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littlerivermike
04-12-2010, 01:25 PM
Everyone understands the advantages of the newer rubber sole wading boots over felt. But I want to focus on the "sole" issue of traction. Some have said that on certain surfaces that the new rubber sole boots are "just as good as felt" but I have never heard an "unqualified" favorable comparison. What is the latest from Smoky Mountain fisherman who have actually waded using the new boots in the park? How does the traction of the rubber sole boots stack up against the same old boot with felt on park waters?

Rog 1
04-12-2010, 03:21 PM
I have fished for years in the LLBean aquastealth boots....hiking in these boots is not problem and they wear really well...on dry rocks you sometimes feel like spiderman...this rubber sole was developed for rock climbing...I have not found anything that will keep you from slipping all the time but I like this sole better than either an all felt sole or partial felt sole.

92Esquire
04-12-2010, 09:02 PM
For the past three years I've been wearing Bean Aquastealth boots. They've been really good up until this year. Sometime in the past few months it's like the tackiness has finally worn off the boots, and it's like wading on ice at times now. I won't wear them into the park anymore. I have a pair of felts that I only wear in the Smokies now. It's a shame, because when I've walked a good distance I always wish I'd had on the lighter Aquastealths.

No experience with the Patagonias or Simms. And honestly these boots have been great for two years (and about 75 days on the water).

Carlito
04-13-2010, 11:43 AM
For the past three years I've been wearing Bean Aquastealth boots. They've been really good up until this year. Sometime in the past few months it's like the tackiness has finally worn off the boots, and it's like wading on ice at times now. I won't wear them into the park anymore. I have a pair of felts that I only wear in the Smokies now. It's a shame, because when I've walked a good distance I always wish I'd had on the lighter Aquastealths.

No experience with the Patagonias or Simms. And honestly these boots have been great for two years (and about 75 days on the water).

You know, sometimes rubber just gets old and loses that tacky feeling. That's probably all that was. Any chance you've been leaving them out in the sun to dry? I'm starting to think I need new rubber for my mountain bike for the same reason.

mcfly
04-13-2010, 08:41 PM
Everyone understands the advantages of the newer rubber sole wading boots over felt.

There is an advantage to the rubber soles over felt?

littlerivermike
04-14-2010, 09:26 AM
1. Easier to clean and less risk of transporting invasive species.

2. Better traction on the trail and getting down to and up from the water.

3. Real good traction on the pebble beds out West.

But still the main question is whether the newest generation of rubber soles (from Simms, Chota, Orvis, etc.) have improved their Park water traction to the point where they are "just as good as felt" in the Park.

mcfly
04-14-2010, 11:55 PM
1. Easier to clean and less risk of transporting invasive species.

Only true if the boot lacks shoe strings and is made entirely of rubber. And even then, they seem to encourage people to perform sloppy cleaning at half effort or, worse, to not clean at all after use.

2. Better traction on the trail and getting down to and up from the water.

Not really. Could depend on the boot and the age of the rubber sole and the surface being traversed, but seems to only be true if the rubber has cleats or studs.

3. Real good traction on the pebble beds out West.

And likely to get you killed or seriously injured on most rivers in the east.
But still the main question is whether the newest generation of rubber soles (from Simms, Chota, Orvis, etc.) have improved their Park water traction to the point where they are "just as good as felt" in the Park.
NO.

Just sayin'. There seems to be lots of propaganda out on this with the same points that you are making, all produced by the equipment manufacturers or lobby's.

92Esquire
04-15-2010, 06:57 AM
I'm going to state that I cautiously agree with McFly.

The reason I bought my rubber-soled boots had nothing to do with invasive species - it was durability. A couple times each winter I fish in saltwater in cooler temps. Too cold for me to want to wet wade, so I wear my waders and wading boots. The first couple times I did it were complete murder on my legs (due to the wet boots picking up 50 lbs of sand each) and on the felt (due to the sand grinding the felt away while walking).

The rubber boots served their purpose for saltwater, but were also a convenient option at other times. I agree that they are lighter weight on the trail, and in some instances can offer superior dry-land traction to felt. But the nature of the beast is that current rubber technology may approach some fraction of felt's traction in the water, but I don't think it's met or exceeded it yet. In some situations rubber is downright dangerous.

