You aren’t the first hunter—and you probably won’t be the last–to get fed up after spending a bundle on hunting boots and finding them to be less than you bargained for.
Perhaps you ran into issues that ran the gamut from poor fit and sizing to materials that don’t hold up in rugged environments—or the granddaddy of all dilemmas: boots that let you down in the leakage department!
As a hunter, you may know that you need to get things prepared perfectly before a hunt, from your gun to your hat, your hunting jacket, and the boot, etc.
Can you think of a more miserable situation than hunkering down to wait out your prey and finding yourself foot-deep in moisture? Thought not.
We want to help you avoid such situations by giving you pointers on what to look for when you shop for today’s best hunting boots. Toward that end, we’ve selected three brands of hunting boots that merit your attention. These three are all good bets for getting you through multiple hunting seasons in comfort so you can focus on your mission.
Wait, If you have knowledge about the best hunting boots in the world, no need to read the brief reviews.
Let’s check our top 3 Best Hunting Boots 2016 :
- Irish Setter Men’s 2870 Vaprtrek Waterproof 8″ Hunting Boot
- LaCrosse Men’s 18″ Burly Classic Hunting Boot
- Bogs Men’s Classic High Camo Winter Snow Boot
There are hundreds of manufacturers of hunting boots out in the hinterland and depending upon their business history, you can easily find iconic styles and models that have been around for decades. What does this say to you? That consumers stick with brands and engineering that stands the test of time, so keep in mind the staying power of brands once you’ve winnowed down your short list and before you get out the plastic.
To collect information on the three styles we culled from credible resources, we used unbiased research based on manufacturer tests, consumer testing, hunting boot reviews and feedback, so your chances of suffering from a serious case of Buyer’s Regret are officially diminished if not eliminated thanks to our due diligence.
1.Irish Setter Men’s 2870 Vaprtrek Waterproof 8″ Hunting Boot
Color: Realtree Xtra Camouflage
Fit: 74-percent of all buyers found the fit to be right on the money
The Irish Setter brand has been around almost as long as the dog breed, so you have a right to expect features that won’t let you down. If you’re an early-season hunter, these durable, ankle-high boots will stick with you to the end thanks to tightly-woven synthetic materials and a thick rubber sole that puts enough distance between you and forest floors or ground-level blinds to stay comfy. The shaft extends about 7-inches from the arch and you get all of the advantages of RPM technology.
What’s RPM? This acronym refers to the space age composite material that does everything but make your coffee in the morning. It performs like a rubber boot. It looks like a rubber boot. It even behaves like a rubber boot, in terms of strength and durability, yet you won’t believe how lightweight these are when compared to rubber. We’re not casting aspersions on your feet, but ScentBan control paired with UltraDry waterproofing could make you love these boots even more than your dog, but don’t let him know that.
You also benefit from the fact that this company isn’t a highly-diversified entity out to make big bucks rather than delighting their customer base. Perhaps that’s why the folks at Irish Setter don’t find it weird that their boots get fan mail from repeat customers who wouldn’t buy another brand if a gun was put to their heads.
- Can’t say this too often: light, light, light and lightweight.
- Stay high and dry in lousy weather. Feet stay fairly warm, too.
- There’s a tactile feel of the ground beneath the feet despite the solid sole.
- Excellent stalking boots—even long distances won’t cause blister rubs.
- Terrific value for those on a budget.
- Some buyers returning these Irish Setters complained about traction issues.
- Cloth insets on these boots are vulnerable to punctures.
- If you are used to Vibram soles, you may not adjust to the “foamish” feel of this one.
- Some extended break-in time has been reported by those new to the brand.
- Scattered sizing issues reported by consumers returning these boots.
2. LaCrosse Men’s 18″ Burly Classic Hunting Boot
Color: OD Green
Fit: A whopping 82-percent of buyers were impressed.
Classic design, color and signature fit are the reason this LaCrosse hunting boot continues to be the only choice for myriad outdoor activities and here just a few of the reasons why: these boots are 100-percent Ozone-Resistant; the scent-free rubber nylon lining is made of anti-microbial wool, and comfort and odor control earn top marks from hunters of all ages. Sturdy outsole cleats grip any terrain and at just 5.7 pounds per pair, you won’t feel like a club-footed Yeti by the end of your adventure.
