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Best Survival Boots

When it comes to survival, what is the single most important item of clothing you can possess? I think a strong case can be made for footwear. You depend on your boots or shoes to get around. Whether that means being able to traverse long distances without your soles wearing out or having the traction to sprint across a slippery landscape without tripping and falling, the quality of your boots could literally mean the difference between life and death.

Here is a list of the Best Survival Boots

ImageSurvival BootsRating
ASICS GEL Venture 5 Trail Running Shoe4.5 / 5.0
Merrell Men's Moab Ventilator Hiking Shoe4.5 / 5.0
Belleville Tactical Research TR511 Mini-Mil Transition Boot4.2 / 5.0
Danner Men’s Radical 452 GTX Outdoor Boot4.5 / 5.0
Ahnu Women's Montara Boot4.6 / 5.0
Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot4.5 / 5.0
Belleville 350 Tactical Research Khyber II Mountain Hybrid Boot4.3 / 5.0
Belleville C795 Men's 200g Insulated Combat Boot4.0 / 5.0
Belleville TR513 Men's Lightweight Hot Weather Boot4.0 / 5.0
Bates Men's Cobra Hot Weather Coyote Tactical Army Boot4.0 / 5.0
Blackhawk Men's Warrior Wear Desert Ops Boots4.6 / 5.0
Under Armour Men's UA Jungle Rat Boots4.0 / 5.0
Belleville TR900 Jungle Runner Lightweight Panama Boot4.1 / 5.0
Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot4.5 / 5.0
Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus Ii Waterproof Hiking Shoe4.4 / 5.0
Irish Setter Men’s 83608 6" Steel Toe Work Boot4.5 / 5.0
Timberland PRO Direct Attach 6” Steel Toe Waterproof Boot4.2 / 5.0

My favorite pair of hiking boots have been wearing out, and a few weeks back I decided it was time to shop for a replacement pair. This prompted me to take a closer look at my closet and to reconsider my preparedness in terms of footwear, and it occurred to me that I was actually under-prepared. The reality is that if you want to be really prepared, you don’t need just one good pair of boots. That is a start, but you actually need boots and shoes for different purposes.

So I figured since I was doing all the research anyway, I may as well put together a guide to share with you all. That way you also can shop for the best survival boots in a variety of categories.

Features to Shop for in Survival Boots

The exact features you need to shop for in survival boots depend partly on what you plan to use the boots for. You need different features in trail shoes than you do in mountain survival boots, and different features in mountain survival boots than you do in hot weather survival boots and so on.

There are a few basics though which are always important:

  • Solid traction. This is a must with any solid pair of survival boots. You need to be able to maintain a grip on the surfaces you are traversing. Running or even walking in boots without a good grip is dangerous.
  • Strong materials and durable laces. If you are actually in a survival situation, who knows when you’ll be able to get a chance to get a new pair of boots? The boots you have now may need to last you through years of hard use. That means you need some seriously durable boots (and some extra sets of laces).
  • Good support. If your survival boots are not offering you the support you need, that is going to strain your feet, your legs, and even your back. This will result in discomfort, and may even cause injury.
  • Breathability. This is essential even in a boot which is well-insulated. Moisture trapped in your boots isn’t just uncomfortable, it can also cause issues with your feet, exacerbating blisters and athlete’s foot.
  • Shock absorption and range of motion. These features are important in case you end up having to run or jump or do anything else which requires agility or speed.
  • ​Comfort. You will be spending a lot of time in your boots if you are in a survival situation. You will have enough on your mind without needing to be distracted by feet which are uncomfortable or in pain. Choose comfy shoes that you can imagine wearing for an extended time.

Things to Avoid When Shopping for Survival Boots

Naturally when shopping for survival boots, one of your first thoughts is going to be to shop for military or jungle boots. This makes sense; those boots were designed for hardcore survival situations. In fact, some of the boots I recommend fall into that category.

