TOP 10 Best Wading Staff 2023 (Fly Fishing Wading Stick)

Carrying the best wading staff when fly fishing is highly essential for your protection. As walking blindly into waters can be quite dangerous. If you enjoy fly fishing in large watercourses as well as streams with sloppy, bouldery bottoms, you should not overlook the best fly fishing wading staff.

For more apprehensive anglers out there, wading through the center of a river far from the shore might have you feeling overwhelmed and isolated. So, it is essential you carry a wading staff with you the next time you go fly fishing. If you ask us, The MOJO Outdoors Walking Stick is truly the best wading staff and fishing stick in the market because of its promising features including its reliability, stability, durability, and best of all: versatility. You will find a more detailed review of this wading staff further in this article!

Below we have compiled a list of the 10 best wading staff reviews. We have also created a buying guide and answered some frequently asked questions. Going through this article will resolve all your queries and you will be able to pick the best wading staff for yourself.

Now that you know what to look for, let’s walk you through our top picks for the best wading staffs for fly fishing in 2023:

Best Wading Staffs For Fly Fishing

1. Hammers Collapsible Wading Staff – Overall Best Wading Staff for The Money


Material: Aluminum
Color: Black
Style: Collapsible
Extended Length: 12-inches
Full Length: 52 ? -inches

You know I alway check reviews and take them with a grain of salt, and this was definitely one of those times, so many people today can’t tie there own shoes, on to the product, I just got the wading stick on Wednesday before going on a camping trip with friends and the wife, yes my account is on my wife’s name we did get to wade trout fish two of the days, lots of fast water from all the rain, I did step in a hole and go under,lol. No the stick wasn’t a magic wand but it was awesome on the slick rocks and really helped with the fast water,I see people complain about the lanyard... it worded great and the length is adjustable , 50-100 percent!
It folded easily and went right in my chest cross pocket on my waders, and when you need it just pull it out and hold onto the handle and let go of the rest, it automatically snaps into a ready to use wade stick, and the carbide tip gripped the slick rocks great, I really don’t know how you couldn't like this thing, hope my honest review helps, to many cry babies give reviews, yeah I said it

Since I bought this staff I use it a lot, don’t even think about it, it’s a great safety tool and easy to use,all you really need is balance!!!
I have zero complaints, and I’ve used it maybe 12-15 times, no down side

Well it’s 12/16/20, I’ve used the staff 2-3 times a week since I got it, I use it ever time I go, I river snd creek wade a lot, it’s awesome, gives you balance that I need every time, I’m 61 years old, I liked it so much I just bought a second one to give to a fishing buddy that Wade’s we me from time to time, he has been down a few times this years and I thought he might love it too, I’m sure it’s like most things, you can always find something better, that being said this thing is great, not one complaint and tons of use!

Because it is composed of aluminum, it is both lightweight and sturdy, and it has an anodized matte black finish. The lack of weight makes it super convenient to carry around which is why it is among our top picks too.

When folded, you can conveniently fit it into either the provided nylon belt pouch for the staff or your own backpack. With just one hand, you can immediately open the staff thanks to its twin shock corded spring action construction.

And let’s not forget to mention, this wading staff is priced under $50. Isn’t that simply amazing?

Our Verdict:
If you frequently fly fish and wade, The Hammers Collapsible Staff, which weighs roughly 11 oz., is a wonderful model to have.


A budget friendly option
It provides great support and stability in fast-moving waters making it the best wading stick.
The design is super sleek and compact.


The longevity of this fishing wading stick cannot be guaranteed.

2. Aventik Foldable Wading Staff – Best Durability


Material: Aluminum
Full Length: 55-inches
Folded Length: 12-inches
Style: Foldable

I bought this because I didn’t want to spend ~$200 on other brands of poles. I have used it on some pretty gnarly high mountain streams and it works well. The belt holster works well and drains well and the lanyard does too. Although you need to make a hole in the wrist strap for the lanyard to be used it’s not a big deal. It will pull apart as some people have said. If you stick it down in the mud or wedge it in some rocks or whatnot when you try to remove it it will separate. So don’t get it if your gonna be swamp wading you just end up pissed off. I wade rocky streams and it’s not too hard to keep it out of crevasses if you pay attention to what your doing. Would buy it again.

