It’s that time of year that’s spiritual around my household, waterfowl season. Depending on where you live, you may have a waterfowl season as early as August and in the spring as late as May. Literally you can waterfowl hunt 10 months out of the year if you know where to look, and with hardcore waterfowlers, comes hardcore gear. And the last thing you need failing on a trip in the flooded timber, pond, creek, slough, etc. is a leaky pair of waders. Been there…many times.
And I live up in north country where it gets cold, very cold. So I consider many factors when it comes to ranking duck hunting waders;
- Camo Pattern
- Extra Bells & Whistles
So check out what we found to be the most reliable pairs of waterfowl hunting waders on the market today.
Okay, I’m going to start with the affordable version of the Banded line of duck hunting waders. It’s rated down to negative 10 degrees (-10 F), which I consider important living in the North country. It has a 1,624 gram Thinsulate Ultra insulated boot, which is very thick in the wader line. They do A LOT of reinforcing at the knees and on your butt. So if you’re having to sit, it makes it really nice.
The price point isn’t too shabby for the name and the durability. Overall, it seems to be a solid pair of hunting waders. Oh, and it’s MADE IN THE USA which is pretty important for a lot of guys seeking quality.
PROS: Made in the USA, great features, warm boots
CONS: It’s a tad pricey but they get MUCH more expensive these days.
Okay, so we’re going to kick off the reviews with one of the best you’ll find…The LaCrosse line of duck hunting waders. If you’re the type that gets cold easy, then you’ll want to look into something like this. It has 1,200 gram Thinsulate Ultra insulated boots for starters, which is pretty thick in the wader line. All of the standards are there like double stitching and sealing over seams. It has a big pocket on the chest, and has padding on the knees. If you’re expecting to be standing in cold water for a long time, these may be the duck hunting waders for you.
PROS: Great boot, well built, and a trusted name.
CONS: A bit pricey and I don’t personally care for darker timber camo patterns. I’m usually in cattails and shallow fields.
If you’re looking for duck hunting waders that rival the LaCrosse’s, then look into what Frog Toggs has to offer. This is a comparable 1,200 gram Thinsulate insulation in the boot, with 120 grams of quilted insulation in the wader. I like these fleece lined hand warmers in the sides, and the belt design is nice if you like your duck hunting waders tight. With a large shell pouch and storage, these are waders that are worth a look.
PROS: Warm boot, accessories, long standing company, and warm breathable wader
CONS: A little pricey, but these waders should last
I really like these waders, and is why I included them in the list. The straps on these duck hunting waders are more solid and rugged then I’m used to in most waders. They don’t dig into your shoulder, and I like that. It has 3.5 mm of neoprene construction, and 600 grams of Thinsulate insulation in the boots. The camo shown is RealTree Max 4 and it also comes in Mossy Oak Bottomlands. It’s well built and has a lighter boot for getting around and setting up/picking up decoys. There’s a reason Frogg Toggs always show up in the list, they make some great waders.
PROS: Rugged design, thin boot, and camo options
CONS: I would like to see a bit more options on the wader
So this may be even overkill for the boys down south, but LaCrosse has built an even stronger boot at 1,600 grams of Thinsulate insulation. It’s a little bit heavier, obviously, so it’s a little tougher to get around then…say, an 800 gram boot. But if you’re hunting the Midwest or Canada and need something for the extremes, this is a solid choice. It boasts all the same features of any LaCrosse duck hunting wader, and has a row of shell cushions below the pocket. Kind of nice to keep some spare shells ready to grab (not like it’s something new, just nice). The knees are padded and it has Max-4 camo, which I always liked.
PROS: Strong LaCrosse brand, super warm boot, and rugged design
CONS: With any Lacrosse wader, you also pay a bit more. It’s also a tad heavy.
Alright southern boys, if you’re looking for an affordable pair of duck hunting waders in the right camo pattern (Mossy Oak Break Up Infinity), then the Allen Bit Timber rig might be the set for you. It has 3.5 mm of neoprene construction, with 600 grams of Thinsulate in the boots. Just the right amount for moderate to semi-cold weather. These duck hunting waders have a high back, which is unique, with padding on the knees. I like waders with waist belts too. If you’re looking at moving around a lot while waterfowling, then these waders may work well for you.
PROS: Big pocket and has thick neoprene. Great grip on the boots
CONS: A bit light if you’re looking for extreme cold temps.