If you are an elk hunter, you know just how demanding it can be. You are forced to trek for long distances through rocky terrain.
Sore feet, blisters, and foot cramps could end up ruining your hunting trip. It’s even worse when you have to trek through such terrain on wet and cold feet.
As such, besides the right firearm, your hunting boots will determine just how successful or miserable your hunting trip will be.
Even for seasoned hunters, one thing that you never want to take lightly is boot selection.
The right hunting boots will offer the much-needed insulation, warmth pus good ventilation that you need as you venture into the wild.
There’s just one thing! The market is flooded with elk boots with every company claiming to manufacture the best. The whole ordeal can be a little overwhelming without proper guidance.
For that reason, this comprehensive guide is going to cover in detail the best elk hunting boots so that you can narrow down your choices. If you are in a hurry, you can check out our table below to quickly see the top picks.
Review of the 11 Best Elk Hunting Boots
Whether you are a seasoned hunter or are just getting started, at the top of your list of priorities should be good quality and comfortable hunting boots.
Hunting boots especially when you are hunting elks can make or break your hunting trip. So, here is our honest review of the best elk hunting boots.
Cold weather is inevitable when you go elk hiking and the last thing you want is to trek for miles in wet and cold boots. The Irish Setter Men’s 882 Elk Tracker is the best option if you hunt in cold and wet weather.
When it comes to hunting boot manufacturers, Irish Setter is among the most reputable brands best known for manufacturing comfortable as well as highly durable hunting boots.
As an elk hunter, you need hunting boots that are hard enough to trek through rocky terrain. The Irish Setter Men’s 882 Elk Tracker is 100% pure leather and comes with perfectly designed leather cleats that make the boot perfect for elk hunting.
The boot has a nylon lining that is great at absorbing moisture as well as a leather welt that makes the boots not only strong but very durable.
The boots also come with an EVA footbed that cushions your feet when you are trekking through rough terrain. A Gore-Tex fabric lines the inside of the boot as well as a 600GM Thinsulate for the best insulation especially when you are targeting long hunting hours and varied weather patterns.
Since the boots are made of high-quality materials, they are damage resistant and will not get ruined even when they are exposed to high temperatures in the wild. The boot design helps keep your feet comfortable and warm throughout your trip.
- The boot design makes it ideal for long hunting hours and rocky terrain.
- The boot design also provides the much-needed ankle support when you are trekking through rocky terrain.
- The boots are made from high-quality materials hence very durable.
- Compared to other elk hunting boots, these are not the most budget-friendly boots.
- The boots are usually slimmer so you need to make sure that you order a size bigger.
Rocky is one of the oldest brands and has been in the rugged footwear industry for years. Their Bearclaw 3D LTT Hunting Boot is 100% leather and comes with a sturdy sole.
The boots are highly rated mainly because of their durability. The boots not only offer support and protection when you are in the wild, but the design accommodates both proper ventilation and circulation.
This is thanks to the Thinsulate insulation that is integrated into the boots as well as a sturdy footbed that promotes the circulation of air when you are wearing the boot.
What this means is that your feet will remain dry and cool regardless of the duration of your hunting trip and the terrain. The last thing you want is your hunting trip getting ruined due to sweaty feet all through.
The boots also come with a “3D” outsole that is uniquely designed to help you trek through rough terrain with ease.
- The full leather construction makes the boot not only sturdy but highly durable.
- The boot is highly insulated and waterproof to keep your feet dry and warm throughout.
- The soft footbed ensures proper ventilation as well as comfort regardless of the terrain.
- The 3D rubber sole allows for stability when you are trekking through rough and rocky terrain.
- The boots are very easy to break-in.
- If you have narrow feet, you may have to wear two pairs of socks so that the boot can fit well.
- The boots don’t come with a protective toe feature.
If you are always hunting in areas that have uneven and extremely rocky terrain, you needed a boot that is stable enough and offers the support you need. The Lowa Tibet GTX Trekking Boot is just perfect for such hunts.
The boots come with Vibram soles that are designed to offer a great grip on such terrains. The boot will also not gunk up with rubble on the hunting trail.
The boots come with a Gore-Tex lining that makes them not only breathable but fully waterproof.
The midsole is PU incorporated and there is also a stabilizer that adds to the stability especially when you are carrying something heavy.
