Posted by Blace Hutchens on December 19, 2016
In today's market there are many apparel companies dedicated to performance and function in the kayak fishing world. Everyone has their favorite company, brand, and clothing that they use on the water. Well, I have been putting a certain brand of boots, splash pants, and wet socks through the grind this year and want to give my review on them. The Company is NRS and the items being reviewed are as follows: NRS BOUNDARY BOOTS, NRS ENDURANCE SPLASH PANTS, and NRS WET SOCKS. Let's get started!
Beginning the review with the Boundary Boots simply because I think they’re the most influential piece of equipment I have used this year. The boots are tall, mid calf style made with neoprene upper, thick insole, and rugged rubber sole. They secure nicely to your feet with a sturdy Velcro strap across the top of the foot and then again around the leg with a buckle strap. The boots are built to last season after season without sacrificing all day comfort. I have worn the boots day after day this season with no signs of wear or tear. I spend the majority of my time on jagged river rocks and they have ensured all day comfort. Whether it is launching the kayak, portaging a class 3 rapid, or dragging to your favorite hole.
I first used them at Kentucky Lake in March, up against cold water, wind, and white capping waves. They kept my feet warm, dry, and free from the elements. This was important due to the intense waves crashing against the kayak and pushing you against the banks. I was forced out of the kayak at one point being pelted by wave after wave. The boots gave me the chance to jump out into the shallow water without getting soaked feet. I was sold from that point forward, but continued to put them to test. I wore them on an adventure to Sandstone Falls on the New River, where the river is most powerful. I was forced to drag up and over a shallow rapid, but the boots performed flawlessly against the flowing current and the slick boulders. I have been impressed time after time with the boots and would highly recommend them to any novice or experienced kayak angler. They would even be great for the bank fisherman in the family. Great all around product manufactured to ultimately last year after year without breaking the bank.
Pros: Lightweight, Packable, Easy On & Off, Pair great with the NRS wet socks and splash pants
Cons: If you wear them with shorts in the summer expect gnarly tan lines!
Endurance Splash Pants
The Endurance Pants rank number 2 in the most impressive gear for me in 2016. They have kept me dry and cozy all season long. The HyproTex material NRS uses repels water very well. The water just beads off them like they were sprayed with Rain X. They are extremely lightweight while still allowing for great protection against the elements. They permit tremendous range of motion while walking or in the kayak. They cinch around the waist with strong Velcro and elastic. The design around the waist is easy to use and adjust. They also fasten around the ankle to prevent any unwarranted water from encroaching your legs. They are fairly thin and I recommend wearing a base layer under them in the colder months. At the same time the breathable material can be worn in the warmer months without becoming too hot, also providing the UV protection on those sunny days. They material is also great against snags and tears. Multiple times I have encountered briers while dragging to put in and take out locations with no ill effects to the pants. Hooks and lures with trebles don't easily find their way into them. One zip pocket on the upper thigh is functional, easy to access, and large enough to fit items like an iPhone.
Being labeled a splash pant implies the pants would be good against over spray while running rapids or light exposure in the water. This isn't the case with these pants. I use them as if they were waders. They completely prevent you from getting wet and dry quickly after you're out.
I have used them to wade through strong river current, used them to wade the river after beaching the kayak, and most importantly launching the kayak in colder water. I love to get out of the kayak to setup my GoPro for pictures and these pants give me that opportunity while staying dry. Pair these pants up with the Boundary Boots making a fundamental lower body wader. This is another great product that is reasonably priced.
Pros: Durable, Adjustable Waist and Ankle systems, Waterproof, Way of Fit, Reinforced fabric of knees and seat
Cons: Hard for me to find anything I don't like about them. It would be nice to have additional pockets
NRS Wet Socks
Simple and effective is the best way to label the wet socks. Essentially they are just a pair of 2mm neoprene booties that go great under wet shoes like the boundary boots. They can also be great with slip on sandals or Crocs. Adding warmth, cushion, and an extra barrier against the elements are all things the socks offer. For the price they are worth picking up just because they will probably last a lifetime. They offer an almost seamless design that really hugs the foot snug and comfortably.
Pros: Price point, Resistant, Convenience
Cons: Remembering to bring them along
This is an unbiased review of these products. I am not associated with NRS. I just love their products. Thanks for reading and keep those lines tight!!