What are Vision Keeper Wading Boots?
Vision Keeper Wading Boots are lightweight rubber soled boots designed to be worn with stocking foot waders. Rather than the usual felt soles, which provide grip on rocks but are a nightmare to use on grass or mud, the Vision Keeper wading boots have a grippier rubber sole.
What is the sole like?
I bought the Vision Keeper boots after my previous Vision Hopper II felt sole wading boots proved too treacherous to wear. I was forever sliding on grass and mud, so opted to get a pair of these for a bit more grip.
While the rubber sole is certainly better than felt, the tread is quite fine and can quickly become clogged with mud when walking along the river bank, so you'll still slide around a bit. It's a shame the soles aren't a match for those of a proper walking boot.
What is the grip like when wading?
I tend to wear these when wading in the River Dee in Wales. This river is known for being a challenging one to wade. While the bits I fish don't have too much slippery bedrock, they do have lots of very slippery cobbles that comprise the river bed.
Felt soles probably provide more grip on this substrate than these rubber ones. However, if you install wading boot studs (I used Greys Strata Wading Boot Studs in mine) the grip goes up a level. I felt very confident once the studs were in place. The only problem was, the fell out after just a few trips...
What are they like to wear?
Although not as light as the Vision Hopper II boots, the Vision Keeper boots are certainly not heavy. They're very soft and comfortable to wear. They're on the bulky side so do feel a bit little like clown shoes but they do the job fine.
Are they hard wearing?
I've been using mine for nearly two years. They've held up far better than the Vision Hopper boots, where the soles fell off and the stitching came away. The boots are still in one piece and the only sign of wear is the rubber starting to perish on the inside.
They've got reinforced toes and heels to add a bit of extra protection, webbing lace loops that won't corrode and a padded ankle to make them comfortable to wear. The sole also seems fairly hard wearing, even if grip could be better.
How much are Vision Keeper wading boots?
As wading boots go, Vision Keeper boots are quite cost effective, retailing for around £79.99. You can pick them up for around £50 if you shop around, which is very good value for money. They're available in sizes from 7 to 12.