I don't know that there is a vast conspiracy to eliminate felt with no basis, but I do think there is a "look how green our company is" movement afoot that may not be completely based in science or reality. I don't know how to solve the invasive species problem (although it is interesting that many of the fish we enjoy fishing for in rivers are by definition an invasive species). I do know that every angler is going to have to do more than just buy a different pair of boots to stop the problem.

littlerivermike
04-15-2010, 07:41 PM
At last year's troutfest, I asked the Chota rep if his new rubber sole wading boots were "just as good as felt in the Park"....he side stepped the question. I was hoping that there had been some improvements in the traction arena since then. I guess I need to stick with felt for use in Park waters.

kentuckytroutbum
04-15-2010, 07:59 PM
I agree with mcfly and 92esquire on this issue. I make it a point to clean my gear after a trip, are people too lazy to clean and sanitize their gear, after they have been on the SoHo for example where there is didymo?

I think there is a lot of hype about "how green we are" by companies trying to market their products. And I think some of them are of dubious value.

A friend of mine guides on the Kennebec in Maine, and he has both felt and rubber soled boots. The Kennebec can be quite swift at times, and his opinion, which I value, is that felt gives him better traction on rock bottom streams & rivers.

tennswede
04-15-2010, 09:01 PM
You all better buy all the felt you can while they are available. There will be a black market for the stuff in a few years. I'm really disappointed in TU and Simms on this one. Although NZ and Alaska lead the pack on this. If we get some serious accidents and lawsuits caused by those accidents, maybe this will be stopped. If not, wading from now on will be a nightmare. I sure hope it won't come down to that. I just don't think rubber is going to do it. Might be wrong but time will tell I guess. I'm going to buy felt as long as it is legal. Of course I don't have plans to fish Alaska or NZ any time soon, but it won't be long before every other locality follows suit.

mcfly
04-16-2010, 10:51 AM
You’re right Tennswede. A trend of banning felt soles is starting. Unless rubber soles improve dramatically, safely fishing many streams will be prohibitively dangerous. I'm not aware of any proposals to ban them in TN or NC, but can you imagine if that happened?

kentuckytroutbum
04-16-2010, 02:03 PM
Emotionalism, hysteria, gov't beauracracy, and junk science are running amuck over us! Look at the issues with trans fat, salt in NYC restaurants, rubber soled boots, etc. None of this banning has occurred because of legitimate and thoughtful studies.

You're right, buy felt now, make a run on it, corner the market, and then sell it back to us at inflated prices. Please offer deep discounts to your fellow fly flinger friends on this forum. I wear a size 11 boot, and my wife wears a size 7. Thanks! ;)

BlueRaiderFan
04-16-2010, 02:30 PM
You all better buy all the felt you can while they are available. There will be a black market for the stuff in a few years. I'm really disappointed in TU and Simms on this one. Although NZ and Alaska lead the pack on this. If we get some serious accidents and lawsuits caused by those accidents, maybe this will be stopped. If not, wading from now on will be a nightmare. I sure hope it won't come down to that. I just don't think rubber is going to do it. Might be wrong but time will tell I guess. I'm going to buy felt as long as it is legal. Of course I don't have plans to fish Alaska or NZ any time soon, but it won't be long before every other locality follows suit.


Swede, You may end up with a closet full of felt soles that are illegal in the park (and elsewhere). Just a thought.

tennswede
04-16-2010, 05:57 PM
Blueraiderfan: I hope I'm safe for now. I'm not against helping the environment but I have a hard time accepting the official reason for banning felt. I don't like to push opinions and agendas on a fly fishing forum. To me it should be all fun and games here. I do however think that this felt banning business is pushed on us and without a proper product to replace it. I'm almost certain that law suits will follow if it hasn't already. I just don't think rubber is the answer. I also think that allowing felt until a better than rubber alternative is the way to go. I think felt is very minor in the big scheme of things. What about waders, boats, birds, wildlife in general, belly boats, anchors? you name it. Now let's go fishing.

BlueRaiderFan
04-16-2010, 06:44 PM
Oh sure...I agree, I was just stating that stocking up on felt soles may not be a good idea becaue it looks like they will be banned most everywhere soon.

tennswede
04-16-2010, 07:36 PM
Dwayne: Yes, of course I run the risk of that. Although, I doubt TN will be on the forefront. I guess I'm having hope that common sense will prevail and when Alaska, NZ, et al realize the potential effects of what they are doing is hurting the business, then they might reconsider. I think it will be a few years before it hits us anyway. I also want to clarify for anyone reading this that I do not hope for a failure of rubber soles or any other material for that matter. I'm just afraid that it's premature to ban felt. Btw, I'm not offended by your reply just passionate about this subject since a lot of places I go, are very dangerous even with felt. Can't imagine what it would be with rubber.

mcfly, I can't imagine, what would happen if it spreading. Not at this stage in the game. I guess time will tell. I don't' want to sound anti environment or sound ignorant, but this didymo scare is wearing me out. I can't remember when it was first noticed in NZ, they all said it will be the end of trout fishing as we know it. Has not happened as of yet. We live in a time of scaring people, to push agendas.

