Wading can be a little chilly after breakup but there's no need to go numb below the waist just because you fish in cold water. The Insulator Pant serves as a warm buffer between you and your waders. They're made of eco-friendly polyester (51% recycled) double-faced fleece (brushed on both sides for loft and warmth) with a moisture-wicking finish. Details: elasticized waistband with drawcord and a brushed tricot lining, two tricot-lined front pockets, one zippered hip pocket and tapered cuffs for a smooth, low friction underwader fit. They are recyclable through the Common Threads Recycling Program. I know many of you have expressed appreciation for the old El Cap pants. The Insulator Pant was cloned from the rootstock of that classic style.
Photos by Rene Braun
Great Sandals! Got a pair when they first came out. Super comfy, great around the water and a good company to support. The only drawback is they don't say "Patagonia"!
On a side note, what do you know about Patagonia's hiking boots? I'm in the market for a new pair and none of my local retailers carry them. I like what I've seen on the website but can't find out any first hand info.
Hi Sean--in ref to the Patagonia hiking boot--the model is the Nomad GTX--it is a solid, mid wt hiking and backpacking boot with a Gore sock membrane suspended between shell and liner. I have sold a hundred or so pairs and feedback from our customers is excellent. Good fit for a medium (D in men) width foot and easy break in. Top-of-the-line construction and eco-conciencious technology and materials throughout.
There are no stirrups as you can see Mark. The product brief on this pant followed a solid performing underwader and multi-purpose style – the El Cap Pants. The Insulator Pants have a tapered lower leg and the cuff fits securely, without being restrictive and without riding up. No stirrup widens the potential user group from an inseam perspective and provides a more casual aesthetic without compromising performance. Bold simplicity was the goal.
I just wish someone would make a pair of these pants with side zippers or snaps on the legs like the tear off warm up pants basketball players wear. That way you could put them on or remove them with out having to take your waders & boots off completley. Perfect for the days that are 30 in the morning, 60 at midday, and 30 again in late evening.
Straq, any chance you guys made some of these with long enough inseams to fit "normal" size people?!?!
Noted on the desire for long inseams Jared.
I'm a fan of the short inseams, being a 29 incher myself. On a wholly unrelated note, is there any chance Patagonia will build bootfoot waders? What about hip waders?
The inseam on the Insulator Pant grades from 30-31" on XS and S to 32-33" for M - XXL. Shorter inseams can alter. Long inseams are in the works for the future.
Bootfoot waders are on the development schedule but are no simple endeavor. What would you like to see Adam? Add your comments to - http://www.wayupstream.com/2007/04/im-beginning-some-new-product.html
Hip waders seem quite interesting. We'll see. Add comments on this one too.
I would LOVE a pair of lightweight hippers.
I'm admittedly a bit basis considering a large portion of my fishing is on the smaller waters or spring creeks of the Driftless Area in Wisconsin. So, I would obviously like to see a great pair of hip waders available on the market. What makes a great pair of hippers?
What makes a great pair of "hippers"? We'll see. I've got some ideas and they are already in the works!
My typing fingers perked up when I saw the posts regarding hippers--I have wanted/needed some for a good while but can't really decide what to do--a decent pair will cost almost as much as a pair of waders and I'm really not sure if a boot foot is the answer. I would really like something light and compact that I could throw in a canoe, kayak or backpack. With Patagonia's entry into the footwear market I hope to see some sport sandal models from them that would work for fishing. I currently use Chaco Z-1s with the 5-10 climbing rubber sole for wet wading, usually over a 2mm neoprene sock in trout water. They work pretty well although the tag end of the sandal strap has an uncanny ability to attract loops of fly line. I think a sock-foot hipper in combo with a well-designed sandal or sandal/shoe hybrid along the lines of the Mion (high-tenacity rubber sole a must) would offer a tremendous amount of versatility. The hippers could also be worn with conventional wading shoes.
I appreciate the hip high and footwear comments. It's all music to my ears because Team Fish has been working on a S9 collection of wading styles to meet diverse needs. I can't say much more at this time. As soon as the sales meeting is over next month I'll let a few cats out of the bag.
As a Patagonia dealer in the Driftless Area, I too would love to see a decent pair of breathable hippers on the market. Most companies have nixed them from their product lines, and our small spring creeks practically beg for them. But, something a bit more durable than just simple waders too, as most hipper junkies are small stream anglers who do a lot of kneeling and crawling.
