Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Redington Sonic-Pro Wader - A YGF Review

As some of you may know, I have had some issues in the past with leaky waders. I can be tough on waders. The only things I shy away when wading or walking the banks is barbed wire, knives, AK-47s, and Revolutionary era cannons.

In the past, I have been rewarded for my aggressive wading and “pre-wading?” with leaks. Massive leaks. Massive leaks around the seams connecting the stocking foot and the waders...and the seams around the knees...and the seams on the inside of my legs. Those leaks lead to a great deal of discomfort while fishing in the cold Montana winters. Massive leaks leave your feet in a neoprene fish bowl of sorts and shorten your winter, fall, and early spring days on the water. Plus, there is that pesky hypothermia hanging aboot. Conclusion: Leaky waders are the worst...the living worst.

Recently, Redington offered me the opportunity to test out a pair of their Sonic-Pro waders. Considering my recent history with waders, I jumped at the chance to review their critically acclaimed waders.

The Sonic Pro waders come in three different styles: the Sonic-Pro Zip Fronts, the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot, and the Sonic-Pro Wader Pants. I chose the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders. After having the Sonic-Pros in my possession for about a month, here is my review.


This could go really quickly. Do they keep me dry? Yes. Are they comfortable? Yes. Do they have plentiful amounts of dry storage? Yes. Would I recommend them to someone looking for new waders? Yes. End of review. If I ended it now, the review would be short on valuable details and opinions. So, prepare for the opining and provision of facts.

Facts:
The Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders are constructed of 100% nylon DWR coated wader fabric. 5-layer fabric on the lower leg and seat for durability and 3-layer fabric on the remaining portion of the wader. The seams are welded with sound (using Ultra Sonic welded construction) and have been double taped for added durability. The stocking feet are made of high-density neoprene. The waders have a zippered, brushed micro-fleece hand warming pocket and a laser cut exterior pocket with a YKK water resistant zipper. Additional storage is provided by a flip-out interior welded storage pocket with a mesh pocket, hemostat holder, and hypalon dock. A 2-inch stretch wading belt is secured by three belt loops. (and finally) The waders have gravel guards with a plastic anti-fouling lace hook.

Opinions and Thoughts:
Construction
The three-layer/five-layer waterproof construction is pretty standard in comparable waders in other brands. However, the seams of those comparable waders use needle and thread, not sound to secure the seams. The use of the ultra-sonic welding technology reduces the weight of waders and theoretically the durability.

The waders feel sturdy and heavy duty, but aren’t heavy in weight by any means. From personal experience, I can speak to the durability of sonically welded seams. I own a pair of sonic seamed waders and after a year of hard use, no leaks. Which, is more than I can say for the traditionally constructed waders of my past.

Fit
The Sonic-Pros fit extremely well. They fit true to size. The legs aren’t baggy. No front pooch is formed when you secure the wading belt. They keep a slim profile. All that being said, they aren’t too tight. They are comfortable. My legs aren’t Justin Beibering or hipster jeaning (I am pretty sure those are both verbs). A proper fit is important for wading. Extra bulk and fabric can impede someone while wading. I felt confident while wading some of the deeper, more powerful runs of the Bitterroot. My movement was not impeded or altered. Additionally, there was very minimal of the dreaded leg rub, which I can only imagine will increase the lifetime of the interior leg seams.

Bonus Points: I didn’t look like I have a kangaroo pouch for a stomach when wearing them. Vain, yes. But, I don’t want to look like I got a couple joeys underneath my waders. I gots ta look good for the camera.

just one joey
Features
These waders have pockets galore. Which, for a disorganized fisherman like myself, is much appreciated. The exterior pocket is spacious. Big enough to hold a small fly box, bags of split shot, a couple indicators, and several spools of tippet (note: split shot and indicators are winter tools...it could also hold any number of much cooler spring, summer, and fall items during those seasons). The hand-warming pockets are clutch, especially with air and water temperatures hovering in the low thirties during the winter. If I were to have my druthers, the fleece would be a little thicker. But, they did the job. For those anglers who use a lanyard or a smaller chest pack, the flip-out interior pocket could serve as a suitable replacement. Overall, my fishing experience was stream-lined with the ample storage provided by the wader’s pockets.

