Now is the time of year when you really don't want to be caught with the wrong footwear. Boots are part of the uniform, but they're also an important tool. If they're so uncomfortable they take your mind off the job, you can't work efficiently. Worse still, if you can't depend on them to get you where you need to go-including a foot pursuit down an alleyway or on rough terrain-you could truly find yourself in danger.
Winter adds its own set of boot-related problems. If the uppers on your footwear have seen better days or just don't provide enough insulation for colder weather, you could be in for a world of hurt shivering through a 12-hour shift. And if the soles of your boots-especially the tread-can't stand up to the snow, mud, or whatever else you might find yourself walking in, you might wind up knocked off your feet.
Whether you find yourself in a Michigan snow storm, a humid Florida rain shower, or a blistering out-of-season heatwave bringing dry winds in any state, you'll need excellent moisture absorption to keep your tootsies dry and comfortable.
Consider it a holiday gift to yourself to be sure you have the footwear you need for the job this season. Here is a sampling of the newest models.
To provide toe protection without the pinching and bulk of a full safety toe boot, 5.11 has developed the patent-pending, high-strength composite Kick-Toe. The Kick-Toe is now available in the company's new XPRT boots designed to deliver extreme performance for high-speed, low-drag operations. Three models are available: One has a suede and nylon upper; the other two feature a full-grain leather and 1,200-denier nylon upper. In addition to 5.11's revolutionary Kick-Toe technology, all three eight-inch contour height styles feature non-metallic construction, 5.11's Shock Mitigation System, Talon Stabilizer, the Cinch System, and more. Pricing begins at $139.99.
5.11 XPRT Patrol
Height: 8 inches. Sizes: Men's 4-15. Color: Black. Upper: Full-grain leather and 1,200-denier nylon. Sole: Oil and slip resistant, quiet outsole. Special Features: Composite Kick-Toe, non-metallic construction, Shock Mitigation System, Talon ankle stabilizer, Cinch System, Sympatex waterproof-breathable membrane, bloodborne pathogen resistant. Closure: Laces. Price: $139.99 and up. Need FREEInfo? Use #22325.
Public safety personnel face many unexpected hazards because they are typically first on the scene of an accident. Bates' DuraShocks footwear with Crosstech fabric provides durable liquid penetration resistance to many of the threats an officer may encounter, including blood, body fluids, battery acid, gasoline, and hydraulic fluid. Partner this protection with the Bates DuraShocks guaranteed comfort system, a side zipper for easy on and off, and a slip-resistant rubber outsole, and you'll not only be protected for those long hours on the scene, but also comfortable.
Bates CT-6 and CT-8
Height: 6 or 8 inches. Sizes: Men's M 4-15, EW 7-14. Color: Black. Uppers: Leather and nylon with liquid-penetration-resistant CrossTech fabric by W.L. Gore. Sole: Bates DuraShocks SR outsole. Special Features: Direct attach construction, soft toe. Closure: Laces and side zipper. Price: $149.95 for 6-inch, $169.95 for 8-inch. Need FREEInfo? Use #22326.
Blackhawk Warrior Wear is expanding its boot line in 2008 with the Side-Zip waterproof boot in five- and seven-inch heights. Built on a Vibram "Multisport" oil-resistant TC4+ compound outersole with large, open lugs for excellent traction over debris or irregular surfaces, the lightweight ZW5 and ZW7 Side-Zip boots also feature a water-friendly PU midsole. The Cordura and full-grain leather uppers have a waterproof SympaTex barrier and gusseted tongue with a molded tooth zipper opening on the side. The toe and heel have rubberized reinforcements. Although waterproof, the ZW5 and ZW7 allow the foot to breathe with an Ortholite custom molded foot bed that is both washable and anti-microbial, while a Dri-Lex inner lining wicks away any moisture and dries quickly to maintain maximum comfort.
BlackHawk Side-Zip Waterproof Warrior Wear
Height: 5 or 7 inches. Sizes: Men's 6-14. Color: Black. Upper: Cordura and full-grain leather. Sole: Vibram "Multisport" oil-resistant TC4+ compound outersole with large, open lugs; water-friendly PU midsole. Special Features: Waterproof SympaTex barrier, gusseted tongue, Dri-Lex inner lining. Closure: Laces and side zipper. Price: $164.99 for 5-inch and $174.99 for 7-inch. Need FREEInfo? Use #22327.