The Aventik Foldable Wading Staff can be folded down to a size of 12 inches from its full length of 55 inches when fully extended. The 4 feet mark on the body of The Aventik Foldable makes it possible to navigate the waters while being much more aware of its depth.

The fact that this staff has a brass press button that firmly locks everything in place means that it will not let you down in terms of steadiness either. It has a self-draining pouch that makes carrying it during traveling more convenient.

Our Verdict:
Overall, we really loved this wading staff for its ease of use, stability, and durability. If you are searching for an option within $40, we’d say you must give this one a shot!


It provides excellent support, especially making it perfect for senior anglers who experience trouble balancing themselves.
The Aventik Foldable staff is quite sturdy and will likely last a long time.
It snaps open quickly and firmly.


It is comparatively thinner than other wading staffs which might decrease its reliability.

3. Zephr Wading Staff – Best for Beginners


Material: Aluminum
Style: Collapsible
Full-Length: 56-inches
Length: Non-Adjustable

Other reviews have stated that this staff is not sturdy enough for crossing a stream/river. In my opinion, after using it for several "crossings", it is more than sufficient for most rivers. This staff will not help you to cross a raging set of rapids (you're crazy if you try with a steel rod). For what you pay and the support it provides to keep you steady, it's perfect. And per another persons comment, the holster that comes with it is actually big enough to get the staff into without much fuss. I'd definitely purchase another one and will if anything happens to the one I have.

If this is your first time shopping for a fishing wading stick, we would recommend you the Zephr Wading Staff. Its best feature is that it comes with a cork handle that will allow the staff to float in the water in case it slips from your hand so you do not lose it. This feature makes it ideal for beginners.

The Zephr wading staff is lightweight which certainly does not mean it won’t be able to provide much stability since it can easily support up to 250 pounds of weight. It further comes with a retractable coil bungee so you can attach it to your wading belt while the staff is not in use.

Our Verdict:
The Zephr Wading staff is one of the best fly fishing staff in the market. It offers great things like durability, stability, and convenience of use making it worth every penny.


The sections of this wading staff are made up of sturdy aluminum.
It can support a lot of weight making it ideal for all body sizes.
It is durable.


The wading staff holster that it comes with is made of cheap quality.

4. Perfect Hatch Collapsible Wading Staff – Best Under $50


Material: Aluminum
Style: Collapsible
Color: Multi
Extended Length: 54-inches

I use this for fishing streams. It snaps open instantly and locks firmly into place. The shock-cord running down the inside of this staff has higher tension than my previous wading staff (which I had to replace because the cord stretched and lost its elasticity). Overall it’s well-made, but the top of the staff has a padded end cap that unscrews for access to a camera mount. As I was hiking alongside a stream I was lucky to hear the end cap hit the ground in some dry leaves or I would have lost it. Perhaps through the rhythmic motion of walking, it had come unscrewed and fallen off. I’ve since remedied the design flaw by adding a rubber washer over the screw post, which keeps tension on the threads (rubber washer not shown in the photo). The cap is essential because it’s where the wrist-strap attaches to the staff. The buckle on the wrist strap provides the only attachment point on the staff for the coiled retaining cord. As you can see in the photo, the storage sheath includes a steel key-ring that the retaining cord is attached to. The other end of the retaining cord has a small carabiner-like clip to attach to the staff. I had to clip it to the buckle on the wrist strap because there is no other attachment point on the staff. That lack of attachment point is the 2nd design flaw, since if you lose the end cap there’s nothing to attach the retaining cord to (the wrist strap attaches over the threaded camera mount stud).
Another design improvement I’d like to see is a way to adjust the tension of the shock cord - and the ability to replace it entirely when it eventually loses its elasticity.

These criticisms aside, I like the staff, which is very sturdy and has a nice neoprene sheath with a belt-loop at the top and a drainage hole at the bottom.

This option is quite portable as well. As it can be folded down to 12-inches and comes with a neoprene pouch, it is super easy to carry the wading staff around while it’s not in use. The clip-on lanyard will allow you to attach the staff to yourself so you can free your hands while wading in waters where the staff is not necessary.

