Three Things To Know Before You Buy Your Next Pair Of Rubber Boots

In wet conditions, rubber boots nearly always keep your feet drier and more comfortable than other types of footwear—even those that claim to be waterproof.

rubber boots on a shelf
Not all rubber boots are the same. Here's how to choose the right pair.Denny Muller/unsplash

We’ve all been there—walking a field or lake bank after a recent rain and feeling that squishy feeling between our soaked socks and the soles of our leather boots. Unfortunately for us, we foolishly left our mud boots at home, so had to trudge on with a grimace and a little less enjoyment of the situation. A good pair of rubber boots can change all that. To make a good selection, you should ask yourself three critical questions.

How Tall A Boot Do You Need?

original muckboot scrub boot
A lower, tight-topped boot like this model will do the trick if you aren't wading in deep mud or muck.Muck Boot

Rubber boot uppers come in a wide range of heights. Are you going to be walking in mud and muck nearly up to your knees, or just through some wet grass in the yard? If the former, a taller boot is best, while for the latter, a shorter boot will suffice. Shorter boots are more comfortable to wear, but getting in water or muck higher than your boot tops will quickly convince you that you should have chosen a taller pair.

Where/How Will You Use Them?

Muck Boot Woody Max Rubber Insulated Men's Hunting Boot
This model's rugged, aggressive tread is designed for slippery terrain and other areas where footing is questionable.Muck Boot

How and where you use them will dictate the outer sole pattern you'll want to choose. If you'll be wearing them somewhere like a slick creek bed where traction is important, a heavily lugged sole is your best bet. But if you are going to be in a cattle corral ankle deep in muck, the outer sole pattern likely won't make as much difference.

Will It Be Cold Or Hot?

Servus 15" PVC Polyblend Soft Toe Men's Work Boots
A simple, uninsulated boot like this one will keep your feet from sweating while also keeping them dry from the outside elements.Servus

Outdoor temperature and the temperature of whatever you intend to be walking in are also important to your selection. If it's early spring and you'll be wading the bank fishing brush piles for crappie, you're going to want plenty of insulation. Without a well-insulated boot in this situation, you'll likely have to cut your trip short so you can go home and warm up your feet. The opposite is true when you will be wearing your boots in warm or hot water or muck. Any insulation at all in that situation is going to make your feet sweat. Your boots might keep the water out, but your feet will get just as soaked from perspiration.