Merwin: "Get Studs"

Field & Stream columnist and MidCurrent editorial board member John Merwin notes the trend toward offering screw-in studs as part of manufacturer’s “green sole” offerings, and suggests that despite being very unfriendly to your guide’s drift-boat deck (don’t try it), they put the ‘grip’ in grippy. “Most makers either are or soon will be offering hard-metal studs with rubber wading soles. These sharp metal points combine with rubber-sole lugs to give traction substantially better than felt on just about any wet surface. And they are considerably easier to clean.”

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  • Pisces

    I am of two minds on cleated boots.
    My existing pair of waders & boots are almost at the end of their lifeccycle, so I expect to be in the market for a new pair next spring.
    Is it really an issue of invasive species, or selling more product? I see more efforts recently around educating anglers to wash off their gear, and even a few special wash tanks at some locations. With the exception of Korkers, I don’t see how most manufacturers have really thought through the issue of “slick & the big fall”.
    Does anyone remember the metal cleat debate in golf? Readers will easily guess why metal cleats are no longer welcome at any golf course in the US – they chew up the terrain. I wonder how the trails will be after a few months of dozens of anglers per day? My guess is it will lead to greater erosion.
    I’m not on a rant here, just thinking critically about these new products. I am a moderate gear junkie – more so for utilitarian products that solve multiple needs.

  • rab

    Cleated boots definitely grip better than felt.
    As far as preventing invasive species (didymo)is concernred, all of our efforts will probably only help to delay the transfer. Do we disinfect our wading boots, waders, nets, flylines, wading jacket sleeves, and the feet of all the heron we see?
    Im not arguing against trying but simply pointing out just how imposing the problem really is. And yes, manufactureres are definitely playing the didymo card to sell product. I am one of there best customers.

  • jrh

    Can’t we microwave the felt soled boots?
    On my last fishing trip of 3 short times out the only guy that fell was wearing the new rubber soled boots by a very reputable manufacturer. Rubber is no good on rocks. Rubber is for the duck hunters on sandy or muddy bottoms that I gave up a long time ago when hauling decoys out.
    jrh