Hunting Boot Battle

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KY Grouse Hunter
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Hunting Boot Battle

Post by KY Grouse Hunter » Sun May 09, 2010 8:22 pm

Guys... Ive had it. I cant go on until I find the right match for me. I am a serious... serious grouse hunter. And where I live... briars are the habitat of choice. With all that said, i go though a pair of hunting boots just about every season or two and its time to get a pair of boots that will fit my criteria, with stand the elements, and last a while. I need boots that are light, somewhat insulated, have some sort of briar "fighting power", waterproof, and good tread. Im to the point to where Ill spend good money on a pair but would like to keep it to some sort of minmum. Any suggestions or help?
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Casper
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by Casper » Sun May 09, 2010 10:06 pm

I know nothing about hunting in the type of conditions you have but out west the rave has been on the Meindl brand of boots. You can shop for them at Cabelas. They are a spendy boot but folks seem to be very happy with them. I think I will give em a try this year as I end up in similar situations as you and go through a pair every year.

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TAK
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by TAK » Wed May 19, 2010 11:51 am

I am lucky to make it through a year with boots! If your getting dang near 2 I would be happy!

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bwjohn
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by bwjohn » Wed May 19, 2010 6:43 pm

I grew up in S W VA, probably not far from where you are hunting, with the same type of covers. I was actually only a couple of miles from the KY border. I used a pair of Cordura boots for years that had a gortex liner in them. Probably used them past their prime, but I loved those boots, still have them, but need to be resoled.

I think the Cordura handles the briars well, their gortex and have vibram soles.

Then negatives are they are not the best support. You could get a nice insert from a hiking store or something like that, would probably drastically improve the walking performance.

I have since moved to utah, I have a pair of Miendl's. I am on my second pair, the first pair I bought came apart at the sole after having them for 3 months. I think more of a manufacturing defect. I really like the boots, time will tell. But they are a much more sturdy walking boot and good so far in some of the rocky areas that I get into out here.

nothing beats trying on the boots, it is hard to buy from online. Don't think there is a Cabelas near you.

Don't forget to look at a good hiking store, there are some real good hiking boots that can really work well for bird hunting and long walks in the woods.

good luck in the search
brandon

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mcbosco
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by mcbosco » Wed May 19, 2010 6:46 pm

I don't like to buy things like boots unless there is a 100% unconditional guaranty for the life of the item. Here in the soggy Northeast I don't think there is a better boot than the classic Maine-style boot from LL Bean. I have 4 pairs, two as old as 20 years that have been re-soled at least twice each.

I could send any of them back for a complete refund, with no questions asked except where to send the check or which CC to credit. Beans also has a good selection of other boots with the same guaranty.

The Filson boot is great too and same type of guaranty.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by lvrgsp » Thu May 20, 2010 8:29 am

I'd look at a few of these, not the cheapest boot on the market.
I'll venture to say my next purchase I am going to head up to Berlin, Wisconsin and stop by Russell and have them make my next pair, or if your lucky enough I believe they have a few pair of odd or new returns sitting in the shop....may want to give them a call.
I like the looks of their insulated bird shooter boots....like I said not the cheapest, but there again they are custom making them for your feet.
I have had a pair of Irish Setters now for over 3 years of alot of abuse....light weight, waterproof, comfort is ok, not the best soles IMO, but I need a good stiff sole for a bad toe I have, and these seem to have to much flex for me, something most folks want...

Just a thought,


http://www.irishsetterboots.com/upland

http://www.chippewaboots.com/boots/upland/24716

http://www.russellmoccasin.com/boots_tr ... ooter.html

jimbo&rooster
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by jimbo&rooster » Thu May 20, 2010 4:43 pm

Ive got a pair of the irish setter upland boots and I love them. I have had them about 18mos. they are as light as some of my tennis shoes. I put alot of miles on these boots hunting through farm country mostly briars and sticks to tear at them not much in the way of rocks. i have owned several pairs of Irish Setter, and red wing boots with no complaints.
jim
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RoosterBuster
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by RoosterBuster » Tue Jun 15, 2010 8:31 pm

I got a pair of Avery's for a friends GSP and they lasted about 1/2 mile....after that they came off and were shot.

