Waders for mountain creek fishing

broens

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Hi everyone

I do most of my fishing in Swiss alpine creeks. This mostly involves scrambling over rocks and through bushes (sometimes thorny), fishing on my knees/sitting and walking quite some distance. I've attached some pictures for you to gauge the setting.

Currently, I use a pair of chest high boot-foot waders with the following downsides for me:
- they're relatively inflexible (kneeling, scrambling)
- the boots don't protect my ankles at all
- It is quite cumbersome to take a p*** ;)
- I sweat a lot when walking in summer
- it's hard to clean them

Since I almost never wade deeper than my waist, I'm thinking about buying a pair of waist high stocking-foot waders. But I've never used stocking foot, nor waist high waders, so I'm not sure if they really fit my needs.

What type of wader would you suggest? Any specific models I could look for?

Thanks!


IMG_1744.jpgIMG_9187.jpgIMG_9315.jpgIMG_1619.jpg
 

jayr

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What brand are you currently wearing?

Is wet wading a possibility? I am guessing no, but have to ask anyway.
 

tcorfey

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The water looks pretty shallow but also pretty cold. You might want to look into the Choata Hippies, (stocking foot hip waders)they are made from the same material as waders with neoprene feet and all but they only go up to your crotch. When you hike you can fold them down and when you wade you can attach them to your belt. You want to wear some quick dry nylon pants under them so if you get carried away and wade too deep they dry quickly. Then buy a decent wading boot that is sturdy but fairly flexible for hiking. I have used the Orvis and the Patagonia light weight boots both worked well. I am sure Simms has a comparable product.

I have a pair of the Hippies and they are very light weight. I take them on trips because of that.

Chota "Hippies" – ChotaOutdoors
 

mtboiler

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I have only owned one pair of chest high waders. For the last 15 so years I have fished exclusively in waist high waders. Every pair of waders I have ever owned have been stocking foot waders. Never had a pair of boot foot waders. I walk a decent amount to spots and waist high waders are way cooler and easier. 90% of the time when i wade a small stream though I wear a pair of neoprene socks with my wading boots. Never much deeper than my knees, but usually it is my feet that get cold. So the neoprene wading socks keep my feet warm and the added bonus is the help fill out a wading boot for wet wading.
Now, a third thought, and something I am really considering is a pair of Chota hippies. Haven't pulled the trigger on those yet, which is probably good since the heel seem of my waders is leaking and I will probably get a new pair of waist high waders this fall. Won't need waders probably the rest of the summer as I will be wet wading with wading boots and neoprene socks probably through September.
 
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100954

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Dan Bailey waist high waders. But I don’t know if they make them any more? Their shop in Livingston, Montana has been sold and will be reopening soon under new ownership. Check with them when they open. I’ve worn their waders for many years, spring and fall, and they are excellent.
 

triggw

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That's beautiful country and stream you're fishing:)

I use the Simms G3 Pants (waist high) and boots for similar fishing here in Colorado. They work great and solve all the problems you mention. They're a fairly expensive wader to go thrashing about in the brush and thorns, though.
 

quattro

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I second the Simms pant recommendation - I use then fro similar waters in New Mexico and Colorado. also stocking foot and boots - much more comfortable for long walks in my experience. I've hiked significant distances in the the Simms g4 boots. I like the aluminum cleats screwed into them as attentional traction support both on the trail and in the water.
 

mysticm

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Beautiful stream pictures. A couple of years ago, I fished similar looking alpine streams in Austria. I mostly fished from the banks (water was crystal clear and did not want to scare the fish), in these situations I only wore my wading boots and some quick dry pants over a wool base layer. On a few occasions when I had no choice but to enter the water, I wore my pair of Orvis Ultralights. Patagonia also makes a similar model.
Some key things you may consider - 1) make sure that you select the correct in-seam length for your waders. In my case, selecting lightly longer in seam length gave me all the flexibility I needed to also hike up hill with them and scramble over boulders. 2) Buy a cheap pair of knee protectors (commonly found in the hardware stores in US, they attach with a couple of velcro bands around your knee), I used them over my waders for the times when I needed to fish from my knees. These knee protectors are quite light weight and low cost, so easy to carry in your back pack, sling pack.
Happy fishing & catching :)
 

ryc72

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I would skip the waders altogether and just get waterproof socks from Sealskinz and use hiking boots that you are okay getting wet and polyester quick dry pants and maybe wear knee pads. The socks aren’t truly aren’t waterproof but will keep your feet from freezing as the water that seeps in will quickly warm and stay warm. Assuming it’s 15c Air temps or warmer it should be doable. If it’s colder than that then wader pants with wading boots will probably be best. If you go the wader route though the Patagonia ultralight waders would be on the top of my list.
 

hatidua

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Simms neoprene guide socks inside Patagonia Foot Tractor wading boots and some mosquito repellent. Yes, I understand you are in the mountains but I was wet-wading in Colorado at an elevation of 9,500' (sorry, not sure how many meters that is) in mid February and I lived to tell the tale. You don't need waders unless it's something you really want, or in winter.

I used to wear waders year round, even in July. I got older....and maybe a little wiser.

This is in April, elevation 8,000' and there was snow on the sides of the river: @marklewisphoto on Instagram: “Wet-wading, April, Colorado - cold feet. . . . #bouldercreek #bouldercanyon #browntrout #brooktrout #flyfishing #yakodasupply…”
 

ibookje

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I do most of my fishing in southern Germany and Austria. The streams and rivers is fish I never go deeper than thigh high.

I have been using the Vision breathable hippers for almost 15 years. It’s so much cooler, easier to get in and out, taking a p&ss is a breeze ( :) ) and very durable. Best investment ever!
 

broens

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Thanks everyone for your advice! Quite a few of you seem to go without waders, just wearing neoprene socks and (wading) boots. I really haven't considered this to be an option at all... so i'll test this weekend, how often and how deep I need to wade. With lots of bushes on the bank, I often fish from the water..

I'm a bit skeptical about the hippies (Chota and Vision), as they don't close on top, so if I accidentally wade too deep, they could fill with water...

@hatidua : I'm sure, the Colorado streams are as cold as our glacier-streams, but you seem to be tougher than I am :)

@jayr : no clue what brand it is - cheap.
 

jwbowen

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I wet wade a lot. I wouldn't wear chest waders in those waters. When I plan to stay in the water all day
and encounter areas that have deep places I have to go through I use Patagonia UL waders. I can roll the
top down and remain cool. I usually have a pair of wool long John bottoms to keep my legs warm when
its cooler water. Sometimes I just wear long quick dry pants when I have to do some scrambling and
the water is not to cool. I have several waist high waders that just get too warm when a lot of scramble
and climbing is called for. Honestly, the water temp will determine what I wear on my lower extremities.

For the above applications:
1:) Early spring, Patagonia UL waders and UL boots.
2:) Summer, Quick dry pants and a pair of UL boots or just wading shoes with thick warm socks.

Just my mileage, yours may differ:))))
 

tcorfey

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I'm a bit skeptical about the hippies (Chota and Vision), as they don't close on top, so if I accidentally wade too deep, they could fill with water...
Broens, you do realize that the Hippies have a built in cinch strap just below the knee to help keep the socks in place and help prevent flooding just in case you go in a little too deep.
 
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