But I want to take a moment to caution you about cheap jungle boots. These are very popular and are designed to look like real military boots, generally in styles that were common decades ago (think Vietnam war era). But they are not real military boots. They are generally made in China. The manufacturers of these boots are making them to be stylish and cheap, not durable and functional.

So basically, avoid those fake military boots like the plague. Prepping is about a lifestyle, not just an image. And that means spending money on real boots.

Top Brands for Survival Boots

What are some of the best brands for survival boots?

  • Merrell: Merrell got started in 1981 manufacturing hiking boots. Some of the best survival boots around are made by Merrell as well as its parent company, Wolverine (which acquired Merrell in 1997).
  • ​Timberland: Timberland is the boot brand that drove most of the innovation behind waterproof boots. They’ve been manufacturing high-quality boots since 1928. Today, their name remains synonymous with waterproof footwear.
  • ​Columbia: Columbia Sportswear was founded in 1938 and has its headquarters in Oregon. The company manufactures a wide range of outdoor footwear ideal for winter weather, trail hiking, running, and more.
  • ​Belleville: This is one of the most important brands in the world of military boot manufacturing. The company has been around since WWI and makes some of the toughest survival boots on the market.
  • Danner: Another company that got started manufacturing boots in the 1930s is Danner. Danner boots include Vibram soles, Ortholite footbeds and Gore-Tex linings for optimal comfort, support and functionality.

That isn’t a full list, but it’s a good introduction. You’ll see boots from these brands and others in the list below.

Top Survival Boot Reviews

Now let’s take an in-depth look at some of the best survival boots you can purchase in a number of different categories.

Best Survival Shoes for Everyday Wear

You are not necessarily going to need a serious boot for everything. For day-to-day survival, you may actually find that a basic trail running shoe fits most of your needs. A boot which goes up over your ankle might be overkill, and may not always be the most comfortable option. So here are a few trail shoes to consider to start you out with your survival footwear.

 1.  ASICS GEL Venture 5 Trail Running Shoe

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

This trail running shoe is immensely popular, with more than 6,340 customer reviews and an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. You can purchase it in the $40-$140 range. At the lower end of that bracket, it is obvious a fantastic deal. It is available in numerous different colors. There is also a version for women here.

Key Features

  • Made of synthetic/mesh materials with a rubber sole.
  • Contains a removable sockliner and Rearfoot GEL cushioning.

What the ASICS GEL Venture 5 Trail Running Shoe Is Best For

This is not a “boot” per se, but I think it is important to include at least a couple of running shoes on any comprehensive list of survival footwear. Consider these for everyday wear if you are in a long-term survival situation. They are a light, comfortable choice, ideal for walking, running, or anything active.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that these trail shoes provide excellent support with comfortable cushioning, especially in the heel cup and arch. They can significantly reduce foot and leg pain. There are some complaints, but they seem fairly random (some about durability, others about fit and comfort, and so on).

Sizing Tips: Most buyers seem to indicate that these shoes fit true to size, but that they may run a bit narrow, especially in back at the heel.

 2.  Merrell Men's Moab Ventilator Hiking Shoe

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

You can buy these trail shoes in the $50-$150 range. They have more than 4,810 customer reviews and an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars online. As with the trail shoes above, they are available in a range of colors.

Key Features

  • Synthetic and leather water-resistant materials with a Vibram sole.
  • ​EVA foot frame is compression-molded.
  • ​Air cushion midsole.
  • Mesh upper keeps shoe breathable and comfortable.

What the Merrell Men's Moab Ventilator Hiking Shoe Is Best For

These trail shoes were designed with hiking in mind. They are ideal for providing you with protection in a wide range of environments while providing your feet with the support they need for plenty of walking, running and other athletic activities. I would again recommend them for everyday survival wear when you do not need the extra ankle support offered by full-on boots and would just prefer something a bit more minimal and lightweight.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that these shoes feature sturdy materials and high-quality stitching which hold up well to plenty of regular use on long hikes. At the same time, they are cool and breathable and keep your feet dry. On the downside, they are not the lightest-weight trail shoes out there.

