So you want to take up fishing. Or perhaps you’ve already been an avid fisher for some time, in which case you can probably attest to the importance of good wader shoes or wading boots. Waterproof boots, sometimes referred to a “waders” are necessary for every serious fisher, especially if they plan on getting into the water frequently. 2017 alone saw over 49 million Americans participate in freshwater, saltwater, and fly fishing — and the latter in particular requires waterproof boots.
As you’ve probably guessed, fishing can put a lot of wear and tear into waders, to the point that even heavy duty waders can break down over time. If you put moderate wear and care into your waterproof boots, they can last up to 3 years — but as these boots tend to be something of an investment, and finding the right waders for you isn’t necessarily easy, you’ll want them to last for as long as possible. With that being said, we’re looking into how you can ensure that your waterproof boots last; that way, you can enjoy a pastime enjoyed by millions of people worldwide, uninterrupted.
1. Be Strategic About Your Usage/strong>
As with any shoe, waterproof waders need be applied to the right purpose. Some waders are more heavy duty than others, for example. If you’re going to be wading through a river to go fly fishing, you may want heavier boots. Those who are saltwater fishing and spending more time on a boat than in the water, you may still want waterproof shoes, but they should probably be more lightweight. You’ll also want to be careful about how you fish and cross the water. If you’re walking through a river in your waders, begin from a 45 degree angle; this will give you the most success.
2. Think Before You Buy
Keep in mind — you don’t want to buy the first pair of waterproof boots that you find. If they do turn out to be the best, go back to them! It’s important to investigate the brand you’re buying from, and to assess whether or not the physical makeup of the shoe is right for your purposes. Thickness is an important thing to consider; if you’re looking at neoprene waders, for example, they tend to run from having a 3 millimeter thickness, which will work for warmer weather fishing and flying fishing, to 5 millimeter thickness, which is best for cold waters. Ensuring that you’re buying the right waterproof boots will take their durability another step further — and don’t forget to check your fit!
3. Dry And Store Your Boots Properly
Waterproof doesn’t mean 100% waterproof. Water will inevitably get into your boots one way or the other — and while your boots may protect your feet, you need to protect your boots in turn if you want them to last. For that matter, moisture can build up in your boots while you wear them — and that moisture, combined with heat, can cause mildew. Turn your waders inside out to dry them completely. For that matter, store your waders flat, or hang them upright. Another storage tip would be to store them out sunlight; that will further decrease the damage.
4. Wash Them Yourself
As a final detail — you may not like how your waders look after you’ve used them. The only way to fix that is to wash them; but handle that yourself! Do not by any means throw your waders in a machine, and let them air dry after. Use a wash that is specifically made for waders, and you’ll get even better results!
Waders are necessary tools for fishers, just like a fishing rod would be. But all too often, they are treated like regular shoes. Take care of your waders, and they’ll last for years — giving you plenty of successful fishing trips!