The boots also feature a LOWA C4 tongue plus a collar for maximum comfort and safety. There is also an ankle-flex design that is meant to help you trek safely even on slippery terrain.
- The boot is completely waterproof thanks to the seamless Gore-Tex lining.
- The Climate Control lining helps keep your feet dry and cool regardless of the trekking hours.
- The FlexFit ankle and heel fit allow for stability and comfort when hunting.
- The fit is a little tighter which means a longer time breaking in them.
The Irish Setter Men’s 860 Big Game Hunting Boot features the most rugged and aggressive outsole compared to other hunting boots. The lugs on the soles are multi-dimensional providing excellent stability and balance when you are on the move.
The internal design gives the boot enough room to accommodate even hunters with wider feet.
Most hunting boots are heavy and therefore prone to odors when your feet sweat. Irish Setter has tried to solve that problem by incorporating ScentBan technology into the boots.
The technology kills bacteria that cause odors that may alert animals of your presence. Also featured is a Gore-Tex and 1000g Thinsulate lining that helps keep your feet warm and dry during the hunt. The boots are fully insulated as well as waterproof if you are hunting in cold and wet trails.
- The boots are ideal for wet, cold, and high-altitude hunts in general.
- The ScentBan technology ensures that you go undetected in the wild when you are hunting because there is no foot odor being given off.
- The 3M Thinsulate provides for perfect insulation regardless of the terrain.
- The outsoles feature carbon rubber which ensures superior grip even when trekking through rocky terrain.
- The boots can be a bit heavy therefore not ideal for novice hunters especially when you consider how much you are paying for them.
If you are a seasoned hunter, you’ve come across the Danner brand. They are one of the best-known companies in hunting gear manufacturer and it’s no wonder their Pronghorn 8″ Gore-Tex Hunting Boot has made it to the list.
The boot is designed with CamoHide leather before being reinforced with Terra Force technology making it one of the sturdiest hunting boots on the market.
The boots are built to handle even the most rugged of terrains thanks to the sturdy full leather toe and heel caps. The outsole is also made of long-wearing rubber adding to the durability of the boot.
Another great feature and contrary to what you would expect with boots of a similar build is that it is extremely lightweight. In addition, Danner features moisture resistant and breathable Gore-Tex lining and an Ortholite footbed that ensures that your feet remain cool and dry.
The boot is built for comfort regardless of the terrain and there is the added feature of aesthetics where the boot can also serve as an early-season hunting boot.
- The heel and toe caps feature full-grain leather making the boot sturdy enough to handle different terrains due to the waterproofing properties.
- The rugged construction adds to the stability of the boot as you trek through rugged terrain.
- The outsole that features rubber components adds to the stability and comfort of the boot.
- The boots may be hard and the arch support is not the best.
An elk hunting boot is supposed to be sturdy enough to handle the rugged terrains you may encounter and that’s what Kenetrek has done with their Extreme 400 Insulated Hiking Boot.
First of all, the length of the boot is long enough to properly protect your feet against the pain that comes from trekking for hours. The boots are made from durable high-quality leather material and come with a nylon midsole.
The K-train outsoles are sturdy enough to provide great traction when you are trekking on bumpy and rough terrains. The outsoles are designed to ensure that your feet remain not only protected but comfortable throughout the hunt.
The boots also feature a breathable and waterproof Windtex membrane that provides great insulation. The 400GM Thinsulate ensures that your feet don’t sweat.
The Kenetrek Extreme 400 Hunting Boots are also light in weight weighing only 7 pounds and are great for anyone who hunts in the mountains.
- The high top design offers much-needed protection when you are trekking in rough terrain.
- The 400GM Thinsulate and Windtex membrane ensure that your feet remain comfortable as well as dry.
- The leather material makes the boots fully waterproof and the sturdy nylon midsole makes the boot long-lasting.
- The outsole is designed to provide enough traction so that you don’t slip and injure yourself especially when you are trekking through rough and rocky terrain.
- The boots also come with a toe guard that offers maximum protection when hunting.
- The boots are lightweight which means that you can trek for hours and miles without them weighing you down.
- The boots can be tough which makes breaking in a little difficult.
- In terms of pricing, the boots sit high on the price range.
If you are looking for a boot that is comfortable and stable yet stylish, the Irish Setter 2870 Vaprtrek Hunting Boot is just perfect. It is a heavy-duty boot that is made of full leather making it not only waterproof but highly breathable.