Sizing Tips: Customers say that you should order about half a size larger than you normally would wear. Have wide feet? These shoes are reportedly an excellent choice. Those with narrower feet would do better with the ASICS shoes recommended previously.

Best Hiking Boots For All-Purpose Survival Wear

Now, let’s get into the terrain of proper boots. If you are going to get just one all-purpose pair of survival boots, shopping for a solid set of hiking boots will cover most of your needs.

 1.  Belleville Tactical Research TR511 Mini-Mil Transition Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

These AR670-1 compliant military boots are an excellent all-around choice for survival because they were designed specifically to offer a kind of intermediate between traditional duty boots and general-purpose athletic boots. You can get them for $100-$150. More than 40 buyers have given them an average rating of 4 stars.

Key Features

  • Made of flesh-out suede leather and 1000 denier Cordura nylon with a Vibram sole.
  • ​Aero-Spacer technology keeps the boots breathable.
  • ​Hydrophilic lining.
  • Each pair weighs less than two pounds.

What the Belleville Tactical Research TR511 Mini-Mil Transition Boot Is Best For

These boots are one of my top recommendations because they were designed to offer the support and durability needed for military duty, but with the comfort and flexibility of athletic boots. If you have the budget for just one pair of survival boots, consider these.

Pros and Cons

Buyers are impressed by how light these boots are, and say that they are comfortable right out of the box. Some have even mentioned that they feel like wearing a pair of tennis shoes—in other words, they are as comfortable and liberating as the trail shoes I have shared previously, despite being real combat boots. There really are not a lot of complaints, so it is hard to even come up with drawbacks here.

Sizing Tips: A few customers did mention having trouble getting the right fit. There are reports that the boots run half a size large and half a size small. Why the confusion? It probably has to do with the boots fitting more like shoes than boots. If you keep in that mind, it should guide you in the right direction. Also consider these boots if you have wide feet.

 2.  Danner Men’s Radical 452 GTX Outdoor Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

This hiking boot can be purchased in the $100-$180 range. More than 500 buyers have given it an average rating of 4.5 stars. Several color options are offered.

Key Features

  • Full-grain nubuck leather and fabric with a synthetic sole.
  • ​Scuff-proof toe caps and Danner Boulder TF™ lug outsoles.
  • ​Waterproof.
  • Performance cushion insoles.

What the Danner Men’s Radical 452 GTX Outdoor Boot Is Best For

This is another great set of all-purpose hiking boots which you could wear in any situation or terrain. I would recommend these as another option if you can only buy one pair of survival boots.

Pros and Cons

According to customers, these boots can go through all kinds of wear and tear on all manner of terrain and hold together very well. One surveyor who wore them for work mentioned they were just as great on concrete and rebar as they were in root-choked forest undergrowth. A few buyers said they were not as comfortable or durable as they hoped, but most customers were very satisfied.

Sizing Tips: The majority of customers say that these boots fit true to size, though a few felt they ran slightly small.

 3.  Ahnu Women's Montara Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

Here is a good option if you are shopping for a survival boot in women’s sizes. More than 780 customers have given this boot an average rating of 4.5 stars. You can buy it for $100-$180.

Key Features

  • Leather with a synthetic sole.
  • ​Speed-lacing system.
  • ​Includes a padded collar with eVent for increased breathability.
  • Waterproof.

What the Ahnu Women's Montara Boot Is Best For

These are also all-purpose hiking boots, great for a wide range of environments. They are designed to offer comfort, balance, and stability.

Pros and Cons

These hiking boots have fantastic reviews. Customers say that they are rugged and hold up to brutal wear in all kinds of environments. They provide a lot of support, become more and more comfortable with time, and generally are cool and breathable. In very hot weather though, they can be a bit stifling.

Sizing Tips: A number of buyers suggested that you get half a size larger than you would regularly order, especially if you plan to go on long hikes or wear thick woolen socks. You never know how long you might need to walk in a survival situation, so this seems like great advice.

