Wildhorn Topside Snorkel Fins Review
Here is our updated list of Wildhorn snorkel equipment that are suitable for casual snorkeling. Our top choices based on verified buyer experiences are:
- Wildhorn Topside Snorkel Fins, combined function of both shoes and fins >> read recent buyer reviews here
- WildHorn Outfitters Seaview 180° V2 Full Face Snorkel Mask, panoramic side snorkel set design
- WildHorn Outfitters Seaview 180° GoPro Compatible Snorkel Mask, tubeless design, prevents gag reflex
Despite only founded in 2015, Wildhorn Outfitters is already well known brand among outdoor companies. Located in Salt Lake Valley near the Wasatch mountains, the company produces innovative equipment for snorkeling, camping, hiking and snow sports.
While the snorkel fins market is dominated by major brands like Cressi, Seavenger, Cozia, US Divers; affordable and new generation snorkel fins like Wildhorn are receiving positive reviews from the casual snorkelers where the pricing of their products are on the affordable side of the popular brands.
A significant model getting traction among snorkel enthusiasts is the Topside snorkel fins by Wildhorn. The main difference of this pair of fins from its competitors on the market is your ability wear the fins on land comfortably. Without further due, here is our Wildhorn Topside Snorkel Fins Review:
Review of Topside (Wildhorn vs Regular Snorkel Fins)
1. Sizing Information
Topside snorkel fins fit true to your regular size. The sizing chart on this page will give you an idea about how the fins will fit. Remember snorkel fins will expand very slightly when you are out of the water and the fins are wet. You can round up your shoe size for half shoe sizes and that would give you a good fit.
The smallest men's size is 9, men's sizes go up to 13. The smallest size for women's fins is 6 and they go up to 11.
2. Material and Comfort
As mentioned above in the sizing section, Topside fins are made to fit like a shoe and this is thanks to the material used - neoprene for the upper construct of the fins.
If you snorkel regularly, you would know that the biggest problem with standard snorkeling fins, when used for extended periods of time, is the blisters you get from the very tight fit. The Wildhorn fins on the other hand are very much like stretch fit neoprene boots which will expand slightly when wet avoiding painful blisters in return.
For best results, you may need to be adjust your fins after you get in the water. Release and readjust the hook and loop Velcro strap system around your ankle so you can easily perfect your fit for snorkeling. The comfort of boot or socks like feeling, coupled with the neoprene material will enable you to spend longer periods of time swimming, snorkeling or while doing other watersports like paddling or bodyboarding.
Compared to open-heeled fins, the toes are closed and they would help avoid cramps or tension in your feet while snorkeling.
3. Versatility - Walk on Land, Snorkel in Water
The main advantage of Wildhorn Topside fins vs regular snorkeling fins is the combination of two distinct functions in one piece of equipment - that of shoes for outdoors and fins for water. Pretty much all users of Topside fins praise your ability to walk on land comfortably with fins already on your feet (yep, this sounds pretty absurd but they are indeed designed to make this happen!).
The rather silly moves of waddling in and out of the water is nowhere to be seen with the users of Topside fins and surprisingly they are much easier to put on (again thanks to the use of neoprene) compared to other types of fins. The foot protection on land is secured by rubber soles, and the users of this equipment seem to test on rocky surfaces, beach and all sorts of uneven terrain with success.
4. Wildhorn Topside Fins for Snorkeling, Scuba and Other Sports
Well, the biggest trade off about using these boot-like fins comes into play while you are actually snorkeling or swimming in water. Basically while it is a lot easier to walk on land because the blades are shorter, because they are shorter you won't be able to swim as fast as with standard snorkel fins. While this is perfectly OK for many casual snorkelers - those looking to exercise swimming faster or need more speed while snorkeling (or especially free diving) do not find the Topside fins as their best fit snorkel equipment. The short blade are perfect for improving your strength and when used with the correct technique they will provide meaningful boost to your swimming speed.
The design has a more emphasized down kick. This is due to the neoprene top construct of the boot. Again for purposes of a casual snorkel trip, short blade fins provide the necessary thrust to get you to your target.
Here is some footage from Wildhorn's official youtube channel:
5. Are They Easy to Carry During Travels?
For most buyers, the strength of the Topside fins is the ability to walk on land in comfort. The second most important advantage of these fins is they do indeed fit your luggage with ease! You can carry your pair of snorkel fins in your carry-on or even in your backpack. The short fins are ideal for easy packing and easy transportation of your snorkel equipment. The fins also float in water so they are also pretty practical to move around when you don't have them on your feet in water.
As the company phrases it, it will be fair to say that they found the sweet-spot of snorkel fins for those who love compact traveling. They will stay safe even in densely packed luggage as the bases are made from a high-grade polymer blend.
6. FAQ about Wildhorn Topside Fins
- Are the Topside fins suitable for bodysurfing?
They are rigid enoug and indeed suitable however it may be worth testing for bodysurfers among big waves.
- Do the neoprene boots separate from the bottom for washing?
No, they are attached to the rubber soles of the fins.
- How much do they weigh?
They weigh 1 pound 1 oz each fin.
- Do they come with a bag out of the shipping box?
There is not bag that comes together with the Topside fins.
- Can they be used for lap swimming with efficiency?
They can be used for lap swimming however note that your speed will be limited due to the length of the blades.
If you are looking to compare Wildhorn snorkel fins with other popular snorkeling fin models - here are 5 top alternatives for you:
If you are looking to buy snorkel fins that you can use on land as well, Wildhorn Topside Snorkel Fins are definetly worth it and we highly recommend buying a pair if you are into casual snorkeling. Our final thoughts in two lines...
- PROS: They are compact to travel with - you can use on land - and easy to wear
- CONS: They are not suitable for free diving or to be used as scuba diving fins due to the short blades