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The Fish Magnet Gear Guide
Steelhead and Salmon Spey Fishing
By Dave Robinson

Dave Robinson Fish Magnet Gear Review

Featured Gear: Redington Sonic Pro Waders and Jacket

November 24, 2016

Here we are on the shoulder season between the best of our fall favorite steelhead and salmon rivers, and the upcoming winter steelhead season! I like to get 2 or 3 days a week on the water, so for me this is torture. High water, closed or fishless rivers...So what to do? Get your gear organized, tie the flies you will need or order flies and gear that you will need for the chilly, wet winter season. Also reflect on the gear that worked great for you last year, or failed and left you disappointed, or worse yet, cold and uncomfortable enough to make you want a warm room, instead of being comfortable on the river where the magic happens. Did your wading gear keep you dry and warm enough, or send you packing early? I'm not going to waste your time in this area reviewing gear that is sub-par.

I'll admit right up front, I started out as a Simms Guy and will not knock them. I had the G3 waders and Jacket, and still use the jacket for a lighter more compact summer top. The Simms G3 waders were very good but felt like I was wearing body armor! They eventually got leaks like most waders after a lot of really tough service, and like the great company they are, they replaced them for me. I met up with Jeff, the owner of for a couple of days on the O.P. to see if we could find a fish this last winter, and I brought home a new set of Redington Sonic Pro Zipper Dry Fly Waders. Then when I got home, I sent my Simms in for repairs. I'm a big time coffee drinker, and always hated to strip down several times a morning to get rid of some of it! As a result I would hold off on the coffee a bit to stem the anguish of this operation! The idea of the handy zipper had me thinking lots of black coffee with a foamy shot of Coconut creamer!

Fast forward to nearly a year later. These waders are lighter and more breathable than I was used to, and really, really, comfortable. You just never sweat in these things! A couple of months ago I was noticing a dribble or two around the crotch area...Hey I'm not so old that I wouldn't notice a weakening bladder! I figured I could put some silicon zipper lube on it, and it would be back to perfect, but decided to send them back to Redington to take a look. I'm the kind of guy that when I find a great product, I will buy more of it to have on hand. So I Called Grabflies and bought another set. When they arrived two days later, I sent my leaky set to Redington for a check. In the meantime I put my replaced Simms G3s up for sale on EBay, because once I started wearing the Sonic Pros, I just never went back to the Simms!

Get this, I sent the waders in on Monday. Wednesday I got an email from Redington customer service saying that they received them with an order number. By Friday, I received another email saying the order was complete and shipping out. Monday I got them in the mail. To my surprise they didn't fix or check out my waders....What!? THEY SENT ME A BRAND NEW PAIR!!!!! With a new belt, dry storage bag and warranty card! You just can't beat that! So now I'm going into winter with two sets of brand new Redington Sonic Pro Zipper waders.

While I'm at it, we might as well look at the Sonic Pro Wading Jacket as well. Sometime during all of this, late last winter, Jeff and I decided to meet on the Cowlitz to try and exercise some winter chrome for the afternoon. We were emailing back and forth to get it figured out, and I mentioned that my Simms Jacket was pretty tight to try and get much layering under it, and when I did layer up, they would bind in my shoulders and armpits. He said he had a new Large Redington Sonic Pro Jacket laying around and that he would bring it for me to try on with some extra layer tops on. When we met the next day on the river, Jeff brought out the Jacket for me and, oh yeah! Nice! Can I wear it? If you love her put a ring on it...I mean, sure, but you will have to pay for it if you want to take the tags off! Being the gear whore that I am, of course I did!

Well, I didn't touch a fish, so it must not have been a lucky jacket, however, Jeff hooked up and he was wearing one, so good enough for me! Sold!

This Jacket is really roomy for the winter cold months, has a great adjustable hood with bill, and lots of pockets in all the right places. It also sheds water like a duck. The neoprene cinch down wrist cuffs are very comfortable as is the cinch waist elastic draw string. The hand warmer pockets could stand to have a tad bigger opening for wet cold hands though.

