Wading Boots

The Best Wading Boots 2021

Wading boots are designed to be worn along with fishing waders and they ensure you are kept dry and have superior traction whilst walking or wading through the water.

Many come with interchangeable studs for additional traction when needed.

The best wading boots are the Redington Fly Fishing Skagit that is compatible with studs and contains a rubber toe cap for added abrasion resistance.

Many wading boots come with various differences and this can be seen with the sole of the boot.

The 3 most popular types include felt, rubber and a combination of the two and choosing between them is a matter of personal preference.

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Best Fishing Wading Boots

Wading BootsPreviewStudded
Frogg ToggsNo
Korkers Devil’s CanyonYes – Interchangeable
Korkers GreenbackYes – Interchangeable
Foxelli Wading Boots No
Simms Tributary Rubber Sole Wading BootsNo

Unlike your standard footwear, wading boots need to be able to withstand long trails, sand, mud, UV rays, water, and uneven or slippery rocks.

That is a serious amount of wear and tear from a single pair of shoes and its vital that they are durable.

Depending upon the type of wading you do, felt is best for grip on slippery rocks but they do suffer on other surfaces.

For the best all-round experience, we highly recommend choosing rubber wading boots for the best performance.

Walking through water is very demanding on your footwear and wading boots need to be waterproof, breathable and windproof.

Therefore it’s worthwhile researching for a pair that suit your needs.

Below is a list of the best wading boots that are designed to provide superior grip on slippery rocks and ideal for saltwater or fly fishing.

Frogg Toggs Wading Boot

The Hellbender wading shoe will keep you protected and comfortable when you are enjoying the great outdoors. 

Take your time to walk through streams, lakes and other bodies of water without worrying about stepping on objects that would cause injury to your feet. 

If you like to fly fiish, the Frogg Togg Hellbender will allow you to wade in with confidence. Frogg Togg has been making wading shoes and accessories for the avid sports person for over 16 years. 

The Hellbender features:

  • 100% PVC
  • Lightweight mesh and PVC upper
  • Padded ankle collar
  • Nylon heel pull
  • Polyurethane midsole
  • Felt outsole
  • Polymer lace loops with brass speed hooks
  • Speed laces with locking lace clip

Once out of the water, the Frogg Togg wading boot will shed water and provide traction for walking up the river bank. Comfortable enough to wear all day and not feel fatigued. 

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Korkers Devil’s Canyon Wading Boot

boots that constructed for your comfort and safety in mind,


If you are an avid fly fisher, the Korkers Devil’s Canyon boots are your best bet for a comfortable and safe experience.

These boots have a high, tight ankle profile, so they stay secure and are very supportive of your feet.

They also have multiple drainage ports to keep your feet dry. They come with two different soles for different types of terrain, and the entire boot is constructed to prevent abrasion.

Here are the specs for the Korkers Devil’s Canyon wading boot:

  • Multiple integrated drainage ports
  • Both plain and stud Kling-On soles
  • Hydrophobic fast dry uppers
  • Molded toe cap
  • Sizes from 7 to 15
  • M2 Boa lacing system
  • Rubberized anti-abrasion midsole
  • Minimal triple-stitched seams to keep water out

The Korkers Devil’s Canyon boots really stand out as the best fly fishing wading boots because they are so durable and really keep your feet dry.

Everything about these boots is constructed with your comfort and safety in mind, which is why they are such a good investment for the avid fly fisher.

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Korkers Greenback Wading Boots

  with dry, supportive boots with a good grip


The Korkers Greenback Wading Boots are the best choice if you like to fish in areas that contain plenty of slippery rocks.

They are so great for this purpose specifically because of their gripped interchangeable sole system, so you can switch out the soles depending on the type of terrain you will be encountering.

They come with Kling-On sticky rubber soles, which stick very well to even the most slippery rocks.

These boots are also great for slippery terrain because they have lots of support for your foot and ankle, giving you more control of where you step.

Here are some of the notable features of the Korkers Greenback Wading Boots.

  • OmniTrax 3.0 Interchangeable Sole System
  • Comes with plain felt and sticky rubber soles
  • Internal water channels and midsole ports
  • Sizes start from  7 to 14
  • Hydrophobic fast-dry material
  • Durable cemented construction and thick seams

The OmniTrax interchangeable soles make a huge difference when it comes to staying in control on slippery terrain.

The hydrophobic construction also keeps your feet nice and dry and prevents bacteria from growing in the shoes.

The Korkers Greenback Wading Boots are a great investment and the best wading boots for slippery rocks.

They are dry, supportive boots with a good grip while out on the water, which is great for tackling those slippery surfaces.

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Foxelli Wading Boots 

You can forget about having sore feet after a day of fishing when you are wearing the Foxelli wading boot. They will give you plenty of support to keep your feet comfortable all day long. 

The removable, Ortholite insoles offer relief and protection. Shock absorbent midsoles minimize the impact on the joints of your feet and the flexible upper gives you freedom of movement.

The Foxelli Wading Boot features:

  • Multi-terrain traction
  • Pull-on heel-loop
  • Ankle and arch support
  • Rubber kick log
  • Removable ortholite insoles
  • Durable & breathable plaid nylon
  • Shock absorbent EVA midsoles
  • Rubber toe caps for extra protection

The Foxelli wading boots have a slip-proof rubber sole for advanced traction on rocky stream beds. Sturdy and well constructed, these wading boots are tear and abrasion-resistant, durable and breathable, too. 

