What I’ve found after 30+ years working in fly fishing is that everyone says they have the most comfortable everything. “Our wading pants and tech sun shirts are the very best and you’ll want to wear them all the time.” I’ve heard that so many times I’m pretty numb to these exaggerations.

I’ve worn so many “fishing” pants either for fishing or for everyday wear hoping that I had finally found something that truly makes me “want to wear them all the time.”  Well, good news!  I have found a pair of fishing pants that are amazing for ALL aspects of life, except a formal dinner.

Skwala SOL Wading Pant in ShadowA little more than a year ago I ordered a pair of Skwala’s Sol Wading Pants, not free from the manufacturer, at a pro price. I thought I would give them a try after seeing the sample and feeling the material. They had all of the features that I’m drawn to and I needed some new pants anyways. When I saw them in person, from the samples they sent us, I thought they checked all of the boxes. The articulated legs and microporous fiber used seemed to be ideal in Redding for wet wading our local rivers and streams as well as wearing for everyday use. I wasn’t sure that they would be the answer to anything but thought in the worst case scenario they would be great for kicking around on the weekends or wearing to work. They have plenty of pockets for daily use and the side and back pockets have zippers rather than velcro, which I always prefer.

Skwala Fishing’s CEO, Kevin Sloan, had told me that these were the “best” and I was thinking, “sure they are, just like all of the others.” I’ll be the first to admit when I’m wrong and give credit to the person that proved me wrong. The first time I wore them was a visit to the coast to see my daughter and do some camping. No, not a fishing excursion just yet. They were extremely comfortable for the drive over, which isn’t a surprise as they feel like your favorite pajama bottoms. The true test on this initial trip was going to be when I stopped at the ocean and let my dogs run on the beach and swim. We hit the coast after the long drive and I let the boys out to run and play a bit. Not sure if anyone else has Labradors, but if you do, you know they love the water, so they were in the Pacific Ocean in no time. Again, not your normal fishing test yet, but a test on how quickly these things would dry. I was thinking to myself, “great, now I’m going to have to change when we get back to the truck.” We played in the water, ran on the sand and enjoyed the wonderful smell that you only get from the ocean. After an hour or so we returned to the truck and to my surprise, by the time we reached it my pants were dry. Yes, they were a bit sandy, but that just brushed off and we were back in the truck and headed to the campsite.

Since that first trip I’ve worn them to do just about everything, from golf to travel. I finally was able to put them to the fishing test a couple of months later on the Upper Sacramento River. Since it’s still hot here in Redding, this was in September, I was able to wet wade. I was a bit concerned about wear and tear with the weeds getting spiky and much of the brush being dry from the hot summer. But, there’s no better way to test this stuff than to take it out and see what happens. Again, with dogs in tow, we pulled off at the Delta exit and geared up for a light day of fishing and some dog swimming. I picked Delta as I know a few holes that the dogs can enjoy between fishing runs.

Side pocket on the Skwala Sol Wading PantAgain, these pants checked all of the boxes. With all of the pockets I was able to carry all of my fishing gear for the day without needing a pack. I of course did have a waterproof backpack, the Patagonia Guidewater Backpack, with me though as I brought lunch and some supplies for my dogs.  This isn’t the case for everyone I know, but I’m a minimalist when it comes to my fishing gear. We trudged through the brush when needed and also waded through the river at other times. Just as Skwala says about their pants, “Slogging through current while picking apart boulder pockets.”, they worked great for this exact scenario. At no time during the day did I feel that my pants were slowing me down or dragging in the water. The tapered, articulated cut on the legs makes for a very comfortable day in the water.

We returned to the truck a few hours later with happy dogs and a few trout to hand. The goal of the day wasn’t so much to catch a ton of fish as it was to have a great time and test out these pants. For me, they passed every test I threw at them. By the time we got back to the vehicle and put everything away, which wasn’t much, my Skwala Sol Wading Pants had completely dried and I only needed to pick a few foxtails and stickers out of the legs. There were no tears or rips from the brush and they looked as though I just took them off the clothesline.

Bryan Quick wet wading the McCloud River in his Skwala Sol Wading Pants

I’ve worn lots of “wet wading pants” in my time and in my opinion these are the best I’ve ever put on and used. A bit on the shorter side (32” inseam), but that works great for wet wading. I think Skwala hit a homerun with these pants and I would strongly recommend that you give them a try for yourself whether it be in the salt or on your local river. As Pat Pendergast stated in his “Gear Review:  Skwala RS Jacket & Waders,” well done Skwala Team!

I would also recommend that you read Justin Miller’s gear review that he wrote in December of 2022 on these same pants and the Skwala Sol Tactical Hoody – https://www.theflyshop.com/gear-review-skwala-sol