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What do you wear under waders?

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Seems like a silly question, but as my brother and I mull over the idea of getting a pair (most likely chest-high), the thought occurred to me - what do you wear under them?

I assume that with neoprene you have to go bare as it needs the heat from your skin to warm up the water insulation in the neoprene to make it work. 

What about regular rubber ones?  Jeans?  Shorts?  Whatever will fit?

Thanks for the help folks.  :)

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No, you don't go bare under neoprene.  You just avoid it altogether.  Same goes for rubber, unless it's just akle deep water you're trudging through.

Get Breathable waders.  Bottom layer, something that wicks sweat, like Under Armor base layer.  If it's summer, that's all you need, but in colder weather, this is where you add you're insulation layer.  I like non cotton material for this.  For you're torso, add a wool sweater, and optionally a rain shell, though I like that over the waders.  remember, if you're out in the cold, the object is stay dry and warm.  Cotton kills.

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Unless you only wade in very cold water and never in the summer, don't get neoprene. Like J Francho said, breathables are the way to go. Layer underneath as needed to stay comfortable. Just get them a size larger than you think you need. That allows room for extra clothes, plus, it gives you room to move without putting stress on the seams.

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Here in Michigan, I usually only use them in the fall in a fast, cold moving river area of the Pere Marquette for salmon.  I use chest high breathables with felt soles.   I usually wear jeans underneath and sometimes thermal underwear under the jeans with one or two layers of socks.  Coat etc is as required.

I like the breathables better than the rubber kind.  Also, the felt soles are better should I step on any moss covered rocks as they are not as slippery as the rubber soled boots.  Once in awhile I have to glue the sole back on.  No big deal.

 

Good luck.

 

 

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I had a pair of heavy 5 mil neos, and I'm WAYYYYY warmer in breathables.  I wade in some pretty cold weather.  So cold, 32° water feels like a relief. 

Here's one of those days.  "I caught you a nice troutsicle, lol."  Fish froze in just a few minutes in the sub 0° temps.

 

troutsicle.jpg

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32 minutes ago, J Francho said:

I had a pair of heavy 5 mil neos, and I'm WAYYYYY warmer in breathables.  I wade in some pretty cold weather.  So cold, 32° water feels like a relief. 

Here's one of those days.  "I caught you a nice troutsicle, lol."  Fish froze in just a few minutes in the sub 0° temps.

 

troutsicle.jpg

Wow!  It looks like that one came straight out of the freezer.  Amazing.

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37 minutes ago, J Francho said:

I had a pair of heavy 5 mil neos, and I'm WAYYYYY warmer in breathables.  I wade in some pretty cold weather.  So cold, 32° water feels like a relief. 

Here's one of those days.  "I caught you a nice troutsicle, lol."  Fish froze in just a few minutes in the sub 0° temps.

 

That's a hog of a trout!

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1 minute ago, fishballer06 said:

That's a hog of a trout!

The reel is a 5" center-pin in a neoprene case, so you can do the math. ;)

 

bigSteel.jpg

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Oooo boy, breathables are expensive!  Regardless, thank you all for the input, I appreciate it.  :)

Man, figure fishing isn't too bad to get into - $40 rod, $50 reel, $10 line and a few lures and you figure you're good.

Then you realize...  Oh, I need waders, more lures, different line, a float tube that turns into a kayak/boat, top rack for the car for said kayak...  lol  Things spiral out of control quickly!  :)

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Yeah, if you're looking at Simms or LL Bean, they can be really expensive.  I won't spend $500 on waders.  I have a pair of Frog Toggs that are a few years old, and went for something like $70.

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What do you do about footwear?  Do they require boots or some other form of shoe?

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You can go with an old pair of sneakers, and upgrade later.  In warmer months, I just use water sandels.  I winter, I have a pair of Korkers.

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I recently just upgraded my wader game, thanks to Francho's advice. I went with the Frogg Toggs Hellbender stockingfoot breathables. They were $84 shipped. And then I got myself a pair of Cabelas wading boots on sale for $47. 

If you go with a stockingfoot wader, you'll need some kind of shoe/boot to go over the stocking. An old pair of sneakers will work if you're on a budget, but a pair of decent boots will give you better grip and ankle support in the water. 

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The deal with the old sneaker is that they're lighter, when you don't need all the felt and studs for winter fishing.  If you have algae, you might want studs, though.  I usually get the cheapest pair I can find at a thrift store, usually a size to size and a half too big.

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I have a pair of 3mm neoprene camo waders that I use mostly in October to duck hunt and sometimes they can get HOT.  I just wear a pair of gym shorts underneath them especially in early October because its still in the 60's or warmer outside.  When I start walking around in those things and working up a sweat, they are unbearable.  I've never had an issue with getting to cold but then again I don't use them after about the first of November either.

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30 plus years in waders - could not imagine neoprene on skin. Clammy sticky staff infection breeding ground. Yuck.

For ducks, neoprene over khakis, thermals under that if cold enough. Boot foot.

For trout, breathable ones, orvis has a mid range set that aren't too pricey and worth the step up in quality. Khakis underneath with insulated socks. I'd do the stocking feet and a good pair of felt soled boots (rubber soles = drowning victim in the Appalchians).

Warm water bass / bream in creeks (and trout in July / August)... Skip the waders, shorts or whatever. 

 

Dave

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I stay away from waders all together.  Can't stand to wear them.

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2 hours ago, Bankbeater said:

I stay away from waders all together.  Can't stand to wear them.

I can't stand poison ivy, and poison oak in the woods I cut through to get in and out of the river. We also have a lot of geese and cows that leave E. coli and there can be other nasty bacteria that live in the waters I have to wade in, so I wear waders. Breathable waders that fit properly are pretty light and comfortable.  Good boots support your ankles. That's important when walking around on rocky bottoms. 

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I have a pair of neoprene 3mm waders with stocking feet I bought at Cabela's years ago. Most of my wading is in late spring and late fall/ early winter. Water temps are between 40 and 60 degrees. I wear sweats underneath and don't really have too many problems. Yea its sometimes a little warm but not too bad. The problem is finding felt soled boots. Because of all the concern over invasive species, some people have deemed felt soled wading boots a no-no. I use to just go into a local sporting goods place and buy a pair. Now I gotta go to a fly shop to pick up a pair.

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There was concern that felt waders were spreading didymo otherwise known as "rock snot". But that was shown to be wrong so felt soled boots are not as bad as they were thought to be for a while.

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8 minutes ago, Columbia Craw said:

Be a man and go commando !

I would avoid lunges.....

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I wear shorts when its warm and sweat pants in cold weather.With sweat pants you can move easier.Plus there warmer then jeans.

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I have a pair of Orvis waders that were somewhere in the $150-200 range and a pair of felt soled boots from Cabela's that I was able to pick up on sale for around $60.  They don't get uncomfortable when it's warm, and you just layer accordingly.  Breathable base layers, good synthetics over cotton, and good wool socks can go a long way when the water is cold.  

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