A few months ago I took delivery of some CPX Zip-front Waders. Now, after several fishing sessions donning the new strides, I’ve hung up my old waders permanently – I’ll miss that lived in feel but not the soggy legs!
The new waders have what are described as ‘ergonomically designed high density neoprene booties’ – they’re comfortable right off the bat. The built in gravel guards are also a snug fit with strong lace hooks and grippy rubberised hems, very effective at keeping out the grit, grime and gravel.
Being a modern wader the CPXs are cut to be less baggy than traditional designs and like many other premium products have no vertical inside leg seams. These features promise to reduce friction and the wear it causes. The legs, which are constructed from Redington’s proprietary RedStorm five layer fabric, feel very robust and should prove resilient to puncturing and general abrasion when walking through brush. The leg design also incorporates ‘articulated’ knees helping with freedom of movement. The seat and upper sections of the wader are constructed from three layer RedStorm providing extra breathability.
The Riri Storm® zip, fast becoming the industry standard, makes the wader a little easier to pull on and off than non-zipped models. As a bloke however, I think the zip is most useful when it comes to spending a waterside penny – it sure beats all the faffing around with regular waders. Of course, if you’re not concerned about this functionality you can always save yourself some cash and opt for Redington’s standard CPX waders.
Up front, two zipped stretchy outer pockets take enough gear so that when I’m on the river, I can get away without a vest (I carry one C&F medium fly box, five spools of mono, line dressing and a Monomaster). Two hand warmer pockets are accessible and roomy enough to function as they should – they have zippers that are water resistant and seem to keep out the water on the odd occasions when you wader up to your armpits.
The suspender straps are a cross-over design similar to other leading brands. They’re comfortable and make use of low profile clasps and adjusters lending a sleek feel to the design. The straps are removable to aid rolling the wader down for use as waist highs; an arrangement aided by the low profile clasps. At the front of each suspender is a little tab from which tools and/or leader and fly preparations may be hung. I have forceps and Gink hanging from one tab, and leader degreasing pad and nippers hanging from the other.
The CPXs are supplied with a simple and serviceable wide nylon webbing belt. This can be threaded through light gauge loops at back and sides, though on my medium size waders I find the loops to be situated a little high in relation to the pockets for my liking so I wear my belt out of the loops. I’m guessing larger models have more room for the belt.
As mentioned earlier I’ve given the CPXs a reasonable amount of use and so far their performance has been good.
Except for food, tea and ‘convenience’ breaks I often stand in cold running water for most of a fishing day. If I’m not properly dressed I find the water puts a chill in my bones, even in summer. Fortunately the fit of these waders allows me to wear my fleece leggings and light trousers together, so I’ve been plenty warm enough so far. At the same time I can confirm the CPXs are close enough fitting to retain the intended wear characteristics; the legs don’t flap when walking, and presumably the fabric won’t wear through prematurely.
For anyone doubting the wisdom of including a front zip let me just confirm one more time, the waders, including the Riri Storm® zip, are reliably waterproof. While the zipper does its job impeccably, the RedStorm fabric is equally up to the job. The outer surface sheds water well, at least while new and clean, having been finished with REPEL, DuPont Teflon® fabric protector. The special fabric finish also helps repel stains. The combined five and three layer fabric construction also breaths well enough even if the current heat wave has pushed them beyond any reasonable limit (no specific breathability ratings are available) – if the weather gets any hotter I might start looking for a pair of wet wading shoes!
If I have any criticism I should say I was a little surprised that the seat construction wasn’t of similar weight to the lower legs, or at least a bit heavier than the three layer fabric, but I’m assuming Redington Fly Fishing have found this an unnecessary feature. I also think the belt loop attachment looks a little vulnerable though in my case that’s not going to be an issue.
So, overall, I think the CPX Zip-front waders are a nice product. They’re well constructed and comfortable with good detailing that makes for a very functional wader. I’ll be interested to see how they fare over the next few seasons – I’ll be sure to report back »