Best Elk Hunting Boots – Top Brands Compared & Reviewed
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Elk hunting is an exhilarating experience that requires proper preparation and equipment. One of the most essential pieces of gear for any hunting trip is a reliable pair of boots. But choosing the right boots for elk hunting involves more than just considering the weather and terrain.
In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of selecting the best boots for elk hunting, taking into account factors such as insulation, durability, traction, and more. We understand that every hunter has different requirements and preferences, so we’ve included a variety of options to suit your individual needs and budget.
Our recommendations are based on our expertise and extensive research, and we’ve provided detailed reviews of each product, including their pros and cons. So whether you’re a seasoned hunter or a beginner, you can trust our recommendations and find the best pair of elk hunting boots for your next adventure.
- Best Insulated: Kenetrek Mountain Extreme 400
- Best Boots for Elk Hunting: Danner Men’s Pronghorn GTX 8
- Best for Wide Feet: Danner Pronghorn
- Best for Cold Weather: Irish Setter Elk Tracker 860
- Best Mountain Hunting Boots: Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex
- Best Hunting Boot for Money: Rocky Men’s Bearclaw 3D LTT
Best Elk Hunting Boots for 2023
Elk hunting is mostly at its peak in the late season of hunting. While preparing for your hunt, ensure to get the best boots for yourself from the following list so that you don’t feel uncomfortable during your trip.
Best Insulated: Kenetrek Mountain Extreme 400
- Height: 8 inches
- Weight: 3.3 pounds
- Insulation: 400 grams Primaloft
- Lace length: 72 inches
10 out of 10
- Sufficient warmth
- Traction is good
- Durable material and parts
- Insoles are stiff
- A little expensive
Kenetrek Mountain Extreme leather boots are the top pick for elk hunting enthusiasts. Their rubber soles provide reliable traction on rugged terrain, making them ideal for hunting in hilly or mountainous areas.
The boots require minimal breaking-in time, but it is recommended to wear them for 15 to 20 miles to maximize comfort. The tongue may take longer to break in, but it’s a small price to pay for the long-term comfort and durability these boots provide.
It’s best to buy these boots one size larger than your usual size to ensure a comfortable fit, especially if you plan to wear insulated socks while hunting in extremely cold temperatures.
The boots keep your feet warm and comfortable, while the outsole offers excellent grip on slippery or wet surfaces. However, laces are easy to adjust, providing additional support, and the tongue easily tucks into the side folds for added security.
To ensure warmth in cold conditions and prevent water from entering the boots, the Kenetrek Mountain Extreme boots feature 400-gram Thinsulate and a durable windtex waterproof membrane. These boots compete with many boots with 800 grams of Thinsulate in terms of warmth.
They are well-stitched and made of high-quality material, making them durable and long-lasting. They have held up well after a year of use by my fellow hunter, with no sign of wear and tear on the leather or any parts breaking.
However, some wearers may find the insoles of these boots too hard for their comfort. Swapping them out with a softer pair can improve comfort.
Overall, the Kenetrek Mountain Extreme boots are an excellent choice for elk hunters seeking reliable, durable, and warm footwear for their outdoor pursuits. With their superior design and high-quality materials, these boots will keep your feet comfortable and secure while you focus on the hunt.
Best Boots for Elk Hunting: Danner Men’s Pronghorn GTX 8
- Full grain leather
- Nylon upper
- Cushioning PU footbed
- PrimaLoft insulation
9.8 out of 10
- Extremely warm
- Good traction
- Quality parts
- Danner sizes are smaller than others
- Price is high
When it comes to hunting elk in freezing temperatures, it’s crucial to have the right gear, especially the right boots. After researching extensively, I found that Danner Pronghorn 8″ boots were highly recommended by fellow hunters. And now, having worn them myself, I can confidently say that they are the best boots I’ve ever owned for elk hunting.
One of my biggest concerns was keeping my feet warm, and these boots have surpassed my expectations. Even in extremely cold weather, my toes were warm, and I was only wearing one pair of insulated socks.
These boots are made with a GORE-TEX waterproof lining over the leather and Nylon upper, which offers 100% waterproof protection while also providing moisture-wicking performance.
The boots are true to size, but since I prefer wearing insulated socks, I ordered a size bigger. They fit perfectly, with an 8″ height that offers added support and protection. I didn’t need any time for breaking in these boots; they were comfortable and offered soft cushioning inside for protecting and ensuring a secure fit.
At first, the grommets were a bit challenging to work with, but after two to three times of usage, they became easier to use.
The insulation and cushioning PU footbed provide excellent comfort, and I walked around for almost three hours on my last trip without experiencing any soreness or blisters.
And when it comes to traction, these boots are highly reliable on wet and slippery surfaces, making them ideal for hunting in mountainous terrain. In fact, they even outperform the popular Kenetrek Mountain boots in this regard.
Overall, I highly recommend the Danner Pronghorn 8″ boots for anyone looking for reliable, warm, and comfortable hunting boots. The quality of these boots is well worth the price, and I have worn them on every trip this season without any issues.