 4.  Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

Here is another great pair of women’s hiking boots which would make for great survival footwear. In the $50-$120 price range, they are very reasonably priced. More than 850 customers have rated them with an average of 4.5 stars.

Key Features

  • Waterproof full grain leather and synthetic materials.
  • ​Rubber sole and compression-molded EVA foam midsole.
  • ​Omnishield water and stain resistant treatment.
  • Omnigrip lugged outsole.

What the Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boot Is Best For

You can wear these hiking boots in a range of climate conditions and environments and they will perform well. They are not technically waterproof—just water-resistant. But in a lot of environments, that is all you need.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that the Columbia Women’s Newton Ridge Plus Hiking Boots are very comfortable and have great traction. Nonetheless, they can get slippery if they happen to get wet, which means that they are not a suitable option on slick terrain.

Sizing Tips: A few customers stated that these hiking boots run a bit large, and you should consider going half a size down to get the right fit.

Best Survival Boots for Mountainous Terrain

Now I want to share some options with you if you are looking for survival boots which are ideal for mountainous terrain. The following boots will give you the traction you need even on jagged rocks and uneven surfaces.

 1.  Belleville 350 Tactical Research Khyber II Mountain Hybrid Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

This pair of tactical boots from Belleville are a rugged, durable option for mountain wear. They run in the $120-$140 price range and have more than 100 customer reviews averaging out to a rating of 4.5 stars.

Key Features

  • Lightweight, comfortable leather with a Vibram sole.
  • ​Combat Lunar Lining keeps these boots breathable.
  • ​With Lace-to-Toe style, you can customize your fit.
  • ​Serrated kicker and overlays on the heel and toe prevent slides, slips and falls.
  • TR-1 Load Bearing Orthotic Insole provides support.

What the Belleville 350 Tactical Research Khyber II Mountain Hybrid Boot Is Best For

These boots were actually designed with the input of special forces consultants. So real-world experience informed their development. If your survival retreat is in a mountainous location, these boots will provide you with the traction you need to safely traverse the surrounding territory.

Pros and Cons

Customers report that they are impressed by the level of support and traction these boots provide. They also are renowned for their durability, and can easily outlast many competing boots. On the downside, the insole is not the best, so those with high arches or flat feet may need insole inserts. There is also no waterproofing.

Sizing Tips: The majority of customers who bought these boots say they fit true to size, with a few reporting they run just slightly on the large side.

 2.  Belleville C795 Men's 200g Insulated Combat Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

You can get these boots for $150-$200. The consensus rating right now is 4 stars out of 5. Sadly there is not a ton of customer feedback available, but they look to be one of the better choices for icy, mountainous terrain.

Key Features

  • Full-grain cowhide leather and nylon fabric.
  • ​Removable insert.
  • ​Polyurethane-cushioned midsole.
  • ​Gore-Tex® waterproofing keeps your feet dry.
  • Vibram® Sierra FIRE & ICE™ outsole provides traction on icy surfaces.

What the Belleville C795 Men's 200g Insulated Combat Boot Is Best For

Wear these boots in cold, icy climates. They would work well on both mountainous and flat terrain. The key feature here is the Vibram® Sierra FIRE & ICE™ outsole, which is made of a unique rubber that doesn’t harden in the cold. This helps you maintain traction when other boots would lose their grip.

Pros and Cons

You will not find a lot of feedback on these boots, but the design can help us establish some of the advantages and disadvantages. Thanks to the insulation, they are great for cold weather, but in warmer weather they would be stifling. So if you will also need boots for warm conditions, this should not be your only pair.

Sizing Tips: Many Belleville boots run half a size large, so that may be true for these boots as well.

Best Hot Weather Survival Boots

So if you do need survival boots for hot conditions, what boots should you get? Here are a few suggestions.

