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FlyflingerMarch 16th, 2015, 6:17 pm
Fredericksburg, Virginia

Posts: 30
A couple of days ago I picked up a current copy of "Fly Fish America." On page 38 is an article, "Buyers' Guide to Breathable Waders" that explains the latest technologies and lists 100 models. It also has charts that distinguish boot foot or stocking foot, type of fabric, barrier type, and MSRP. The editors did a fairly good job. I would think the OP would find this article quite useful and it's free at nearly all fly tackle shops and outfitters. What stops my heart is looking at the MSRP of Simms top wader, now the G4Z, at $799. Simms may very well be the best waders on the market, but at the price of your first-born? However, one can purchase a functional, breathable, no-frills wader for under a $100. I counted at least six. There are a lot of waders priced under $150 as well.

Bmark0610, you need to read the article to determine what features are important and what are not important to you before you decide which one to pick. I am willing to bet forum members have strong ideas they are willing to share should you have questions.
Jmd123March 17th, 2015, 12:22 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
Check out Cabelas for a wide range of prices/quality. How much time will you spend on the salt-water flats in temps that are too warm for waders vs. cold trout streams where you need them most of the year? How much wear and tear do you put on them, do you fish small brush-filled streams where you are climbing over logs (e.g., my streams) or do you have nice open stretches to wade and cast at distance?

I have used both Simms and Cabelas breathable stocking foot waders with good results, with Orvis Wet Wading Shoes and now Redington wading boots. About $200-250 per waders, $80-100 per boots. I fish from May (April if I am lucky, hope so with this spring thaw!) to October (November rarely but again if I am lucky) and like I said ditch the waders if summer is warm (unlike last summer!!) and go with just the wading boots with neoprene socks or booties. May have to go with long johns under fleece-lined jeans with waders if steelhead start showing up soon in my "backyard"...

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
WbranchMarch 17th, 2015, 2:32 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733

For my steelheading under clothing I have two different weights of Polar fleece. I use 200 weight in October and go to 300 weight for November and early December. Both pairs have slash pockets, a zippered wallet pocket, and stirrups so I don't have to tuck my pant legs into my socks which is bulky.

I wear a thin pair of white poly liner socks and layer them with a Gander Mtn synthetic sock. I use a pair of #13 Simms Freestones so my toes have space to move and not get cold. Upper clothing I wear a short sleeve poly T-shirt, followed with a thin UA long sleeve shirt, then a 300 weight poly pullover, followed with a good wading jacket, one of those synthetic beanies with the ear flaps and finally a pair of Simms fingerless gloves. I carry one of those hand warmers that has nice felt on the outside and on the inside is a fire proof material and I have these solid fuel sticks. I light one end of the fuel stick and insert it into the unit and it keeps very warm for about two hours. Then I just put in another fuel stick. The hand warmer body costs about $8.00 and I think I can buy a dozen fuel sticks for $5.00.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123March 17th, 2015, 7:53 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
Thanks for the advice on set-up, Matt. I need to update my cold weather clothing with more modern materials - I skied down to 10 F on the trials this year (only because it was sunny with no wind) but a lot of days I was pushing the comfort level, largely because of sweat. I know the newer materials are much better at wicking moisture.

I'll have to ask you in a separate post about leader set-ups for shallow, clear waters - which I will be fishing, preferably after dark because these are some skittish fish, redds right next to shore!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
WbranchMarch 17th, 2015, 9:41 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
Jonathon, Jonathon, Jonathon,

What am I going to do with you????????

preferably after dark because these are some skittish fish, redds right next to shore

For a guy who once wrote a less than flattering post about guys who pursue steelhead here you are telling us that you are going to disturb the lovemaking activities of a pair of steelhead procreating on a redd.

I tried many years ago to fish for steelhead on the Rifle River, back in my Skidway Lake days (yes, that's a real town, though it doesn't even have it's own Post office). One day I was fishing what looked like a nice hole, and then from the woods emerge no fewer than 8, count 'em, EIGHT guys, in a line, walking right on the opposite bank, right over the hole..."Gee, I don't think I'm going to catch anything...and neither will any of those guys either!!!"

Besides the fact that, in my humble opinion, standing out in cold, wet weather casting like a zombie SUCKS...

Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
WbranchMarch 17th, 2015, 10:05 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733

Regarding steelhead leaders it all kind of depends on how big the fish are, how spooky they are, the skills of the angler, the flow regime, and a few other factors. I typically use a 9' 3X leader for water with some visibility, but no more than 18". When the water turns from an emerald green to more or less translucent I go to a 10' 4X leader. I use a 7 1/2' 3X leader and add one of those micro tippet rings and add a piece of Seaguar GrandMax or other very good fluorocarbon about 18" long. When the water drops and gets clearer and the fish start getting spooky I'll usually stick with the 10' but replace the 4X with a piece of 5X. Then I can sight fish with smaller flies and the steelhead readily eat those little nymphs. You just have to have patience and take your time. You just can't be horsing in 5# - 7# of fresh chrome on 5X.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123March 18th, 2015, 10:21 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
Yes Matt, I do recall my little rant. I think I also recall you saying that I made you so upset that you would then need to take a pill of some sort...not sure how much in jest that was, either! I can certainly apologize for it again.

Yes, I know I'm not much of a steelhead fisherman, have tried it on many occasions (probably at least fifty or so) with no success, and fly fishing in winter weather is something I just haven't been into lately. However, these fish will be nesting within a ten-minute walk from my house, and I have proper steelhead tackle (9' 8-weight Cabelas L-Tech Rod with RLS reel), so I really have no excuse and likely deserve the derision I have gotten on this site for my steelheading comments. So, this year I am going to give it another try. And it's either catch them on the redds or have to lob sooo much weight into 10-20 foot deep holes that I just don't think I could have fun with the latter.

Thanks for the leader advice as well, Sir. These fish nest right next to shore in shallow (less than 2 feet), gin-clear water and thus are extremely skittish. Last spring a couple of guys in a drift boat were getting pretty pissed off at some kids who kept running down to the shoreline and spooking them...I'll take a photo of the area and post it on here to show you what I'm talking about. There is even a small creek that these poor fish try to swim up and spawn in, but not only is there no spawning gravel, the stream is sooo shallow that they get stuck on their bellies in the sand with their backs out of the water! Pretty sad, except for the bears that get gourmet meals at this time of year, just when they come out of their dens good and hungry!

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MartinlfAugust 13th, 2015, 9:07 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Here's some information on waders.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell

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