If you really want to find out how waterproof your clothing is, go fishing in it. Five hours or more of walking, sitting and moving about will ensure that every weakness has been found!
The material needs to be your first port of call – 5,000mm fabric will keep you dry in moderate rain, while 10,000mm to 15,000mm will withstand heavy storms. But 20,000-plus is the gold standard, and is the only choice if you are planning on sitting out in a downpour all day without a brolly.
Breathability is also worth looking at. A plastic bag is 100 per cent waterproof, but sit outside in one and you’ll soon end up soaked in condensation and sweat!
The best waterproofs have an adjustable hood, won’t restrict movement when casting and will have a good seal on the cuffs to prevent water soaking the sleeves of the clothing underneath.
Most quality suits will last several years of heavy use, but if you can afford the initial outlay and want to stay dryer for longer, look at investing in some Gore-Tex.
Halkon Hunt Custom Gore-Tex
What they say: Tailor-made premium-quality three-layer Gore-Tex waterproofs, specifically designed for the rigours of top level angling and the most demanding of weather. Choose from two different cuts of jacket, bid ‘n’ brace or overtrousers, all available in off the peg sizes or made to measure in any colour scheme, and embroidered with your name, club and team if required.
What we say: Simply the best you can buy. Not only is it incredibly comfortable, designed specifically for anglers by a company with 30 years experience, but the durability is immense, with anglers fishing twice a week often finding their suit will last 15 years or more.
+ The ultimate waterproof angling clothing
+ Can be made in any size
+ Gore-Tex material remains waterproof often for a decade or more
+ Represents good value to anglers fishing two to three times or more a week
+ After-sales alterations and repairs available along with a two-year warranty
- Premium cost
- Overkill for the fair-weather fisherman
Sizes: M/L/XL/XXL or tailor-made
Price: Three quarter Jacket £328.20, Pole Jacket £260, Bib & Brace £260, Overtrousers £165, www.halkunhunt.com
Preston DFX Waterproof Suit
What they say: Replacing the top of the range DF30 suit, the DFX is a feature-packed waterproof garment in 20,000mm material, reinforced in key areas with taped seams, high neck protection, large storm flaps, waterproof zips, neoprene inner cuffs and a stiffened peak, all designed to keep the active angler warm, dry and comfortable in all weathers.
**What we say:**Preston suits have always been renowned as great performers, with this being the best designed yet. We especially like the neoprene cuffs, which form an additional waterproof barrier inside the main cuff.
+ Well cut and comfortable, with superb hood
+ Superb neoprene inner cuffs
+ Smart yet discreet colouring
+ Reasonably priced
- A XXXXL size would be welcome
Price: Jacket £139.99, Bib & Brace £129.99, two-piece set £249.99, www.prestoninnovations.com
Matrix Tri-layer 25k clothing
What they say: Choice of jacket, salopettes and overtrousers made in durable triple layer PU coated reinforced nylon outer fabric with a 25,000mm water resistance. Fully taped seams, reinforced high-abrasion resistant knee and seat panels, along with waterproof YKK zips, ankle straps and part elasticated waist, all make for a comfortable and durable suit for all seasons.
**What we say:**Smart coloured thin and lightweight material, with loads of Velcro and elasticated adjusters, make these really comfortable to wear. Neoprene cuffs help stop water running up your arms when shipping and casting. A great all-round set of clothing.
+ Excellent waterproof rating
+ Loads of adjustments
+ Smart and comfortable
+ Well designed neoprene cuffs and hood
- Price is aimed at the regular wet weather angler
Price: Jacket £130, Salopettes £130, Overtrousers £119.99, www.fishmatrix.co.uk
Korum Neoteric Waterproofs
What they say: A resilient and hard-wearing set of 5,000mm waterproofs designed to withstand the rigours of walking long distances, accessing difficult swims and stalking big fish. Incredibly lightweight, these waterproofs pack down easily to fit into a bag. The jacket features an all-encompassing adjustable hood system, Velcro cuffs, side pockets and a handy phone sized breast pocket, while the trousers include a click-lock buckle belt and hand sized pockets with storm flaps.
**What we say:**Light and comfortable, preventing you from feeling bogged down on the bank, and kind on the wallet. A great set to carry with you to guard against that unexpected storm or to wear all day long on those damp and drizzly days.
