For many years I had the thought the only option for waterproof footwear was wellies. That was until the day I was at an off roading event with like minded van owning friends. I had been admiring the nice leather boots of my friend Amy. How fabulous she looked striding round the muddy field with her jeans tucked inside them. Then to my horror she began to wade through the nearby stream. I thought she’d notice and be devastated, but she seemed utterly unperturbed.
Naturally enough I asked her about the state of her ruined boots and wet feet, when she explained that they were riding boots and if treated properly were completely waterproof. Not being ‘horsey’ myself, this was a revelation to me. Obviously I went shopping and treated myself to a pair at the earliest opportunity.
Firstly, I must say other riding boots are available. I truly have no idea whether they are any better or worse than those made by Dublin, I can only review the ones I own. Although other makes were available, Toggi also do a similar range, I selected mine for the comfort and look of them. Mainly I was particularly taken by the laces up the side.
They have a thick cushioned sole, arch support and cupped heel support which makes them comfortable enough to wear all day . The leather outer is lined with a waterproof and breathable membrane, which even helps control sweat. The side laces not only look great, but when pulled tight and held in place with the sprung loaded cord retainer add to the overall comfort.
They work best when treated with a leather conditioner, which will need to be reapplied periodically. I use a product called Renapur, containing beeswax and jojoba.
The negatives are: although comfortable, for me they are not suitable for walking any great distance. Like wellies, they are not the tightest fit around the foot and tend to slide a little. Believe it or not, they cause my socks to work their way off unless I tuck my trousers into them.
The positives: waterproof, warm, comfortable and I think they look great.