 1.  Belleville TR513 Men's Lightweight Hot Weather Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

If you expect to have to walk long distances across desert sand dunes or other hot locations, you are going to need a boot which is as lightweight and breathable as it is sturdy and reliable. For that, consider the Belleville TR513 Men's Lightweight Hot Weather Boot. There are only a few reviews as of the time of this writing, but they average out to 4.5 stars. You can buy this boot for $100-$150.

Key Features

  • Slip- and oil-resistant outsole lends traction.
  • ​Materials are breathable and ventilated to keep feet cool.
  • TR-1® load-bearing orthotic insole increases support and comfort.

What the Belleville TR513 Men's Lightweight Hot Weather Boot Is Best For

These boots will keep your feet cool and dry in any hot locale. Because the boots are lightweight, they also are ideal for any situation where you might have to do a lot of walking. Heavier boots may fatigue your feet too much, draining your energy and causing pain.

Pros and Cons

Not only are these boots cool and comfortable, but customers say that they also offer excellent support. There is not much to report in the way of negatives. They take a little time to break in.

Sizing Tips: Buy about half a size down from your typical size and you should be in good shape.

 2.  Bates Men's Cobra Hot Weather Coyote Tactical Army Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

There are more than 30 customer reviews for these boots with an average rating of 4 stars. The cost ranges between $100-$150.

Key Features

  • Flesh-out cattle hide leather and abrasion resistant nylon.
  • ​Comfortable padded collar.
  • ​Breathable lining.
  • Includes a powerful endurance performance system to restore energy to your feet, preventing fatigue.

What the Bates Men's Cobra Hot Weather Coyote Tactical Army Boot Is Best For

These boots are another great choice for hot weather. One important thing to note however is that they are not water resistant. So if you live in a climate which is hot and gets a fair amount of rainfall, get a jungle boot instead. These are preferable for a desert climate.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that these boots are awesome when it comes to support, but that they do not allow for much in the way of a free range of movement. So they are good for long hikes, but not so great for jumping, fighting, or other activities which demand unrestricted agility. If you have to run, you will be pleased to know that the angle of the sole reduces jarring.

Sizing Tips: These boots are more or less true to size, unless you plan to wear them with thick socks (for whatever reason—maybe you are adapting them to winter). If you do, get a size larger. Otherwise, stick with your regular size.

 3.  Blackhawk Men's Warrior Wear Desert Ops Boots

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

You can get these popular desert ops boots in the $90-$210 price range. More than 310 customers have given them 4.5 stars on average.

Key Features

  • Abrasion-resistant leather.
  • ​Cordura panels for breathability and water resistance.
  • ​Gusseted tongue.
  • ​Vibram “Multisport” outsole is oil resistant.
  • ​Toe is reinforced against scuffing.
  • ​Ortholite footbed.
  • Dri-Lex inner lining keeps feet dry with moisture wicking technology.

What the Blackhawk Men's Warrior Wear Desert Ops Boots Is Best For

Designed for desert wear, these boots are ideal for any environment which is especially hot. In fact, the water resistance feature means you could even wear them in climates that get more precipitation. Additionally, the outsole provides you with the traction to deal with uneven ground.

Pros and Cons

Customers praise many aspects of these boots: the water-resistance, the strong traction, and the lightweight, comfortable design. In terms of drawbacks, there is one, and that is that these boots may wear down more quickly than some competing footwear.

Sizing Tips: Generally speaking, the Blackhawk Men’s Warrior Wear Desert Ops Boot runs true to size. In fact, they should be roomy enough to accommodate socks, but not so roomy that you have to go down a size. They do however run a little narrow.

Best Survival Boots for Forested Areas

Now that you know what to wear in hot climates, especially desert conditions, let’s check out some of the best survival boots for forest environments.

 1.  Under Armour Men's UA Jungle Rat Boots

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

These tactical boots are quite affordable, ranging between $70-$170 on the market right now. At the lower end of that bracket, you are snagging a fantastic deal. More than 110 customers have given them 4 out of 5 stars on average.

