It’s the hunting season so gear up, because I am about to give you the most important tips for one of the essential need when hunting, and the best five to help you narrow down your search.
Hunting boots! Yes, footwear is so important! When you’re hunting in any sort of terrains out there, whether it’s damp, slippery, dry, muddy, snowy and so on, and your feet is the first interaction point with the ground. And with all sorts of bacteria in the soil, the last thing you want is an infection which would stall or cause an end to your whole hunting activity.
This review is going to focus on rubber hunting boots in particular, because rubber has fantastic characteristics – such as being rigid yet flexible at the same time, waterproof and many more.
Factors when selecting Rubber Hunting Boots
Many things to pay attention to when you’re making your choice for a perfect rubber hunting boots. Below are a list of factors you may want to look at before making any decision because these boots are not exactly cheap as well, and you need to spend your money wise.
First of all is the capability of insulating your feet whenever you’re out on your hunting adventure. When you look at the boots available in the market, insulation is measured in grams mainly because it depends on the material used in the manufacturing process. When it comes to insulation, material and the thickness of the material plays an important role because in the end you want comfort for your feet. Rubber is an amazing heat insulator.
Cold or snowing weather conditions can be detrimental, where in severe cases can lead to frostbites. So your boots must be able to retain the heat in the boots to protect your feet. Hot terrains can make your feet sweaty, and this would increase the moisture level in your boots. Thus, you want a boots that can keep your feet cool and comfortable at the same time.
Therefore, to determine the type of insulation needed is to consider your hunting environment you’re going into. There are some boots out there created just for users who hunt in both cold and dry seasons, where the lining inside the boots is removable, so when it’s hot, just take out the lining, and it’s ready for your hot terrain.
When the weather is not exactly in your favor, or when your hunting ground is submerged in water, being waterproof is one of the characteristics you would want your boots to have. Imagine water seeping into your boots, it will only compromise your movement because as water accumulates in the boots, it increase the weight at your feet.
Also, even if a little moisture gets into your boots, imagine your socks gets soaked and your feet soles and tissue may be affected, and if you experience this very frequent, the last thing you want is some fungus growing on your feet, but this is in the cases where the feet is extremely exposed to moisture for quite some time.
Two things you have to look at to determine the ability of your boots to resist water at a high level: material and soles. Since we are reviewing on rubber-made boots, rubber also known as latex, has the characteristics where its molecules are relatively packed closely together, and though being flexible, it does not move apart to cause the penetration of water molecules.
Fit to the feet, it just has to have a perfect fit. Imagine if the toe space is large, or the above ankle is tight, you will not feel the comfort at all. Purchasing a rubber boots is good for most hunting activities, for example if you need to climb, it has to be able to have a grip on the surface where you step on, and retaining the balance, with the flexibility in the rubber this can be achieved.
Comfort also correlates with insulation, because without proper insulation, you will be so uncomfortable in those footwear. Also if you want to ensure the comfortable feeling in your boots retained, make sure you use proper socks, because for example if your boots is narrow, you wouldn’t want a thick socks because there would not be space for your feet to breathe.
If you’re always going into a wet terrain, or if you’re highly active in and out of hunting season in the environment, you want a pair of boots that could last you for a long period of time. Boots aren’t exactly cheap nowadays, so it has to be worth every penny. Durability depends again on the material used, type of sole, and waterproof.
Rubber in this case has the tendency to be worn out faster if abrasion against the surface is high. Imagine a very rocky surface. So that is why most of the rubber hunting boots aren’t purely made of rubber, but a mix of either synthetic rubber or substitutes of rubber which has higher endurance characteristics.
The soles also has to be made of good quality material because that is the contact point. Poor quality, leads to faster process of wearing out, and finally can also cause injury in long term if not replaced for a new pair. Soles are also important as for the function of grip, especially when you are in wet or cold environment, grip is very important to prevent slip and imbalance.
So make sure you choose the best material, with higher percentage of rubber in it.
Before you go for a hunt, you know what you’ll be up against, the weather and the geographical area. So if you think it’s rather windy and it may rain, waterproof is a must and also insulation. Second, if it’s a location submerged in water or snowing, for example when hunting for ducks, then of course again waterproof, insulation is very important.
At times half of your body is in the water. If it is a rough terrain, a lot of rocks, not level grounds, then make sure the sole of your boots is tough enough to endure and provide the protection needed for your feet.
