What is the best pair of boots you ever owned for hunting pheasants?

JPH

Member
I bought a pair of Crispi Idaho GTX boots about 4 years ago. Highly recommend. Prior to those I had Danner Grouse. Great boots, comfortable, but they didn't hold up nearly as well as these Crispi's have.
If there is deeper snow and it's really cold, I love my Schnee 13" Hunters.
 

cheesy

Well-known member
Was a big Russell an myself. Wore a pair out, kind of. After re-re-re-repairing and having toe caps added (they were getting very drafty), no longer fit right. I loved those boots so much that I had a funeral for them. Also bought a pair for the wife at least 20 years ago - hers are still good to go despite a fair amount of use. I need some new ones for myself, both set of boots I have now are generally great, but weigh too much and remove too much topsoil when it is wet.

But. Are Russells still made in the USA? I don't mind paying for high quality/good value for the long run but if they aren't made here anymore and quality is slipping as reported - I've bought my last pair.

So - shopping now. Is it my imagination, or do "hunting" boots cost more than essentially identical "work" boots?

Just saw your reply to me, sorry for the delay.

They're still made in Wisconsin.

My only complaint with them is a couple of tight spots on one foot, but I think that has worked itself out as I've worn them this season.

The dissapointing part is ordering a 'stock' boot other than the custom sizing to my foot tracing, and then they don't even put the sole on it that they have spec'd on their website. Again, its a comfort sole, which might be a good thing, but thats just lack of attention to detail that shouldn't have happened in a $550 boot.

For 'production' boots, I wear Thorogoods everyday, have a pair of 8" moc toes on right now. They're like tennis shoes on my feet. If I didn't have a half dozen 'hunting' boots floating around, I'd buy a set of Thorogood waterproof 'hunting' boots and give them a try.
 

KSnative

Active member

Just saw your reply to me, sorry for the delay.

They're still made in Wisconsin.

My only complaint with them is a couple of tight spots on one foot, but I think that has worked itself out as I've worn them this season.

The dissapointing part is ordering a 'stock' boot other than the custom sizing to my foot tracing, and then they don't even put the sole on it that they have spec'd on their website. Again, its a comfort sole, which might be a good thing, but thats just lack of attention to detail that shouldn't have happened in a $550 boot.

For 'production' boots, I wear Thorogoods everyday, have a pair of 8" moc toes on right now. They're like tennis shoes on my feet. If I didn't have a half dozen 'hunting' boots floating around, I'd buy a set of Thorogood waterproof 'hunting' boots and give them a try.
Nephew works construction, often 12 hours a day and sometimes 7 days a week - and won't wear anything else. If I ever need more boots - that would probably be my first choice. LL Bean offers great service - but it seems to me they've become an electronic mall shopping botique, geared toward appearance and not so much - especially - durability. Better value can usually be found elsewhere IMHO.
 

Nugent

Well-known member
I started using Kennetreks a couple years ago and will never go back. They are expensive, but for my style of hunting, they're perfect. They feel like I could play basketball in them, but have enough support for sidehilling for chukars or elk. I usually do 10-15 mile per day upland hunts and they keep my feet in good shape. If you're just heading out a draw for a couple hours, most any goretex boot works fine, but for all day hard hiking, the kennetreks are the best I've found.
15 miles a day? What!!
 

benelli-banger

Well-known member
sharptail hunting, 10 minimum, 12-15 not that unusual...10+ pheasant hunting not too unusual...4-5 hours of hunting...I actually walk about 2.5 mph pheasant hunting most of the time...
 
Whoa, those aren't wallet friendly! A few options have them over $700. If a guy could get 10 seasons, probably worth the price. Great review.
how about 30 seasons? I expect mine to last longer than I do and so far, they have held up unlike any boots I have ever owned.

I've had almost every brand mentioned in this thread. Worn them all out and usually within 5 years. Been hunting since I've been 10 years old and been through dozens. The leather wears out, the soles give way, the goretex waterproof isn't.

The Russell's are on at least year 11. I got them resoled not because they needed it but because I wanted more traction for going in and out of ditches. My hunting has changed some over the years. Did more quail before, now almost purely pheasants. Different ground where I am at.

And to me the most important things are comfort, waterproof, and durability. The waterproof is the most surprising thing because they aren't "waterproof" boots. They just make them right so that water has a very, very hard time getting to your foot.

I paid about $600 for them. That's about 2.5 pairs of boots that other people think are great. And I will bet that they are more comfortable and last longer than those 2.5 pairs so it's money well spent. Just like spending money on a fine bird dog. It pays in the end.
 

matto

Active member
The waterproof is the most surprising thing because they aren't "waterproof" boots. They just make them right so that water has a very, very hard time getting to your foot.
I've always been curious about that claim. I'm certainly not looking to cross ankle-deep creeks or run a trap line, but we see a lot of frosty/dewy grass and light snow. What has been your actual experience with Russells and "waterproofness"?
 

cheesy

Well-known member
I've always been curious about that claim. I'm certainly not looking to cross ankle-deep creeks or run a trap line, but we see a lot of frosty/dewy grass and light snow. What has been your actual experience with Russells and "waterproofness"?
I've only got 2 seasons on my Russells, I haven't hunted any rainy weather. Just the morning dew/frost, occasional finding of a puddle in a waterway, and some light standing water in the cattails of South Dakota that I tried to get out of in a hurry. My feet stayed dry.
 