If quality is the first criteria you use to decide on a hunting boot, this 18-inch rubber boot will get you through extreme environments while leaving your feet dry, protected and sweeter-smelling than rival boots on the market. Take them hunting and fishing and then make them your go-to, on-the-job industrial boots, ready to tackle anything a job site or repair project throws your way. The scent-free rubber won’t give you away even when prey is close and the neutral green color blends perfectly into myriad environments. If you’ve experienced more than your share of ankle fit issues in the past, kiss those days goodbye.
- Lightweight and maneuverable in blinds, fields, stands and anywhere else you need them.
- Scent-free rubber won’t reveal your presence.
- Cushioning exceeds comfort expectations, even on the longest days.
- Pair these boots with insulated socks and get your fill of ice fishing and winter hunting.
- Hunters and workers with arch-support issues will find foot nirvana in these boots.
- Promises of “scent-free” stalking weren’t true for a few hunters who had problems with rubber boot smell.
- Reports from constant wearers project a one-year life span before cracks and tears show up.
- If your job requires you to wade in warm liquids or you’re hunting in hot climates, your feet could get too hot.
- If you have a narrow foot, you may wish to keep shopping unless you’re prepared to pile on the socks.
- While this boot stands up to extreme weather and terrain, they’re not impervious to puncture-related breaches.
3. Bogs Men’s Classic High Camo Winter Snow Boot
Color: Mossy Oak
Fit: 79-percent of purchasers found fit on the mark.
The Bogs Men’s Classic Camo snow boot has an impressive construction resume: made of rubber all the way down to the sturdy sole, the heel measures around 1-inch and the boot platform is 1/2-inch thick. There’s a 14-inch span along the shaft from the arch, and the 16-inch boot opening invites very large feet to stick around and enjoy some wiggle room.
No worries about snow sneaking into the boot’s interior, and you can hide out with the best of them wearing these solid winter camouflage-patterned boots. The stretchable inner bootie snuggles feet and keeps them protected. There’s an anti-odor insole and self-cleaning outsole, so short of preparing your morning eggs, this Bogs snow boot makes a winter sporting companion that serves you well.
While you do your best not to slip on icy surfaces, it happens, which is why you will most appreciate the non-slip outsole that grips wet surfaces with the tenacity of a grizzly. This doesn’t mean the interior of these boots was neglected: enjoy great support courtesy of a solid internal shank. In other words, bring on the foul weather. You’re ready.
- Not every boot offers this much warmth and waterproof protection in sub-zero environments.
- Affordable and tough, Bogs stands behind its promise to deliver a stealthy and rugged winter boot.
- The preferred boot of ice fishermen and winter hunters, they do double duty as winter chore busters.
- Delivers an awesome grip on the iciest surfaces and obstacle-strewn trails.
- While the fit doesn’t generate complaints, sizing does. Yes, they run small, so try before you buy.
- Because of the insulating properties, there have been complaints about body-generated heat that can’t escape so sweat produced creates its own type of discomfort.
- Not every buyer found the price tag on their Bogs boots in line with their budgets.
User Guide :
What does it take to make you a happy camper when you set off on your next outdoor adventure? More factors than you may acknowledge at first glance because boot selection destined for a variety of rugged experiences don’t compare to picking out a new pair of shoes for the gym or the trail.
In fact, the following seven factors should weigh heavily on your decision making process and if you use this list to eliminate the boots that don’t meet your criteria, your search may not be as tedious nor as long.
Construction: It’s all about how the sole winds up being married to the upper. This is a critical factor if you intend to spend most of your time in rugged environments where Mother Nature can be punishing. Stitching, gluing, bonding, seaming and other methods used to join and bind materials have come a long way since your granddad hit the country store for his hunting footwear.