Height and Weight
Rubber hunting boots comes in various sizes for both men and women. Height is an important factors which is determined based on your choice of hunting grounds.
A waterlogged terrain would require a tall boots, because you would not want to let water move in from the top part.
Besides, the waterproof characteristics is applied on the external surface of the boots, you can hardly avoid the water from moving in if it’s a short boots not from the surrounding but from the top.Hot or dry landscapes does not entirely require a tall boots, but for better protection, it’s advisable to get one which is high.
Shaft is the term used to measure the height from the middle of the arch up the outsole of the boot to the top of the boot, so this is what you need to measure to ensure its tall enough, preferably 14 inches and above. Weight also impacts the choice of the boots, where we return back to the features of a terrain. Heavy boots are suitable for wetlands, because you wouldn’t want your feet to be floating, you want a stable grip to the ground.
Lighter weighted boots are perfect when you’re on hunting grounds which are easier to move about, or involves a little hiking.
Top-Five Rated Rubber Hunting Boots
|Name||Insulation||Waterproof (%)||Height (inches)||Weight (pounds)||Comfortness||Suited Terrain||Material||Durability||Size Range (US)||Price|
|LaCrosse Alphaburly||High||100||18"||7||High||All||Rubber over Neoprene||High||M: 6 - 15||$$$|
|Kamik||Moderate||100||13"||4||Moderate||Cold/Wet||Synthetic Rubber||High||M: 7 - 15||$|
|MuckBoots Hi-Cut Boot||High||90||15.5"||3||Moderate||All||50% Rubber 50% Nylon||Moderate||M: 5 - 16||$$|
|W: 6 - 17|
|Kamik Cold-Weather||High||100||13"||2||High||Cold/Wet||Rubber and Fabric||Moderate||M: 7 -15||$$$|
|Bogs Winter||High||100||14"||5||High||Cold/Wet||Rubber||High||M: 7 - 21||$$|
LaCrosse Men’s Alphaburly Pro 18″ Hunting Boot Review
LaCrosse has focused this particular hunting boots on men, with its sizes ranging from 6 US – 15 US. The Alphaburly boots has the height of 18 inches and weighs at 7 pounds. The height may not be comfortable for many but with the calf area measuring about 16 inches around, you can easily tuck in your pants and you’re done. You barely feel that it’s loose at the top.
It comes in green, mossy oak break up country, and Realtree Xtra Green designs. With such weight, you would imagine in suited only for wetlands, but that is not the case here.This particular boot was structured in a way where it can be suited for any terrains, with the material used here which is rubber and neoprene, you can hardly feel the pressure of lifting the boots. This manufacture has combined rubber with neoprene which has high proficiency in heat insulation.
A plus point here is that it’s odourless, you know how sometimes you can get the latex smell from some rubber items, and it’s not the case here with the blend of neoprene. The gram insulation of this boot is with approx. 800 grams – 3.5MM neoprene; 0° – 70°F.
The lining inside this boots is desirable because it’s embossed neoprene layer, meaning a better air movement within your boots and avoids accumulation of moisture. This will definitely keep your feet away from feeling sweaty or stiff. The waterproof feature comes through the neoprene, which also gives it a flexibility you need when enduring harsh grounds. It features a thick cushioning EVA midsole for added comfort if your hunting involves a lot of movement or walking, and it has the ability to absorb shock if you hit against any hard objects.
An adjustable rear gusset which is near the calf for the perfect fit – easily worn and removed. Multilayer rubber coating on the toe and heel area gives protection against abrasions, added support and increased durability. So, you can go ahead and climb rocky hills or rough lanes, not an issue with this pair of rubber boots.
The outsole of this boots are uniquely designed to endure warm or cold situations. It has either the insulated or the non-insulated styles, so its clear cut that if it is non-insulated, not suitable for cold weather conditions. The tread pattern enables you to move effortlessly in challenging grounds, whereas the chamfered edges enables you also to move fast by shedding mud, snow or any obstacles below.
Lacrosse boots have innovated this pair of boots with the ability to grip the ankle and lock the heels in place. It helps to prevent excess rubbing of your heels which can cause heat and discomfort. This particular boots is quite expensive so you may need to save up for this one. Though perfect in many ways, there are downfalls to this particular boots.
The weight could be an issue to some, especially if you’re small sized, it can feel heavy and a little stiff and difficult to walk in. The grip around the ankle area also seems to be causing discomfort because it restrains from quick movements and also removing the boots. The area between the toes to the shaft is quite spaced out, not suitable for some. Also, it is not a snake boots.
