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Home » Best Cold Weather Hunting Boots in 2024: Buyers’ Guide

Best Cold Weather Hunting Boots in 2024: Buyers’ Guide

When the weather turns frigid, having the right footwear is crucial for hunters who want to stay comfortable and safe in the field. The best cold weather hunting boots provide insulation and warmth while also being waterproof and rugged enough to handle ice, snow, and frozen ground. In this buyers’ guide, we’ll highlight the top-rated hunting boots for cold weather and examine the features that make them ideal for all-day wear in sub-zero temperatures. Whether you’re after lightweight pac boots or heavy-duty 1600-gram boots, we’ve got recommendations to keep your feet warm and dry no matter how low the mercury dips. Read on to find the perfect pair of cold weather hunting boots for your needs.

List of the Best Cold Weather Hunting Boots

Check out the thorough review of the best cold weather hunting boots below.

1. Kenetrek Insulated Leather Hunting Boot

1. Kenetrek Insulated Leather Hunting Boot

Crafted for hardcore hunters, the Kenetrek Mountain Guide 400 stands up to the most grueling backcountry pursuits. The 10-inch leather uppers utilize a seamless one-piece vamp design that enhances abrasion resistance and waterproofness. Reinforced double and triple stitching provides added strength in high-wear areas. Underfoot, the rigid 7mm nylon midsole offers unmatched support when hauling heavy loads. A Windtex membrane and 400-gram Thinsulate insulation lock in warmth without restricting flexibility.

The aggressive K-73 outsoles grab traction tenaciously across rough terrain while a sturdy toe cap handles repeated impacts. As a testament to Kenetrek’s quality, all hardware swivels rather than breaking under stress. For hunters who won’t compromise on materials, construction, or performance, the Mountain Guide 400 provides the ultimate fusion of comfort, support, and durability.

Pros And Cons

  • Seamless vamp enhances waterproofing

  • Reinforced stitching prevents wear and tear

  • Rigid midsole supports heavy loads

  • K-73 outsoles provide superb traction

  • Swiveling hardware avoids breakage

  • Expensive compared to competitors

2. Irish Setter Hunting Boot

2. Irish Setter Hunting Boot

Blending durability, comfort, and waterproofing, the Irish Setter Wingshooter boot tackles rugged terrain during long hunting days. The handsome full-grain leather uppers repel moisture thanks to UltraDry technology pairing a waterproof membrane with moisture-wicking lining. Underfoot, the Prairie outsole sheds debris across uneven ground while providing superb traction. A steel shank adds stability and supports the foot when carrying heavy loads.

The removable polyurethane footbed and nylon lining ensure all-day comfort and moisture management. Using sturdy Goodyear welt construction, the sole platform is sealed against water intrusion while remaining easily resoleable for extended wear. At just 5 pounds per pair, the 7-inch Wingshooter remains lightweight and flexible for stalking game.

Pros And Cons

  • Waterproof full-grain leather

  • Prairie outsole for traction

  • Steel shank for stability

  • Goodyear welt construction

  • Removable cushioned footbed

  • Runs small, order a half-size up

3. aCrosse Waterproof 400G Hunting Boot

3. aCrosse Waterproof 400G Hunting Boot

Engineered for elite performance in harsh conditions, the LaCrosse Alphaburly Pro raises the bar for scent-free, insulated hunting boots. The 18-inch shaft combines flexible, ozone-resistant rubber with insulating 3.5mm neoprene. The embossed liner boosts air flow while quick-drying wicking prevents interior moisture. A multilayered toe cap and heel provide added abrasion resistance. The EVA midsole cushions every step while the adjustable rear gusset enables a secure, active fit.

At the core of this Made in the USA boot lies 400 grams of Thinsulate Ultra insulation to retain heat without compromising dexterity. Twin density rubber outsoles grab traction across uneven terrain. For hunters who brave the extremes, the Alphaburly Pro promises unmatched warmth, flexibility, and waterproofing to 400 feet. The pull-on design allows quick dressing without laces, zippers or hooks that could snag.

