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Patagonia Forra Wading Boots Review

Patagonia Forra Wading Boots Review

Fitwell logo on Patagonia Forra Wading BootOverview

The Patagonia Forra Wading Boots are a new product that us at TCO Fly Shop are very excited about. Some of us were lucky enough to have early access to these boots, and an opportunity to test them out before they came to market. We decided we would share some of what we found about these boots with you! Here's our Patagonia Forra Wading Boots Review!

The Patagonia Forra Wading boots are built for long hikes to the water and the slick rocks that lie below it. These boots are slim and minimalistic yet aggressively designed when needed, and the large surface area of the Vibram Mars sole and the HexaBase lugs on the outsole combine for maximum grip and stability.

These boots have a unique design when compared to the competition. The arch of the sole is much different than traditional wading boots. You may also be surprised by the thick tread, and the upper fabric’s thin profile, which is much different than the thicker foam uppers of most wading boots. 

The made in Italy Forra wading boots leave nothing to question when it comes to quality. They are expertly designed and made of high quality materials, making them trekking and wading machines that are built to last!


The Patagonia Forra Wading Boots are a lightweight wading boot made for both the trail and river. The supportive, high collar upper is made of abrasion-resistant Cordura® nylon mesh for quick-drying and lightweight support. They feature an aggressive Vibram Mars with XS Trek compound tread, which offers best in class traction while remaining incredibly lightweight. Seriously these boots have no business offering the performance they do at only 40.99 ounces. Once out of the water, these boots will not hold you down. They are designed to drain water quickly, and it is free from unnecessary foam and backers for much faster dry times. 

The supportive, high collar upper is made of abrasion-resistant Cordura® nylon mesh for quick-drying and lightweight support.

Our Experience

Some of us at TCO were lucky enough to get our hands on the Patagonia Forra Wading Boots ahead of time. We all put these boots to the test and fished them in different waters and situations. Ultimately, we were all extremely happy with the Forras, and it is now some of our go-to wading boots.

We found the tread to have great traction, even without studs, thanks to the Vibram XS Trek Compound. Once studded, we can imagine these boots will have some of the best in class traction. 

Additionally, we found the lightweight and sleek design of the upper to be a welcome feature, and the boot remains lightweight when wet thanks to its quick draining capabilities. We didn’t find ourselves missing the foam uppers of other wading boots, and we found that the high collar of the Forras offered great ankle support. This will be especially helpful to those of us who often find ourselves hiking into fishing locations, and don’t want our heavy wading boots holding us back from where we want to fish. 

Patagonia is known to create products of the highest quality, and we found these boots to meet and surpass those standards. They feel and look great, and allow us to take on our fishing adventures with confidence.

Vibram Mars With XS Trek Compound Tread

See what the team at TCO had to say about the new Forra Wading Boots:

"We have a ton of small streams in Pennsylvania and I spend the majority of my time wading/hiking so I was happy to try out the new Forra wading boot from Patagonia. The first thing I noticed was how light they were, which isn't surprising since Patagonia is having these made by an Italian company named Fitwell that's known for making high end hiking/mountaineering footwear. They definitely have a hiking boot feel with a well defined arch. The upper is made of a heavy duty mesh that conforms to the ankle and seals out any rocks or gravel that might make it past your gravel guards, the mesh also means they dry faster than usual. I noticed they don't hold much water so there isn't a drastic weight change when wet. They have an aggressive vibram sole that works well in and out of the water and a rubberized toe cap for extra protection. They seem to run true to size but if you fish in the cold going up one size would help fit a thicker sock. I got 11's and usually wear a size 10 sneaker. Overall I think they did a great job on these and I'm looking forward to putting some more miles on them"

-John Parisi TCO Bryn Mawr Retail Sales Associate & Relentless Fly Fishing Guide


“Incredible grip for the weight of the boot!

The new Forra boot from Patagonia truly makes wading more enjoyable for me! Patagonia teamed up with Fitwell, an Italian brand, to create their new-lightweight Forra boot. Patagonia designed these boots to feature a built-in arch within the Vibram sole. Finally! A wading boot with an arch!

The arch feature provides me increased comfort and stability over long days out fishing. The beefy Vibram sole of the Patagonia Forra boot (almost two inches) has plenty of rubber cleats and spots to insert metal studs. At first, the additional elevation of the sole took a bit of getting used to, but it comes in handy when I wade deep.

The boots’ unique rubber cleat construction allows anglers to grip round, slimy rocks with ease. The Forra’s cleats and arch feature team-up to grant me the ability to generate lots of traction with the balls of my feet and my heels. The ankle support appears thin and loose to the eye, but once the boots are laced up, the boots do a fantastic job keeping my ankle stable and cozy. 

The Patagonia Forra boots feature a material and buildout that allows water to pass in and out of the boots more freely. This will force the boots to drain quickly, and the additional water weight does not slow me down! If an angler finds themself transitioning from wading to walking often, the Patagonia Forra Boot is a great pair of boots for them to consider.

The one knock on these boots is simple. Sinking lines and dirtier fly lines often get stuck on the protruding cleats close to the arch of the boot. Fly line loves to get trapped on anything it can, and this is no different.”

-John Dwyer TCO Reading E-Commerce Team Member 


“I have been testing a pair of Patagonia Forra wading boots for about four months now and have taken them to a variety of destinations.  They have all of the attributes that I look for in a boot.  They are lightweight, have good ankle support, and great traction.  I wore them on some major hike in days and they were spectacular.  I plan to stud them this fall for steelhead season. Additionally I find them to be nice and roomy which will be great for an all season boot when heavy socks are required. Well done Patagonia!”

-Chris Frangiosa TCO Fly Shop Head of Operations


"Incredible grip for the weight of the boot!"


In conclusion, Patagonia did an awesome job with the new Forra wading boots. The unique design and thoughtfully placed features all in a durable build make these some of the best on the market. If you like to get off the beaten path to get to your fishing spots, or you just want an all around great boot that combines lightweight comfort with support, durability, and traction, the Forras might be for you. Check them out here.

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