old east tn boy
04-16-2010, 11:13 PM
I fished the Hiwassee today for the first time. Wonderful day and caught lots of fish, especially Browns. Very few other anglers on the water. I left around 6 pm and not another soul in sight. But that was a potential problem. I am 59 years old but at times act half my age especially while wading. Physically, I am in relatively good shape except for the ears which are beyond repair even with good hearing aids. Anyway, my oldest daughter is a nurse. She has admonished me several times about falls and the consequnecies of broken bones at my age. Well today while jumping around those jagged rocks her words came back to haunt me when I missed a step and almost landed on a sharp edged rock. I will still be carrying a bruise for a couple of days. My wading boots are felt and they saved me from an unexpected breif swim or worse, a broken leg with no one around to rescue me. If felt is banned I will be doing a lot less wading.

mcfly
04-16-2010, 11:49 PM
mcfly, I can't imagine, what would happen if it spreading. Not at this stage in the game. I guess time will tell. I don't' want to sound anti environment or sound ignorant, but this didymo scare is wearing me out. I can't remember when it was first noticed in NZ, they all said it will be the end of trout fishing as we know it. Has not happened as of yet. We live in a time of scaring people, to push agendas.

Agreed. I'm not against the felt soles either, as long as I have a choice to a safe alternative until the sole technology is on par with felt. As soon as a felt boot comes on the market safe enough for a trip around the horeshoe on Abrams, I will make the switch. That is my criteria for acceptability.


Emotionalism, hysteria, gov't beauracracy, and junk science are running amuck over us! Look at the issues with trans fat, salt in NYC restaurants, rubber soled boots, etc. None of this banning has occurred because of legitimate and thoughtful studies.

You're right, buy felt now, make a run on it, corner the market, and then sell it back to us at inflated prices. Please offer deep discounts to your fellow fly flinger friends on this forum. I wear a size 11 boot, and my wife wears a size 7. Thanks! ;).
Kentucky Trout Bum: Felt has been banned in New Zealand and Alaska, initially in part of the state and then expanded to the whole state later. The ban has just passed the house in Vermont. Idaho has banned felt use by wildlife and fisheries employees with talk of instuting the ban to everyone. Simms stopped producing felt soles in anticipation of further bans. TU is pushing for the ban in other states. All states don't have to ban felt to make it unavailable; just enough states have to ban to depress the demand for felt to make it obsolete. What brand do you prefer and how many pairs would you like to preorder?

pineman19
04-17-2010, 07:24 AM
An interesting issue to say the least. I agree with Hans and others that fishing the mountain streams with rubber isn't a safe option at this time. I bought a pair of rubber soles on the cheap last year on the cheap to try with my Korkers. I only tried them once, up on Sams Creek and Thunderhead and they worked okay, but I was a little tentative in my wading. Not sure I would want to use them on the Greenbriar or the WPLP. I have hurt myself enough over the years with felt over the last 12 yrs on Park streams. As far as worrying about getting busted wearing felt if they outlaw them in TN, I am not to worried about that, TWRA doesn't do a very good good job of enforcing the current rules, much less starting regular checks of whether somebody is wearing felt. I would be glad to take my chances at getting busted if I felt it kept me safer on the streams.

Neal

kentuckytroutbum
04-17-2010, 08:42 AM
pineman-
I'm aware that felt has been banned in AK & NZ. My point is that no one seems to know HOW it is spreading. Could it be eagles, kingfishers, ospreys, otter, beavers, boat owners, hikers, tubers, etc. etc.? I believe that fly flingers, as a group, are careful about their potential role is spreading didymo for example, and show great concern for maintaining or even improving the habitat. Why focus on felt boots for fly fishing? Percentage wise, I think we represent a very small segment of the population that use the waterways. Because we are a small group, maybe we're an easy target for the banning people to key in on us.

A good friend of mine works for the KY F&W in a Director level position, and he told me they don't know how it spreads, or even what long term damage it may or may not do. Several weeks ago, someone on this forum, made a statement that sulphur hatches have actually increased since didymo has spread to that tailwater. (Wish I could remember the thread!) Someone help me out here, please.

Meanwhile, I'll keep wearing felt boots, and sanitize them after use!

silvercreek
04-17-2010, 09:28 AM
Waterwolf under Tennsee streams and tailwaters "Clinch Surprise" 4/13/2010

kentuckytroutbum
04-17-2010, 01:03 PM
Yup! You're correct. Thanks for the help.

mcfly
04-17-2010, 03:05 PM
pineman-
I'm aware that felt has been banned in AK & NZ. My point is that no one seems to know HOW it is spreading. Could it be eagles, kingfishers, ospreys, otter, beavers, boat owners, hikers, tubers, etc. etc.? I believe that fly flingers, as a group, are careful about their potential role is spreading didymo for example, and show great concern for maintaining or even improving the habitat. Why focus on felt boots for fly fishing? Percentage wise, I think we represent a very small segment of the population that use the waterways. Because we are a small group, maybe we're an easy target for the banning people to key in on us.

