A pair of the best comfortable fishing boots is worth its weight in gold if you are an avid angler. Good ankle boots will keep your feet comfortable and dry whether you’re just loading and unloading the boat by yourself or standing on a deck for hours on end while fighting less than ideal weather elements.
Our expert angling staff reviewed quite a few boots over the last year and researched everything that is currently available. We also talked with a bunch of professional anglers, guides and other knowledgeable anglers to come up with a list of the best fishing boots out there right now for the money.
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BEST OVERALL FISHING BOOTS: Grundéns Deviation Ankle Boot
I bought these boots last year and they are my favorites I’ve ever owned. Comfortable, good fit, easy on and they sit higher under your bibs than most boating shoes so you are not going to have wet feet in a rain storm.
These hands down have the best traction in wet conditions of all the other boots out there. Some deck boots are actually more slippery on a wet boot than regular tennis shoes. But the aggressive soles on these boots are awesome.
And in the early season and late season these are the perfect boots for cold conditions without having to wear full-on winter boots.
BEST LIGHTWEIGHT FISHING BOOTS: Xtratuf Sport Ankle Boot
These are some of the most popular fishing boots on the market largely due to how easily they slip on and how lightweight they are. Throw them in your boat, truck or garage and grab em and go anytime there is a chance you might have to get wet.
Whether you’re loading or launching the boat or fishing in a torrential downpour, these boots stand up to the test. I keep some in my storage unit with my boat as they have gotten to be as essential as my boat.
They are 100% waterproof, Non marking soles, slip resistant outsole with the highest rating for slip resistance possible. They also feature a breathable mesh lining that is sandwiched into the shoe to allow your feet to breath. Pull on tabs are sturdy and these boots are made for heavy abuse.
BEST FITTING FISHING BOOTS: Simms Challenger Boot
This vulcanized rubber boot has somewhat set the bar in waterproof protection. Simms makes arguably some of the best gear for keeping anglers dry and these boots are no exception. The neoprene lining and elastic top give you a nice form fitting boot that is not too tight but also stays very close to the leg so no water can trickle in. The rugged outsole grips well on most surfaces and foot bed is very comfortable for all day wear.
This is a long standard in deck boots and the latest versions are every bit as good and improved as this boot has ever been.
BEST CROSSOVER BOOTS: Grundéns Freeboard Chukka
I was looking for a good-looking slip-on shoe that would do double-duty as a casual shoe and one with fishing-specific design features. I like the slip-on for convenience — no laces mean they go on quickly and fit consistently. This shoe style also allows for some sock layering, so I can bulk up when temps take a dip. They’re also waterproof, an obvious plus in the boat.
The sole is non-marking and built for grip on wet and slippery surfaces. I’m a clean freak, so cleanliness is a side benefit of the boat-specific sole – the low-profile tread pattern doesn’t carry a lot of dirt, so it minimizes tracking soil and mud into your boat. Cosmetically, the leather upper looks great and has a cool technical and casual hybrid look where the leather meets the black leather band and white sole.
The contrast in materials is attractive and functional in terms of durability where it matters (heel and toe). I’ve worn my single pair of Freeboard Leather Chukka’s for two years and running, and they’re still in excellent shape, given the abuse they’ve been subjected to.
BEST PRICED FISHING BOOTS: AFTCO Ankle Deck Boot
AFTCO won best of show in 2022 at ICAST for this boot and put themselves on the deck boot map with anglers. These boots are well made with oversized loop straps that make pulling on and taking off these boots a breeze. And they are the only decent deck boots we’ve found under $100.
These boots are great on carpeted surfaces but can get a little slick on fiberglass or other smooth surfaces. So just something to be mindful of. The antimicrobial sole is a nice touch and the neoprene inside liner is quick drying should you splash water into them on your adventures. The soles offer good cushion and rebound making them comfortable for on the deck and on the bank.
BEST COMFORT FISHING BOOTS: Muck Excursion Pro
Muck has a long history of making great fitting waterproof boots and the Muck Excursion Pro Mid boot is one of their most popular ankle boots ever. I wore mine for many years before retiring them. The boot features a soft neoprene upper section with molded aggressive tread rubber lower section to keep your feet dry, comfortable and pain free after a long day of fishing.
The 4mm neoprene bootie and Xpress cool lining makes for a nice wear. The sock liner keeps foot friction to a minimum and the EVA midsole adds additional comfort and support. These boots are also very sturdy around the lower foot so they won’t tear up if you have to climb over obstacles on your bank fishing adventures.
Read our full review here: Muck Excursion Pro Mid Boot Review.