MAcDonTom1

New member
What is the best pair of boots for sale for pheasant hunting in South Dakota ? Lightweight and waterproof with a little insulation.
Schnee Granites - expense but worth it. You can skimp on all the other stuff but great boots are worth it. Mine are 5 years old and still going strong..
 
I've always been curious about that claim. I'm certainly not looking to cross ankle-deep creeks or run a trap line, but we see a lot of frosty/dewy grass and light snow. What has been your actual experience with Russells and "waterproofness"?
Frosty, damp, wet, rain, dewy? Feet stay dry. Have walked through some shallow creeks and been quite happy not to have soaked socks. Not even sure I had any seepage.

I tend to avoid that sort of test because the results might be bad. But I wouldn't do that with goretex boot either. Never had goretex that was better than the Russells. And none have been nearly as good with regard to wear. I did get boar hide toe caps because I walk in some really abrasive crap and I think that has helped alot, but the rest of the boots are nearly new looking.
 

remy3424

Active member
I keep looking at the Russells, $806 for the Signature South 40s...any issues with your arches wearing these? They look awesome and I watched a video of them making the boots...almost have me ordering some. That boot will be waterproof. If our knuckle heads in DC hand-out any more COVID welfare checks, I might have to stimulate Russell's business with mine.
 
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cheesy

Well-known member
I keep looking at the Russells, $806 for the Signature South 40s...any issues with your arches wearing these? They look awesome and I watched a video of them making the boots...almost have me ordering some. That boot will be waterproof. If our knuckle heads in DC hand-out any more COVID welfare checks, I might have to stimulate Russell's business with mine.

What options are you adding to get them to $806? $595 is the base pricing. I haven't had any arch issues, but my arches are pretty flat to begin with, the boots are definitely accommodating to flat arches.

I found a pic of mine from when they were a week old. Still upsetting to me that they didn't put the sole on them that they had specified on their website. For the price, the attention to the order detail was lacking. Beyond that gripe though, I'm actually happy with the boots. Would I buy them if my wife hadn't given me a gift card for them? I don't know. I'd like to try some other Crispis, Lowas, Schnees, etc, but am not dropping $400 simply to compare.

v4dZHeE.jpg
 

benelli-banger

Well-known member
I am incredibly impressed with the Irish Setter Havoc 801's....a 9" leather boot that is amazingly comfortable...about $200-225, depending on the retailer...I have had about 3-4 pairs of them, my next pair have been ordered...I hunt a lot, and can get 2-3 seasons out of a pair...
 

benelli-banger

Well-known member
when conditions are wet or snowy, I love my muck "chore cool" boots...have 2 pair...a shorter pair (mid-shin) and a standard knee-high version, which I have had for about 6 years...I can wear either pair all day, whether it be sharptail hunting or pheasant hunting...8 or 10 or 12 miles, no issue...
 

matto

Active member
Thanks for the reports on the russells. I might be tempted when my current pair wears out. I'm one season into Irish Setter Wingshooters. They took some break-in, but I'm really liking them.
 

remy3424

Active member
What options are you adding to get them to $806? $595 is the base pricing. I haven't had any arch issues, but my arches are pretty flat to begin with, the boots are definitely accommodating to flat arches.

I found a pic of mine from when they were a week old. Still upsetting to me that they didn't put the sole on them that they had specified on their website. For the price, the attention to the order detail was lacking. Beyond that gripe though, I'm actually happy with the boots. Would I buy them if my wife hadn't given me a gift card for them? I don't know. I'd like to try some other Crispis, Lowas, Schnees, etc, but am not dropping $400 simply to compare.

v4dZHeE.jpg
Heel counters, 200 grams insulation, and shark skin toe caps...I wouldn't even consider them w/o the toe-caps (adds $105), that would be what would wear through first I am thinking. Moccasin design flat bottom...is there room for insoles to give a little arch support? How do they lok today?
 

Boch0627

New member
What options are you adding to get them to $806? $595 is the base pricing. I haven't had any arch issues, but my arches are pretty flat to begin with, the boots are definitely accommodating to flat arches.

I found a pic of mine from when they were a week old. Still upsetting to me that they didn't put the sole on them that they had specified on their website. For the price, the attention to the order detail was lacking. Beyond that gripe though, I'm actually happy with the boots. Would I buy them if my wife hadn't given me a gift card for them? I don't know. I'd like to try some other Crispis, Lowas, Schnees, etc, but am not dropping $400 simply to compare.

v4dZHeE.jpg
Lowes renegades are now available in a 8" boot. More upland style than hiking boots style.
 

cheesy

Well-known member
Moccasin design flat bottom...is there room for insoles to give a little arch support? How do they lok today?

Off the top of my head, I'll say no to any insoles, they're pretty tight. If I remember, I'll slip a pair in just to try. I bought a thin pair of insoles for some western boots that I haven't used yet that will work for a test.

They look good as new. I treat all my boots heavily with Obenaufs HD. I think the beeswax in it wards off a lot of the abrasion if they weren't treated.
 
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