A good friend of mine works for the KY F&W in a Director level position, and he told me they don't know how it spreads, or even what long term damage it may or may not do. Several weeks ago, someone on this forum, made a statement that sulphur hatches have actually increased since didymo has spread to that tailwater. (Wish I could remember the thread!) Someone help me out here, please.

Meanwhile, I'll keep wearing felt boots, and sanitize them after use!
I missed your point the first time around. I don't understand either why felt soles have been singled out. Any improvement is good improvement, but why focus only on felt soles as an avenue. I hardly see anything else about cleaning boats, kayaks, rafts, or or anything else after leaving a river.

littlerivermike
04-19-2010, 08:57 AM
So the consensus is.....Felt is still the best material for wading boot soles for traction while fishing Park waters. While there may be some benefits for using the most current rubber sole wading boots, the superior traction in the water provided by felt soles outweighs any claimed advantages of rubber soles. Agreed?

kentuckytroutbum
04-19-2010, 07:14 PM
So the consensus is.....Felt is still the best material for wading boot soles for traction while fishing Park waters. While there may be some benefits for using the most current rubber sole wading boots, the superior traction in the water provided by felt soles outweighs any claimed advantages of rubber soles. Agreed?

I agree! Wholeheartedly. Keep your felt and keep it clean!

kentuckytroutbum
04-20-2010, 09:39 AM
Just received my latest issue of American Angler magazine in the mail yesterday. Guess what? The editorial page had an article on felt soled boots. I don't agree with everything they said, but it looks like this matter is now getting attention from the magazines. I don't know where this is going, but it looks like downhill!

Buy up the felt!

Carlito
04-20-2010, 09:41 AM
Just received my latest issue of American Angler magazine in the mail yesterday. Guess what? The editorial page had an article on felt soled boots. I don't agree with everything they said, but it looks like this matter is now getting attention from the magazines. I don't know where this is going, but it looks like downhill!

Buy up the felt!

Yep. Couple months ago they reviewed a bunch of new gear and were pushing the rubber sole boots hard.

tennswede
04-20-2010, 11:21 AM
Anyone else feeling like this is showed down our throats? I'm always leery when any industry or organization is so quick to make a judgement. Like I said before, I'm not sold on this idea yet.

jeffnles1
04-20-2010, 12:07 PM
Anyone else feeling like this is showed down our throats? I'm always leery when any industry or organization is so quick to make a judgement. Like I said before, I'm not sold on this idea yet.

Neither am I. However, I bet the folks who make boots are really happy that so many fishermen are going out and replacing them.

I just bought a new pair of Chota boots from LRO last week (for my rapidly growing teen age son). His feet are right now the same size as mine so when his foot grows (probably by the time he gets home from school today), those new boots will be mine. I went with felt.

No boot is going to keep you from slipping once in a while. Play in the water long enough and you're going to get wet.

However, I trust felt and do not want to change until the laws force me to.

Jef

txbrown
04-20-2010, 01:28 PM
When things happen that don't seem to make sense, 'follow the money'. A lot of marketing, tooling and probably lobbying investment has been made. Some companies may feel they have a significant edge in this debate. As with most issues, there are pros and cons and not everything may be as it seems on the surface. I will use felt and keep it clean but as rubber improves, I would love a good hiking/fishing sole.

92Esquire
04-22-2010, 07:29 PM
Y'all convinced me. I bought a "backup" pair of felts just in case.

Owl
04-25-2010, 08:32 PM
There is a reason that wading boots were made with felt soles. ( Duh, huh?)

If every person, craft and animal that entered a river with river snot in it and then got into another river were entirely made of rubber, then rubber soled wading boots would make perfect sense.


You show me a rubber beaver, and there ya go. Until then, it's politically correct, environmental hysteria.

Will rubber soles help slow the spread of the river nasties? Probably not. How can it, when everything out there that goes from one river to another OTHER than wading boots can be made from anything under the sun( including flesh and fur.)

I'm going to find a pair of felt soled boots somewhere, and then buy 4 pairs. That should get me through a 1/2 dozen years until they come up with something better, or until the nonsense subsides.

I have no doubt that the problem is real....it's the solution that I question.


my .02 for reality based thinking...

jeffnles1
04-26-2010, 07:20 AM
I still think we're seeing the convergence of a bad economy with equipment manufacturers needing to sell some stuff to stay afloat, the fact fishermen care deeply about the streams and rivers we love, and some whacko environmentalists who would love nothing more than to keep us off the rivers.