Best for Wide Feet: Danner Pronghorn
- Height: 8 inches
- Weight: 3.3 pounds
- Insulation: 400 grams Primaloft
- Lace length: 72 inches
9.7 out of 10
- Warm and comfortable
- Reasonable price
- No pull up tag
As a professional hunter, it’s important to be prepared for extreme weather conditions when hunting elk. That’s why the Danner Pronghorn GTX boots are one of the best options on the market. These boots excel at keeping your feet warm, even in the snowiest of conditions.
Constructed with durable leather and a sturdy rubber sole, the Pronghorn GTX boots can withstand rough terrains and long hours of wear. The design of the outsole provides excellent stability, allowing you to move confidently on slippery surfaces. The tread design also offers the best grip for smooth walking and climbing.
The soft insole ensures maximum comfort without causing any blisters or cuts on your toes. The height of the heels and the forward part of the boots are designed to prevent pain in your feet and promote stable walking.
To keep your feet dry and protected from water, the boots are equipped with a GORE-TEX lining over the leather. The height of the shaft and the insulation add an extra layer of protection against harsh weather conditions.
Having personally worn these boots for two elk hunting seasons, I can attest to their superior performance. While frequent climbing has caused some wear and tear on the tread, the boots still fit comfortably and keep my feet in place. The leather and nylon construction also allows for breathability during long days of hunting.
Although it would be helpful to have a pull-up tag to make taking the boots off easier, it’s not a major issue during the hunt.
Overall, the quality of these boots is impressive given their price range. Trust me, the Danner Pronghorn GTX boots are a solid investment for any serious hunter.
Best for Cold Weather: Irish Setter Elk Tracker 860
- Height: 12 inches
- Weight: 4.25 pounds
- Insulation: 1,000 grams Thinsulate
- Lace length: 108 inches
9.6 out of 10
- True to the sizes
- Moisture wicking performance and waterproof
- Durable material
- Not reliable grip for wet or slippery surfaces
The Irish Setter 838 Wingshooter hunting boots are an excellent choice for hunters who want ready-to-wear boots straight out of the box. These boots are highly comfortable and require minimal break-in time.
Ensure you choose the correct size to wear socks with them, and you will experience unparalleled comfort that will exceed your expectations.
Crafted from high-quality leather, both the upper part of the boots and the sole are built to last.
The boots are lightweight and have soft insoles that provide excellent support, with underfoot cushioning that ensures optimal comfort. Additionally, the midsole and insole cushioning, along with the laces, keep your feet securely in place.
These boots are highly reliable for winter elk hunting due to their waterproof design and moisture-wicking nylon lining, keeping your feet dry and warm, even in extreme cold weather.
However, they have a poor tread design that doesn’t provide enough traction on wet and slippery surfaces. Therefore, they are not recommended for hiking or wearing during the rainy season.
Despite their slight drawback, these boots are one of the best pairs you can purchase for keeping your feet dry and warm in extremely cold weather, thanks to the 400g Thinsulate. They are breathable, not too hot, and not too cold, making them ideal for most hunting conditions.
For an affordable price, the boots are of excellent quality, and they are durable enough to last for over a year, even for professional hunters. I’ve never experienced any water leakage or roughness in the leather thus far, making them an ideal investment.
Best Mountain Hunting Boots: Salomon Quest 4 Gore-Tex
- Eva foam for shock
- Gusseted tongue
- 4D advanced chassis
9.5 out of 10
- Very comfortable
- Grip is amazing
- Fairly priced
- The eyelets are not so durable
Salomon Men’s Quest 4d 3 boots are a high-quality, synthetic option at an excellent price point. These boots offer unparalleled comfort and cushioning, making them suitable for long hikes, running, and walking.
Not only do they provide a comfortable fit, but they also offer optimal support for your feet, ensuring you can traverse rough and slippery terrain with ease.
Designed to provide maximum traction, these boots are reliable even on rainy days, thanks to their waterproof and moisture-wicking properties. With the addition of insulated socks, your feet will stay warm and comfortable while hunting.
During the elk hunting season, these boots proved to be both lightweight and breathable, allowing for long hours of wear without causing discomfort. The sturdy construction of the outsole and insole offered excellent protection, ensuring your feet remained well-protected over uneven terrain.
Although they may require some time to break in, these boots are true to size and have a wide front, making them more breathable and comfortable for your toes to move easily.
Furthermore, these boots have been designed to reduce blisters and wounds, offering a comfortable fit without causing any discomfort or pain.
With the added benefit of being durable and sturdy, these boots are a smart investment for any hunter or hiker looking for a reliable and comfortable option for outdoor activities.
Overall, the Salomon Men’s Quest 4d 3 boots are a worthwhile purchase for anyone seeking top-quality synthetic boots at an affordable price.
Best Hunting Boot for Money: Rocky Men’s Bearclaw 3D LTT
- 100% Leather
- Full-grain leather featuring Bearclaw 3D outsole
9.5 out of 10
- Comfortable insole
- Durable quality
- Looks great
- Breathable and light
- Reasonable price
- The rubber sole is not durable
Rocky Men’s Bearclaw 3D LTT hunting boots are an excellent investment for any outdoor enthusiast. The boots boast superior durability, thanks to the quality of leather used in their construction.
