the input everyone.
With Simms on one foot and Orvis on the other, I tramped around the yard for an afternoon and evaluated a variety of points on each. Shad, because I fish in Alaska once or twice a year and I do get over the the Rockies once or twice a year, I only evaluated the rubber soled version of each. I went into this assuming no rubber sole will match felt for underwater grip.
On the comfort front, I found the Simms to be a little easier on the feet, though the sole is much stiffer than on the Pro. On the fit category, I found both to be good, though notably I needed to go TWO sizes up in the Orvis Pro.
Simms has a great history on the construction/wearability/longevity side. The Pros are pretty new so there's not much history. In examining them both very closely and despite the more flexible Orvis sole, as long as the glue doesn't fail it looks like the Pro's should be nearly as indestructible as the SG boot.
When it came to the overall sole however, it was night and day. I found the Orvis Pro's and their partnership with the tire guys (Michelin), noticeably superior in "stickyness" and flexibility. The flexibility is only moderate, vs the very stiff sole on the Simms., however the stiff sole likely does make the Simms boot a little more durable.
In all but the sole category I found the boots to be very comparable. I was sold on the OP's however- and I think they may even approach felt for grab underwater. I also think they will be significantly more comfortable when longer hiking overland is required.
So there it is. I'm off to Alaska later this week and I'll report back later this month how they actually performed in the water. Hopefully I won't be leaving any Michelin skids on the river bottom!
JP
 

sroffe

Active Member
#17
I wouldn’t wear any non-felt boots without spikes.
What he said.

I have a pair of Simms rubber soled boots, and had to put extra traction on them to keep slipping on the wet river rock of the OP. Definitely worth having spikes, or cleats, or what ever to keep you from falling.
 
#18
Update: Spent 5 days on the river and found the Orvis Pros to be great. Nary a single slip and the only minor issue I had was some discomfort from the stiffness of the upper boot on my skinny ankles. Very comfortable on the feet though, and after a few days they seemed to break in around the ankles. They show no wear after the five days and I feel comfortable they'll last for as many more years as I'll be doing any serious wading (hopefully quite a few).
I'm sure the Simms Guide boots are good, it just felt like the stiff bottoms were better suited to crampons than easy walking around the river.
Bottom line, I'm very happy with the choice and would be comfortable recommending the Orvis Pros with Michelin soles to anyone.
And the fishin wasn't bad either ;)
 
#19
Update: Spent 5 days on the river and found the Orvis Pros to be great. Nary a single slip and the only minor issue I had was some discomfort from the stiffness of the upper boot on my skinny ankles. Very comfortable on the feet though, and after a few days they seemed to break in around the ankles. They show no wear after the five days and I feel comfortable they'll last for as many more years as I'll be doing any serious wading (hopefully quite a few).
I'm sure the Simms Guide boots are good, it just felt like the stiff bottoms were better suited to crampons than easy walking around the river.
Bottom line, I'm very happy with the choice and would be comfortable recommending the Orvis Pros with Michelin soles to anyone.
And the fishin wasn't bad either ;)
Did you wear them as is, or did you add some studs/cleats to the bottom?
 
#20
Did you wear them as is, or did you add some studs/cleats to the bottom?
Thanks for asking. Wore them straight out of the box with no additions to the sole. There were not a lot of large rocks (softball/basketball size) and there was not a lot of moss, so they'll still need that kind of test- hopefully very soon!
 

mcoomer

Active Member
#21
I've had Orvis, and now have a pair of Simms guide boots with the rubber soles. Love the fit, but miss my felt soles. Going to put lugs in them and see if that helps. Good traction in the river, great traction on the bank getting in and out of the river, but felt is a bit better on the rocks. But yeah Simms > Orvis.
 

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