Waders are used during fly fishing to enable the fisherman to enter a stream, creek or river and remain dry. Waders are typically constructed of a waterproof material and may either be hip or chest style. There are many different manufacturers of waders at a wide range of prices from which to choose.
Waders are made of either a thin rubber material, a waterproof canvas, or a thin neoprene. Neoprene is an insulated material also referred to as wet suit material. It is light, waterproof and comfortable to wear. The canvas material is typically referred to a duck cloth and usually weighs more than rubber or neoprene waders. Rubberized waders are water proof but are also hot as there is not means for moisture to evaporate. Waders will feature either a boot made of rubberized material or a stocking foot. The boot of a wader will have a felt sole, tread pattern, or feature metal studs depending on the type of bed under the water. Stocking foot refers to a foot made of the same material as the wader, over which a wading shoe is worn. Waders may also feature an array of insulations and waterproofing membranes such as Gore-Tex.
Hip waders are designed to come up over the legs to hip height. These are designed for wading more shallow-type waters of not more than a few feet. Hip waders are made of a variety of waterproof materials and may be either boot or stocking foot. Hip waders feature a strap on the side of the wader with either a snap or buckle. The waders are pulled on over the legs up to the hips. The straps are then pulled up to a belt or belt loop and secured. Hip waders are an excellent choice for warm and hot weather fishing as many water levels will be down due to dry weather. They are also cooler as less of the body is covered by the wader material.
Chest waders are designed to come up to the chest for the purpose of allowing a fisherman to navigate deeper water. Chest waders are most commonly made of neoprene but also of rubber and canvas. The neoprene is an excellent choice especially in cooler temperatures when wading in cold waters, since it acts as an insulator. These waders may have built-in rubberized boots or feature stocking feet for use with wading shoes. A wading belt is also used many times with chest waders to secure the waders around the mid section of the fisherman. This belt serves to gather the waders and help reduce the chances of water filling the legs of the waders should the fisherman enter water which might spill into the top of the waders.