Additionally, the rubber sole provides excellent support, making these boots the perfect choice for long walks or climbs.
These boots are specifically designed with elk hunting in mind and feature a reliable tread design that provides an excellent grip, ensuring maximum stability on any terrain. Furthermore, the boots are ideal for cold weather conditions, keeping your feet warm and comfortable.
The perfect fit of these boots ensures that you’ll never experience any discomfort or blisters, and with time, they become even more comfortable. The insole and outsole provide excellent support, but they could have been of better quality to match the boots’ overall quality.
During my last rainy hunting trip, these boots proved their worth. They did not leak or allow water to enter, and my feet remained dry throughout the entire trip.
Additionally, the boots are of just the right weight, neither too heavy nor too lightweight, and they offer excellent breathability with moisture-wicking performance and sufficient insulation.
In addition to their exceptional performance, these boots also boast a stylish brown color and a perfect height. They are one of the best hunting boots available in the market, and they offer the same performance for a fair price. You won’t be disappointed with this purchase.
Things to Consider Before Buying Elk Hunting Boots
You do know your type/style of hunt and the weather conditions, so choose the one that will be most reliable for hunting elk. Consider the following features of the boot before buying it.
Material reliability and durability
Buying boots that will last longer and do not get worn out easily is very important if you are a hunter. As you will have to walk on rough surfaces, you will need to ensure that the boots can go a long way without getting damaged.
For durability, leather, rubber, and synthetic material boots are the best options. Also, the sole of the boots should be thick and made of reliable material for walking over rocky surfaces and protect your feet from getting hurt.
Warm and insulated boots
No matter which animal you are preying on, you will need warm insulated boots for hunting in cold weather. Choose the boots that have more Thinsulate insulation and are comfortable to wear around.
For hunting in cold weather, mostly 800 grams of Thinsulate is sufficient. But you can opt for more if you are about to hunt in low freezing temperatures. Also, it depends on each hunter whether or not his feet get cold easily.
If you feel that even 1000 grams of Thinsulate are not enough for you, choose higher or wear thick insulated socks.
Going to hunt in cold areas obviously means that it can rain or snow at any time there. Therefore, you will need either waterproof or water-resistant boots so that your feet do not get wet inside the boots, making you feel uncomfortable.
Even if it isn’t raining, a boot should have the moisture-wicking ability to prevent moisture from entering your boots. Waterproof boots are never a wrong choice, even if you are not hunting in the winter season. Your boots won’t get wrecked due to moisture, dirt, or water and will last longer.
Usually, rubber material boots are considered the best waterproof boots naturally, but if you are opting for leather boots, you will have to try some techniques for making them waterproof.
Breaking in of the boots
You might not have heard about it before, but the ability of boots to break in easily is very important for hunting. If the hunting season is near and you are getting a new pair of boots. Make sure to find out how much time they will take to break in.
That’s because a pair of boots that can break in quickly will be more comfortable as compared to the ones requiring weeks. You obviously can’t compromise on the comfortability with boots that may hurt your feet throughout the hunt. There are various great options of boots that break in quickly and ensure comfortability.
Even if your boots break in easily, the right size matters more than that. Tight-fitting boots can cause pains and blisters and ruin your hunting trips for two to three days by making it difficult for you to walk around or hike in the mountains.
While looking for the right size, remember that you need to buy a size bigger for your hunting boots than your usual size. It’s because you will be wearing thick socks with them for hunting elk in the rainy or cold season.
Also, before going to hunt, it’s better to try them on with the socks that you are going to wear with them to prevent any discomfort later.
As you will be wearing the boots for hours and might be walking or hiking long distances, choose the boots that are lightweight. As for the material, boots made of Nylon as well as rubber material are light in weight.
Although winter boots do weigh a little more than usual boots, brands do consider this aspect of hunting boots and manufacture many lightweight boots for the comfort of the hunters. So before buying, do check the weight of the boots.
The best elk hunting boots will cost between 200$ and 500$. But there might be some options for less or more price. Check the reviews of a product before spending money.
Danner Men’s Pronghorn GTX 8″ Boots, as well as the Kenetrek Mountain Extreme 400 Insulated Hiking Boot, are great boots for elk hunting. They keep your feet warm and comfortable. And also lets you hunt in rainy seasons.
A hunting boot should be 15 to 20 cm tall but even ankle-high boots can perform the same job if it has the proper insulation to prevent water from entering inside and sturdy soles for support.
The boots that will fit the best will support the best. But it should be breathable and wide enough from the front to let you move your toes freely. Therefore, don’t buy too tight or too lose boots, just a size bigger if you are going to wear thick socks with them.
If you want the best durable boots for elk hunting this season, Kenetrek Mountain Extreme 400 and Danner Men’s Pronghorn 8 are the best choices but are a bit costly. Also, Danner Men’s Pronghorn GTX 8” Boots are another great option for professional hunting. All are waterproof boots and keep your feet considerably warm even in freezing temperatures.
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