I'm with Owl, I have no doubt there is a problem with didymo and other invasive. IN fact, rainbow and brown trout are invasive species in the Smoky Mountain streams.

I'm not so sure it is felt sole wading boots that would be spreading rock snot any more or less than boats, birds, swimmers, kayaks, and maybe even whacko environmentalists taking water samples from multiple streams in the same day.

If the stuff is so easily spread that a single cell being introduced in the water is all it takes, rubber soled wading boots isn't going to make a bit of difference.

Just my .02 worth.

Jeff

littlerivermike
06-02-2010, 09:29 AM
Broke down and purchased a pair of new Simms rubber sole wading boots at Troutfest....just spent a couple hours in Elkmont waters. The verdict is in.

Not as good as the hype......Not as bad as I had feared.

I'm in my 60's, live on the Little River outside of Walland and have been fishing Park waters for about 9 years. I frequently fish alone and a bad fall at this stage in my life would be harder to recover from so I need ever footing advantage I can get. Slime covered rocks are a challenge with any boot. My initial assessment confirms my prejudice that felt is superior to rubber on slime. Otherwise the new Simms performed slighter better than I thought they would.

Bottom Line: I will keep wearing my felt as long as I can and keep cleaning my boots first thing as soon as I get home from each trip. Now if I can just get rid of the funky smell from my neo booties...............

buzzmcmanus
06-02-2010, 12:53 PM
Now if I can just get rid of the funky smell from my neo booties...............

Just use a wet suit cleaner like the one linked below. Or, you could probably find something at a local dive shop.
http://www.swell.com/RIP-CURL-PISS-OFF-WETSUIT-CLEANER?CAWELAID=464094895

I don't name the stuff, just know that it works.

waterwolf
06-02-2010, 11:02 PM
Glad to see I am not alone in my skepticism over the new fangled rubber boots. Think I will stick with felt, and if they make it illegal, well, I guess I will dye it black and move on.

Life is too short and this crazy green movement could lead us into a paralyzed state as a country.

Wilson10
06-03-2010, 12:22 PM
Glad to see I am not alone in my skepticism over the new fangled rubber boots. Think I will stick with felt, and if they make it illegal, well, I guess I will dye it black and move on.

Life is too short and this crazy green movement could lead us into a paralyzed state as a country.


Too much of this liberal movement could paralyze us for sure in multiple ways!

Dye your boot bottoms...lol My felt soled simm guide boots came with black felt! I'm good for a while!

Mac
06-03-2010, 06:33 PM
I will keep all my equipment clean after each stream visit not just my wading boots.

But in my opinion you wont catch me making "leaps of faith" from boulder to boulder in anything but felt boots. :biggrin:

Carlito
06-04-2010, 01:29 PM
if they make it illegal, well, I guess I will dye it black and move on.

LoL. Right there with ya.

Grannyknot
06-04-2010, 01:47 PM
If the park biologists decide that it is in the best interest of the streams to ban felt (for whatever reason), I will oblige and not wear my felt boots within park boundaries. I don't have a sense of entitlement to fishing those waters and feel privilaged to do so at whatever cost it may be.

my penny (not even 2 cents worth):smile:

Owl
06-04-2010, 01:54 PM
" I don't have a sense of entitlement to fishing those waters"


You should. If you are an American, the Park and it's waters belong to you. At the expense of those families who lived there and were forced to leave, I might add. So, IMNSHO everyone should have a say in what happens with OUR park, not just the government workers who run the park, or are employed by the NPS. ( who do a fine job IMHO, and I am usually pretty hard on DNR/LEO agencies and their often clueless officers)


BTW - if you have a decal on your vehicle that is firearm related, do not be surprised to see a Ranger (or two) bushwhacking down into the ravine you just entered in order to fish a headwater stream. One of the first things they wanted to know was " are you packing?" It's fine with me that they do their job ( and I think they do it well.) but they usually check me at the roads or when fishing road-side, often waiting in their patrol vehicle until I exit the stream. Put a gun decal on your truck, and they'll apparently gladly follow you down into **** to check you out. just FYI for your carriers.

Grannyknot
06-04-2010, 02:40 PM
Owl, I appreciate your concern for my ignorance, but I can assure you it was not ignorance, it was just my opinion, which was formed through a lot of thought and consideration.

Not really sure what the firearm comments have to do with my statements.

