BEST HUNTING BOOTS FOR 2019 – A PERFECT FIT FOR ALL OUTDOORSMEN
As a child, you pulled on your rubber boots and went out to play in the snow or jump in puddles after a heavy rainfall. It was simple and good fun, but sometimes, when you took off those boots, you found soggy wet socks and wet feet.
Back then, there was nothing to worry about; you just put on new socks and go about your day.
Now you are an adult and a hunter who needs to keep your feet dry, warm, and protected throughout every weather obstacle Mother Nature throws your way.
What to Look for When Buying the Best Hunting Boots?
For success out on the hunt, consider many things before purchasing the right pair of boots for the job. You may even need to buy more than one pair if you hunt different seasons or terrain.
First and foremost is comfort during the timeframe of your hunt. You need to stay dry and warm, but also be able to maneuver effectively at a moment’s notice. Buying hiking boots and walking on flat upland all day is going to leave your feet and ankles sore. It will put a damper on your hunting experience and possibly keep you out of the hunt later.
Speaking of terrain, where and when you hunt is a big game-changer for your boot buying experience. You want the best hunting boots for the best hunting situation.
Are you sitting or walking all day? Maybe you will do a little bit of both. Is there going to be water, swamp, or dry, rocky hillsides to climb around? Do you need a snakeproof boot or thicker soles to grip sharp rock edges safely? It is highly likely you will not find one boot that covers them all.
You will need to consider the weather too. The season and type of game you hunt will quite possibly need a completely different pair of boots. Duck hunters won’t usually need to climb rocky hills, but will be in swampy, wetlands and may need a pair of thick waterproof boots to be comfortable for short walks.
In the dead of winter comes the best big buck hunting time, and the coldest days. Trudging through heavy snow requires insulated, thick-soled boots with excellent traction.
Finally, what your boots are made of will also impact how well you survive the hunt. Leather boots are great for high ground hunting or climbing. Rubber boots are bulky and heavy, so they are best if you are doing less walking or spending your hunt in swampy, wet terrain. Neoprene boots make a great scent concealer for the hunter trying to sneak up on their prize, such as a bowhunter in the fall might do.
Let’s review a few of the best hunting boots in the business. Take a look at the soles of the boots and the height as well.
Some hunters need a deep groove in their sole to grab onto pointy rocks and keep them from slipping in the mud. Other hunters need tall boots to prevent water from splashing down into them like you did as a kid in those rain puddles.
1. Irish Setter Men’s 808 Wingshooter Waterproof 9″ Upland Hunting Boot
These 9 inch high boots are sturdy, leather, and waterproof to keep you dry all day. They come with a thick Prairie rubber sole that reduces the total weight you have to pick up when walking long distances.
The boots lace up and come complete with metal eyelets for a quick lace and go technique. No hunter wants to spend extra time tucking laces and having them poke you in the ankle halfway through the hunt.
They are ideal for the flat land hunter sneaking around in tall grass or open fields. The height will provide extra ankle support, much like the design of a military marching boot, yet not constrict calf mobility when you want to squat or crouch.
Leather is flexible yet sturdy when it comes to ankle and heel mobility. Consider these for warmer, dry upland terrain hunting.
These boots are not insulated. They come equipped with a lighter sole, and that means you could feel every point rock you find. Leather comes with a distinct odor, and that could hinder your stealth approach if you expose yourself to any wind in the flat hunting terrain. Leather also needs to be maintained to remain waterproof and reliable throughout the continued seasons.
2. Lacrosse Men’s 4X Alpha Snake Boot-M
Here you have a pair of boots that are made entirely of rubber from top to sole, making them 100% waterproof. 14.5 inches of leg coverage is no match for any snake that could head in your direction.
These thick, sturdy boots are snakeproof, waterproof, and ready to provide all-day comfort. Just slip them on, tighten the top with the attached gusset and strap combination, and you are ready to hit the ground hiking.
The insides include an insulated neoprene layer for warmth. There is a 4-layer underfoot set up that allows for any terrain type walking. The basic set up with full rubber boots makes putting them on over layers very easy to do, keeping the hem of your pants dry and from wearing more quickly.
While the tall boots are going to keep your feet dry, it is not a great boot for climbing and twisting at the ankle. This option will keep your toes from freezing off while you sit all day, but if you intend to climb a steep hill or a rocky cliffside, the height will not provide the flexibly and movement you want. You also want to try these on for size and secure fitting before buying. There is no tying of laces for a tighter fit.
3. Irish Setter Men’s 2875 Vaprtrek Waterproof 17″ Hunting Boot
We have another pair of Irish Setter boots, but with added protection with snake guard material from top to bottom. These boots are set up with a quick lace system with eyelets from ankle to mid-calf. In addition to being completely waterproof, the leather and rubber combination come fully equipped with Armatec coating, meaning a rugged outer surface for long-lasting durability.
The camo weaved with brown gives these boots a gold star for blending into many different hunting locations. The rubber soles continue protecting against snakebites but also help in movement over rocky terrain. The angled lugs under your feet provide excellent added grip for better traction and push from the toes when climbing.
These Irish Setters do not come insulated and look to fit tight to your feet, leaving little room for thicker socks to add warmth for long sitting sessions. The 17 inches up your calf may leave your ankles slightly sore from lack of mobility and breathing room up to your leg.
4. LaCrosse Men’s Grange 18” Hunting Boot
When you want quick and easy, simple, and durable, then these might be the best hunting boots for you. No laces to mess with, just slide your feet in and hit the trails. Made of 100% rubber, these boots, and the soles are waterproof, scent-free, and made for quick on and off ability.
For added protection, they have multi-layered material around the heel and over the toe. Lacrosse keeps it simple with this tall brown boot.
Resistant to ozone, tears, and abrasions, the rubber boot of brown can get you in and out of any thick brush or mucky waters. The soles are not so thick that mud will get stuck between them, but not so thin to cause slippage on wet surfaces. The biggest benefit is the fitted ankle area to keep your feet secure inside the boots at all times.
Rubber does not hold heat or protect against wind, and cold as well as other materials do, so no insulation is provided here. While the material does offer some mobility, the height may hinder you from sitting comfortably when squatting down or crouched in a small hunting blind.
5. Irish Setter Men’s 2870 Vaprtrek Waterproof 8″ Hunting Boot
Made like a tennis shoe, but built for hunting! These short ankle-length boots are an amazing early season hunting boot. Only 7 inches from arch to entry, but these boots provide all the support you need for long treks across any terrain. The insides are fully insulated for warmth and soft to the touch for comfort. Sit all day, or hike up the mountainside, this boot does it all.
Durable rubber sole, yet light-weight enough to keep you from getting tuckered out on a long haul. The only weight you should be adding is the prize of your hunt back to your truck. These boots are scent-controlled, waterproof, and rugged all the way around. Check out the toe grips for digging in, and the side grips to help support your ankle on uneven terrain.
A shortlist for these boots, but short is what these boots are. There is no lower calf coverage from weeds and tall grass. That means walking in before the sun can dry the grass is going to leave your pants wet and cold for the waiting period. The inside is thick with a fuzzy material, not a good option if you plan to walk through thick briar bushes. You may end up picking burrs off your boots and pants before warming up for the ride home.
In the end, you need to make sure the boots you buy are the best hunting boots for your needs. The best advice you can take is to make a list of where you plan on hunting, how you intend to get to your spot, and how long you need to walk to get there or sit and wait.
Tallgrass and flat land make a good combination for tall boots with waterproofing and durability. Swampy marshes and hiking type terrain require good solid support and a grip to keep you upright.