We’ve been waiting for these new Forra boots from Patagonia to drop ever since the collab was first announced a few months back. Patagonia’s last wading boot collabs, were the River Salt and Foot Tractor, that were built with iconic American boot brand, Danner, out of Portland, Oregon. Check out Leonard Flemming’s review of the River Salt here.

So first up, what does Forra mean?

According to Google Translate, forra means ‘gorge’ in Italian, which makes sense in that these boots are designed to be at home as you head up distant kloofs and valleys in search of fish. They’re also “gorge” in the sense of a Sandton kugel commentating on leopard skin leggings.

Patagonia Forra boots
Patagonia Forra boots

Who are they a collab with?

The giveaway is in the Italian name. For this boot, Patagonia teamed up with Italian bootmaker Fitwell who have decades of experience making quality boots and shoes for hiking, skiing, climbing, hunting and other Alpine activities.

Who are they aimed at?

If you have ever found yourself weighing up whether you should hike in to your fishing spot in other boots or trail shoes because you want to preserve your wading boots, then these are the boots for you, because usually there’s a trade-off. Boots that are good for wading and boots that are good for the hike in. Patagonia’s Forra are designed to do it all – from being submerged in water all day to hiking, bundu-bashing, scrabbling across cliffs, getting baked in the sun, climbing, jumping and doing the Can-can.

Patagonia Forra boots
Patagonia Forra boots

What are the details?

Weighing in at 1.16kg (41 ounces), the Forra are light yet that does not for once second mean they are flimsy.

Patagonia says, “Built on a solid foundation of sticky Vibram® Mars soles and durable HexaBase lugs, the Forras provide a wide contact area for wet grip and dry traction. The EVA midsole is designed for durability, comfort, shock absorption and all-day support. The boots offer enhanced ankle and toe box protection and lightweight stability for technical approaches, scrambling, and boulder-filled wading conditions. The hard-wearing CORDURA® mesh uppers are quick-drying, quick-draining and don’t add unneeded ounces. An adjustable web lacing system provides a secure fit in critical situations on or off the water. All hardware is non-corrosive and abrasion-resistant.“

What’s the damage?

The Forra Wading Boots are available for $299 USD. At today’s exchange rate that’s R5600, but factor in a few more grand for whichever shops and outfitters ship it in to South Africa. Check them out here.

Patagonia Forra boots
Patagonia Forra boots. Photo Bryan Gregson

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