+ Ideal for the roaming, specialist or short session opportunist angler
+ Superb value
+ Packs up small
- 5,000mm fabric has its limits – take a brolly or bivvy if it is likely to rain all day long
- No XXXL or XXXL sizes for larger anglers
Price: Jacket £54.99, Trousers £49.99, www.korum.co.uk
Daiwa Matchwinner two-piece suit
What they say: A tough and waterproof 5,000mm full wet weather set with a bib n’ brace and jacket, complete with polyester quilt lining for warmth and comfort. Elasticated and adjustable waist, neoprene cuffs, Velcro straps and an adjustable, insulated and removable hood ensure you remain fully protected.
**What we say:**A great fitting and professional-looking suit at a budget price. Elasticated straps and multiple polar fleece-lined handwarmer pockets are all great and practical features.
+ Great price
+ Available in the rare size of small
+ Quilt-lined for warmth
+ Adjustable elasticated straps on the bib n’ brace are very comfortable and remain on the shoulders well
- Not available in XXXL
- 5,000mm rating could be higher
Price: £120, www.daiwasports.co.uk
Garbolino Match Waterproofs
What they say: Quality match-style clothing as part of a full matching range including fleeces, smocks, hoodies and shirts. Smartly presented in breathable three-layer durable fabric with external pockets, internal pockets, drawstring waists, reinforced key wear areas, Velcro storm cuffs with neoprene inners and an elasticated, removable hood.
What we say: A smarty presented and well-designed set of clothing. The longer three-quarter length jacket prevents water pooling in the crotch area and a high collar prevents drafts. A great set of clothing for all round use.
+ Discreet yet professional looking designs
+ Three-layer fabric for durability and prolonged water resistance
+ Part of an all-inclusive matching clothing range
+ Sizes from S to XXXXL means they’re likely to fit almost any angler
- A little on the pricey side, but you get what you pay for
- Overtrousers would be a welcome addition to the range
Price: Jacket £159.99, Salopettes £149.99, www.garbolino.co.uk
Middy MX-800 Pro Limited Edition
What they say: A waterproof and breathable 5,000mm clothing set with a cosy fleece lining, Velcro storm cuffs and ankle fasteners, along with elasticated adjusters on the waist and hood.
What we say: Incredible value, as you can get a huge six-piece clothing bundle for around £160 in some shops. The quality isn’t bad for the money either, and it will keep you both warm and dry in all but the worst of conditions.
+ Incredible value
+ Warm fleece lining
+ Comfortable fit tailored for active angling
- XXXL and XXXXL sizes would be welcome
- 5,000mm material will struggle to keep you dry in torrential rain
- A little too warm for summer use
Price: Jacket £99.99, Bib n’ Brace £79.99, three-piece set plus T-shirt, cap and beanie £219.99, www.middytackle.com
Maver MV-R 25 waterproofs
What they say: A classy addition to the popular match range made from heavy-duty waterproof material. Discreet contrasting colours with modest MV-R branding featuring storm cuffs, storm hood, high neck protection, rubber zip pullers, taped seams, Velcro fasteners and drawstring waist, along with storm flap protected external pockets.
What we say: A generously proportioned set leaving plenty of room to move and for extra layers. Reinforced areas and a quality construction mean these waterproofs should last several seasons of heavy use, or far longer for the less frequent angler.
+ Tough zips with oversized pullers and strong buckles
+ Generously proportioned but elasticated, so doesn’t look baggy
+ Grey and black colouring with green trims is striking yet not too ‘in your face’
+ Modestly priced
+ A longer designed jacket is great for taller anglers
- Although a bonus for some, we thought the number of pockets was overkill
- Matching overtrousers for summer would be good
Sizes: M/XL/XXL/ XXXL/XXXXL
Price: Jacket £129.99, bib n’ brace £119.99, www.mavermatch.co.uk
Also worth a look
Preston Innovations DF Competition Suit
Similar design to the DFX suit, but in a more affordable fabric.
Price: Jacket £84.99, bib n’ brace £74.99, two-piece set £149.99, www.prestoninnovations.com
Guru Gore-Tex Clothing
High-spec Gore-Tex waterproofs made by Halkon Hunt in the sought-after Guru colours.
Price: Pole jacket £295, bib n’ brace £275, overtrousers £178, www.tackleguru.com****__
Trakker Summit XP
An all-season set of waterproofs with a 10,000mm rating and plenty of features.
Price: Jacket £99.99, Trousers £79.99, www.trakkerproducts.com
Drennan 25k clothing
An impressive 25,000mm waterproof rating, neoprene cuffs and a peaked elasticated hood.
Price: Jacket £158.99, Salopettes £148.99, Trousers £105, www.drennantackle.com