Are you an active fisherman doing a lot of hiking or walking between fishing spots? Maybe you just want a really comfortable pair of wading boots? The new Vapor Boots from Simms Fishing Products could be just the ticket for you. Built off a hiking boot platform, these boots have built off of many great features you know and love with your comfortable old Simms wading boots, cut out any unnecessary weight, and added some new high-tech features such as the Simms VaporTread™ Vibram sole.
Simms 2014 Vapor Boot
When we first heard about these new boots, about a year ago, we immediately thought they would be the perfect summer-time wading boot. However, we’ve since realized the versatility that this boot brings to the table. You can size it up to be worn with your waders for Fall, Winter, and Spring use, then when summer comes around, pick up a pair of Simms Guard Socks and wear them for summer wet wading. If you’re looking for a pair of summer wet wading/hiking boots, buy them as you would your normal hiking boots. Combo that with a pair of Simms Wading Socks and you’re in business for hiking around the Gallatin River on a beautiful July morning.
Breaking Down the VaporTread Sole:
The new sole that Simms built into the Vapor Boots is top notch. Similar to the new RiverTread sole in the G3 Guide and G4 BOA Boots, the VaporTread has shown some major improvements on its predecessor (StreamTread). By simply comparing the two, you’ll notice one difference right away: The 90 degree cuts of the rubber lugs vs. slanted cuts on the older boots. One complaint of the older boots was the longevity of the sole grip. Simms took this to heart and came out with the new cuts. Because of the 90 degree angle, the lugs will essentially be self sharpening. As they wear down, they will continue to stay sharp and provide maximum grip. The sole features these lugs throughout the middle, with a slightly more aggressive “hiking style” tread on the outer edges of the sole.
The new lugs aren’t just the only cool new feature in the Vapor boots, but the next is something that is still relatively unknown to many consumers. It might sound like just a big word (one that our Simms Rep, Michael White, loves to use), but the term proprioception basically refers to your body’s perception of it’s location in space. It’s one way for your brain to perceive the location and function of your limbs. Your typical wading boot has a rigid material glued between the sole and the insole. While this rigidity does help with support and durability of the boots, it also significantly reduces your ability to “feel” what your walking on. Through extensive testing, Simms realized that there are only few select points on where a good boot needs the rigidity, the rest can be cut out.
To make a long story short, the new VaporTread sole is rigid on the outer edge and flexible in the middle and is noticeably lighter in weight. This technology creates a “cupping” effect when the user is stepping on rocks and moving their way in and around the river. The result is an increase in proprioception, and all around better balance and grip.
Close Up of the Lugs
If you haven’t noticed yet, we are sort of intrigued by the new Vapor Boots. The new VaporTread sole is great. The decreased weight and increased grip and “feel” is great. The boots feel like a nicely broken-in hiking boot, but have the grip that only a pair of wading boots can bring. Whether your plans include a 25-mile backpacking trip into the Bob Marshall Wilderness, the “Bird Float” on the Yellowstone River, or walk/wading the Gallatin, we’re convinced that the new Simms Vapor Boots will be a great addition to your arsenal of gear. If you’d like to check them out in person, come say hi at either one of our shops here in Bozeman. You can also find them in our Online Store at The River’s Edge.