A lot of companies sell products labeled as “Pro” gear but few of those products truly meet the needs of professionals.
Fishing guides, pro anglers, fisheries biologists, and riparian scientists are professionals who spend hundreds of hours each month in waders and wading boots, plunging through cold rivers and water bodies. Orvis’ design teams considered the needs of those types of users when they created the new Pro Waders and Pro Wading Boots.
The Orvis Pro Waders, available in men’s and women’s-specific sizing. The Pro Waders feature a Cordura shell – four-layer in the upper section, five-layer in through the legs – that withstood all forms of abuse to which we could subject it. Our testers scrambled over abrasive volcanic rocks, pushed through tangles of slide alder, vine maple, devil’s club, and even blackberry briers. The Pro Waders withstood all attacks. What’s more, we found we withstood the abuse better as well when wearing the Pros thanks to removal knee pads that cushioned creaky joints, and anatomical construction through the crotch, knees, and feet for a much better fit and natural mobility.
The Pro Waders sport a number of features that make life easier for pros as well as casual anglers. The waders feature Orvis’ unique suspender system that allows the top to be worn chest high, or around the waist. Those uppers also sport a large external storage pocket with a water-resistant zipper to keep your gear secure. That pocket is fronted with a fly-storage patch, and a daisy chain to keep your zinger-based tools handy. The Pros also feature a large four-way-stretch mesh interior pocket to keep essentials secure. Along the sides of the upper are a pair of deep fleece-lined handwarmer pockets.
The Orvis Pro Wader proved slightly less breathable than some of the other Gore-Tex waders we’ve tested, but the plethora of highly functional features and the extreme durability make those the go-to-choice for anglers who spend a lot of time exploring rough and tumble trout waters. $498. Buy now
To make the most of those Pro Waders, partner them with the Orvis Pro Wading Boots. Orvis patterned with the engineers at Michelin tires to develop a new sole compound. Orvis designers say, “the Michelin Outdoor Extreme outsole offers 25 percent better abrasion resistance and a resounding 43 percent improvement in wet rubber traction.” Numbers aside, our team found that the Pro Boots proved nearly as grippy as felt on slime-slick river rocks, but also suitable for long treks into remote waters – something few of us would want to do wearing felt soles. The Pro Wading Boots fit and feel much like a comfortable pair of hiking boots – especially when worn over the close-fitting booties of the Pro Wader. The synthetic upper is light, and because it does not absorb much water, it stays light even through extended use and is remarkably fast drying, The Pro Wading Boots are ideally suited for anglers who like to get out and move around their fishing waters, whether it is hiking into remote sections of river, or simply working upstream through a long series of runs and pools. The Pro Boots are equally well suited for use in and out of the water – something no other wading boot we’ve tested could claim. $229. Buy now.