The rubber sole adds to the comfort and makes the boot extremely durable. The rubber sole also means excellent traction even on the toughest of hunting trails.
The boot is tall measuring 12 inches with a 9.5-inch shaft. What this means is that your entire leg is protected when you are wearing the boot.
It comes with a 200GM Thinsulate which makes the boot extremely lightweight. Also featured, is a Gore-Tex lining that contributes to the waterproofing properties of the boot.
When you are hunting elks, the last thing you want is to spook them when they detect your scent. Irish Setter has incorporated ScentBan technology which prevents bacteria that cause odors.
The midsole absorbs shock when you are walking minimizing the risk of developing blisters and other trekking related injuries. It is a lightweight hunting boot weighing only 2 pounds which makes it easy to trek for long hours in search of prey.
- The sturdy midsole acts as a shock absorber that prevents blisters, and foot cramps that may develop after hours of trekking in the wild.
- The boot is light in weight which means that it won’t weigh you down regardless of the terrain or the miles you need to cover.
- The ScentBan technology contributes to a successful hunt since animals won’t detect your presence.
- The arch support may not be the most comfortable which means that foot fatigue is inevitable especially when you are covering miles of hunting trails.
The boot features a durable Realtree fabric and leather upper so that it is not only comfortable but snuggly fitting.
Another great feature is the Dry-Core lining that makes the boot extra breathable and waterproof. Nothing ruins your hunting trip than soggy feet especially when you have to cover rocky and wet terrain.
The boots also have Thinsulate ultra insulation so that your feet are dry and comfortable regardless of the weather. What makes the boot a favorite for many elk hunters thanks to the comfortable fit due to the PU footbed and EVA midsole.
These features ensure that your feet are always well cushioned and well supported when you are on the move.
The lugs on the soles are multi-directional. What this means is that your feet are always stable regardless of the terrain. This also helps prevent injuries and accidental slips on the hunting trail.
- The boot is constructed from resistant Nubuck leather making it extremely durable.
- The Realtree edgy textile detailing helps you blend well on the hunting trail.
- The boots are also extra waterproof thanks to the Dry-Core lining.
- The Thinsulate insulation ensures that your feet remain dry and warm even when hunting in cold weather.
- The thick EVA midsole cushions your feet by acting as a shock absorber underfoot.
- The DuraFit rubber heel makes for a secure and tight fit by locking the heel in place to provide the much-needed stability on the hunting trail.
- The boot may not be the best when hunting in extremely cold weather.
Are you looking for a boot that is not only safe but offers great traction? Look no further than the Zamberlan Men’s 996 Vioz GT Hiking Boot. The boot is designed for comfort, safety, and compatibility.
It features a Gore-Tex lining that makes the boot extremely waterproof. Zamberlan has also added a hydro-bloc 2.8mm Tuscan leather upper that protects the ankles and the feet from injuries.
The boots also come with a Vibram outsole that ensures comfort and safety when you are walking be it toe climbing or downhill break-in. The boots also feature cushioning that is strategically placed so as to offer protection and comfort no matter how tough the terrain is.
- The boots are ideal for hunting in any kind of weather thanks to the Gore-Tex lining that makes them not only breathable but waterproof.
- They also feature great traction that ensures that you don’t trip and injure yourself especially when you are hunting through rocky terrain.
- The Vibram outsole ensures that you can comfortably run after prey uphill or downhill.
- The cushioning protects your feet for the entire duration of the hunt by preventing sores and blisters.
- The boots can be heavy and they are also hard to break in. However, once you break-in, they are extremely comfortable.
Salmon has been in the outdoor wear market since 1947 focusing on innovation to design progressive hunting gear.
Their 4d 3 GTX Backpacking Boots make up for a popular choice among elk hunters and for good reason. Thanks to the excellent traction, the boots are designed to handle any kind of terrain.
It’s a mid-height hiking boot that features 4D Advanced Chassis which helps guide the feet so as to reduce fatigue even when you are hunting in the toughest of terrains.
The lacing system of the boot is one of the reasons why it’s beloved by hunters. Most mid-height hunting boots make it impossible to maintain the tension in the ideal areas but not the 4d 3 GTX Backpacking Boot.
