Guide To Winter Fishing Boots

As winters go, this one’s been pretty hard and we’re only just in to January! Most waters around the north west have been frozen since the back end of November and are only now just beginning to thaw, so no doubt there will be a mass exodus of anglers heading to the banks over the coming weeks desperate to wet a line.

Fishing at this time of year brings with it a number of challenges and not just in tempting the fish; you also need to ensure you can keep your feet warm in freezing temperatures. If you want the ultimate protection and comfort whilst out on the banks, then a good set of winter boots will keep you warm, dry and on the ball.

In this piece we’ll offer up some points for consideration, and hopefully put you on the right track if you’re in the market for some winter boots.

First up, let’s take a look at the different types available. Proper winter boots go by a couple of different names; either field boots, winter boots or ski boots. What most have in common is a heavyweight thermal lining, which can be permanent or removable. Most have a moulded base, which looks a bit like a Wellington, but then a laced upper. Some may be without laces completely, or may have straps.

I’ve tried most types over the years and at the moment I’m using a lace up boot with a removable liner. They have a rubberised moulded base and fabric high walled sides. The boot itself is probably a size ten or more, but inside there is a heavyweight thermal liner, which can be removed (if night fishing for example) to give an extra layer of warmth over your socks. They can feel cumbersome when walked for long periods, but to be honest I have them as ‘session boots’. The most I tend to walk in them during winter is from the car park to the swim, and once in the swim, my feet are in total comfort (and warmth) for the duration of my stay!

I’ve had the boots for perhaps two years now, and they’ve served me well on the bank, though I have to say that this winter they have been, quite literally, worth their weight in gold. I live in the Staffordshire Moorlands, less than five minutes drive from the village that always makes the news each year for getting the most snow - and this year there’s been plenty! At one point it snowed every day for nearly two weeks, and as for temperatures, don’t even go there! Let’s just say that if it was above freezing in the day time it was a blessing! Things grind on regardless of course, but I have to say, the daily routine of de-icing the car, getting the kids to school, etc, was particularly testing this time around – especially on the mornings when it was below minus 10… and there were lots of them!

The field boots were my saviour; my feet were always warm and toast throughout no matter where I was; on the school run, checking the lake or out with the kids. I remember having them on the first day the weather hit when I took Izaak up to school, and one of the other parents joking about how big they looked. Over the coming days as the weather got worse and worse, the parents looked colder and colder each day… but it made no difference to me, the boots were built just for this kind of use. The icing on the cake was when the same parent joking about them days earlier then came over to ask where he could get some!

Suffice to say, they are ideal for winter session fishing, but there are a few pints worth considering. If you are likely to be doing a lot of walking, you may be better of going for a fixed liner. Whilst the removable liners are great for session fishing, they do move around a bit when walking long distances, and it can feel like your socks are coming down a bit. Also, have a think about what type of liner you prefer. Most fixed liners have a pile type lining, which whilst comfortable and warm, may flatten in time with prolonged use, and of course, this then reduces the insulating effect of the liner.

Many of the removable liners, are not made from pile, so don’t flatten in the same way. The removable liners in mine are as robust and thick now as the day I bought them, unlike many of the moonboot style boots I’ve had in the past, which end up being no warmer then Wellingtons.

It’s all about finding the right combination to suit your intended use. But any of the selections we’ve highlighted below would be a good starting point.

Proving that winter boots need not cost the earth, you can get ready for the worst of the weather with these wonderfully cosy Hardwear Clifford James Warm Winter Waterproof Boots costing just £20.42, which are ideal for session carp fishing, coarse fishing and predator fishing in any weather. With slip resistant soles, you'll be ready to go every morning, rain or snow. Comfortable enough to wear all day long these boots are perfect for all outdoor pursuits. Colour: Black/Dark Brown Uppers.

Hardwear Winter Fishing Boot


For those wanting a little more luxury, the Olang Canadian Après Ski Boot is a very comfortable boot ideal for winter fishing. Boasting ample padding for internal warmth and featuring a full length laced front, you’ll be like toast when out on the banks! The durable and highly stylish Canadian boot features a deep cleated sole and offers good traction. Ideal for winter session fishing offering extreme warmth, comfort and protection. Priced at £59.99

Olang Canadian Apres Ski Boot


Another value for money offering at just £27.01 is the Manbi Tracks Winter boot is just the job for winter fishing. It has a tough ripstop outershell and a waterproof rubber shell sole unit. The Sherpa fleece liner will keep your feet nice and warm while the sole will provide excellent levels of grip in the snow. Fantastic winter boot for carp and coarse fishing use.

Manbi Tracks Winter Boot


Last but not least is the Terrain Apres Ski boots; warm comfortable boots perfect for winter fishing. The fibre pile lining feels luxurious whilst the softer upper allows flexibility and results in optimal comfort. The waterproof foot section provides protection from the elements and keeps water out leaving your feet dry and snug! Fantastic winter fishing boot to keep you warm and dry when the heavy weather hits home. Priced at £39.94

Terrain Apres Ski Boots

Julian Grattidge
January 2011