I had high hopes for these boots but ran into a major issue-at least for me.
First the GOOD- they fit like a tennis shoe and the traction was far superior to the Simms Free Salt Boot. And they definitely felt less clunky and bulky. I felt more nimble while traversing across rocks and boulders. They are light as the name implies and I could’ve worn them all day.
Now for the BAD- no matter what I tried, I couldn’t keep sand and microgravel from getting into the boot. It got to the point where enough got inside that it was uncomfortable wearing them. I know that I have skinny ankles and as such I expect some sand/microgravel to enter in through the top of the Simms Guide sock but there was a lot inside the boot. Way more than what was inside the sock.
As you can see from the photo the Simms Free Salt is quite a bit taller which gives the Guide Sock more surface area to prevent ingress of sand/microgravel. The tongue design and height of the boot might be the culprit.
I plan to try my Simms standard wading socks and separate velcro gravel guards to see if I can get a better seal to prevent this issue. As of now, I’d rate them at a 5 out of 10 on a sliding scale. I’m not ready to give up on them, but as is, I shouldn’t have to stop and empty the boot out just to keep fishing-that doesn’t work for me.
We’ll see how it goes from here.