View Full Version : Footwear of choice for desert life?

09-09-2009, 11:54 AM
I have read a few of the other posts, but did not really get the answer that I was looking for. For those of you in or recently out of the desert, what were the most comfortable authorized (US Army) boots that you have worn? I am currently wearing the Oakley assault boots and they are about shot. I have not ruled out another pair, but must admit that I am intrigued buy the Blackhawk desert ops and Rocky S2Vs. Any opinions for or against or any other to consider?

09-09-2009, 12:00 PM
How they fit YOU is what matters most.

09-09-2009, 02:23 PM
+1 on Rambler's sentiments. Go with something you can try on. I have a low-displacement foot (not much fat, light bone, shallow instep). That means Danners work well for me, Bellevilles tend not to. That in mind, in order of preferenece--these are boots I've worn.

Lowa (Desert Seeker); good under armor/pack load. Pricey but they last, saved me from medical retirement stemming from a nasty case of plantar fasciitus.
Garmont (Tactical); good under armor/pack load and a true mountain boot. Pricey but they last.
OTB-recent entrant, designs based on exhaustive tests and de-briefs with folks in the field; OTB Bushmaster is becoming a popular urban assault boot among folks in units with loose uniform standards (armor load only). Still being refined, but poised to become a great boot.
Danner (Acadia (surprisingly comfortable in hot weather), good compromise if you're limited to one year round boot) Ft. Lewis boot also; Danner manufactures in US and China; Danner China boots aren't always the same quality); US-built boots good under armor and pack load; best ankle support I've felt, been wearing these for 20+ years; they can be re-crafted.
Altama (Desert "jungle" boot) if cost is an issue; only if used with Superfeet green insoles.

Lowa, Garmont and Danner are careful about their lasts, meaning that you can try a boot at an outdoor store, get a feel for sizing and then look for their tactical versions.

I've worn other brands but have moved on, so to speak.

Oh, and remember SOCKS. Bridgedale Special Ops (you laugh now, but if there's a sock worthy of that moniker it's Bridgedale) or Smartwool PhD. Once you wear either of those you'll never go back.

09-09-2009, 11:03 PM
I appreciate the responses. I understand the comment about what fits, and probably should have clarified that I do not have the opportunity to try anything on as I am already here.

As far as the socks issue, I have tried the smartwools, but not the brigades. I prefer a very thin sock, almost a liner. I have grown fond the Under Armor heatgear boot tacticals. Very light, expels moisture fairly well, and are reasonably priced at just under $10/pair.

I have tried the Danner boots before. I am not sure if I just had two "off" pairs, but they both fit completely different and were much less than comfortable.

Now with your recommendations for the Lowa and Garmont footwear, any suggestions of e-tailers? Prefer those that offer a military discount and that ship to APOs. Until I got here, I was completely ignorant to the amount of businesses that will not ship to APOs. Sickening.

09-10-2009, 02:52 AM
Can't comment on "Army" boots, but I'm pretty sure our boots are the same with the exception of the EGA.

IRT Danners, they are like walking on clouds IMHO, the only problem is the heel cup is protected by a thin piece of material that quickly wears down and the cup cuts through it and your heel. I've had that problem and so have several Marines I know, on the plus side the customer service is good, but I can't recommend the Danners because the heel cups did me dirty.

I like the Altimas, even without the SuperGreen insoles, I've worn them both ways, additionally I've also worn the heavy duty orange insoles. Good any way, better then the Bates and Bellevill alternatives I've worn, reliable long wearing boots but absolutly no cushion.

Altimas are my choice.

IRT socks, I think I've tried just about all of them to include the Under Armor, those were some of the worst socks I've ever worn IMHO. They made my feet sweat something terrible and the elastic at the top just about cut my calfs in half. I threw them away after the first wearing.

The only sock I have found that I like is Covert Threads, if you're in the Desert go with the "Sand" one that is made for the desert enviornment. They are comfortable, durable, and don't make my feet sweat excessively. Google Covert Threads. I've given a few pairs of these away to my fellow Marines when we were in the field training and they loved them and ended up ordering several pairs for themselves when they returned from the field. It's a company run/owned by prior military and they usually hook you up with a deal if you buy 10 or something you get a few free, I can't remember, it's been awhile and I'm not sure if they are still doing it.

They are a little thicker then regular socks, but not bad, get a pair or two and see if you like them.

09-10-2009, 07:00 AM
Always been a big fan of Wellco and Belleville boots. I think my issue hot and temperate boots are Belleville. Bought a pair of the Wellco ripple soles and they are/were the most comfortable boot, out of the box, that I have ever worn.

09-10-2009, 08:33 AM
I didn't realize you were already there. If you like the Oakleys, I would get another pair (if they haven't changed them). I would not want to experiment while there if you don't have problems with them. Or get them AND something else you want to try if you can swing the coin.

You got buddies with the same size feet? check out their boots, it will help figure out what brands to NOT look at.

straps gave you an excellent rundown, as usual.