A dependable and comfortable set of hunting waders can make or break your waterfowl hunt. We’ve all been there, over the moon to be out in the field, and all of sudden you feel that unmistakable cold spot followed by a shockingly uncomfortable squishy feeling in your boot. Yep, you’ve gone and sprung a leak. If it’s time for a new set of waders, the Hunt Bums crew has your back with our list of the best duck hunting waders of 2020.
Orvis SonicSeam Waterfowler Wader
Orvis is no stranger to the outdoor market, though they’re usually associated with fishing, in lieu of duck hunting. That all changed when they released their Orvis SonicSeam Waterfowler waders.
I’ve had the pleasure of wearing my set of SonicSeam’s for about four seasons now and I can tell you without a doubt that these waders are the real deal. Ultra-light, breathable, and tough as hell. I hunt everything from dry fields and club blinds to refuge free-roam and duck boats, this set of waders has seen it all and stood up to an enormous amount of abuse and then some.
Made to take a beating and keep coming back for more, these boot foot waders are unique, at least to what I’ve seen, in that they feature a fully neoprene-lined lace-up boot that keeps the boot on your foot securely and provides superior stability when footing is unsure, perfect for when you’re tramping through the nastiest tilled rice field muck you can find. The outsole has great traction and won’t cake up with mud, snow, or ice, and the removable felt liners are a nice touch for added warmth when needed. Lightweight and breathable are great for California hunts, but if the temp starts to drop, you’ll have plenty of room to add a base layer or two.
Available in Max-5 camo, these waders are also backed by Orvis’s industry-renowned warranty. Considering that these waders have dropped in price over the past few years, these waterfowl waders are a bargain that you can’t afford to miss.
Marketed as the last wader you’ll ever buy, every part of the Sitka Delta Wader is designed to be serviceable or replaceable, incredibly enough, including the boot.
Built with Gore-Tex Pro – these waders are as breathable and comfortable as they come. The legs of the Sitka Delta Waders are articulated which makes these particularly easy to walk in, no matter how loose or slippery the footing, and the boots are extremely comfortable, supportive, and most importantly durable. I’d go as far as to say that I like the boots on these waders just as much as I like the boots on the Orvis SonicSeam’s.
The foot of this wader is the tried and true LaCrosse Aeroform insulated boot. The AeroForm radically changes what a rubber hunting boot can be by replacing the rubber shell with one made of durable, flexible, lightweight and insulating polyurethane. Designed for a high-speed low drag fit, the waterproof AeroForm is built for extra comfort and wont weigh you down, while still being tough enough to stand up to unforgiving brush and briers.
Keep in mind the uppers are uninsulated so if you’re hunting in cold weather, you’re going to need some additional layers and make sure you’ve got a good pair of socks on if you’re in cold water.
Drake Waterfowl Systems is well known in the marketplace for its outstanding waterfowl products, and their hunting waders are no exception. Serious waterfowlers who get in 60+ hunts a year, as well as numerous guides and industry pros swear by the brand.
Warm, dry, rugged, and remarkably comfortable. These breathable insulated waders are packed with 300 grams of insulation that
guards against the iciest wind and water.
Guardian Elite Breathable Waders have everything you’d expect in a top-tier set of hunting waders. The chest features a large hook and loop front cargo pocket, a vertical call pocket, and another vertical pocket protected with a Fowl-Proof™ zipper for your phone and valuables. The waders sport an exceptional against-the-body hand warmer pocket that helps retain body heat to warm your hands quickly.
The Buckshot Mudder Boot cuts weight by nearly half when compared to previous models and the refined design also provides above-average heat retention with 1600 grams of Thinsulate insulation. Your feet are going to be warm, that’s for certain.
Worried about issues with your new waders? Drake has long-held that they have the lowest wader return rate in comparison to competitors, and their dedication to customer service and making sure the customer is taken care of speaks volumes to their commitment.
You might’ve heard a mixed bag of reviews when it comes to Banded products. When it comes to Banded Black Label Waders though, you can rest assured these are made to go the distance.
Banded designed the Black Label Wader to be their top tier finest waterfowling wader ever made. Loaded with features and tech, additions like SHEDS™ waterproof and breathable fabric to keep you dry on the harshest days, and a premium boot design with a lug style cleat pattern gives more comfort and more grip in unstable or slippery terrain. Top it all off with a boot that offers 1000 grams of Thinsulate insulation and you’ve got yourself a superior setup. Not only is The Black Label wader a good-looking piece of gear, it’s also extremely tough. With 900 Duramax reinforced padded leg and shin guards you can wade through just about anything with confidence. Also included are some tasteful additions like a fleece handwarmer pocket and an internal device pocket.
Keeping yourself dry and warm and comfortable when hunting should be the highest priority. As with any gear you choose for, you’ll always be ahead by investing a bit more than you originally planned.
Lets us know what waders you picked out, or what other waders warrant a product review on our end in the comments below,