Pros And Cons

  • Flexible scented-free rubber/neoprene

  • Embossed liner enhances breathability

  • 400g Thinsulate Ultra insulation

  • EVA midsole for cushioning

  • Twin-density rubber outsoles

  • Can be difficult to remove

4. Muck Boot Arctic Pro Hunting Boot

4. Muck Boot Arctic Pro Hunting Boot

When facing frigid extremes, the Muck Arctic Pro delivers uncompromising warmth for hunters. The 8mm neoprene bootie conforms to the foot, while fleece lining and 2mm thermal foam beneath the footbed retain heat down to -60°F. A stretch-fit topline seals out snow, and the lightweight EVA insole cushions every step. The Bob-Tracker outsole grips terrain from mud to ice with versatility. Double reinforcement provides added support around the heel and instep when traversing uneven ground.

Born from the need for a more comfortable hunting boot, Muck boots set the industry standard for waterproofing and insulation. The Arctic Pro exemplifies their promise of keeping feet comfortable in the harshest conditions. With a comfort range spanning up to -60°F, these made-in-USA boots allow hunters to stay concealed and focused on the prize rather than battling cold feet.

Pros And Cons

  • 8mm neoprene for flexibility and warmth

  • 2mm thermal foam underfoot

  • Fleece linings for comfort

  • Bob-Tracker outsole for traction

  • Double-reinforced heel and instep

  • Can be overly warm in milder weather

5. Baffin Men’s Wolf Snow Boot

5. Baffin Men's Wolf Snow Boot

When deep snow meets extreme cold, the Baffin Wolf stands ready. This 11-inch boot leverages Baffin’s hybrid construction, pairing a molded base with an inner foam bootie. The multi-layer liner utilizes Thermaplush insulation to retain heat down to -40°F. A removable 6mm footbed cushions each step while the contoured EVA midsole prevents packing out. The drawcord collar and double buckle lock out moisture while an aggressive snow-specific outsole grips icy terrain.

For 25 years, Baffin has engineered cold-weather boots unmatched in warmth, comfort, and versatility. The Wolf exemplifies their dedication to hybrid technology for superior insulation and fit. Unlike traditional bulky boots, the foam liner prevents pressure points while allowing a custom molded shape. When the hunt takes you into deep Arctic conditions, the Wolf has the cold-weather performance to keep the focus on the hunt rather than frozen feet.

Pros And Cons

  • Multi-layer Thermaplush liner

  • Removable cushioned footbed

  • Contoured EVA midsole

  • Aggressive snow outsole

  • Drawcord collar seals out moisture

  • Sizes run small

6. TIDEWE Rubber Hunting Boots

6. TIDEWE Rubber Hunting Boots

When braving frigid extremes, TIDEWE’s rubber hunting boots deliver uncompromising warmth and waterproofing. The 800-gram insulation retains heat in temperatures as low as -50°F while the 7mm neoprene layer enhances warmth. A sealed rubber shell extending to the topline blocks moisture from entering. The EVA contoured midsole provides lightweight cushioning and shock absorption for all-day comfort. Deep lugs on the outsole maintain steady footing across slippery terrain.

TIDEWE optimized these boots for the rigors of cold-weather hunting, with reinforcements on the heel and toe guarding against abrasion. The adjustable neoprene gussets ensure a tight seal to lock in warmth while remaining user-friendly. Built to handle the most punishing conditions, these 100% waterproof boots allow hunters to maintain dry feet and superior traction.

Pros And Cons

  • 800g insulation for extreme warmth

  • 7mm neoprene layer retains heat

  • Reinforced heel and toe

  • Deep lug outsole for traction

  • Adjustable neoprene gussets

  • Run small, order up a size

7. ROCKY Blizzard Stalker Insulated Boot

7. ROCKY Blizzard Stalker Insulated Boot

When deep snow meets biting cold, the Rocky Blizzard Stalker boot powers through wintry conditions. The split suede and rugged 900 denier upper repels moisture thanks to guaranteed Rocky Waterproof construction. Lined with 1200 grams of Thinsulate Ultra insulation, feet stay warm even when temperatures plummet. The mesh PU footbed allows air circulation while the TPU heel stabilizer prevents slippage. Underfoot, the multi-directional Blizzard outsole maintains sure-footed traction across snow and ice.

At just 5.4 pounds per pair, these 9.5-inch boots retain flexibility for stalking game. The molded foam collar and extended tongue prevent chafing when worn for hours. Built for hardcore hunters and anglers, Rocky uses only premium materials and construction techniques on every pair.