GSPlover
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by GSPlover » Sun Jun 20, 2010 12:29 pm

I have trouble finding boots that wont hurt feet and leave blisters. I walk milles and miles every year and the best boot Ive found is the Danner Pronghorn non-insulated. They are comfortable, have never hurt my feet and have never leaked. The pair I have now is 2 years old and still in good shape. Though I will be getting a new pair soon.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by fishvik » Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:41 pm

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Last edited by fishvik on Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.

fishvik
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by fishvik » Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:50 pm

The best boots I ever owned were White Smokejumpers. I worked for over 30 years with my primary duties in resource management and wildland fire involving hiking over various terrain from wet coniferous forest to dry sagebrush steppe on some of the steepest slope in the US. Those boots held up to everything I threw at them. I had both pairs rebuilt 3 times. Along with working in them I also used them for upland bird and big game hunting. They were the most comfortable, support giving boot I've owned. They are a bit on the heavy side and they are spendy (about $300 dollars now off the self and more if you get them built at the Spokane factory) but if you spend alot of time on your feet in the field they are worth it. They are all leather, uninsulated with lug soles and have to be greased to repel water. Just my humble opinion.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by RoosterBuster » Thu Jun 24, 2010 9:12 pm

i'm an idiot, I was thinking dog boots. haha.

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JakeDD
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by JakeDD » Wed Jun 30, 2010 12:50 pm

This issue has come up for me every year for the last 10 yrs or so. I had an old pair of Rocky Cornstalkers that were, frankly, the best "bleep" boots I've ever owned. Put tons of miles on those things over their 13 yr career til the sole literally crumbled on them. They didn't leak a drop, even to the bitter end. I tried replacing with a newer pair of Cornstalkers and they just didn't fit right, quality was marginal, and seemed really heavy. I still have them as a backup, but not pleased with them, though they do keep the water out. Decided to try some Danner Elk Hunter (or Elk Ridge) boots a couple yrs ago and was royally disappointed in them. Comfortable right out of the box, but leaked like a sieve and looked 10 yrs old after 1 day of hunting.

This year I'm considering a pair of Meindls, Red Wings, or Irish Setters. I see Danner is now doing some military boots which looks interesting to me, but I'm still gunshy after my last experience.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by lvrgsp » Wed Jun 30, 2010 1:48 pm

I can say if and that's a big if, danner is making the military boots they made 15 to 20 years ago, they were a very impressive boot, extremely durable, and waterproof, very comfortable, but pretty heavy as well....That IMO was the best boot Danner made, and also IMO unless there made the same the Danners of now are far more inferior than they were then....JMO.
I have Irish Setters and RedWings, IMO Irish Setters are an ok boot, but the Red Wings are quite a bit better, a bit heavier and a stiffer sole but for me that is what I prefer....The Irish Setters were extremely comfortable, ok on waterproof, and ok on durability, the soles on the IS are poorly built, and cracked relatively quick.....
I wear boots on avg, 25-28 days/month and anywhere from 10-16hrs a day, from Railroad work to Farm work to Hunting I put a pair of boots through the ringer, and so far the Red Wings have been pretty good going on there second year, not as good as they once were IMO but still a good boot.
I just got my Russell Boot catalog, and when my RedWings go, I'll run up to Wisconsin and have a pair made...

Chip

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JakeDD
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by JakeDD » Tue Jul 06, 2010 8:56 pm

Chip - how long was the break-in period on your Redwings? I also like stiffer soles, but have a pair of lace-up cowboy boots I've been breaking in for months and they're killing me!

