I wore my Astral Hiyak shoes wet wading for the first time today. I am a size 9 and the shoes are 10s. I wore a pair of light socks under my Simms Guard socks and they fit perfectly. The grip seemed fine and they are very light and allowed me to feel the bottom. Up until now I have been using my Soft Science shoes this year but since they are now unavailable the Hiyaks will become my go to shoes.
I’m bummed to hear that Soft Science is no longer making the Terrafin. Such a great wading boot.
Does the Hiyak grip compare to the Terrafin?
I was able to find one place that has Terrafin, but they only accept MasterCard.
Other than you have Ninja black vs OD green the soles feel slightly thinner. I was able to feel the stream bottom better but they did fine on a long walk. The only thing I don’t know is how their grip will be out west.
I am into my second season with my Hiyaks and they are working out pretty well for me. I find them so comfortable that I have taken to driving up into the mountains wearing them and back down after fishing as well. Our Sierra Streams are pretty rugged and the Hiyaks grip well but do not offer as much foot protection as many of the other wading boots that there are out there. But that’s an apples and oranges comparison because the Hiyaks really are not Meant to be wading boots at all. But being able to feel the stream bottom structures offers its own set of advantages and rewards. All wading shoe foot wear offers its own set of compromises, you just have to decide what is most important for you in your fishing environments. Durability remains to be seen but so far my Hiyaks are doing fine - knock on wood…Karl.
Erik, I have not fished in the Terrifins but I fished a number of years in the 5-10 Search and Rescue Canyoneering Shoes with the Stealth Rubber soles, which were considered the State Of The Art for wet traction. I feel the Hiyaks grip better than the SARS did but do not offer as much foot support, stability and foot protection as the SARS do. For me, the Hiyaks are a lot more comfortable and a good deal lighter in weight. I had to re-glue the soles back on the SARS twice as the factory glue job partially failed in different places both times. I believe it is a real plus that the Hiyak soles are Both sewed and glued together in stead of just being glued. How long the stitching will last remains to be seen…Karl.
@ERiK_Ostrander - Forget the Mastercard only issue, they’re not even encrypting their web page. All your PAI sent over the interwebz in open text? No thanks…
Here is an up date on the Hiyaks: My usual shoe size is 10.5. Astrals only come in whole shoe sizes, so my Hiyaks are size 11s, so there is a bit more room in them than is really required. I normally wet wade with only a medium weight pair of wool socks on. I added an old pair of insoles from an older pair of wading boots (now gone) that I had kept, and the additional padding really added a lot of comfort to the Hiyaks and took the edge off of the sharp rocks, with out subtracting much from being able to feel what you are walking on. I just thought that I would pass that on a long to anyone it might be of some help to…Karl.
Found this review of the Hiyaks used as a kayaking shoe