Having the best waders for surf fishing is not less important than fishing with the right equipment and gear. After all, if you don’t feel comfortable fishing for hours, the experience won’t be something that you would like to get back another time.
But, as the market is flooded with countless fishing waders, it’s tough to find the one among them especially if you are a beginner fisherman. To make it easier for you, I’ve gone through hundreds of reviews on waders, and listed the top 5 waders below which got excellent feedback from beginner, moderate, and pro level anglers.
5 Best Waders for Surf Fishing
The list includes budget-friendly and value for money waders for both beginner and pro anglers.
1. Compass 360 Stocking Foot Breathable Chest Wader (For Adults)
You would want a wader set made of durable fabrics, has excellent water-resistance ability, and additional features to make your surf fishing more convenient. All these qualities are in this wader from Compass 360. If you need a full-sized wader for just little over $100, you won’t regret buying it.
If you don’t know much about Compass 360, well, Compass 360 was acquired by Exxel Outdoors in the first quarter of 2020.
Made of 4-layer water-resistant and breathable fabric, you will find this wader to be extremely durable. Even after years of heavy use, you will hardly notice any hole on it.
However, they cut corners when it comes to the seams. So, be careful in areas where there will be a lot of stretch while you wear it.
The storage pocket is also water-resistant. Keep your smartphone, camera, and other valuable electronic devices without worrying about getting damaged. Also, there’s a flip-out storage pocket inside the wader for you to keep other stuff.
With its 100% neoprene made booties, you can rest assured about protection from both weather and sharp objects on the shore.
Wearing this with a sweat pant and a shirt feels extremely comfortable and warm, which makes it one of the best surf fishing waders in this price range. Size is perfect if you aren’t overweight.
Washing with cold soapy water would be more than enough for it. No need to put it in a dryer.
2. Frogg Toggs Hellbender Breathable Stockingfoot Fishing Wader (For Men’s)
Not everyone feels like spending more than $200 for waders. If you feel the same, and want a decent wader that doesn’t cost much, you should miss this one from Frogg Toggs. The Hellbender model is one of their best waders for saltwater, which seems to hold pretty well for fishing throughout the year.
The upper part of it is made of 4-ply durable nylon material to make sure it can withstand both weather and elements. You will find the material to be comfortable enough in all seasons. It’s breathable enough during summer, and pretty warm for moderate cold seasons as well.
Frogg Toggs makes sure that the knee part is even more durable as this is the part that gets exposed to the salt water. It got reinforced nylon material, which is water-resistant and exceedingly durable at the same time.
Although there are chest pockets for holding smartphones, cameras, and other stuff, the pockets aren’t waterproof. So, keep that in mind before you buy it. However, the hand warmer compartments are pretty useful for fishing on cold days.
Neoprene booties are quite durable, which is something you would expect from a wader of this price point. This is one of those inexpensive waders that comes with an outsole. So, you prefer not spending extra bucks for an okay quality outsole, the deal is worth considering.
3. Hodgman Caster Neoprene Cleated Bootfoot Wader (For Men’s)
Another wader with cleated soles on the list. This one from Hodgman got pretty much everything that a moderate fisherman would want for a convenient surf fishing experience.
The main garment feels pretty durable for harsh weather as well as cold water. Even if the water is cold, the wader will make you feel warm enough to enjoy your surf fishing sessions.
For the booties, they used a neoprene shell with 3.5mm thickness. It feels comfortable and snug fit. In addition, the cleated soles are well-made to save you from slippery rocks and gravel on the shore.
The pant area of this wader is quite flush and sag free. You will be able to move with utmost flexibility even wearing a sweat pant under it.
Even though there aren’t too many storage pockets, the center pocket is water-resistant to keep your hand and other valuables dry while fishing.
Unlike cheaper waders, the shoulder straps are made of quality material, and provide comfortable adjustments to fit the wader perfectly.
Considering its material quality, cleated sole durability, and comfortable fitting, it’s one of the best waders for surf fishing you can get in this price range.
4. Tidewe Bootfoot Chest Wader (For Men and Women)
Not everyone likes to wear a thick and heavy wader while fishing. That’s why I have enlisted this lightweight wader from Tidewe. It feels 35% lighter than conventional waders available in the market, while not cutting corners about durability and user convenience.
For the upper part, they’ve used 2-ply nylon material to make it waterproof yet lightweight to wear. Also, the pant area got reinforced nylon PVC construction to make sure water doesn’t make its way inside. So, for both sealing water and blocking dirt, you will find it pretty reliable to wear.
Stitches on the seams seem pretty solid, which is something you won’t find in cheaper alternatives. There are adjustable buckles as well as suspenders to make sure you get a snug fit for whatever reason you will be wearing it for.
If a water-proof mobile pocket is one of your requirements, this one got that too. In addition, they provide a water-proof phone case just to make sure there’s no accident regarding water damage.