I've never been too crazy about wading in sandals, as they tend to slip and slide along with my ankles. A durable pair of stocking foot stalkers would be great! I'd even be willing to sacrifice a bit of breathability (since they are hippers you are vented already) for extra durability to deal with barbed wire, constant knee wear etc.
I have also had many comments on women who fish hippers and love them as they are a bit more comfortable, and easier to take a bathroom break in.
Just a thought... (let me state this up front, I have never used hip waders in a small stream or creek)
Is it really necessary to have so many different specialized pieces of gear for curtain conditions and environments that we fish in. Why can't you buy one pair of waders that will work for winter steelheading, the spring trout opener and hot summer days out on your favorite flow. My watermasters work for all of these conditions. I am able to layer for winter, wear them normal for spring trout, and roll them down for that small spring creek or drift down the river. I have heard YC say it many times not in his own words "buy less, but buy something that will work across multiple conditions/ environments", the quality versus quantity idea, etc...
How many different rods and reels do we "really" need? Do they "really" effect how many fish we hook into?
How many trophy fish have been caught on pflueger medalist compared to the top of the line Ross, Hatch, Abel, and Tibor reels?
just playing the devils advocate :)
Mat, thanks for the comments on Hip Highs. From my perspective, the market for this kind of style is quite diverse but as you’ve stated, most specialty fly fishing brands have never offered or abandoned them. For me, the hip wader was the first wading attire I owned. They were actually an industrial rubber version with boots attached. They were perfect for the creeks I fished growing up in upstate NY. I was also carrying a canvas creel during those days too. Of late there has been a surge of interest in wading pants but with the Watermaster Wader in the Patagonia line which can become a pant, the “hipper” seemed like a more natural way to go. Stay tuned to see what develops.
JVK, huge thanks for “playing devil’s advocate”. Patagonia Team Fish tries hard not to over assort the line. That’s why we have only two models of waders currently in our line when other brands offer as many as twelve. So where did the idea for a hip high germinate? As I stated above, there has been a surge of interest in wading pants and one of the most popular costs more than the Watermaster II Wader which as you already know features the ability to become wading pants by rolling them down. To me that suggested that there was opportunity in the market for something more minimalist than a wader. The Midwest anglers who’ve been part of this conversation have highlighted one type of water that hip highs would be perfect – small creeks. If done right, a high end hip wader could provide focused protection, weight savings, packability and a much lower pricepoint than a wader of comparable make and materials. We’ll see…..and who knows, maybe there’s room to bring the creel back too!
I agree, my WM-lights have worked all over the country, but down here in the NC/TN/VA area you are often hiking in miles to various mountain streams...have you ever hiked a couple miles, in the south, in April/May, up the side of a mountain, to get to a tiny little pool holding a handful of 7-8 inch brookies? Doesn't matter how cool the air is or how lightweight or breathable your waders are, you're going to sweat.....a lot. IMO, wet wading can also be a pain in those situations, which is why I usually suck it up and bring my heavy rubber hippers with me (also protect against snakebites). A product like the WM, but with a boot fit would be lightweight and something I would use more than my chest highs (at least 9-10 months out of the year).
Also being in the southeast, my chest highs just seem overkill for brookies in the Shenandoah National Park. I also think there is a group for people, especially older folks who prefer hippers because they keep them from going into too deep of water.
I agree with MC, a boot-foot hipper would be preferable.
I really appreciate JVK’s thoughts and “devil advocate” position; particularly the YC reference. El Pescador and the Southeast folks amply articulate the conditions hippers are utilized. When it is 90 F and humid the less material the better which may lead to a suggestion of wet wading for the brief periods of time you are in the water on small waters. Hip waders provide an excellent level of protection against Lyme disease which is becoming more pervasive and nasty cover (i.e. thickets, burrs); the Driftless Area happens to be a hot spot for both. I recently heard YC describe a Patagonia product philosophy that really resonated with me. While being interview by Brokaw at Google’s Zeitgeist YC shared the belief and a guiding development force that a piece of equipment is perfect not when you can’t add anything more, but when you can’t take anything more away without sacrificing intended function and high quality. If we consider the critical factors to a small water angler, well developed hippers just may exemplify that philosophy and be the perfect piece of gear. I personally would like to see a highly breathable stocking foot hipper as it is lighter and more packable.
On another note. For those involved with non-profits, there is a new site to help learn and employ a vast array of Google applications and grant support: http://www.google.com/nonprofits/ . National and local efforts can benefit.
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