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Thread: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

  1. #1
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    Default Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    What are your thoughts on wader prices? Are the expensive ones ($250+) worth it for someone who isn't in a fishing profession, or is it just wasted cash?

    What is the max you would pay for a pair of waders?

  2. #2
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    Great Falls, Montana
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    I'd say this: gear is what you pay for, but don't forget to ask yourself much you are going to use it.

    One of the greatest gear experiences I've had was using a high-end pair of waders (same pair) since 2006. No problems as compared to a friend who went the cheap end and went through two pairs in one Winter/Spring session. This winter I found part of the inner wader failing, sent them in, and was sent back an entirely new pair of current model waders.

    That being said, I used and abused my waders (besides proper care and maintenance ) since '06. I don't think a cheaper pair would have held up to the task.

    IMO, having a good pair of waders w/ a good warranty is pretty hard to beat. Yes the price might be higher, but cut out a few coffee or fast food stops and it starts looking doable. Watch for end-of-the-year sales at local fly shops, and the internet is full of sites getting rid of waders daily.

    I'd love to answer your second question; but I've forgotten how much I paid back then
    "We regarded it as our family river....and I surrender it now only with great reluctance."

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Thanks long bow. Great reasoning there. I'm asking mostly because I have a new $500 gift card to Orvis and I don't really know what I want with it. The one piece of my equipment that is slacking the most are my waders. Truthfully though, I don't use waders too much, but if I had a nicer pair......

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Short answer for me, yes, they are worth it. Long answer, I'm just your normal fish when I can kinda guy. I've had a pair of Simms Guide waders(very similar to the current Guide Stockingfoot) for several years. They've made numerous trips out West to Colorado and the San Juan in New Mexico and one trip to Alaska. A few months before I bought them I had blown out a pair of Orvis breathables on the San Juan. Went to "Float n Fish" to get some new waders and the dude there asked me if I wanted to buy the last pair of waders I would ever need or just some good replacements. I think the Simms Guides were around $399 then(could be way off), that was not in my budget(whatever the cost then was). So I picked up a pair of the Simms Lightweights. They were by far the best waders I had owned to that point, and still around 250 bucks. But, a few months later I go into one of my semi-local fly shops and walk out with a pair of Simms Guides. Steve Dally seems to know what buttons to push on me to sell me something, even if I don't need it! I will bust out the lightweights occassionally, like when the smallmouth creeks are a little to cool to start wet wading, and they still look almost brand new. The Guides look like they've been rode hard and put up wet and still perform flawlessly. That's my two cents.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Well, first of all, I have to admit to being cheap. But in this case, if I had $500 I would consult the Yellowstone Angler 2013 Wader Shootout and find a good compromise wader (the Redington Crosswater waders did pretty well for $99 for instance) but in any event, there are some pretty good waders there for a lot less than $500. Then I would think about a very nice reel, something that you would have your hands on, and look at and listen to when you fish and indulge in something like that. After all, waders are just a pair of pants...

    I am very suspicious about the actual value of high end fly fishing equipment. While I do believe that quality has value, most of this stuff is massively inflated in price for a market with money to burn.

    But, as said starting out, I am deeply cheap...

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  7. #6

    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by gfirob View Post

    I am very suspicious about the actual value of high end fly fishing equipment. While I do believe that quality has value, most of this stuff is massively inflated in price for a market with money to burn.

    But, as said starting out, I am deeply cheap...
    While I agree with this, I had a bunch of tax cash so I bought the G4Z simms. Very nice but overpriced.
    Okiemountaineer

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by nick k View Post
    Thanks long bow. Great reasoning there. I'm asking mostly because I have a new $500 gift card to Orvis and I don't really know what I want with it. The one piece of my equipment that is slacking the most are my waders. Truthfully though, I don't use waders too much, but if I had a nicer pair......
    You are very welcome. Just my 2cents though. But seeing your "I don't use waders too much" and "$500 gift card to Orvis" I say you put that to a new rod for yourself. You deserve it. I might get in trouble for saying this but get a rod from Orvis and there are plenty of other good companies out there selling great waders. I too had a gift certificate to Orvis for $100, and it was hard to make it go along ways. Went ahead and got one of their lower-end rods which has been an awesome rod for the price. I can only imagine some exceptional use off of their higher-shelf models.
    "We regarded it as our family river....and I surrender it now only with great reluctance."

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  10. #8
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Unfortunately, these days I would consider $250 a good price.

    The highest I would go if I needed new waders right now would be Simms G3, $450.

  11. #9

    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    My first waders were $120.00 from one of the chains. They lasted me 4 1/2 seasons of about 20 days per season (many days were waders on at breakfast, off for bed). That works out to $25.00- $30.00 per year. I bought another pair of the same model.

    If I paid $400.00, they would have to last 13 years or so. So the cheaper ones seem to make sense for me in my situation.
    Last edited by rusty 54; 07-25-2013 at 07:14 PM. Reason: bad math

  12. #10
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    Default Re: Expensive waders, are they worth it?

    Quote Originally Posted by rusty 54 View Post
    My first waders were $120.00 from one of the chains. They lasted me 4 1/2 seasons of about 20 days per season (many days were waders on at breakfast, off for bed). That works out to $25.00- $30.00 per year. I bought another pair of the same model.

    If I paid $400.00, they would have to last 8 years. So the cheaper ones seem to make sense for me in my situation.
    Right on man. My current waders are the old Simms "Classic" Guide, they are probably 8 years old and I paid $330 or something like that back then. It was a big purchase for me, but 8 years later and more than 150 days in then and they are still the best waders I've ever owned. And why I will go back to Simms when these finally fail, if they ever do. :-)

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