Owl
06-05-2010, 09:17 AM
Grannyknot,

My, my everyone is touchy around here lately. If your formed opinion is that you are not entitled to fish in waters that you, as an American citizen technically "own" then that's your business and you are, of course welcome to it! I wasn't trying to call you ignorant, but the statement seemed to indicate the willingness to give to government the "say-so" that should belong to the People. I was simply responding to what you wrote, not trying to insult you or hold your hand, or call you ignorant. Although you may ( and apparently are) well informed on the concept that the government answers to the People and not the other way around, many folks are not as well informed and I find it best that we educate as many people as we can that are truly ignorant of those roles as possible.

The firearms statement was just an afterthought to warn people that they are apparently doing a bit of "gun owner" profiling in the park now that the new law is in place allowing carry on ones person. I am sorry if my posting it somehow offended you.

tennswede
06-05-2010, 10:30 AM
Owl,

Completely off topic, but I remember when you and I were heavy users on another board. The scary part is I can't remember which. Was it flysouth maybe? Didn't you move to Nashville for a while. Did I meet you a couple of years back at our board picnic at Metcalf Bottoms. Man, I hate getting old and this darn amnesia is killing me.LOL.

Anyway, if you are the same Owl, have a good one and glad to see you back in action. If you are not the person I'm thinking of, happy trails anyways.

James Buice
06-22-2010, 08:13 AM
In the debate over Felt vs Non-felt, I think the most important thing to remember is BOTH TYPES OF BOOTS REQUIRE THE EXACT TYPE OF CLEANING to be totally safe. The felt soles only carry a small portion of hitchhikers; the inner sole of the boot, tongue gusset, laces, and even the nooks of your gravel guards can all hold unwanted travelers. Even though you are using a felt alternative sole such as Kling on from Korkers or the Vibram soles from Simms, the exact same precautions must be taken, same as if you had felt soles.

I'm just saying this because it seems that the advertising I've seen as well as a lot of internet chatter surrounding rubber soles have focused more on the shotgun approach of "banning felt" and nothing on the need to thoroughly clean both types of boots as well as gear that comes in contact with the water (trailers, boats, waders, etc).

Just wearing rubber soles does very little to help stop the spread of aquatic hitchhikers. The original TU mantra of "Inspect, Clean, and Dry" is still the only way to avoid the spread of these little buggers by anglers. Now if we can just get those herons on the bandwagon, we're set!

J

Grumpy
06-22-2010, 08:54 AM
In the debate over Felt vs Non-felt, I think the most important thing to remember is BOTH TYPES OF BOOTS REQUIRE THE EXACT TYPE OF CLEANING to be totally safe. The felt soles only carry a small portion of hitchhikers; the inner sole of the boot, tongue gusset, laces, and even the nooks of your gravel guards can all hold unwanted travelers. Even though you are using a felt alternative sole such as Kling on from Korkers or the Vibram soles from Simms, the exact same precautions must be taken, same as if you had felt soles.

I'm just saying this because it seems that the advertising I've seen as well as a lot of internet chatter surrounding rubber soles have focused more on the shotgun approach of "banning felt" and nothing on the need to thoroughly clean both types of boots as well as gear that comes in contact with the water (trailers, boats, waders, etc).

Just wearing rubber soles does very little to help stop the spread of aquatic hitchhikers. The original TU mantra of "Inspect, Clean, and Dry" is still the only way to avoid the spread of these little buggers by anglers. Now if we can just get those herons on the bandwagon, we're set!

J

Agreed!

Grumpy

waterwolf
06-22-2010, 09:34 AM
In the debate over Felt vs Non-felt, I think the most important thing to remember is BOTH TYPES OF BOOTS REQUIRE THE EXACT TYPE OF CLEANING to be totally safe. The felt soles only carry a small portion of hitchhikers; the inner sole of the boot, tongue gusset, laces, and even the nooks of your gravel guards can all hold unwanted travelers. Even though you are using a felt alternative sole such as Kling on from Korkers or the Vibram soles from Simms, the exact same precautions must be taken, same as if you had felt soles.

I'm just saying this because it seems that the advertising I've seen as well as a lot of internet chatter surrounding rubber soles have focused more on the shotgun approach of "banning felt" and nothing on the need to thoroughly clean both types of boots as well as gear that comes in contact with the water (trailers, boats, waders, etc).

Just wearing rubber soles does very little to help stop the spread of aquatic hitchhikers. The original TU mantra of "Inspect, Clean, and Dry" is still the only way to avoid the spread of these little buggers by anglers. Now if we can just get those herons on the bandwagon, we're set!

J
What do you know about cleaning boots? Maybe from all the BS you have had to clean off yours after a conversation with Mr. Cates :biggrin:

BTW, where is my royality check for my ugly mug being slathered across your masterpiece?

Owl
06-22-2010, 04:03 PM
And the deer, bear, tubers, float tubers, kayakers, rafters, beavers, otters, kingfishers, elk, etc. etc. etc.


swede, I've never been to a group meet up at metcalf bottoms, however....

