Maine Guide

Canal Footwear?

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What is the preferred footwear these days for navigating up and down those slippery rocks to the water?

 

Now that I’m in my mid fifties, I don’t want to risk a career ending fall. 

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Good topic, and I'm sure you'll get a variety of opinions.

I've tried many over the years. Some met with various degrees of success, while others didn't work at all. I finally settled on good ankle high hunting shoes, with Cordura outers, goretex waterproofing, and aggressive Vibram soles.

They're light, provide needed ankle support, reasonably waterproof, and provide adequate traction on slippery rocks. I actually have two pair, in the event one pair gets wet, I'll have a dry pair for the following night.

Even in spite of all that, I took a near career ending fall a few years back that I don't like to think about to this day.  Top of the rocks, all the way till my head landed in the water.  Broke a favorite rod and spent a half hour shaking off cobwebs.

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1 min ago, bob_G said:

Good topic, and I'm sure you'll get a variety of opinions.

I've tried many over the years. Some met with various degrees of success, while others didn't work at all. I finally settled on good ankle high hunting shoes, with Cordura outers, goretex waterproofing, and aggressive Vibram soles.

They're light, provide needed ankle support, reasonably waterproof, and provide adequate traction on slippery rocks. I actually have two pair, in the event one pair gets wet, I'll have a dry pair for the following night.

Even in spite of all that, I took a near career ending fall a few years back that I don't like to think about to this day.  Top of the rocks, all the way till my head landed in the water.  Broke a favorite rod and spent a half hour shaking off cobwebs.

Thanks Bob. I was hooping you would chime in. I figure you would have the most experience in this area. 

 

Does anyone use korkers?  Or felt soled footwear?  

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2 mins ago, Adame450 said:

I use Korkers 

I was just wondering if they are used these days. Still slippery on the walk down to the water, or do they hold well on the rocks?

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Posted (edited) · Report post

40 mins ago, Maine Guide said:

What is the preferred footwear these days for navigating up and down those slippery rocks to the water?

 

Now that I’m in my mid fifties, I don’t want to risk a career ending fall. 

Wear flip flops like the Jersey fishermen who invade the canal every summer.

 

I've been wearing good hiking boots with an aggressive tread like Merrell or currently Keen.

Edited by zak-striper

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I wear deck boots, but pick my spots to climb down the rocks, avoiding seaweed. Hard to get to my favorite spots these days at daybreak, didn't fish the Canal at all last season.

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I have never worn my korker cleats. I may wear korker boots (without studs) with stocking foot waders. Usually I wear boot foot waders with no studs. 
 

When I am there for a few weeks I also wear crocs, sandals or even bare feet at times. There are plenty of safe places to fish.  Plan ahead for landing a fish long before you hook a fish. 
 

Don’t expect someone to go down and get your fish for you. Others have had that expectation :wave:

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3 mins ago, ged said:

I have never worn my korker cleats. I may wear korker boots (without studs) with stocking foot waders. Usually I wear boot foot waders with no studs. 
 

When I am there for a few weeks I also wear crocs, sandals or even bare feet at times. There are plenty of safe places to fish.  Plan ahead for landing a fish long before you hook a fish. 
 

Don’t expect someone to go down and get your fish for you. Others have had that expectation :wave:

You mean like the guys throwing plugs over your head from the service road? :sarc:

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Some guys are fine with just felt soled wading boots.  Those guys won't tell you about the times they wiped out out on the slick wet grass going down to the rocks.  Put studs on those felt boots.  The best and in the long run cheapest studs are Kold Kutter studs made for motor cycle ice racing.   Hardware store hex heads don't last.  You can find them on eBay.

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The best I've used is Cabela's wading boots with the felt bottom and screws. Not sure if they still sell them anymore but the felt/screw bottoms seem to handle most variables best for me. No matter what you choose some spots are going to be difficult navigating and falls are almost inevitable.

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It's the random unexpected tipping rock that'll get ya, regardless of how good your traction is. They look solid, but can sometimes shift when placing weight on them. Always best to thoroughly check out the stability of rocks down to a new area in daylight before trying it at night. :idea: Also solid advice above about finding a safe landing spot for you and the fish before you start casting. 

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