Tips For Hunting/Hiking Boot Care

This is a guest post by Ganon Hingst. In fact, if you have been following the blog for a while, you would have notice this post written by Ganon. The article is so in-depth that we thought that it would be cool to have Ganon contributing another post.

Over to Ganon….

We have all paid for an expensive, nice pair of boots for hunting, hiking or any outdoor activity. If you’re not careful and don’t give them the proper care and attention they need, their quality will fade over time leaving you paying for another pair of expensive boots.

I am sure you want your footwear to last as long as possible, right? Just in case you are searching for great boots for hunting, we recommend you check out this post. Are you checking for women hunting boots instead? Use the link to check out our top 5 women hunting boots review.

Here are some simple tips on boot care, which will help you save money and be happier with the product you decide to purchase!

Tip #1 Make sure you water proof your boots regularly

Waterproofing your footwear might be the most simple and essential tip for boot care there is, yet most owners neglect. Generally, you can buy some water proofing oil or wax your local shoe or outdoor store. It is essential to keep up with the application of these waxes or oils whenever you see them wearing off.

Luckily, these signs are pretty obvious to spot. When they are properly waterproofed you will see water forming into beads and sliding off the boots. Once it start to absorb water, even if your feet aren’t getting wet, then it is time to re-waterproof your footwear.

Another sign is when the leather on your boots is looking dry and crusty because the moisture has been removed from the leather. Any moisture, like water, that comes into contact with the boots will be deeply absorbed which can leave for a long day walking around with wet feet and damage to your nice 300$ shoes!

Water damage can be done to the boots and a visible sign of this is cracking in the leather. So make sure to avoid all of these problems with waterproofing!

Pro Tips: Using the wrong type of lubricants to waterproof your shoes can be damaging the quality and usability of your boots altogether. It’s recommended to use lubricants that are leather-friendly as it works well with most types of boots.

One of the best lubricants in the market is Snow-Seal Original Beeswax. It’s not like those grease or oil that you will normally use to waterproof this footwear. Instead, it’s made from bee’s wax, which is much better than other forms of lubricants as it wouldn’t harm the boots.

Tip #2 Make Sure to Condition Your Boots

Conditioning it is a whole different method by itself. Initially, it might sound like you are doing waterproofing again. However, it’s totally different. Conditioning sought to improve the texture of your shoes (especially if it’s a leather boot) by providing the moisture required (like what your skin needs).

Applying conditioner to your footwear is almost as important as waterproofing your boots. The leather on your boots is actually a type of skin, animal skin. Therefore, it needs to be treated like the way you treat your skin. The conditioners you apply to your boots adds healthy moisture and restores the fibers in your boots to make them more flexible, which prevents them from cracking.

Conditioning it helps maintain the natural oils inside the leather, which reduces water damage and the breakdown of your leather. This helps for healthier and longer lasting leather, which means you wont have to shell out nearly as much money on boots!

Pro Tip: When applying these products to your footwear it is a smart idea to make sure the leather on your boots is saturated with water. This opens up the pores of the leather and helps the products be absorbed in the leather easier!

If you want to learn more about the nature of leather, and why do they crack naturally (even if you are not using them!), check out this article.

Tip #3 Air Dry Your Boots

Make sure when you’re drying out your own boots from a long hike or hunt to air dry them. DO NOT PUT THEM BY A DIRECT HEAT SOURCE! Putting them by a heater or throwing them in the dryer can damage the leather.

It will get rid of all the moisture (from your conditioner) in the leather and cause it to dry out and crack! It will undo all the care you put into your product. So it is critical to let them air dry naturally to avoid damage and dehydration of the leather.

Don’t keep them in the box or places where the air velocity is low after using them in the woods. Most beginners thought that they are caring for their boots by keeping them safely. Well, in this case, you are probably doing the opposite if you keep them in the box!

Tip #4 Clean your Boots After a Long or Dirty Outing

So you’re coming home from a hunt, hike or just walking around outside with muddy and wet shoes. You just throw them into the closet and think nothing about them until you pull them out again. We have all been guilty of this, but it is essential to try to avoid doing this before cleaning them.

Make sure you get all the dirt and mud off your footwear before putting them away because it will damage, crack and dehydrate the leather just like water does. So make sure you clean the mud off them, let them air dry, and then you can store them properly.

Pro Tip: Never leave them untouched until the next day. Try to clean them ASAP to maintain the quality of your boots.

Conclusion

If you follow these tips and take care of your shoes you will no longer be throwing out those nice pairs of 300$ boots you have only had for a few years.

With these tips your boots should last you a good long time and you’ll be happier with your boots then you ever have been before! Hope y’all find these tips helpful and if you have a question or topic you would like me to talk about I can be reached at my email below!

Another great post by Ganon. Like what Ganon said, feel free to ask any questions to clear your doubts! Ganon will be there for you.

Just in case you would like to reach Ganon through email, here is his address.

Email: Ganon.hingst@richmond.edu