I was on flyfishsouth before they banned me. I have also been banned from FAOL and NGTO.
Some online forums are unfamiliar with the idea that not everyone is a sheep, and may have ideas that are based on facts and logic and are not in line with the group-think that many times accompanies a community culture of elitism and snobbery.
Thankfully, there has never been such an atmosphere here at LRO's forums, where members are allowed to agree to disagree and where the admin.'s are above such immaturity and "playing favorites" with the membership.

Also, the members here seem to be of a much more friendly and generally civil character than any other message board I've ever visited....and I attribute that directly to the owners of this forum who have always been honest, fair and sensible concerning disagreements and opinions of the individual members. I consider the LRO forums to be "the grown up table" of internet message boards. :)

That, and I've mellowed out a bit over the last 20 years or so. ( A bit. ;) )

Knothead
06-22-2010, 11:21 PM
Interesting topic, to say the least. I did research on algae (non-vascular plants) in my senior year in college. As previously stated, an infestation of algae can be started with just one cell, that is, one individual.
As to the shoe sole debate, when my wife started to flyfish, she wore an ordinary pair of New Spirit sneakers. I was skeptical but she navigated rocks very well. However.......there are a myriad of ways that a river can be infested- birds, deer, beaver, etc. The best way is to clean all your stuff- rod, reel, line, etc. You get the picture. But will even that be effective?

littlerivermike
07-27-2010, 01:36 PM
The jury is in. I’m just back from a week in and around Yellowstone and only took my new Simms rubber soled wading boots. No felt. There are some streams and conditions like the upper Gallatin or lower Soda Butte where the rubber soles worked great, (but then again I have fished these streams in my Keens before). Other streams and conditions like the upper Madison or lower Lamar, the rubber soles did not provide the same level of traction as felt. I found myself needing to wade extra cautiously and even avoiding some spots I would venture into with felt. I guess this is no surprise, remember, even the Chota rep would not tell me that their rubber was as good as their felt.

But to the point that many have made in this string…..as I talked to other fishermen in Yellowstone, (even one with a LRO t-shirt) there appears to be a false belief that the same precautions are not needed with these new boots as needed with felt soles. Nothing could be further from the truth. I was disappointed that no where in Yellowstone are there cleaning stations (like those found around Silver Creek, ID, provided by the Nature Conservancy) to clean and treat boots and waders. Even at large parking lots on Soda Butte that see literally 100+ anglers a day each or at Roosevelt Lodge where waders and boots were hanging outside of every other cabin, the Park Service as not provided cleaning stations.

I know that boats and tubes are not allowed on the streams of Yellowstone (lakes, yes but streams no). But it is my belief that much more continuing education, signage, and cleaning stations in high use, high risk, locations will contribute to the diminution of the spread of these “invasive species”. Rubber soled wading boots may help….but still the concern remains that many anglers will forego a complete cleaning because they have the “new boots”.

In the immortal words of Mac Truck….”Just my opinion….ought to be yours”.

kentuckytroutbum
07-27-2010, 03:57 PM
littlerivermike-

Thanks for the update. It's good to hear someone's actual experience with rubber soles, and your belief that the traction is not as good as felt.

Your point about cleaning stations is well said. It wouldn't take much to put in cleaning stations at the major rivers and tailwaters. The SoHo, which has didymo, would be a good candidate, next to the restrooms at the weir dam for example. IMHO.

Bill

littlerivermike
07-28-2010, 01:55 PM
Here is the Manager of Silver Creek (The Nature Conservacy) response to my inquiry re what they put in the cleaning tubs:

HI Mike,
We actually just use a bio-degradable soap, it doesn’t kill anything, the idea is to remove things from your waders and boots before and after you are in the water. All dies when we dump the water and it sits in the sun. Depending on where and when you have fished previously, or plan to go after being here, you can use the cleaning stations before and after. Leaving your gear in the sun for a few hours or freezing it can also get rid of unwanted critters.

Let me know if you would like more information,
Dayna

DBKSTONE2
07-28-2010, 02:46 PM
I have wading boots with the interchangeable soles. I tried the rubber set and have used them on 3 trips to C. Fork. I completed the three point stance a total of 6 times on those trips. If I had not "caught" myself to break the fall I would be in a world of hurt. I fell a total of ZERO times last year (30 days) and ZERO this year (20 days) prior to the change. The rubber inserts are going to the trash and It will be felt for me until they pry it out of my cold dead hands.