Our Verdict:
The Perfect Hatch Collapsible Wading staff is one of the most stable options on the list. And considering it costs less than $50, we believe it is too good a deal to miss so make sure you don’t miss out on this best fishing staff.


Since it is lightweight, it is easier to carry and open it with just one hand.
The neoprene holster that it comes with dries up quickly.
It provides excellent balance.


It might not be as durable as the other wading staffs on this list.

5. MOJO Outdoors Walking Stick for Fishing and Hunting – Best Versatile Option


Material: Combination
Color: Black
Full-Length: 60-inches
Height: Adjustable

I bought this because I have terrible balance as a human being; but pair that with being a hunter in a near frozen marsh flooded with logs and all kinds of invisible tripping hazards, I wanted to have a little more piece of mind. So far, this has worked well to help my balance while I'm throwing decoys. Its something solid to hang onto, when my foot takes a misstep and normally my heart sinks into my stomach. I have used it for one season as much as I could, because my buddies steal it from where its tied to the gunnel and use it first.

The only issues I can see is that I do worry about how long the clasp will last (part that keeps the pole extended to desired length), but so far it has worked well. Secondly the bulb is a little heavy and you may feel a little drag in the water leading to slight fatigue in your arm/ shoulder.

If your aim is better than your balance like me, I recommend this as a great alternative to slipping and filling your waders with ice cold water.

It is designed in a manner that won’t sink in case you drop it in the water, and neither will it get stuck in the mud thanks to its specially constructed tip. Another one of our favorite features of this wading staff would be its adjustable length. It allows anglers to alter the staff’s height as per their comfort.

Our Verdict:
This walking stick by MOJO Outdoors is basically everything that an angler looks for in the best wading staffs. It is lightweight, easy to carry, adjustable, and sturdy!


The MOJO Outdoors Walking Stick holds up great.
It works great for preventing you from losing your balance.
Although it is lightweight, it is still quite tough.


The adjustment screws fall off easily.

6. A ALAFEN Walking Stick – Best under $25


Material: Aluminum
Style: Collapsible
Color: Black
Length: 49 inches

I bought this for a trip to the Holy Land in February. It was great as it collapsed enough that I could store it in my backpack. On the third day of a twelve day trip I set it aside to take a photo and sadly walked away without it. My hope is that another traveller is enjoying it.

It is surely not easy to tightly grip a walking stick when wading in waters and A ALAFEN has been quite considerate about that. This wading staff comes with a super comfortable handle which is not just cushioned, but also sweat-proof and comes with grooves to enhance your grip.

You can also adjust the length of this staff from 43 to 49 inches but that’s not it, it also comes with a measuring scale unlike other wading staffs so you can set it to your preferred height accurately.

The wading staff has a rubber footing tip which enhances the grip and reduces the chances of slipping too. And it is also abrasion-resistant!

Our Verdict:
Priced at only $20.99, the AL ALAFEN wading stick is the best you can get if you are tight on budget. It features some amazing characteristics which make it perfect for anglers of all levels!


The AL ALFEN walking stick offers more safety than all other options in this list.
It is one of the cheapest yet the best wading stick ever.


It can be challenging to assemble and hold together.

7.Kylebooker Adjustable Fishing Wader Belt Wading Belts for Fly Fishing Surfing Kayak Accessories Waders Straps

One size fits most, fits fully adjustable from 31" to 58" waist, comfortable fit all chest waders for men

Black fishing utility belt with 2 D rings, 3 swivel heavy hook for hanging fishing tools and accessories

Nylon web belt with high quality quick release buckle, 1 adjustable buckle, adjustable from one side

100% nylon webbing, 38MM(1.5") webbing and 25MM(1") webbing, strong and lightweight

The most important safety device Angler should use whenever wading, kayak or fly fishing

I have fished with this Kylebooker wading belt 23 times and everything is still holding up as new I am 350 lb fits great


Best Wading Staff Retractors

Simms Wading Staff Retractor – Best Premium Retractor


Material: High-Quality Braided Spectra Cable
Reach: 3 Feet
Durable and Sturdy

This works well. It is strong enough for the weight of my Simms wading staff. I hooked it to my upper left side of pack and it holds the staff in place when I'm not holding it.