Kamik Men’s Hunter Boot Review
Kamik is one of a favourite brands for rubber hunting boots because it is so affordable, less than $100 a pair. The designs comes in black, khaki or khaki with black soles. It is only suited for men with sizes ranging from 7 US – 15 US. The shaft measures approximately 13 inches from arch, heel measures approximately 1.25 inches, boot opening measures approximately 15.5 inches around. This pair is around the average weight which can suit both dry and wet conditions, which is 4 pounds.
Kamik hunter boots are made of synthetic rubber overall, with a removable felt lining which gives you a soft and comfortable fit. You can always remove the felt and wash it, it is very easily removed and you can maintain its condition. This boots can be used for chores and also hunting, because it is adaptable to any conditions.
This is also a waterproof knee-high boots, so no issue towards exposure to moisture or snow. It also has an adjustable snow collar or also known as nylon lace collar, so you can tighten or loosen anytime based on your comfort. -40°F temperature rating is given for this boots, so we can know from here it can endure harsh weathers.
EXPLORER TPR outsole gives you the clasp and adhesion required. If you’re a nature loving person, just to give you a hint that this boots are a 100% recyclable, so even when it’s worn out, you can recycle it to save our nature. This boots have very low penetration level, which is good because it keeps your feet safe. Example, if you accidentally spill something hot or even if you are walking in a wet area, the spill/water or moisture remains outside – keeping your feet warm and cosy in the boots.
Some disadvantages is observed from this boots especially its narrow structure which seems to be not suitable for all people. Users has advised that if considering to purchase this boots, better to get one size larger than your actual size for best ease, the fit is better. Maybe if you have larger calves, you may want to consider other boots.
The soles also seems to have less quality as it gets worn out quite quickly, but this also depends on the terrain you’re in. The weight seems to be not suitable in wet terrains, especially muddy areas, the mud gets attached to the soles, making it heavier and difficult to move. But overall based on my observation and friend’s experience in these pair of boots, comfort definitely attained, suitable for all conditions and also affordable.
The Original MuckBoots Adult Chore Hi-Cut Boot Review
This is a very stylish looking pair of rubber hunting boots, and the best part is it accommodates for both men and women, therefore its unisex. For men, the size ranges from 5 US – 16 US, whereas for women it ranges from 6 US – 17 US. It is approximately only 3 pounds, which is a very light-weighted pair of boots, definitely easy to walk in. It only comes in on colour, which is black.
This boots is made of 50% rubber and 50% nylon, and its soles are made of purely rubber.
The shaft measures roughly 15.5 inches from arch, heel measures approximately 1 inch, platform measures approximately 0.75 inches, and the boot opening measures approximately 17.75 inches around. With these dimensions, it is relatively easy to put on and also very flexible due to the mixture of materials, making it convenient to use.With the inner lining made of neoprene, it provides warmth and comfort for your feet.
Great insulation is achieved where even in cold or wet places, the penetration level of heat in and out of the boots is low, and so you hardly feel your feet getting sweaty. Comfort range from sub-freezing conditions to 85°F, meaning it is actually more suited towards wet and cold conditions.
The waterproof capability is approximately 100% throughout, but because this boots are not very tall – this percentage evaluation may be negligible. A blown rubber outsole delivers slip-resistant, with shock-absorbing ability as well.
This boots has a very convenient way of removing it after use, which is you must kick rim on a counter for hands-free removal. How easy is that? After a long day at work or after a tiring pursue towards your prey, the last thing you need is having difficulty in removing the boots. The price of this boots is relatively affordable.
Drawbacks of this boots are observed after the third quarter of the year from purchase time, because apparently the waterproof capability decreases over time. The top is stretch fit. So every time you put it on and remove, the stretching power decreases and the fit is no longer there because it loses the grip strength, making it susceptible to water penetration from the top.
The dimension of these pair of boots doesn’t accommodate many, in some situations with the purchase of appropriate size by users, they feel discomfort around the calves and ankle, because of the rubber thickness not appropriate, and it should be slightly thinner for best outcome. The inner neoprene lining which is a breathable mesh, unfortunately also wears out in longer period of time due to the constant abrasion from the feet to the lining.
