For a few years now Redington has made a push into the soft goods side of the fly fishing industry. I’ve always liked their rods and reels for the value and now am a big fan of their waders and technical clothing. I’m stoked to see a company offer much more affordable options to a lot of the gear out there that is getting ridiculously expensive.
The Sonic Pro waders differ from everything else on the market in that they offer a completely redesigned method of sealing the seams. Rather than the traditional stitch and tape method, Redington Sonic Pro Waders use ultrasonic welding to seal the seams. This is a much stronger and more durable method of seal the traditional weak points on a wader.
All of these features are fine and dandy but how the Sonic Pro’s perform in the field is what counts.
First Impression…The first thing I noticed was the fit, a tad slimmer like some of the more popular waders of the past. I like this a lot because it reduces the amount of rub between the legs which is traditionally a weak point on waders. The fit is by no means restrictive and allows for plenty of room for layers, especially in the zippered model. The feet are also nicely shaped with some texture on the bottom that seems to provide some added durability when walking around prior to putting on your boots. The pockets and gear flaps are all well cut and functional like those on the highest end waders available.
Breathability…This is one of the most important factors to people when purchasing a new set of waders. Certain fabrics do a great job of marketing their material’s advantages for breathability, but in reality there are no shortage of good fabrics. As a gear nerd and a skier I know that just about everything on the market these days that is breathable and waterproof works pretty darn well. The materials used in the Sonic Pro waders are no different. Thus far I’ve tested them in conditions ranging from the low teens to hiking through warms conditions. In the cold with proper layering I was perfectly warm, while in the warm weather they were as comfy as any pair of high end waders I’ve ever owned.
Durability…If you fish on the west coast you know that a durable pair of waders is clutch. Blackberry bushes are the bane of our existence. I’ve bushwacked though berry’s and slid on my backside around on plenty of McCloud rocks with no issues. After talking with Zack from Rio he was stoked with 150 days on his with no issues.
The Verdict…I’m super happy with the Sonic Pro waders. I think for the price you are getting a premium wader for much less than a premium price. I’m especially stoked on having a pair of zipperred waders. I always thought it was an unnecessary gimmick but taking a leak is 100x easier than in traditional waders. I can’t emphasize this enough! In addition it makes changing layers simple as well. The wholesale cost of a waterproof zipper is what drives up the price, and I think by keeping the zippered models sub $400 that Redington is absorbing some of that in order to put the advantages of a zipper within reach of more average anglers. My only negative is the small tabs on the zippered model that make nice spots to clamp your forceps can get dinged with a spey cast causing them to go airborne as well.
I think the Sonic Pro is a solid product and definitely worth taking note of if you’re looking for a really good set of waders for a solid price. Redington has told me that they’ve had very few pairs back and of course will back up those that do come back.
I now have almost 2 years of hard fishing on my Sonic Pro Waders, including letting my gravity challenged girlfriend (she falls…a lot) wear a pair quite frequently I have zero issues with them. Absolutely no leaking or breakdown. I’m pretty darn impressed, by far this is the most durable pair of waders I’ve ever owned. I’m looking forward to many more days on the water with them.