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by lvrgsp » Wed Jul 07, 2010 6:40 am

Jake,
I have 3 pair of redwings right now, one pair of lace up 400 gram thinsulated hunting boots, and they have a deeper lug sole and are extremely comfortable, with if I remember correctly maybe a week break in at most. Thew second pair are pull on's and they took a bit to break in, maybe a good month or two so before they started to feel right, but they are pretty comfortable right now, the soles on those are a bit softer. The third pair I just bought are lace up, non insulated, similiar sole as the pull ons and were good about 2 days out of the box......I also still have a pair of Irish Setters I bought about 3 years or so ago, that have a more flexible sole but they are extremely lightweight cordura and leather, and were good out of the box as well.
I find as many probably have, for me just as if not more important are socks.....the good ole white cotton socks just do not cut it for me unless Im wearing shoes, I have become real fond of the smart wool socks and I wear them year round anymore, they make them in varying weights for different temps through the year......

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JakeDD
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by JakeDD » Wed Jul 07, 2010 8:28 am

Smartwool = smart choice! Big fan of them as well. Think I will look into the Redwings and Russells more this year.

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Deets
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by Deets » Tue Sep 14, 2010 8:51 pm

The guys that buy $300 boots may balk at this post, but I like to use desert combat boots. These boots are lightweight, comfortable, and very rugged. My feet are perpetually hot so I use the hot weather boots that have vents on them. I also have a pair of insulated gortex combat boots I wear in the snow. I hunt in eastern colorado and walk alot of CRP, corn, and wheat stubble. My last pair of boots lasted 2 seasons, and that was after 2 years of Army service. The best part is that you can pick up a pair at the surplus store for about $60.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by lvrgsp » Wed Sep 15, 2010 12:38 pm

Yea the desert issued boots I got over in the big sand box were pretty good, after I got out and they wore out I never got another pair for some reason...actually I think I might still have my old jump boots....
The insulated winter boots you have are they made by Danner? Stationed in europe for 2 years and those were some really good boots to have, a bit heavy but comfortable and warm and extremely durable....

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m2244
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by m2244 » Wed Aug 14, 2013 4:37 am

"i'm an idiot, I was thinking dog boots. haha."

Now that's funny!

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SpinoneIllinois
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by SpinoneIllinois » Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:51 am

I've got a pair of Danners and a pair of Irish Setters, and I like them both. But most often, I find myself sliding into the Muck Camo Camp Boots. They are surprisingly comfortable on long hunts — and I've never been much of a fan of rubber boots. I see that they're now selling two types of Uplander models. I might try those, too.

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AtTheMurph
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by AtTheMurph » Thu Sep 26, 2013 11:02 am

Russell Moccasin. Wear like steel, constructed to be very water resistant (no membranes that will always leak) and custom made to your foot.

I got a pair of the Prem South 40s last year with some upgrades, notably the toe cap because I too hunt thick, thorny briars that eat up boots. After one season you can hardly tell they were worn. Kept my feet dry and extremely comfortable. The only change I would make is the soles. I went with the traditional bird hunting sole because I hunt pheasants mostly but we do climb in and out of ditches and when I quail hunt we get into so hilly areas.

When these soles wear out I'm going to resole with something with some more traction. Russell's are nice because they can be repaired and resoled indefinitely. Not cheap but two or three pairs of other boots that are supposedly good aren't cheap either.

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mtlhdr
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by mtlhdr » Thu Sep 26, 2013 12:15 pm

Danner Grouse Hunting Boots. Made in USA. Completely recraftable. Waterproof. Comfortable. Hurt a bit at the register but I should get years out of these boots.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by Fieldwalker » Thu Sep 26, 2013 1:32 pm

I've never met a serious bird hunter that wanted his boots to have insulation.

If you want to take care of your feet... don't get a pair of good boots. Get a couple pair.

I rotate between Danner Pronghorns, Irish Setter somethings, and a pair of the RedHead Uplander II's. Change them up along with socks between spots.

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GrayGhost
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by GrayGhost » Thu Sep 26, 2013 4:24 pm

Fieldwalker wrote:I've never met a serious bird hunter that wanted his boots to have insulation.