Building on its popular Striker line, Danner has introduced the new Striker II Series with a new extremely light platform, improved styling, and ankle support. The new Danner TFX LITE (TERRA FORCE X LITE) performance platform provides a solid base with an oil- and slip-resistant outsole for agility and stability in the field. The non-metallic hardware is ideal for high-level security jobs and quick entry through electronic metal detectors. The Striker II series consists of four new styles: DXTVent with increased breathability, Striker Side Zip II with convenient zipper, Striker II 8-inch GTX, and Striker 45 II with a 4.5-inch ankle height. The Striker 45 II is also available in women's sizes 5-11M.
Danner Striker 45 II
Height: 4.5 inches. Sizes: Men's 7-15D, 8-14EE (wide); half sizes available to 12; women's 5-11 M. Color: Black. Upper: Leather and 1,000-denier nylon. Sole: Oil- and slip-resistant outsole. Special Features: Waterproof GORE-TEX liner, increased ankle support, non-metallic hardware, women's version available. Closure: Laces. Price: $139.95. Need FREEInfo? Use #22328.
Made of soft and supple waterproof leather, the Airpower P7 High is a multi-purpose, quick-lacing boot from Haix that's suitable for tactical and patrol assignments. Resistant not only to water but also to chemicals, the nine-inch Airpower P7 High features Gore-Tex lining and the Haix Arch Support System. A non-slip, non-marking, oil-resistant sole with PU shock absorption also has self-cleaning tread. For added comfort, a machine washable insert absorbs moisture and dries quickly to maintain foot health, while a padded, anatomically formed tongue provides a secure fit.
Haix Airpower P7 High
Height: 9 inches. Sizes: Men's 4.5-15, medium and wide widths. Color: Black. Upper: Waterproofed, breathable full-grain leather. Sole: Non-slip, non-marking, anti-static, oil- and fuel-resistant rubber outsole with PU damping wedge. Special Features: Waterproof, chemical resistant Gore-Tex Laminate technology, Haix Arch Support System, Haix heel bend, anatomically formed footbed and insole. Closure: Laces. Price: $229. Need FREEInfo? Use #22329
LaCrosse Footwear's new Station Boot Series utilizes LaCrosse's Quad Comfort technology consisting of four layers of cushioning to provide ultimate comfort and support. The Quad Core layer provides cushioning throughout the insole board itself with additional heel and forefoot cushioned shock pads on the hard insole boards, for maximum pressure relief. Handcrafted with full-grain, black polishable leather, the new series offers three styles that are built to last. The five-inch Halon provides easy entry and exit as a slip-on station boot. Its lightweight TPU oil- and slip-resistant and non-marking outsole provides great traction support in slippery conditions inside and out. The station boot is offered with plain toe or steel toe options.
LaCrosse Halon Station Boot
Height: 5 inches. Sizes: Men's 7-14M, 8-14W (with half sizes to 12). Color: Black. Upper: Full-grain, black polishable leather. Sole: Lightweight TPU oil- and slip-resistant and non-marking outsole. Special Features: Plain toe or steel toe options, Quad Comfort technology, slip-on design. Closure: Slip-on. Price: $99. Need FREEInfo? Use #22330.
The Elite Spider line is lightweight (14.9 ounces for Elite Spider 5.0), and is built with running shoe construction. This makes it ideal for SWAT and tactical officers who need to be light and agile on their feet. The Elite Spider 8.0 SZ is eight inches high, hence the 8.0 in its name, and features a circular side zipper, hence the SZ. The boot's leather upper features highly breathable aero mesh with Spidermesh lining inside. Other features include durable composite non-metallic hardware and a compression-molded EVA midsole and Vibram outsole. The boot's lightweight Vertical Build System, Strabila-Flex lasting board, and a composite shank provide stability, while the 3D2 Max comfort contoured sockliner maintains dry feet.
Magnum (Hi-Tec) Elite Spider 8.0 SZ
Height: 8 inches. Sizes: Men's 5-12, 13-15. Color: Black. Upper: Leather with highly breathable aero mesh. Sole: Compression-molded EVA midsole, Vibram outsole. Special Features: Circular side zipper, non-metallic hardware, Spidermesh lining, Lightweight Vertical Build System. Closure: Laces and circular side zipper. Price: $120. Need FREEInfo? Use #22331.