Specialized and ample storage
The stretch wading belt is perfect. All of my previous waders have had “static?” wading belts. What a difference the stretch makes. Mostly in comfort, but also in terms of function. It reduces the amount of bunching and the amount of time spent looking like Nuke LaLoosh adjusting his garter belt on the mound. With three belt loops positioned on the around the back and sides of the waders, the belt is easy to grab and adjust.

The gravel guards are tight, as they should be. The looser they are, the more likely gravel and sand will work it’s way into your wading boots. There is one feature on the waders that I have mixed feelings about. Depends on how you look at it, but the moulded lace hook that attaches to the boot is hard to attach to my laces. In comparison, the lace hooks of waders of my past were to easy to attach and easily came undone. When loose, the lace hooks (of wader’s past) provided the perfect place for fly line to get hung up in, which certainly impedes effective fishing. With the lace hooks on the Sonic Pro, once secured, they do not become undone. Additionally, if you don’t secure them, they don’t eat vagrant fly line like it’s their job. So, maybe it is more of a positive than a negative.

Conclusion
After four winter trips on the Bitterroot, I have been very pleased with the Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot waders. A durable, light fully featured pair of waders for a very reasonable $279.95. Certainly not cheap, but compared to other waders in it's class, that price point should be considered quite a deal. I would definitely recommend them to someone looking for a great pair of waders. They get the imaginary YGF seal of approval.

Want to see the waders in action. Check out my most recent videos, Cutties are for Suckers and Hog Calling.

Here are some stills of the waders. Many thanks to Zach from False Casts and Flat Tires for all of the images. Notice the amazing model and his amazing Phillies hat and his amazing fishing skills. That guy is so amazing. Amirite?

GoPro'n it in my Sonic Pros
No Joeys to be seen
waders on.

fishy waders and a fishy fish




DISCLAIMER: The Redington Sonic-Pro Stocking Foot Waders tested in this product review were provided to me at no cost, but hold a retail value of $279.95. I currently hold no association with Redington whatsoever. As with this review and all future reviews, I will do my best to offer up my honest and unbiased opinion, good or bad.

15 comments:

DarkoV said...

Great Review, Ivan. Love your links and references. How can you go wrong with a Nuke LaLoosh garment dilemna? I guess the only thing that you may not have spent enough time on reviewing was the fish's take on your Remingtons. Were they so impressed with your New Wear that gladly took anything you threw their way.

BTW, "Remington Way" would be a nice S/T to this review. Couldn't find Freddy King's great version of it so this link will have to do. Keep up the great reviews, Sir. Maybe Land Rover will take notice and comp you with a set of wheels to review for those backroad expeditions. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HdKBz41MyHo

yukon said...

@DarkoV/Father - Redington, not Remington. Were you distracted by some of my verbosity?

Sanders said...

Fact: Justin Beibering is good verbage.
Fact: Good review!

yukon said...

@sanders fact: bears eat beats.

thank you for confirming that Justin Biebering is, in fact, good verbage.

Nick said...

Bull Durham references in a wader review... Somebody must be anxious for spring baseball.

d. nash said...

beets. bears. battle star galactica. ... and sweet redington waders. Not only is it written as a fair review, but I think it is also cool that you clearly put them through the ringer with the vids to prove it. nice.

DarkoV said...

Damn!! Yeah I knew it was ReDington not ReMington...but I thought it'd slip by you as you were too busy eying the mailbox for more free gear to review. Should have know better than to try to foist that one by the fisherman.

Zach said...

If I buy these waders do I look as good as you and catch as many fish as you?

yukon said...

@nick - a little bit. don't pitchers and catchers report this week?

yukon said...

@d. nash - thanks man. glad you picked up on the very slight office reference.

yukon said...

@darko v. - nice try.

yukon said...

@zach - apparently, you don't need these waders to catch big fish as evidenced by King of the Herd. But, you would look a lot better in your hero shots.

erik fischer said...

Now that's something I have to add to my mobile camp perth utility kit. Gotta have one of those for those river camping trips.

Frank Cosby said...

While doing some outdoor activities, it is very important that we add up extra precautionary measures. With this we could somehow avoid accidents from taking place.

James Gill said...

How did your fishing and your redington sonic pro-wader go? My dad had to order new one cause his are worn out already, and he basically liked it just like before and he even said it improves his fishing by using it.

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