If you want to take care of your feet... don't get a pair of good boots. Get a couple pair.

I rotate between Danner Pronghorns, Irish Setter somethings, and a pair of the RedHead Uplander II's. Change them up along with socks between spots.

I'm with you Fieldwalker, I had to do a lot of looking and explaining to try and find a pair of boots in Utah without any thinsulate in them that met my needs. I finally settled on the Danner's too, and Iove them. I use them for everything, from upland to elk hunting, and hiking all summer long, and when it snows I just throw a thicker pair of socks on. I have seen some people up in the mountains recently wearing the lightweight Under Armour boot, they say it a really comfortable boot, I tried it on in the stores and I would have to agree, but I'm curious to see how that boot holds up in the long term for those guys.

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Gertie
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by Gertie » Fri Sep 27, 2013 12:25 am

Nick's Hotshots. They'll set you back a chunk but for serious walking in crappy conditions you really can't beat them. http://www.nicksboots.com/
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AtTheMurph
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by AtTheMurph » Sun Mar 08, 2015 11:59 am

Russell's. Period. End of story.

Everything the OP wants Russell's will give him. Custom fit, wear like steel, comfort, etc. Not cheap but with care will last longer than I do.

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luvthemud
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by luvthemud » Sun Mar 08, 2015 2:18 pm

I too rotate between boots. Uninsulated danner pronghorns and some 400 gram insulate Irish setters. I love the danners. The Irish setters are OK, but they dont feel as durable as the Irish setter of old.

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rkappes
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by rkappes » Mon Mar 09, 2015 5:49 am

I'm also a fan of Danner Pronghorns. I have an uninsulated leather pair and a 400 gram pair. I've had both for 5 years now. I beat'em up pretty good and they still keep on going. The 400 gram pair I wear for late season bird hunting, black powder deer hunting and ice fishing.

For my next pair of boots I'd like to try some Kenetreks.

Good socks make a huge difference. I thought people were foolish paying big $ for socks until I got my first pair of SmartWools. Now I only wear SmartWool socks, whether it be hunting or just everyday use...once you go SmartWool you won't go back to cotton.

Boot leather = birds. (Uninsulated full leather Danners)
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1gundog
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Hunting Boot Battle

Post by 1gundog » Wed Apr 22, 2015 8:18 am

My rotation of foot hunting tools
Russell Mocs (Safari)
First gen irish setter (pull on)
6" LL bean boots
LL bean boa gore-tex for colder weather
Danner snake boots

If I could only have one pair would be Russell's

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by largefrag » Fri Jul 10, 2015 7:16 am

Quit buying "hunting boots." I have moved to using high end hiking/backpacking boots. They tend to break in quickly and will last forever. I currently wear a pair of montrail morraine leather hiking boots that I have had for over 15 years. they are still waterproof and bulletproof and i hunt them hard. Unfortunately they don't make them like they used to but I think the mountaineering/ hiking boots tend to be more comfortable and perform better than most traditional upland hunting boots.

jfwhit
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by jfwhit » Tue Jul 21, 2015 6:11 pm

After my "over analysis". I went with Crispi Hunters. Like them out of the box so far. They have an angle support system that I need. Hoping to last me quite a few seasons.

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oldbeek
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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by oldbeek » Sun Aug 16, 2015 8:29 pm

I needed a wide boot. Meindl is the only boot I could find in wide EEE. Meindl primarily makes hikeing boots. 9 inch lace up, light weight, fit is perfect and need no break in.

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Re: Hunting Boot Battle

Post by marysburg » Mon Sep 14, 2015 8:39 am

I'm on my third season in Under Armour Speed Freeks, and they're the best boots I've ever worn. They aren't completely waterproof, but I can wade through shallow creeks and still have dry feet. Good in all temperatures, and they aren't showing wear. Very light weight and comfortable right out of the box with good foot support. Got them at Cabela's. I like them a lot better than my old Danners.

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