The braided Spectra cable used in the construction of the Simms Wading Staff Retractor allows it to support large, heavy fishing equipment that stretches up to 3 feet. Its construction makes it simple to attach to both the fishing staff strap and sheath.


Holds the staff perfectly when it is not in use.
It is super simple to set up and retract so it is ideal for fly fishing streams.
The Simms Wading Staff is the best wading staff retractor as it makes carrying your staff a lot easier.


It is not compatible with wading staffs other than Simms.

Gear Keeper Hammerhead Industries Retractor – User-Friendly


Retraction Force: 6 oz.
Extension: 36-inches
Spring Material: Stainless Steel

I didn't realize there were different "flavors" of stretch and force (inches and oz supported). This one has a short cable and a pretty hefty spring. When I checked it out, the cable slipped out of my fingers, snapped back, and whacked my other hand before coiling back into the housing. It surprised me and left a pretty good bruise on my finger. If you need to keep something heavy on a short leash or are using it underwater (which is it's forte, I read later), this is the one. I wanted something to tether a remote control for my disabled spouse and this would have been too much even for me. I returned it and picked up the same brand but with a longer cable and less spring tension. Again, if you need the power and control, I'd recommend this model, but make sure that is what you want.

The retraction force is quite comfortable. You will experience little to no drag when retracting your fishing gear with it. Plus, it is quite secure and reliable too. It offers an extension of around 36-inches and is easy to use.

And, it is made of high quality so you don’t have to worry about it not being able to withstand abuse!


It does not cause fatigue.
This retractor won’t restrict your movement.
It allows your hands to remain free.


It can be quite powerful so needs to be handled with care or can cause injury to your fingers.

Fishpond Arrowhead Retractor – Budget-Friendly


Material: Aluminum
Cord Length: 33-inches
Break Strength: 147 lbs.

I already had two of these and I needed one more. I connect pliers, clippers and hook remover to my fishing satchel. No more lost tools and perfect access to the tool you need to make your fishing experience even more enjoyable. I highly recommend this product!

If you are looking for a retractor that costs under $30, you might want to consider this one by Fishpond. The arrowhead is arguably the most useful, beautiful, and classic retractor designed by the brand.

You can attach several types of fishing equipment to it including pliers, hook removers, clippers, and a wading staff. It can hold up pretty well and is quite sturdy which means it will last long. For this price, we believe the Fishpond Arrowhead Retractor is a wonderful choice.


It is easy to carry.
The durability of this wading staff retractor is next to none.
It will truly make your fishing experience even more fun.


It cannot withstand a lot of weight.

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So, let’s begin with a buying guide for the best wading staffs for fly fishing:

Buying Guide for the Best Wading Staffs

As you set out on a hunt for the best wading staffs, it is essential you know what features to look for. Since you will be only investing your money in a wading staff once in a while, it is important you make the right choice.

Take the following factors and features into consideration before you decide in favor of any wading staff:

1. Style

Wading staffs come in several styles so you have a variety of options. Let’s look at these styles and the advantages that they offer:

1.1 Foldable Wading Staff:
A foldable fishing staff may be compressed to a length of around 15 inches. These staffs have the advantage of not losing any strength or shrinking because they have the ability to collapse in on themselves. Although they are a little wider than a rod tube, you won’t notice the difference in width. You can carry it with ease if put them into the back of your vest or bag.

Our favorite foldable option has to be the Aventik Wading Staff.

1.2 Collapsible Wading Staff:
For those who need to fit it into a tiny space, a completely collapsible wading staff can get pretty compact. Although they are sturdy, some of the staff’s power can be lost when they must collapse on themselves. A collapsible staff can serve your needs just fine if you won’t be wading into any very forceful water.

While you will find several options for a collapsible wading staff in the list below, we’d like you to consider the Zephr Wading Staff first!

1.3 Fixed Length Wading Staff:
The most resilient staff will be one that is fixed in length! There are no mechanical parts that might break down or deteriorate over time. A fixed-length staff is ideal if you’re near to the water and know you’ll be entering and exiting bodies of water with swift currents and slick bottoms.