Pros And Cons

  • Guaranteed waterproof protection

  • 1200g Thinsulate Ultra insulation

  • Multi-directional blizzard outsole

  • Mesh PU footbed enhances airflow

  • Lightweight for a tall winter boot

  • Minimal arch support

8. Dryshod Extreme Cold-Conditions Hunting Boot

8. Dryshod Extreme Cold-Conditions Hunting Boot

When facing the most punishing conditions, Dryshod’s NoSho Gusset XT boot tackles frigid temps and rugged terrain. Standing 2 inches taller than the regular NoSho, the Gusset XT uses an adjustable neoprene collar to seal out moisture and debris. The Densoprene foam-insulated inner bootie retains heat down to -50°F aided by an additional 2mm of polar fleece. Designed for all-day wear, the 4-way stretch lining wicks away moisture while allowing air to circulate. The EVA midsole absorbs shock, and the directional rubber lug outsole grips slick surfaces.

American-made with imported materials, Dryshod optimized these boots to provide elite hunters with maximum warmth, traction and protection. The waterproof seam-sealed construction and camo exterior ensure stealth in the field. For extreme conditions that demand non-stop performance, the NoSho Gusset XT delivers the pinnacle of comfort, insulation, stability and concealment.

Pros And Cons

  • Adjustable neoprene collar for custom fit

  • Densoprene foam insulation to -50°F

  • EVA midsole cushions and supports

  • Directional lug outsole enhances traction

  • Waterproof seam-sealed construction

  • Heavy and bulky

What are the most important factors when choosing cold weather hunting boots?

When selecting boots for cold weather hunting, one of the most critical factors is insulation. The insulation will determine how warm your feet stay in frigid temperatures. Many cold weather hunting boots have 200-1000 grams of insulation, usually using Thinsulate or PrimaLoft. For very cold temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit, you’ll want boots with at least 400-600 grams of insulation. The insulation should extend all the way to the toes to prevent heat loss.

Another key factor is waterproofing. Hunting in the snow, slush, or wet conditions, waterproof boots are essential. Look for boots made with waterproof membranes like Gore-Tex that are guaranteed to keep your feet dry. Sealed seams are also important to prevent moisture from seeping in. The boot should be made of a waterproof material like rubber or leather. Avoid suede or nylon fabrics that can absorb water.

Traction is vital for safe footing on icy, slippery surfaces in the cold. Hunting boots with deep lugged outsoles made of sticky rubber provide the best traction. Look for large lugs in the tread pattern that will grip snow and ice. Vibram outsoles are renowned for winter traction. You can add spikes or crampons if hunting in extremely icy conditions.

The ideal cold weather hunting boot balances insulation and waterproofing with flexibility and support. A lightweight boot will stay comfortable for all day wear. Finally, choose a boot height that extends over your ankles or calves to seal out snow. Following these guidelines will lead you to the perfect boot for warm, dry feet while hunting in the cold.

What features make a boot suitable for cold weather hunting?

What features make a boot suitable for cold weather hunting?

The most important feature of a cold weather hunting boot is insulation. Look for boots with 200 grams or more of insulation material such as Thinsulate or PrimaLoft. The insulation should cover the entire boot including the toe box. Insulation measurements are usually listed in the product details. The more insulation, the warmer your feet will stay in freezing temperatures.

Waterproofing is another must-have for cold weather boots. Membrane technologies like Gore-Tex provide guaranteed waterproofing to keep your feet dry. Opt for full-grain leather or rubber uppers that repel moisture. Avoid suede or mesh fabrics that absorb water. Seam sealing and gusseted tongues also prevent water seepage into the boots.

Traction features help provide stability and prevent slips on snow and ice. Deep lugged rubber outsoles with large gripping lugs work best. Look for Vibram outsoles known for excellent traction. Some boots have ice-gripping lugs on the heels and toes for added traction. Removable insoles allow you to insert your own orthopedic insoles if needed.

For comfort, look for boots with flexible insulation that allows for a natural stride. Shock-absorbing midsoles and cushioned collars prevent fatigue. Some boots have footbeds that mold to your feet over time. A wider toe box accommodates thick hunting socks. Finally, boots that lace up fully or have hook-and-loop straps ensure a secure, customized fit. Considering these key features will lead you to the warmest, driest, and most comfortable boots for all-day cold weather hunting.

How thick should the insulation be for cold weather hunting boots?

