Many anglers have tossed their old favorite felt or studded felt soled wading boots and purchased rubber or Vibram soled boots of late. Most of us like the idea of reducing the possibility of transmitting invasive species from one drainage to another. Vibram soled boots do reduce that chance, but only proper cleaning, drying or freezing can truly assure that invasives are not moved from one river or lake to another.
But have those Vibram soles offered the same reliable traction that studded felt has? Most would say NO, or NO WAY! Simms, Korkers, Grip Studs, and other wading boot manufacturers have developed additional traction devices that anglers can add to their Vibram soles in order to lessen the chance of one falling on ones ass and using their favorite spey rod or trout stick to break the ensuing fall. The following video discusses the newest stud from Simms to tackle those difficult wading situations.
The new Simms Alumibite Stud hearkens back to Stream Cleats (still around somewhere and pictured below). The Aluminum idea is the same but the massive galosh and difficulty of getting in and out of your boots is gone. Softer Alumibite Studs grab slick rocks where harder carbide studs might not do as well.
The “softer” aluminum stud will give angler a different grab than the existing Star Cleat or Harbite Stud that Simms currently offers. A combination of studs may be the only way to assure the best traction. My favorite part of this new piece of the traction puzzle is that they are made out of the same aluminum as many high end fly reels. Think of have 8-10 mini fly reels on the bottom of your boot, you’ll be sure to step carefully and keep your feet.–CD