Kamik Men’s Hunter Cold-Weather Boot Review
Another one from Kamik brand with excellent quality, matched only for men though. It weighs 2 pounds, with a height of 14 inches from the heel to the top. The shaft measures approximately 13 inches from arch, heel measures approximately 1.25 inches, platform measures approximately 0.50 inches, and boot opening measures approximately 16.75 inches around.
This is a relatively high pair of boots, up to the knee. So, it has the capability to withstand cold weather conditions, plus with the feature of an adjustable drawstring at the top of the boots, you can easily adjust the fit according to your size or preference.
This hunting boots is made of rubber and nylon fabric which is the top part, making it more comfortable for users. It is highly waterproof, so less worry on snow or water seeping in, and also the ability to tolerate up to intense -40°F. So, this definitely means the insulation is great with its 8mm thermal guard liner. It’s removable, so for added warmth, just remove it. By the way, it comes in black or khaki with black soles, so you have two choices to pick from. Its outsoles are made to adapt to snow, the treading are matched for that purpose.
Its traction against snow and ice are purely amazing, avoiding any slip. Kamik made this pair specifically to endure the cold harsh weathers, so perfect for winter time. This pair is easily removed and put on, with the function of the heel kicker.
Somehow, this boots although claimed to be tested to survive cold weathers, many have said that that’s not the case for them. The insulator does not play a good role, and perhaps because the top part is made of nylon which is adjustable, this may be a reason for the cold air to move into the boots if the fit is not right. The liner seems to be not durable enough. Perhaps with a better pair of socks, this issue can be resolved. The weight apparently makes it even harder to move on snowy grounds or ice, and it is quite slippery.
The soles treading are not good enough to have a good grip on slippery surfaces. Although being relatively high, if the top doesn’t function as it is supposed to, water, dirt, snow anything can move in and cause a discomfort. The durability is jeopardized in this case.
Bogs Men’s Classic High Camo Winter Snow Boot Review
Bogs has created this pair of rubber hunting boots specifically for winter, meaning cold terrains. It is beautifully designed with a selection of either mossy oak, mossy oak new breakup, or black. The camouflage pattern is so attractive and is the most frequent choice of buyers. This is unfortunately not a unisex pair of boots, it’s only suited for men. This boots is about 14 inches in height and weighs about 5 pounds. It is made of solely rubber both on the boots structure and the sole as well.
The shaft measures approximately 14 inches from arch, heel measures approximately 1 inches, platform measures approximately 0.50 inches, and the boot opening measures approximately 16 inches around. This is definitely a waterproof boots and can withstand up to -40°F, so no worries when you’re out during harsh weathers.
The height is desirable in cases of cold or snowy conditions, because it is up to the knee. Even if heading towards swampy areas, these boots are said to be adaptable in such conditions, where water does not seep in from the top. It has a long-lasting hand-lasted rubber and a four-way stretch inner booties.
Insulation is also given attention here with the inner being able to absorb and retain heat in the boots yet side-stepping the feel of sweaty. There is an added feature here, an anti-odor component in the insole to prevent unwanted scent from your feet to remain there after a long day. Bogs features a Neoprene upper and a removable, moisture-absorbing liner to reduce heat and eliminate odor.
It also has shanks which gives higher stability and support. The outsole is very durable, where its non-slip which is wanted whenever you’re on ice or on slippery tracks at your terrain providing an excellent grip, and also has the ability to self-clean meaning less effort can be kept for the maintenance of these boots.
Unfortunately, just like any other boots, these pair of rubber boots by Bogs has its weaknesses as well. The insulating power of the boots seems to diminish over time. It loses its capability of keeping user’s feet warm, thus causing stiffness eventually. This can also be overcome probably with a thicker socks to keep the warmth.
The anti-odor as well because in long term, you will somehow still have odor retained as they’re tiny particles. Make sure proper aeration is given to the boots once you’re back after your walk or hunting activity.
When it comes to selecting your rubber hunting boots, you have many factors to think about. In my opinion, based on reviews and personal experience, look for a pair of boots which does not involve any sort of fabric or materials other than rubber or its synthetic versions, because fabric depending on the quality is not advisable when you’re out for hunting or even to do chores.
Also, insulation and waterproof are things you want to pay attention to when purchasing, because these are the two criteria needed doesn’t matter what terrain you’re in. Possibly if you could get ones that are with removable yet appropriately thick linings, you can keep it for both hot and cold weather.
Lastly, look at your terrain, think what is best for your comfort and make your decision. So, which rubber boots thrives in your mind?