The amount of insulation required for cold weather hunting boots depends on just how cold the conditions will be. For milder temps down to around freezing, 200-400 grams of insulation should suffice to keep your feet warm and comfortable. This mid-range insulation level allows for lightweight boots that still provide ample warmth.

For subfreezing days from 0-20 degrees Fahrenheit, look for cold weather hunting boots with 400-600 grams of insulation. This intermediate level provides enough warmth for full days out in the cold woods and fields. Boots with PrimaLoft Silver or Thinsulate Ultra insulation in this range will block out icy temperatures while retaining heat.

When braving extreme subzero temperatures below 0 degrees Fahrenheit, you’ll need heavily insulated boots with 600-1000+ grams of insulation. Boots with PrimaLoft Gold insulation or Thinsulate Extreme can handle the most frigid winter days. The thicker insulation does add bulk to the boots, but your feet will stay toasty even sitting for long periods in freezing blinds or tree stands.

No matter the insulation thickness, ensure it covers the entire boot including the toe box. Toes are the most prone to frostbite. Testing out your hunting boots in cold store freezers can help determine if the insulation level is adequate before hitting the field. With the right insulation for the conditions, you’ll stay comfortable and avoid cold feet while out hunting in the winter.

What types of waterproofing work best for cold weather hunting boots?

What types of waterproofing work best for cold weather hunting boots?

The most effective waterproofing for cold weather hunting boots involves sealed membrane technologies. Membranes like Gore-Tex, Event, and DryPlus create a waterproof and breathable barrier that keeps your feet dry. These membranes have pores large enough for water vapor to escape but too small for liquid moisture to seep through. Gore-Tex is the gold standard trusted by hunters for decades.

Full-grain leather uppers also provide excellent water resistance due to their tight fiber structure. Leather is naturally water-repellent. For even better waterproofing, some leather hunting boots have a waterproof membrane laminated to the inside. Stay away from suede leather which absorbs moisture.

Rubber boots are entirely waterproof and great for hunting in wet snow or swamps. However, full rubber boots lack breathability. So they may cause sweaty feet unless very cold out. For warmth, insulation needs to be added to rubber.

Finally, sealed seams are critical to prevent water intrusion. Water can leak through the tiny holes left by needle punctures. Seam sealing fills these holes with waterproof tape or sealant. A gusseted tongue connects the upper to keep water from entering through the lacing. With the right waterproofing, your feet will stay dry no matter the conditions.

What boot heights are best for keeping out snow in cold weather?

When trudging through deep snow while hunting, taller boots are needed to keep the snow from invading your boots. The most common cold weather hunting boot heights for snow protection are:

  • 10-12 inch boots: These boots extend almost up to the knee, providing maximum snow protection. They seal out snow drifts reaching mid-calf. The only downside is reduced mobility in very tall boots. They are best for standing stationary in tree stands or blinds.
  • 8 inch boots: Hitting above the ankle, 8 inch boots provide a good tradeoff between snow protection and mobility. They keep out most snowfalls up to 6 inches deep while retaining flexibility. This mid-height design makes them more versatile for hunters covering ground.
  • 6 inch boots: You sacrifice some snow protection with these low ankle height boots. They are fine for light flurries but can let snow sneak in when traipsing through drifts. However, they offer the most ankle mobility and feel less clunky.

To further seal out snow, opt for boots with lace-up designs that cinch tightly over pants and long johns. Neoprene snow collars or adjustable hook-and-loop cuff straps also help block snow intrusion at the ankles. With the right height boot laced up properly, you can hunt without getting snow in your boots.

How to choose the best cold weather hunting boots

How to choose the best cold weather hunting boots?

When hunting in frigid temperatures, having the proper footwear is essential for comfort and safety. Your boots need to keep your feet warm and dry, provide traction on snow and ice, and withstand the rigors of rugged terrain. With so many options on the market, choosing the right cold weather hunting boots can be daunting. This guide will walk you through the key factors to consider when selecting boots for cold weather big game hunts.

1. Determine Your Insulation Needs

The first step is deciding how much insulation you need for the temperatures and conditions you’ll be hunting in. The insulation rating (given in grams) indicates the boot’s ability to retain heat. Higher grams mean more insulation.

  • 400-800 grams: Moderate to cold conditions down to 0°F
  • 1000-1200 grams: Very cold to subzero temperatures from 0°F to -20°F
  • 1600 grams and up: Extremely cold conditions below -20°F

If you’ll be active (i.e. lots of hiking/stalking), go on the lighter end. If sitting in a stand, go heavier. Also consider if you’ll be in wet snow or dry powder. Wet conditions necessitate more insulation.

