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.
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:
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.
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|
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 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.
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|
|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.