So let's see what we have here:

Sonic Pro Jacket (click Here)


A waterproof wading jacket with sonic welded technology and superior comfort. Featuring an oversized, fully adjustable hood, tons of storage, and hand warmer pockets, this is the most durable wading jacket you will ever wear.
  • 100% Nylon, 4-layer waterproof/breathable DWR coated fabric
  • High-tech ultra-sonic welded construction (no sew) and double taped seams
  • Oversized, fully adjustable hood
  • RiRi waterproof center front zippered
  • Fleece lined hand warmer pockets
  • Adjustable internal water-tight gasket cuffs
  • Center back D-ring for nets
  • Zippered back pocket
  • Seam technology licensed via Orvis Patent 7,770,235
  • Dave Robinson Fish Magnet Gear Review

    Fish Magnet Rating gives it a 9/10 grabs

    I had to knock off a point for the small hand warmer pockets. Also the bottom of the zipper teeth started to break off. This is my fault probably because this is a very heavy waterproof zipper and was stiff to start. With a little zipper grease I would have had no problem but I sent it back to Redington for the usual great customer service and the way it sounds, they will be sending me a new model jacket with the updated zipper. Didn't I say customer service rocks!

    Please take into account, I use this stuff 2-4 times per week. That is about 5 years' worth per year for the casual angler. I use it a lot, and I use it hard!

    I don't use this jacket much in the summer and fall until the weather turns cold. It is a lot of jacket for the money and is a 2-3 season item. I fall back to the G3 in the summer when it is warm out.

    I want to give a shout out to Jeff at Grabflies as well on this. He did me a solid when I told him about the zipper and gave me a new jacket out of the shop to cover for Redington on this. I didn't want to take advantage of him and tried to put him off but he insisted saying "just send me the new one to me when you get it from Redington" Wow, that's the kind of place I want to buy my gear from, that's taking care of your customers! Sure we're friends and fishing partners now, but he has been like this with my brother and I from the start before he even knew us! Thanks Jeff!

    Sonic Pro Wader (click here)


    The all new Sonic-Pro wader uses 4-layer waterproof-breathable fabric and Sonic Weld seams to create a simple wader with superior durability for uncompromising performance on the water. We designed this wader with minimal pockets and a clean silhouette to provide anglers a durable wader that simply performs in all conditions, from deep steelhead wading to hot summer trout runs.
  • Ergonomic 3.5mm neoprene bootie with 4mm bottom for additional comfort and increased durability against punctures
  • Slim wading belt compatible with majority of pliers and staffs
  • Flip out pocket with zipper and mesh tippet pocket
  • Two-sided fleece lined hand warmer pocket Anti-corrosive hardware SONIC-PRO HD $399 The new Sonic-Pro HD features field tested SonicWeld seams and highly durable 4 layer waterproof-breathable construction with tough, ergonomic neoprene booties to create our most durable wader ever. Ample pockets create enough storage space for essential gear, and our ActiveFit means these waders will be comfortable for even the longest days in tough-wading waters.
    • Ergonomic 3.5mm neoprene bootie with 4mm bottom for additional comfort and increased durability against punctures
    • Two-sided fleece hand warmer pockets
    • Large water-resistant chest pocket
    • Anti-corrosive hardware
    • Slim wading belt compatible with majority of pliers and staffs
    • Flip out pocket with zipper and mesh tippet pocket

    Sonic Pro HDZ Wader(click here)

    SONIC-PRO HDZ $499

    The Sonic-Pro HDZ takes the durable design of the Sonic-Pro HD wader and incorporates a waterproof TIZIP zipper for ease and comfort on the water. With its added features, fit, and durability, the HDZ helps anglers maximize their time on the water.

    • TIZIP waterproof front zipper
    • Ergonomic 3.5mm neoprene bootie with 4mm bottom for additional comfort and increased durability against punctures
    • Snap tab to secure zipper
    • Two-sided fleece hand warmer pocket with water-resistant zippers
    • Anti-corrosive hardware
    • Large water-resistant chest pocket
    • Integrated tool dock on left chest pocket
    • Slim wading belt compatible with majority of pliers and staffs

    Dave Robinson Fish Magnet Gear Review

    Fish Magnet Review Gives the Sonic Pro Zipper Waders a 10/10 Grabs!

    I just cannot find anything about these waders I would change. They even come with a wide elastic waist belt that is super comfy and has lots of pockets. Roll the top down if you want for warm weather wading pants and roomy enough booties to wear a couple pair of socks and or neoprene dry socks with oversize boots.

    Redington has really gone above and beyond to more than compete with Simms and Patagonia with this gear. I'm loving their Prowler boots as well! Stay tuned for that review soon.

    You can catch fish with a bad cast, but you will catch more with a good one!

    See all of Dave Robinson's gear review articles (click here)

    Learn more about Dave, and see some of the fish he catches (click here) - Jeff Layton/Grabflies