Key Features

  • Nylon textile and leather upper is lightweight, soft and comfortable.
  • ​Ortholite sockliner.
  • ​UA Storm gear with DWR finish keeps water out and maintains ventilation.
  • ​Vents in the side provide drainage, keeping water from pooling in your boot.
  • Includes reinforced TPU shank and Micro G® midsole for stability.

What the Under Armour Men's UA Jungle Rat Boots Is Best For

If you think you will be battling for survival in a location with a lot of mud, water and slippery surfaces, these boots are one of the best choices out there. The water resistance is top shelf, and the drainage vents are a big deal. Few experiences are worse in a desperate situation than having to trudge across a landscape with heavy boots which are constantly getting waterlogged. The drainage vents in the Under Armour Men's UA Jungle Rat Boots help to prevent that from happening.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that these boots are durable, comfortable, and provide excellent grip even on slippery ground. The laces however are problematic. Have some extra laces ready to replace them when they fall apart.

Sizing Tips: These boots are more or less true to size, if a bit on the snug side.

 2.  Belleville TR900 Jungle Runner Lightweight Panama Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

Available in the $100-$140 price range, these lightweight jungle boots have an average of 4 stars and more than 40 customer reviews online. Note that even though these are not AR670-1 compliant, they were designed by Belleville. They are similar to jungle boots issued by the US marines.

Key Features

  • Based on the classic style popular in the Vietnam war era.
  • ​Nylon fabric and full-grain cowhide leather upper.
  • ​Double and triple stitched seams.
  • ​Water resistant.
  • ​Rappelling bars on outsole.
  • Drain vents to prevent waterlogging.

What the Belleville TR900 Jungle Runner Lightweight Panama Boot Is Best For

The water resistance and drain vents make these boots an excellent choice for survival in wet climates and conditions. They are also a stylish choice if you like the Vietnam era look.

Pros and Cons

One feature to take special note of with these boots is the small drain vents. They are smaller than those you will find on current standard military issue boots. This is actually good though, because the larger vents get clogged by mud. These are less likely to do that, which is why the military is actually going to be using smaller drain vents like these in the future. So that is a big plus, as is the strong ankle support. The main drawbacks are the thinness of the leather and the cheapness of the laces.

Sizing Tips: These boots fit true to size according to customers.

Best Waterproof Survival Boots

We have already explored a few options for water-resistant survival boots. Now let’s look at a few more boots in the waterproof category.

 1.  Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

As I mentioned earlier in the article, Timberland is pretty much the go-to boot brand if you are looking for waterproofing. One of their most popular boots is the White Ledge Men’s Waterproof Boot, which has more than 4,450 customer reviews and an average rating of 4.5 stars. You can get it for $70-$170.

Key Features

  • Leather and textile with a rubber sole.
  • ​Padded collar and tongue.
  • ​Traction is provided by multidirectional lugs.
  • ​Removable dual-density EVA footbed provides support.
  • Rear pull loop included.
  • B.S.F.P. (Brake, Support, Flex and Propel) system improves traction while offering superior support.

What the Timberland White Ledge Men's Waterproof Boot Is Best For

These boots are designed to keep water out, so you can wear them in muddy or snowy conditions. Keep in mind that no leather boot is totally waterproof, so you do not want to stand submerged in water with these. That being said, customers report that these are incredibly water-resistant and do a fabulous job.

Pros and Cons

Along with water-resistance, these boots offer great traction and durability. One downside however is that they are not very breathable. This should come as no surprise, given how waterproof they are, but they may be stifling and uncomfortable in hot weather. The insulation is not the best either, so in very cold weather you also will need heavy socks.

Sizing Tips: Some customers mention going half a size up while others mention going half a size down. Still others say that these boots are true to size, so you should probably try your regular size first.

 2.  Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus Ii Waterproof Hiking Shoe

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

These waterproof hiking boots are available for $40-$100, making them an excellent low cost option. More than 870 buyers have given them an average rating of 4.5 stars.