Height: Standard boot height is in the 8- to 10-inch range but you’ll find plenty of styles that stretch toward the knee. Your destination is the key to picking the right boot height, as is your desire to keep debris outside those boots! Further, height also determines the type hardware necessary to lace up and secure boots, like laces, grommets, zippers and industrial fasteners.
Insulation/Lining: As a rule, your feet benefit from the most amount of dead air space within a hunting boot, which is why boot designers must be precise about the amount and type of insulation used to craft a boot’s interior. Designers employ mathematic calculations to factor the amount of dead air space per square inch of insulation–but you do enough on-the-job math! Suffice to say that you just want your feet to stay dry so body heat is retained after temperatures dip to daunting lows. Your ability to tolerate cold may move this category up on your priority list.
Lacing System: Those little details—eyelets, hooks, rings, fasteners and assorted hardware—have become big business for manufacturers seeking to win the hearts, minds and dollars of hunters. The obvious objective of any mix of lacing networks is to keep your feet and ankles high and dry, a goal not taken lightly by hunting boot manufacturers who want to set industry standards and become the preferred brand of shoppers.
Material: Choose from rubber (the standard bearer), leather, fabric and synthetics. Each is unique and each type has loyal followers who wouldn’t think of switching. Why include leather when it seems the least good option for manufacturing boots that will be subjected to temperature extremes and serious assaults by a variety of terrain and water? Because sealants to encapsulate leather have grown quite sophisticated, thus if you prefer it and are willing to pay the price, you can have it.
Outsoles: If traction and slippage concerns happen to be on your radar, be finicky about the tread and engineering of the outsoles you select. If you’re a purist, learn the difference between the top 4 styles: Vibrant Lugs, Air Bobs, Shallow Tread and Athletic/Hiking Lugs which are omni-directional. Every outsole has positives and negatives but if you keep in mind the amount and type of refuse you are likely to encounter—sticks, stones, soil, snow and anything else lurking out there—you will choose the one that works best for your adventures.
Waterproofing: You want the ultimate seal produced by rubber cement, silicone and other chemicals and formulations created to bond materials seamlessly and form barriers between your boots and your feet. Does this mean you need only concern yourself with the outside influences you encounter? Hardly. Extreme amounts of sweat excreted from your feet can lead to some pretty miserable hours in the woods as you wait, so when you asses a boot’s weatherproofing, find out how it does in the “breathability” department, too.
Making your buying decision
Life is complicated; so is choosing the right pair of hunting boots, but hopefully, you’ve gotten a taste of what to look for after reading this article and you’re ready to make your buying decision. Veteran hunters recommend taking these four factors into consideration:
1.How often will you wear your boots?
- If you’re the occasional recreational hunter or fisherman, you may not need to splurge on top-of-the-line boots when a more affordable pair suits your needs nicely.
2. Where will you go in your boots?
- Prioritize boot construction heavily when comparing and contrasting boots on your short list.
Where will you buy? If fit has been a problem for you, trying them on before you buy will help you avoid the frustration and hassle of returns and exchanges. Online shopper? Try on boots at a retailer and then order online.
3. Are there deals?
- Shop wisely and you could find the boots you seek for a few bucks less, but you need to be willing to spend a little time in cyberspace stalking that price reduction!
We’re delighted to recommend all three of the boots profiled in this article, but if you need a little more push to tip your decision, we’re happy to oblige. Go for the top-of-the-line Irish Setters if you’re a fan of a space age material like Vaprtrek. Alternately, spend a little less, claim all of the nostalgia that comes with owning rubber boots and walk in the shoes of seasoned hunters by opting for the LaCrosse boots that shine in the accurate fit department.
Dare we add that if you don’t want to reveal your presence while engaging in your favorite winter sport, the Bogs winter boot will keep your secret because they’re specifically made to take on every challenge winter can throw your way?
But, after weighing all factors, our top pick for best hunting boots is the LaCrosse, because when all features and benefits are weighed, this rubber boot came out at the head of the class. That’s why we’re more than delighted to recommend these hunting, fishing and everything-else-you-want-to-do-in-them boots to new and veteran hunters looking for performance, satisfaction and quality at a good price.