New to fly fishing. Looking for wader suggestions

Galaga

New Member
I am 5'10 / 235 lbs. So a little chunky. It's really all in the belly. I don't know that I'll ever do big river Fly Fishing and have been looking at wading pants. Could I get away with wading pants? I'm currently looking at the Patagonia swiftcurrent wading pants.
 

Galaga

New Member
I am 5'10 / 235 lbs. So a little chunky. It's really all in the belly. I don't know that I'll ever do big river Fly Fishing and have been looking at wading pants. Could I get away with wading pants? I'm currently looking at the Patagonia swiftcurrent wading pants.
I plan on doing small creek, stream, rivers and maybe some alpine mountain fishing.
 

Saltycutthroat

WFF Supporter
If you’re looking for a pair of chest waders I always recommend the Simms Tributary waders. They’re under $200usd and mine lasted about a year and a half before any leaks(I trek through some thick brush too.)

as far as wading pants go, you could definitely get away with them in the warm months, but if you plan on fishing in the cold time of year, I would recommend cheat waders.
 

majpreal

WFF Supporter
While I've contemplated wading pants in the past, I've ultimately concluded that the window for using them is relatively small. If sort of depends on when you'll be fishing but for me, it boiled down to this: small stream fishing usually takes place in the late spring/summer. In summer, wet wading is preferred. If you're new to fly fishing, "wet wading" is essentially wading in shorts but wearing proper boots, usually with gravel guard neoprene socks. So in those months before and after summer when the temps are lower, I'll use my chest waders, which I've never found to be too much of an issue. The upside of chest waders versus wading pants is that they give you a lot more versatility if you do decide to attempt some bigger water. If you go with chest waders, I will only buy zip fronts....but that is dictated by my unusually small bladder.
 

Stonefish

Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater....Know Grizzler
If you fish year round, I think you’ll find chest waders versus pants to be more useful.
You might check out the Redington Sonic Pros.
They have models for stout folks.
When you try on waders, consider bringing the heaviest under layer and socks you’d plan to wear while fishing.
That way you can determine if you’ll have room to move around, if the booties are to tight etc.
I like a looser fitting wader myself then one that feels constrictive if I’m layered up for cold weather fishing.
You’ll need wading boots as well regardless of what option you decide to go with unless you buy bootfoot waders.
Good luck.
SF
 

Cliff

Active Member
Chest waders will also come in handy if you ever decide to fish from a float tube.
 
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Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
WFF Supporter
I agree with everyone that your first pair of waders should be chest waders.
"wet wading" is essentially wading in shorts but wearing proper boots, usually with gravel guard neoprene socks.
I often wet wade and fish small stream pocket water with a 2% to 4% gradient. Because I often cover 5 miles of hiking-wading, I want my legs protected. I wear durable cotton/poly cotton/nylon trousers with double knees and seat and find tactical or GI BDU trousers give good freedom of movement and dry surprisingly fast. I wear wool socks, neoprene socks (mine don't happen to have integrated gravel guards), proper wading boots, and separate neoprene gravel guards with a velcro closure.

I've also been wearing knee pads both with waders and when wet wading to protect my legs and waders when kneeling for about 10 years but found that they wouldn't stay put; especially when wearing waders. I tried tactical knee-shin guards that stay put and have mongo padding but found them a bit too heavy and clunky feeling. Then I found fishing-specific padded neoprene full wrap-around wading gaiters/knee and shin guards that are lighter, give better mobility, still provide good protection, provide a little warmth. They also do a good job of keeping gravel and silt away from the tops of my gravel guards.



 

Guy Gregory

Active Member
I've a set of patagucci Rio Gallegos waders that convert pretty nicely to waist highs, I like 'em. Dryft makes a waist high that looks pretty handy for boat/raft fishing, and I've heard good stuff about their materials.
 

East Coaster

Active Member
Since you're new to flyfishing, I would suggest you avoid spending a fortune on your first pair of waders. I would buy a low-end pair of chest waders, which should last at least a season. Once they start leaking beyond the ability to repair effectively, you can upgrade to a nicer pair. At that point, you may know a little more about the type of fishing you're most interested in (maybe it's on lakes or other places where not much hiking is involved, maybe you only like to fish small streams in warm weather, etc.) and you can tailor your next purchase accordingly. The "bonus" is you can do what I do and use the old, leaky pair (as waist-highs as @Albula mentioned above) for "wet-wading" for the times when you want more leg protection than just wearing shorts. Good luck!
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
WFF Supporter
do what I do and use the old, leaky pair (as waist-highs as @Albula mentioned above) for "wet-wading" for the times when you want more leg protection than just wearing shorts.
Hmm... depending on how leaky they are do you get water accumulating in the waders (and not draining away) that is more uncomfortable and annoying than wet wading with just trousers or shorts?
 

East Coaster

Active Member
Hmm... depending on how leaky they are do you get water accumulating in the waders (and not draining away) that is more uncomfortable and annoying than wet wading with just trousers or shorts?
Never bothered me, but maybe I'm just not that particular. I never feel like I'm lugging around a lot of excess water, I'm just wet from the knees down. Also, I'm just wearing shorts (and no socks), so I don't have a wet fabric layer underneath. YMMV......
 

jaredoconnor

WFF Supporter
You would probably be large or large king, in both Redington and Simms. Their sizing is pretty similar. I'm 5'9" 220lb and I wear medium king, for reference.

Full size waders are definitely the way to go, if you will only have one pair. You will usually be fishing in thigh deep water. However, you may need to cross the stream and wading pants will be limiting.

I recommend Redington Escape waders. I've put mine through hell and haven't had a single leak.

I highly recommend getting felt boots, not rubber. WA freestone rivers are the most slippery rivers I have ever fished. Rubber boots are flat out dangerous, even if you put a tonne of studs in them.

A wading staff is also a good thing to have. You can get collapsible hiking poles, on Amazon, for about $40. They aren't essential, if you are careful. However, they allow you to move much faster. They also allow you to get to places that other people can't.
 
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kmudgn

Active Member
Personally, I use waist high waders about 90% of the time. Short waders help keep me from doing something stupid like wading too deep and (to me at least) they are more comfortable than chest highs. It really is a matter of personal preference depending on both fit and cost. In the past I had used LL Bean waders as they had sizes for the "full figured" fisher, but I recently checked and they have so few waders I would look elsewhere.

Seeing as you are new to the sport I would try a medium quality wader from a national chain like Cabela and see how you like it. You can check consumer ratings on most sites to see the ratings Also, look at Sierra trading post as they sometimes have great deals. I am a big fan of local shops and try to use them when possible, but my experience is that they only carry high end, high cost waders.
Good luck
 

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