Key Features

  • Leather and synthetic with a rubber sole.
  • ​Padded collar and tongue.
  • ​Waterproof and breathable with mesh tongue.
  • ​Shank under the arch improves stability.
  • Omni grip® rubber outsole for extra traction.

What the Columbia Men's Newton Ridge Plus Ii Waterproof Hiking Shoe Is Best For

Wear these boots when you need serious waterproofing. One buyer even mentioned that he wore them to the Amazon rainforest for a six-week-long trip. During that time, it was the wet season and it was 95 degrees out. His feet reportedly stayed comfortable and dry.

Pros and Cons

According to customers, these boots are well-insulated but breathable, ideal for hot and cold temperatures. They are lightweight and can even be briefly submerged without leaking. A few customers complained that the fit wasn’t quite right. Beyond that, there are not a lot of drawbacks. These boots appear to be a great overall choice for survival footwear.

Sizing Tips: Sizing these boots seems to be a challenge. Some customers say they run large while others claim they run small.

Best Survival Work Boots for Construction and Labor at Your Retreat

When we talk about survival footwear, we think primarily about what we would wear when hiking, foraging, running, and so on. But it is important to remember there are other aspects of survival too, especially in a long-term situation. What if you are forced to live in your retreat for an extended time period, and you have to do a lot of construction and hard labor? For that, you need a solid pair of safety toe boots. Here are a couple recommendations. Keep in mind that these boots are too heavy for general use.

 1.  Irish Setter Men’s 83608 6" Steel Toe Work Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

These popular work boots feature a steel toe and sell in the $70-$160 range. More than 200 customers have given them an average rating of 4.5 stars.

Key Features

  • Padded collar and tongue.
  • ​Polyurethane footbed is removable for your convenience.
  • ​Made of durable, comfortable leather.
  • Dual-density polyurethane V-Grip outsole.
  • Meets ASTM F2413-11 rating for electrical safety.

What the Irish Setter Men’s 83608 6" Steel Toe Work Boot Is Best For

The steel toe in this work boot will provide you with the protection you need if you are lifting and moving heavy objects. This boot provides electrical protection as well, so consider wearing it if you are working with live wires.

Pros and Cons

Customers say that the Irish Setter Men’s 83608 6" Steel Toe Work Boot is comfortable to wear right out of the box, and that it provides fantastic support and range of motion. The only significant drawback is that a few buyers did say the boot wore out relatively fast.

Sizing Tips: Purchase around half a size down, or even a full size down, from your regular size.

 2.  Timberland PRO Direct Attach 6” Steel Toe Waterproof Boot

Rating: 4.3 / 5.0

These steel toe work boots have more than 1,200 customer reviews, with an average rating of 4 stars online. The market price ranges between $80-$220.

Key Features

  • Made of leather with a padded collar and an insulated lace-up upper.
  • ​Outsole is resistant to oil, offering firm traction.
  • ​Nylon shock diffusion plate reduces shock, protecting joint health.
  • ​Antimicrobial treatment combats odors.
  • ​Waterproof and seam-sealed.
  • 400g of insulation.

What the Timberland PRO Direct Attach 6” Steel Toe Waterproof Boot Is Best For

Wear these boots if you are hard at work in an environment which is cold and/or wet and you need protection for your toes.

Pros and Cons

Buyers comment that these boots are sturdy and that they are comfortable in harsh environments, including snow. There are a few durability complaints, but they are few and far between.

Sizing Tips: Buy about half a size larger than what you normally wear, ensuring that you have enough space for woolen socks.

Conclusion: There Is a Survival Boot For Every Need


Now you should be all set to start shopping for the best survival boots! What you need to buy depends on a variety of factors: where you will be located, what you will be doing, and how long you will be on your feet each day. Ideally, you should have at least several pairs of survival boots so that all your needs are covered. That costs more than buying just a single pair, but in the long run, it could make all the difference in the world when it comes to your survival—and that is worth it!


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