Review: Rocky NoWake Shoe

From late spring to mid-fall, I pretty much live in my river shoes—and yes, in case you were wondering, they smell like it. But what else would one wear? Fishing, floating, hiking with creek-crossings, impromptu swim-sessions in rivers, streams, and lakes... in the summertime, water's what it's all about, and there's just nothing better to have on my feet than a good pair of amphibious, quick-drying kicks.

Many shoes have come and gone over the years, and I'm always on the hunt for the latest, greatest option. So imagine my delight when Rocky released its own version, the NoWake. It's got everything I want—light weight, grippy sole, toe protection, ample side drainage, snug fit—and nothing I don't (e.g., bulk, slow-drying fabric, an open design that lets river gravel in). My only beef with the NoWake is a minor one: during vigorous activity, the toggle-and-bungee lacing system tends to loosen. For most folks, the ease of lacing offers ample compensation—just a quick pull and they're snug. In my case, I want less convenience and more security, so I simply swapped out the elastic laces with static ones, and voila, I'm a happy camper.