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Apparel Review

The Rugged Shark Laguna Shoe Protects Anglers In and Out of the Water


Date: 9/18/11
Tackle type: Apparel
Manufacturer: Rugged Shark
Reviewer: Mark "EZBass" Lassagne

Total Score: 8.00 - GREAT

Introduction: Boating shoes have been around for some but what about fishing shoes? Like most bass anglers I just wear whatever is comfortable because there really hasnít been a shoe designed with the features I have been looking for. Recently several companies have started manufacturing shoes to meet the needs of the bass angler. Face it standing on one foot all day in the freezing cold or blazing heat takes its toll on you and your feet. Then add in rough water, rain, slippery surfaces you really need a shoe designed for all the unexpected issues that arise when bass fishing. Each season requires a different shoe, warm boots in the winter, lightweight boots in the spring or fall then tennis shoes or sandals when its warm. Toss tournament fishing into the mix and youíll also need a shoe that is stylish, functional and comfortable. Add it all up and that is exactly where the Rugged Shark Laguna comes in.


Rugged Shark Laguna Water Shoe Specifications




Menís 8-13 Medium


Stretch mesh / leather upper / EVA mid sloe and rubber sole


Light weight, Elasticized-stretch mesh, Reinforced toe-bumper for added protection, Slip-reducing outsole, Bungee-style lacing system, Anti-shock and vibration "Phylon" midsole, drainage-mesh upper is designed to allow ease of water flow and quick drying, pull tabs on tongue and back, lace up bungee, Attached tongue to keep out debris, EVA mid sole, rubber, flexible removable cushion insole



Impressions: Rugged Shark Laguna shoes are available in Grey only. (The shoes pictured here are an earlier version in green) I was impressed with the shoes stylish look, as many times functionality and style donít seem to blend. The more I looked the more impressed I became, this is a shoe I felt good about wearing on and off the water. The shoe is easy to get on and off plus itís very comfortable without socks.

Though not specifically designed for bass anglers the Rugged Shark Laguna has a lot of features that address applications bass fishermen encounter

Field Tests: To test these shoes I wore them for a season while fishing both on weekends and competitively on bodies of water including the California Delta. We also did some extra testing by wearing the shoes on a wide array of surfaces including rocks, gravel, and even fully submerged in the Delta.

The Laguna has a flat sole and snug fitting upper

Operation: Wearing the shoes while operating the foot operated trolling motor we noticed the flat sole and snug fitting upper made is easy to keep your balance. If you happen to get your feet wet while launching or a big cruiser pushed water over the side the shoes will drain rapidly and your feet donít slip around much inside, a nice feature when you have to walk or operate a trolling motor with wet feet.

The Laguna provides plenty of grip for operating the trolling motor

Comfort: Fishing shoes are becoming a more common item. To function correctly they need to be able to support your weight, provide traction, stability and all day comfort for your feet. When your feet hurt it makes your whole body ache.

Need to get wet when launching the boat? The Laguna has you covered

The Rugged Shark Laguna shoes features flexible fabric on the top section which increases comfort when paired with the flexible sole. I found the interior of the shoes smooth and free of any items poking into my feet, making them a pleasure to wear without socks.

The Laguna provides plenty of grip and remains light feeling when totally submerged

There is amble room in front of your toe and extra material providing a buffer just incase you stub your toe. This extra protection gives anglers extra confidence to move quickly in and out of the boat.

The open sides and top make the shoe very light and helps to drain any water

Throughout the tests I found the Laguna shoes were comfortable to wear even when wet, and you donít feel like your sloshing around in wet shoes, they dry quickly and provide comfortable grip at all times.

The Rugged Shark has a non-marking, non-slip sole.

Protection: The Rugged Shark Laguna shoes provide comfort, style, and support all with a stylish design. Featuring vented sides, insert and soles the days of sloshing around in wet tennis shoes, slipping and marking the deck are over. Thanks to the combination of Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) and rubber soles the Laguna provides excellent traction wet or dry.

Adjusting the shoes is easy with the cord

The removable sole provides plenty of comfort and shock absorption making it easy to stand and fish all day long

Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Rugged Shark Shoe Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Quality sewing and where the EVA attaches to the leather upper 7.5
Performance Works well while fishing wet or dry 7.5
Price Sixty dollars for a pair of decent shoe seem just about right 9
Features Lightweight, good support, good fit, easy on and off 8
Design (Ergonomics) Stylish look which is important to a bass angler, good color contrast 8
Application They serve their intended purpose very well and are good for both boat and bank fishing 8

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Lightweight - Bungee cinch was a little too long and could be a little stronger. (Thicker)
+ Stylish - Only available in grey it would be nice to see the a couple other options
+ Comfortable to wear - They are only available in standard width, wider footed anglers will have to look elsewhere
+ Excellent sensitivity - The heel is supportive but could use a little more cushion for all day standing
+ Flat soles for good support and balance - Much more of a warm water shoe, doesn't provide much warmth


The Laguna is a great option for warmer weather fishing and will serve everyone from weekend warriors to tournament anglers well


Conclusion: I've always worn tennis shoes or sandals for fishing. With tennis shoes, when you find a comfortable pair they are not stable enough, or a flat stable pair is not comfortable. In addition you need to wear socks with tennis shoes, which are certainly not comfortable when wet. Sandals are a great option but I have had my feet burned several times and the soles are not very comfortable over the course of a long day on the water. Iíve found the Laguna comfortable, stylish and very functional, this is truly a shoe I can wear all day, all summer long.









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