I’ve been using Simms wading pants to hike into Tasmania’s Western Lakes for quite a few years now and for me they have become a must have item to ensure I stay warm and dry during those early and late season trips. This year, I've invested in a new pair of the Simms Freestone Wading Pants and as expected, they perfomed exceptionally well.
The winter, spring and autumn months can turn on some brutal weather in this part of Tasmania with wind, rain, hail, sleet and snow all possible in a single day. Even on the good days, these early and late season trips always involve hiking through wet overgrown alpine scrub, water-laden tracks and the occasional small river to cross.
They also give me access to small islands, deep water drop offs and to fish back in towards those overgrown shorelines that have trout laying in wait for that small frog or Galaxias to swim past.
I have done these trips without waders in the past and I have always returned wet and cold. Even wearing waterproof trousers are not enough to keep the water out. I’m actually amazed I don’t see those people who are only into bush walking, wearing these wading pants on their winter and autumn hikes.
Being cold and wet out here is bad enough but what’s even worse for me is being so wet cold and miserable that I have to stop fishing. Now that really sucks.
The harsh scrub and rocky terrain of the Western Lakes is hard on gear and it doesn’t take long for it to destroy poor quality walking boots or waders. The needle-sharp leaves of the flowering Scoparia are especially deadly on waders because they can leave tiny invisible pinholes in waders.
The fabric of these wading pants are as tough and durable as I have used and they do a great job to stand up to these plants. With that said, I still wear a pair of good quality canvas gaiters over any of my waders to protect them from these plants and those sharp sticks that are often kicked up off the track.
Before the days of Simms wading pants I used to walk long distances in chest waders. They did a great job, but now I have been spoiled and there is no going back to wearing chest waders in the Western Lakes for me. These wading pants are much cooler to walk in and I honestly forget I’m wearing waders because they are so comfortable. I even use the side trouser pockets to warm my hands from the cold winds.
I really believe if you want to be able to laugh at the cold and fish all day long, you have to invest in the very best gear to enjoy fishing in this environment.