I think its a conspiracy to get rid of good fly fishermen. PETA is hard at work.:cool:

Crockett
07-28-2010, 03:57 PM
I agree dbkstone2 I have a pair of corkers and tried a couple of times in the smokies to use the "Kling-On" rubber soles that I have read were so awesome. I slid around just as much as if I had worn my regular h2 water shoes. The felt soles work a LOT better. Still use the rubber ones if I have a long hike to or from the stream though so not a total waste.

Maurer
07-31-2010, 02:10 PM
Whatever your take is on rubber vs felt, is cool. I like James' response on everything still needs to be cleaned the same way.

I've been using rubber "studded" boots since March. I have really liked them, however take the studs out and they are not that great.

Just saying if you are going to wear the rubber soles, you should probably put the studs in for saftey. The Tungsten Carbide studs are the only ones to have also.

BlueRaiderFan
08-03-2010, 12:31 PM
I wonder if some brands are better than others when it comes to rubber soles?

Maurer
08-03-2010, 11:55 PM
I'm sure, there are a ton of different tread patterns out there also. It will be interesting to see the how these soles evolve. Who knows maybe some one will hit the jackpot and in ten years we will be asking our selves how we ever managed to fish with felt.

Mundele
08-09-2010, 01:09 PM
Crockett and I went backpacking this weekend and we each brought our boys (5 and 7) for their first backcountry trip. I left the wading sandals at home and opted for my Crocs to wade in (to save weight since I was carrying gear for two). Anyway I was very surprised at how well they gripped wet slick rocks. I don't know if any one else has tried wading in Crocs but they actually did quite well. Not as good as felt, but pretty darn good.

I did lose one at one point and I jammed my foot between two rocks (because they're really soft), but for a lightweight backcountry alternative, crocs arent half bad, if you can get past the poor fashion statement.

I wonder if you couldn't glue crocs sole material onto a more supportive shoe and get the best of both worlds...

--Matt

Knothead
08-09-2010, 07:04 PM
It wouldn't take much to put in cleaning stations at the major rivers and tailwaters.
As I gaze into my crystal ball, I predict they will be used about as much as trash cans at the rivers and tailwaters, or anywhere else for that matter. Just look along any road. Know whut I mean, Vern?

Rebelsoul
09-02-2010, 08:48 AM
Just to throw in my 2 pennies here...I've used felt and that gives me the best traction,but I had to try the Simms rubber "stream sole 360 degree traction" whatever and slipped as much as if I had on my jungle boots.
Felt for me......and I'd like to see a rubber beaver also.:smile:

Knothead
09-02-2010, 09:19 AM
Going to chime in again. Everything that comes into contact with water would need to be cleaned. How many out there clean their car or truck after launching a raft or driftboat? I'm thinking that evasives could live in a wet environment on a launch site until dried out. So many things to consider in this discussion. I know of a flyangler who wears inexpensive aqua shoes and does quite well on wet rocks. I have watched him and he is very careful. BTW, no one has mentioned the use of a wading staff. I have a collapsible staff that has saved my posterior more than felt soles. Don't wade anywhere without it.

Maurer
09-02-2010, 10:45 AM
Here is a link that I found very interesting. It give some reason why felt is being attacked. Check it out. http://www.cleanangler.org

kentuckytroutbum
09-02-2010, 11:23 AM
Someone else had said earlier on this thread that the push for non-felt was being driven by certain boot manufacturers & retailers.

Bill

tennswede
09-02-2010, 10:10 PM
I'm against this felt ban. TU and the others who is backing this is panicking and it's only going to get worse. Anyone else tired of all the hype? Let's see,swine flu, bird flu, whirling disease,
west Nile, etc, etc, and now lead ban. I think the younger generations (and some older ones) have it all figured out, Virtual fishing through the internet and various online games. No need to leave the house anymore, now If I could find that darned pc game Trophy Rivers Circa 1997 and I can sell my gear.

Grannyknot
09-03-2010, 08:52 AM
...... now If I could find that darned pc game Trophy Rivers Circa 1997 and I can sell my gear.

Let me know if you find that video game, I might be interested in some of your gear. :biggrin:

littlerivermike
09-03-2010, 01:26 PM
Fished the upper North Fork of the Payette yesterday..... with my Simms rubber sole boots...BUT for the first time with 18 star cleats added.......Big difference....much better....still need to give the nod to felt...but I was surprised by the improvement with the star studs.

Knothead
09-03-2010, 01:44 PM
This from the cleanangler.org site:
CLEAN

Thoroughly clean your equipment with water and a brush to remove any attached materials

How do you brush a #20 Griffith's Gnat or a #18 bhpt?
The only way to thoroughly clean anything with algae clinging to it is to soak it in something strong.

littlerivermike
09-03-2010, 03:16 PM
See post #53 in this thread. .........use bio-degradable soap to clean your gear.