Fishing waders are the next step in your search for fly fishing gear for beginners. Waders are a must when the weather turns a bit cold and you want to be warm and comfortable on the water.
My first fly fishing waders were made of 100% neoprene they were uncomfortable, heavy, cumbersome, snug and did not breath. Imagine taking them off after a long day of fishing and driving home with your buddies? Not a good smell.
Thank you technology, we now have breathable, comfortable and lightweight waders. Today’s waders are made of Gore-Tex or nylon which are lightweight breathable fabrics that are not only waterproof but comfortable and breathable. Most good waders do come with sown in neoprene stockings, this is actually good for comfort as well and neoprene is more waterproof than Gore-Tex or nylon. The most popular type of wader is the chest wader, although I do have pant waders that are awesome when I’m fishing in smaller waters and when it’s only going to be cold in the morning and warming up in the afternoon.
Waders come in all shapes and sizes, you can spend as little as $100.00 and up to $1,000.00 just for waders. It all comes down to how much you are going to be using them, as well as comfort and durability. If you are more of a summer angler and only plan to do some fishing a handful of times during the colder months, an inexpensive breathable wader will do just fine. Just remember though, if you choose to spend less money, you’re sacrificing the durability of the wader. However, It may make perfect sense to go with the less expensive waders and take the chance that they will last for two or three years before you have to replace them.
There are waders that are made for women and children but for the most part most waders are unisex and come in sizes ranging from, small, medium, large to extra large and so on. Waders are supposed to fit loose but most come with a belt that tightens to keep water out just in case of a fall.
So, per normal we have done a lot of research and found the following suggestions for entry level + waders.
If you will notice the first recommendation is a 3 layer construction, the second is a 4 layer and so on. This speaks to durability as well as the life of the wader and also the price.
Hodgeman makes good waders and for around $100.00 this is an excellent entry level wader. It’s a 3 layer breathable material with neoprene booties and comes with a wading belt, chest pocket, fleece hand warmers and more. If you’re on a budget, this is a good wader and comes in many sizes. It has a lot of features for the price and should last you tell it’s time to upgrade. This wader does have gravel guards but doesn’t have reinforced knee and lower leg guards. To purchase click the header or image.
Yes it’s Orvis Encounter again. Orvis has been around for over 150 years, founded in 1856 in Manchester Vermont, and have been making great outdoor products ever since. I guess they have had plenty of time to figure out how to make a quality entry level products for fly fishing beginners. Orvis calls this value priced and I think it’s more than appropriate because for around $169.00 this is more of a mid than an entry level wader. This is stylish, it’s a 4 layer nylon shell and comes with a lot of cool features, the hand warmer pocket, the zippered chest storage pocket, the lower leg protection, wading belt, neoprene booties, gravel guards, etc. This wader comes in sizes for all anglers, men, women and teens. For this price we couldn’t find anything comparable, this, my friends, is a highly recommend. These waders could seriously last you for years. To purchase click the header or image.
Hodgman stepped it up with the H5 chest wader for around $220.00. This wader is a combination of 3 and 5 layer construction, Hodgman figured out a way to deliver puncture resistance on the legs and seat and at the same time giving you comfort and mobility where you need it most. This lightweight breathable wader features a durable water repellant coating to shed water from the outside of the wader. The H5 also give you a top loading external pocket with water resistant zipper, micro-fleece lined hand warmer, internal storage pocket, wade belt, gravel guards, back D ring to store your net and more. These waders were built to last and their anatomically correct left and right booties are built for comfort and utilize 5mm thick neoprene to keep your feet warm. Hodgman hit the mark with this 3 and 5 layer combination and are highly recommended for the angler who is serious about fishing. To purchase click the header or image
Simms G3 Guide Stocking foot Waders
When you decide to go above and beyond and just want to buy a great pair of waders, the Simms G3 for about $500.00 is unreal. The name, guide should tell you all you need to know. These are built to last for a long, long time, they are designed by fishing guides, made of 5 layer breathable Gore-Tex and made to last. The construction is fantastic and I love the lower leg protection. This is comfort in a wader and it has all the extras you want and need, the micro fleece hand warming pocket, front utility pocket, comfortable back to front suspenders as well as wading belt, etc. They are lightweight and come in sizes for everyone. These fly fishing waders have it all. To purchase these waders visit our friends @ Fish West.
Just remember, when purchasing fly fishing waders, get what you are comfortable with. It may make sense to buy the less expensive wader when you know that you may have to purchase a new pair in a few years. Even if you have to replace them every two years, you’re only spending about $50.00 a year. However, If you are going to be using the waders a lot within a year, think about the higher end waders. Also remember, that if it’s really cold a nice pair of thermals under your waders makes a big difference.
Get out there and get fishing and remember. Fly Fishing Gear for Beginners is happy to answer any questions you may have. Leave your question or comment bellow.