Modern fixed-length staffs are fairly light, so you won’t feel like you’re carrying about anything especially weighty. If you don’t mind its restriction of portability, the added strength it offers more than makes up for it.

2. User Convenience

The most crucial factor you should take into account while making your purchase is convenience. You need to think about your style, whether you want to travel great distances on foot over rugged terrain or hunt along the river from vantage points in your car.

A collapsible or foldable staff would be wise if you tend to leave your automobile in the morning and come back at night with scratches from the underbrush. Another overlooked aspect is the ability to use the wading staff. You have your rod when you go into the water, but you may not have an extra hand to use to deploy your staff.

Pick one that can be folded in and out with one hand. Additionally, a staff’s convenience is increased if you can find one with a storage pouch. Sliding it into the holding bag is an overlooked feature for when you’re getting out of the water and heading to your next location.

The Perfect Hatch Collapsible Wading Staff comes with a high-quality neoprene holster!

3. Sturdiness

If you fish in fast water where the rocks are slippery, you should pay particular attention to how strong your wading staff is. The material that the staff you buy is made of frequently affects its durability. A wading staff made of aluminum is surprisingly light for something so sturdy. Wading staffs that collapse or fold are frequently constructed of aluminum!

Composite is also another material that you frequently see in wading staffs for fly fishing. Although it is another strong and lightweight material, it is frequently quite expensive. If you want to spend more than $100, consider using a composite staff. They’ll also sag and crumble. Regardless of where you fish, it may be important to invest in a robust staff.

Nevertheless, if sturdiness is the most important of your concerns, we would suggest you look at the Aventik Foldable Wading Staff.

4. Length

The length is another factor to take into account while choosing fishing staffs. Choose a longer staff of around 59 inches if you tend to reach out and inquire about what is two steps ahead. Also, a 59-inch staff might be appropriate if you are over 6 feet tall.

A 41-inch wading staff would be the best choice if you are between 4 and 5 feet tall. Be sure it’s the correct length for you when you place your order because these are fairly short. For those who are between the heights of 5 feet and 5 feet 10 inches, there are lengths in the middle. These usually measure 50 to 51 inches.

5. Weight

Your final deciding factor should be the wading staff’s weight. It will be difficult to move the big, thick wood staffs. A staff made of aluminum or composite material will be substantially lighter and more collapsible.

Furthermore, the heftier staff could provide you with greater assurance, so make sure to test them out before you buy. A composite or aluminum staff should work just fine if you’re fishing in shallower but still treacherous water. If not handled properly, wood staffs can be washed away in the current!

Related Post: Best Wading Jacket

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Now that we have narrowed down the options for you, it is time to address some frequently asked questions about fly fishing staffs:

Q: Do I necessarily need a wading staff in fast-moving streams and rivers?

Answer: You need staff if you’re fishing in rapid or stained water. You never know what’s below the surface, so being aware of what’s in front of you before you take a step could save your life. A wading staff will assist you to maintain your balance because it is tricky to turn around in a stream.

It can identify laydowns, slippery rocks, and water drop-offs. It may seem unneeded or even tacky to some fishermen, but it is definitely worth it! Water safety should be your top priority and we cannot stress enough on this fact!

Q: What is the ideal length of a wading staff?

Answer: It depends on your height and a little bit on your individual preferences. You’ll want to be able to utilize your wading staff as a third-leg, tripod-style staff rather than a shorter cane if you want to obtain the greatest safety from it.

This necessitates that it be chest height rather than hip height. Usually, measuring approximately to your armpits is a decent starting point. When a staff reaches this high, you can lean on it for stability and utilize part of the excess length to prod and poke as you are ready to go on.


One of the most underappreciated pieces of fishing gear in the sport fishing sector is the wading staff, yet few people are aware of how significantly more practical it is to wade in swift waters with one nearby. Hence, it is important to carry a wading staff for safety. Which do you believe is the best fishing wading staff for you out of all these features, characteristics, and models?

We still think you should go with the MOJO Outdoors Walking Stick since it comprises all the best features including longevity, versatility, user convenience, reasonable, and is easy to deploy as well! But, we want to leave that decision for you to make considering you are now all set to hunt for the best wading staff for yourself!

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