Near the ankle, is a deep eyelet that contributes to secure tension across the entire foot. The boot is light in weight and it is cushioned with the kind of technology you find in running boots while still maintaining the support you need in a hunting or backpacking boot.
It is also highly waterproof ensuring that your feet remain dry and warm throughout. The boot is also highly breathable thanks to the Nubuck full-grain leather and nylon mesh.
The aggressive lugs protrude at strategic areas ensuring that you are as comfortable as possible regardless of the terrain.
- The 4D Advanced Chassis is a great feature that ensures that you can trek for miles and hours without experiencing foot fatigue.
- The boots also feature a lining that wicks moisture so that your feet remain dry throughout.
- The fact that the boots are light in weight means that they won’t weigh you down even when you are carrying something heavy like prey after a hunt.
- The boots are not the most comfortable to break in. It will take some time but once you’ve broken in them, they are extremely comfortable.
When it comes to reliability and comfort, the Danner Pronghorn Realtree Xtra Hunting Boot has got you covered. The boot is perfect for elk hunting regardless of the weather and on top of that, it is an easy boot to break in.
It features 100% CamoHide leather and a 1000D nylon making it dual textured. It also features a rubber sole that adds to the grip and traction when hunting in rough terrain.
Like most hunting boots, they incorporate Gore-Tex technology to make them waterproof, breathable, and highly durable. The Thinsulate Ultra Insulation adds to the comfort of the boot.
The midsole features EVA cushioning and a Thermoplastic PU shank that absorbs shock when you are walking. Also featured is a Terra Force platform that contributes to the stability and lightweight performance of the boot.
- The outsole is one of the best features that ensures super traction and grip when on rugged terrain.
- The boot has great cushioning for comfort and support regardless of the duration of your hunt.
- It is made from 100% leather that is waterproof and durable so that your feet remain dry and comfortable.
- The boots only come in one color and while the camouflage detailing is helpful, it’s not that necessary.
- The boots can also be a little heavy if you are trekking for long hours.
Things to Consider When Buying Elk Hunting Boots
Now that we’ve covered in detail some of the best elk hunting boots on the market, what are some of the things you need to consider when buying one?
Elk hunting involves trekking for hours on rocky and rough terrain. The last thing you want is to cut your hunting trip short because of blisters and unimaginable foot pain.
Your hunting boots, therefore, need to fit well. Some boots are comfortable the moment they come out of the box. However, most elk hunting boots are made of leather which may take some time to break in.
At the end of the day, what matters is that you get boots that even after breaking in make it possible for you to walk in them for long hours.
Seasoned elk hunters know just how wild elk hunting trails can be. You, therefore, need a boot that is stable enough to handle any kind of terrain you encounter.
As such, consider buying boots that are tall enough to offer great ankle support. Great ankle support is not only important for comfort but ensures that you don’t experience fatigue after a few hours.
The material your elk hunting boots are made of is vital to the comfort and success of your hunting trip. The last thing your want is walking around in wet boots.
Therefore, go for boots that are made from breathable as well as waterproof materials. Most elk hunting boots are made from leather. What differs is the waterproof feature of each boot.
Breaking in period
Most boots can be worn right out of the box but there are those that need a breaking-in period.
Consider how long you will need to break-in a boot before making a purchase. For instance, it doesn’t make sense to buy a boot that needs four weeks to break in when your hunting trip is days away.
This is one of the features that even seasoned elk hunters overlook. You never know what you are going to encounter in the wild.
Bite proof boots are important since it means that you can go anywhere without worrying about snakes and other animals biting into your boot.
Elk hunting may subject you to all manner of terrain. The tread of a hunting boot determines how well or how poorly you will handle the terrain.
The tread pattern, as well as the lug shape, affect the stability and traction of the boot. Some people prefer boots with shallow treads. While such boots do a good job of preventing debris and mud from accumulating over time, they are great for even terrains.
What you want are boots that have broad as well as bold tread patterns for good grip regardless of the terrain you will encounter.
Whether you are a seasoned hunter or a novice, one thing you can’t afford to overlook is the comfort of your hunting boots. Elk hunting boots need to be waterproof, have a good grip and excellent ankle support. They also need to be breathable so that your feet remain cool and dry for as long as you wear them. While at it, you might also want to consider going for hunting boots that are scent-free to ensure that animals don’t detect your presence and run away.