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Simms Tributary Rubber Sole Wading Boots

With 72% of 5 stars, the Simms Tributary Rubber Sole Wading Boots are the best fit for you whether you are walking on the boat deck, hiking, or fishing.

This wading boot provides the trusted support and traction to help you negotiate slick, uneven river bottoms.

It features a textile and synthetic lace-up upper and are designed to have a thick traction rubber outsole.

This outsole is stud-compatible, giving fishers a secure grip over slippery riverbeds, lake bottoms, and algae-covered rocks.

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Wading Boots Buying Guide

A good pair of wading boots is essential for any outdoor enthusiast, particularly those who like to fish.

Wading boots are supportive and durable like regular hiking boots but are specifically designed to keep water out so your feet stay dry, healthy, and comfortable.

There is a wide range of wading boots on the market today, making it difficult to pick the best option in many cases.

There are some important features to look at that can help you determine which wading boot is going to be most effective for your needs. Here’s what to look for when purchasing a wading boot.

Fast Drying

After your boots have been in the water, you want them to dry out as quickly as possible so you can use them again. When shopping for a wading boot, look for the phrase ‘hydrophobic’ in the description.

This means that the boot contains technology that is going to actively dry the fabric as quickly as possible.

Not only does that mean you will get more use out of your boots, but it also means that bacteria and other harmful particles won’t be able to gather in the boot.

This will keep your feet healthy and your boots lasting for a very long time.

Fly Fishing Wading Boots

Supportive Mid-Sole

If you’re going to be outside and on your feet for a long time, you want to ensure that you have the proper support.

A good supportive midsole will ensure that your feet are happy and comfortable, even when you’re standing or walking for long periods of time.

Look for a midsole that’s cushioned and made with EVA or polyurethane for the best possible support.

Felt vs. Rubber Soles

There are some states that don’t allow felt-soled wading boots, in which case you will need to choose a rubber-soled option.

Rubber soles better protect your feet and keep water out, and they offer a good grip on several different types of terrain.

However, felt soles offer a huge advantage if you fish primarily on wet, slippery rocks.

On this particular type of terrain, felt provides better traction and can help you feel more stable.

The type you choose will be primarily determined by where you live.

Outsole Traction

When you are in the water, your shoe needs to have enough traction to keep you from slipping. This is particularly true if the water bodies in your area have very slippery rocks.

A good outsole will have a textured grip on the bottom so that you won’t slip regardless of what type of terrain you are in.

A tractioned outsole is also going to give you more control over where you walk, so you can focus on fishing instead of trying to balance.

Stud Compatible

Some fishers like to add studs or cleats to the bottom of their waders to provide even more traction for their feet.

If this is something you prefer while you are fishing, you should look for wading boots that have the option to attach studs on the bottom. Keep in mind that these studs are typically sold separately.

Saltwater Wading Boots

Cushioned Uppers

The tops of your wading boots also need to be supportive and cushioned. Even if the shoe is low profile, it should have some support that comes up around the ankle to keep your legs and feet in good alignment.

Your shoe should also have to cushion around the ankle and in the tongue to keep you comfortable as you are walking.

The cushioning should be soft and supportive, without rubbing or causing blisters.

Reinforced Toe

When you’re out in the water, there is always a chance that you could bump into or step on something sharp that would damage your boots and even hurt your foot.

To prevent this from happening, look for a pair of wading boots that have a reinforced toe or even a reinforced hell as well.

This reinforcement ensures that you won’t puncture the boot and your feet will stay safe from impact.

Drainage Channels

Since you will be wearing these boots in the water, they need to have drainage to keep the water flowing out of the boots and away from your feet.

If too much water gets into the boots, it not only is uncomfortable, but it also makes it difficult for the boot to be supportive.

Many high-quality boots have mesh drainage panels on the side, which allows the water to flow away from the boot.

This also makes it easy to pour the water out of the boot after you take it off, so it will dry faster. Look for a boot that has multiple drainage channels to pull the water away from the foot.

Aesthetic Design

Although you typically won’t be too worried about style when you’re out fishing, you still want a pair of boots that look nice and isn’t too clunky.

Look for a pair that is relatively low profile without too much extra bulk, and consider whether you like the exterior design.

Many wading boots are now made to look similar to hiking boots, so they won’t look silly if you have to wear them out before or after a fishing trip.

Sizing

The sizing of the boots is also something to consider when making your purchase. Ideally, the boots should fit your foot comfortably, without too much extra room but also without squeezing your foot. Check when shopping to see if the boot runs particularly narrow or wide.

Sometimes manufacturers will recommend that you size up when buying wading boots, so check to see if that applies to the boot you are interested in.

It’s also important to note that there aren’t many wading boots made specifically in women’s sizes.

If you are a female fisher, you should look for boots that run small and narrow to ensure that you are comfortable while you are in the water.

Conclusion

Wading boots are a must-have accessory for any avid fisher or outdoorsman.

A good pair of wading boots is something that is durable, comfortable and keeps your foot safe and supported.

There are many different boots on the market, so you may need to shop around to find the pair that is the perfect fit for you.

If you can, it may help to go to an outdoor supply store and try the boots on before making a purchase, just to ensure you get the right fit.

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