Original S.W.A.T.'s Air All-Leather Tactical Waterproof boot is lightweight at 44 ounces per pair and features air sole technology for superior comfort. The boot's waterproofed leather upper has an internal waterproof breathable membrane and the YKK side zipper is Velcro tabbed and gusseted to keep out water and debris. The footbed's steel shank between flexible lasting boards provides lateral stability and torsional strength, topped by a removable sock liner. Original S.W.A.T.'s proprietary Metro Traction outsole features an Arch Ladder Tread for grip on rope rappels. The heel's ridged kick plate aids boot removal, and an abbreviated toe bumper prevents scuffs. Eyelets reinforced with heavy-duty plastic prevent laces from ripping through the leather.
Original S.W.A.T. Air All-Leather Tactical Waterproof
Height: 9 inches. Sizes: Men's D-width sizes 7-15, EEE-width sizes 8-15; both in half sizes up to 11.5. Color: Black. Upper: Waterproofed leather with an internal waterproof breathable membrane. Sole: Proprietary Metro Traction outsole with Arch Ladder Tread for extra grip on rope rappels. Special Features: Waterproof, ridged kick plate on heel, abbreviated toe bumper, plastic-reinforced eyelets. Closure: Laces and side zipper. Price: $100. Need FREEInfo? Use #22332.
Ridge Outdoors' Waterproof Plus eight-inch boots are built on the company's tradition of comfort and durability for anyone working tactical assignments. The boot's uppers of leather and ripstop nylon feature a Walotex waterproof treatment and are bloodborne pathogen resistant. A padded PU collar and Tru-Fit EVA removable insole provide a comfortable fit, as does the company's shock-absorbing Tactical Air Heel System. A composite shank provides support and a slip-resistant carbon rubber sole makes sure the wearer will have sure footing, no matter the environment.
Ridge 8066 Waterproof Plus
Height: 8 inches. Sizes: Men's 4-11½, 12-15; available in regular and wide. Color: Black. Upper: Leather and ripstop nylon. Sole: PU midsole, slip-resistant carbon rubber outsole. Special Features: Walotex waterproof and bloodborne pathogen resistant, padded PU collar, Tru-Fit EVA removable insole, composite shank, Tactical Air Heel system. Closure: Laces. Price: $119.50. Need FREEInfo? Use #22333.
Designed specifically for Navy SEALs and tactical teams, Rocky's new S2V is geared to perform in the most demanding conditions. Flash-resistant leather uppers withstand fire hazards and are durable enough to handle water and land. A SuperFabric instep panel prevents rope burn while rappelling, and also withstands cuts, abrasions, animal bites, and rotting. Proprietary high-walled Vibram soles and triple-stitch construction further increase sturdiness. Drainage vents move water out of the boot while still preventing debris from entering. A wicking Dri-Lex lining further promotes dry feet, while the Aegis Microbe Shield prevents bacteria and fungus growth. A stretch Lycra tongue and Air Port cushion footbed ensure a secure fit as well as cushioning and comfort.
Height: 9 inches. Sizes: Men's 6-15. Color: Black or Tan Upper: 1,000-denier Cordura sides and panels in treated PTFE coat for flame resistance. Sole: Proprietary high-walled Vibram soles with perforated Air Port cushion footbeds and PU midsoles. Special Features: Dri-Lex lining and Aegis Microbe Shield to prevent bacteria and fungus growth, drainage vents, SuperFabric instep panels, SuperTouch cut- and puncture-resistant material, stretch Lycra tongues for secure fit. Closure: Laces. Price: $190. Need FREEInfo? Use #22334.
Thorogood's Night Recon performance tactical series for men and women introduces Thorogood's S.T.E.P. (Surface Traction Enhances Performance) Technology. The combination of a lightweight EVA midsole and enhanced slip-resistant outsole provide light and flexible traction. Integrated into the boot is a molded PVC unit that helps lock the heel in place to promote foot stabilization. The polyurethane zone density cushioned footbed completes the boot's comfort system. Moisture-wicking Aerospacer lining circulates air to keep feet dry. Three styles are available: athletic oxford, mid-cut hiker, and eight-inch side zip. All models feature uppers of full-grain polishable leather and nylon mesh, padded collars and tongues, and non-metallic hardware.
Thorogood Night Recon
Height: 8 inches. Sizes: Men's 4-12, 13-15. Color: Black. Upper: Polishable full-grain active leather and nylon mesh. Sole: Slip-resistant dual-density rubber with S.T.E.P. technology. Special Features: Molded heel support stabilizers, padded collar and tongue, YKK side zipper. Closure: Laces and side zipper. Price: $94. Need FREEInfo? Use #22335