The boots are well-made. But not durable enough for sharp rock. Otherwise, you won’t face any issue whatsoever.
Wearing it for long hours won’t make you feel uncomfortable as it got quite some stretches for comfort to be the best waders for surf fishing on the list.
5. Foxelli Chest Waders (For Men and Women)
If you are one of those who love both hunting and fishing, this camouflage designed waders would be the right pick for your purposes. The best part of this wader is that it comes with a price point less than $100, yet it’s decent enough to use throughout a year. If you are to get the best saltwater fishing waders with boots, your search ends here.
Made of 4mm neoprene material, this doesn’t feel thin from any aspect. You will experience enough insulation wearing it in any weather conditions. Stitches and seams are strong enough to withstand your toughest moments while fishing or hunting.
Like most higher-end waders, this one also got added protection on the knee area. With reinforced padding, you won’t notice any leaks, rips, and tears whatsoever for years of moderate uses.
While wearing this, you will get enough flexibility whether it’s for fishing or hunting. Using the chest suspenders, you can find the perfect fit according to your body type.
The boots got PVC material with anti-slip soles to get you reliable traction and grip on wet surfaces including muddy areas. These are quite easy to put on and take off, allowing you the much needed convenience for comfortable and hassle free fishing sessions.
Buying Guide for Best Waders for Surf Fishing
If this is the first time you are to get waders, and you need to make sure it’s the best waders for saltwater fishing, this section will help you to exactly where you need to focus, and narrow down your choices.
In the market, you will find both 2, 3, and 4-ply nylon made waders. The larger the number, the thicker the waders are. Thicker ones provide excellent water-resistant advantage. Waders with 4-ply nylon are more water-resistant than waders with 3-ply nylon material.
However, also keep in mind that the thickness will add to the overall weight of the wader. So, if you need a lightweight wader to walk comfortably, go for a 2-ply one. You might not get the best water-resistant feature, still it will be a lot more comfortable for activities that require walking.
For knee area, most manufacturers use reinforced padding of nylon. Make sure this area is thicker than the upper part of the wader. This is the area that has to contact tough surfaces. So, ‘the thicker, the better’ rule also goes here as well.
Some waders are entirely waterproof, whereas some waders have water-proof material from knee to boot area. A full water-proof wader will cost more. If you are more on a budget side, at least make sure the pockets on the upper area are waterproof. So, you can keep devices in your pockets without worrying about water damage.
Insulation and Weather-Protection
Although waders are made of thicker materials, there should be enough insulation for breathability. Otherwise, you won’t feel comfortable wearing one in summer days. Similarly, if you will need a wader solely for the winter season, make sure it feels comfortable and warm enough from the inside. Still, it has to have insulation to make sure you don’t sweat.
There are some all-season waders, which you can comfortably wear in summer, fall, and moderate winter seasons.
Most waders come with at least a chest pocket. You might not find multiple storage pockets in all models. If you need that, be sure to look for one that comes with several pockets.
Handwarmer pockets are a must if you will be using the wader for fishing on cold days.
With or Without Boots
Waders come with neoprene booties or full PVC made boots. Deals with boots are cost efficient. You won’t need to buy separate boots paying more money. Also, boots that come with waders, provide better water sealing advantages as the leg part of the wader and boots upper part will be designed to prevent water from entering.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I need waders for surf fishing?
A: You can technically do surf fishing without waders. But the fishing experience won’t be convenient. As there will be sharp rocks and objects on shore, without a proper wader, chances of getting injured is higher. Also, you will end up with wet clothes. For surf fishing in winter, wearing a waterproof wader is a must.
Q: Are stocking foot waders better?
A: Stocking foot waders come with a complete cost-efficient package where you don’t have to pay for boots separately. Also the water sealing properties of stocking foot waders are better.
Q: How do waders keep you dry?
A: 3 or 4-ply nylon made waders will keep you dry. The material will be thick enough to prevent water from entering.
Q: Does salt water damage waders?
A: Yes, salt water can damage waders if they are not properly cared for. It is important to rinse your waders with fresh water after every use and hang them up to dry in a cool, well-ventilated area. Additionally, it is recommended to occasionally apply a waterproofing treatment or wax to help protect the material from salt water.
Q: How do I choose waders?
A: Consider the material used, adjustments, size, comfort, water-proofing ability, etc. to make sure you get the best waders for surf fishing.
Q: What is the best material for fishing waders?
A: Best saltwater waders are made of 3 or 4-ply nylon material along with reinforced nylon pant area to make sure you get utmost protection from weather and cold saltwater.
Read also: The 5 Best Fishing Shorts For Men
Hope you have already decided which one would be the best waders for surf fishing that checks all your surf fishing requirements. Make sure the wader has enough insulation for you to feel comfortable while fishing.