2. Evaluate Waterproofness

Waterproofing is crucial for keeping your feet dry. Look for boots with waterproof membranes like Gore-Tex that block moisture while allowing sweat to vent out. Waterproof ratings of 5-10 pounds indicate how many pounds of water pressure a boot can withstand before leaking. Higher is better.

3. Traction Tread Matters

Deep lugged soles with aggressive heel and toe traction work best for gripping slippery, snowy ground. Look for multidirectional lugs spaced close together that shed mud/debris. Vibram or Arctic Grip outsoles are top-notch.

4. Prioritize Comfort/Fit

Cold weather boots should have a snug fit while allowing room for thick socks and insoles.Ensure adequate toe box room for warmers/wiggle space. Try boots on with your hunting socks. Break them in before the hunt. Look for boots with removable liners and cushioned footbeds for all-day comfort.

5. Consider Hunt Specific Features

If climbing into treestands, choose lightweight pac boots for more agility. For extensive day hikes, lean towards backpacking styles with ankle support. Determine if you need scent masking features for stalking wary game.

6. Don’t Forget Height

Boot height depends on conditions. For wet snow or early season hunts, choose 8-10″ boots. For late season snow depths 12″+, go with 16″+. But avoid overly heavy/bulky boots if not essential.

FAQs when picking the best cold weather hunting boots

FAQs when picking the best cold weather hunting boots

1. What temperature rating do I need for my hunting boots?

This depends on the typical temperatures you plan to hunt in. Choose boots with the following insulation ratings based on the climate:

  • 400-800 grams: Temperatures down to 0°F
  • 1000-1200 grams: Very cold temps from 0°F to -20°F
  • 1600 grams and up: Extremely frigid temps below -20°F

If you’ll be active (stalking game) go lighter. If sitting in a stand, go heavier.

2. How waterproof should cold weather hunting boots be?

Look for waterproof membranes like Gore-Tex or eVent that have a rating of at least 5-10 pounds of water pressure resistance before leaking. This ensures moisture won’t seep in when trudging through snow.

3. What tread features should I look for?

Deep, rugged lug soles with aggressive heel and toe traction perform best on slippery terrain covered in snow, mud or leaves. Multidirectional lugs spaced closely together provide grip without caking up with debris.

4. How snug should hunting boots fit?

They should have a snug, secure fit while still allowing room for thick hunting socks and insoles. Ensure an adequate toe box for wiggle room and use of warmers. Try on boots while wearing the socks you’ll hunt in.

5. Do I need scent control features?

If stalking wary game like deer or elk, choose boots with activated carbon or zeolite to absorb odors that could alarm animals. This is not as critical for stand hunting.

6. What height is best for snow?

For moderate snow depths (8-10 inches), 8-10″ boots suffice. For late season deep snow 12″+, choose 16-17” boots. Avoid heavy, overly bulky boots if not needed.

7. How do I break in new hunting boots?

Wear them around the house with socks to begin stretching and molding them to your feet. Then walk outside in them to fully break them in before your hunt. This prevents hot spots and blisters.

8. What brands make the warmest hunting boots?

Top brands like Kenetrek, Irish Setter, Lacrosse, Muck, and Baffin offer excellent cold weather boots. Evaluate your specific needs and research which makers have the features you want.

Final Thoughts

When braving the frigid temps and snowy conditions of cold weather hunts, making sure you have the right footwear is imperative for comfort and success. Your boots serve as your foundation, keeping your feet insulated, dry, and stable no matter the terrain. Take the time to carefully assess your specific needs in terms of insulation, waterproofing, traction, sizing, and features. Research the highest rated options that fit your hiking style, expected conditions, and budget. Investing in a properly fitting pair of boots designed for extreme cold will allow you to focus on the hunt rather than freezing toes or slippery footing.

With preparation and the information provided in this guide, you’ll be equipped to conquer the elements this season. The final piece of advice is to get out there and put those new cold weather hunting boots to the test. Staying warm and dry, you’ll be able to go deeper into hard-to-reach areas in search of that trophy buck or bull you’ve been after when the weather drives other hunters indoors.

Enjoyed this guide of the best cold weather hunting boots? Then be sure to check out our other outdoor gears guides.

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