About every two years, I go boot shopping. I don’t ride clipless pedals in the winter so that means that I get to choose from a wide variety of warm winter boots that are every bit at home strapped into a pair of snowshoes as they are turning the pedals of a fat-bike. Over the years, we’ve reviewed boots from Sorel, Kamik, Keen, 45NRTH, Lake, Vasque, Bontrager, Columbia, and Blivet.
Today we’re taking a first look at a new brand of boot from Bozeman Montana called Oboz. Bozeman, Montana inspired the name of and the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem provided the proving grounds for their product line. Outside + Bozeman = Oboz.
The reason that I chose this new brand was the promise of a boot that fits more comfortably than anything else out there. A friend of mine tried a pair of their Sawtooth Mountain Sneakers and told me that they felt better than any other brand outdoor shoe that they’d ever tried. You can read Oboz’ marketing hype about their O FIT System here – https://obozfootwear.com/o-fit-system. I’m used to purchasing an aftermarket set of insoles when I get a new set of trail sneakers but it looks like Oboz come with an upgraded set of insoles that are integrated into the design of their O FIT System.
So when it came time to look at what brand of boot, that I’d be wearing for the next couple of Winters, Oboz were elevated to the top of the list. I ordered a set of size 13 boots in Black and (right out of the box) lived up to the hype as far as how comfortably that they fit. From the footbed to the stove-pipe the Bridger Boots hugged the contours of my foot and ankle/lower leg very comfortably. My last boots didn’t come with speed laces and the Bridgers made me realize how much that I miss that feature. Hand tensioning the top six speed-laced eyelets allows easier entry and exit as well as adjusts to variable thicknesses of socks and tights.
As you can see, I’ve been putting these things through Wisconsin’s late Winter muck and the mire. I did a bunch of recon rides during the snow/ice melt-back for a gravel ride a couple of weeks ago and my feet stayed nice and dry. These boots are definitely waterproof. The Bridgers have 400 grams 3M™ Thinsulate™ and they kept me nice and warm this Winter. The top (stove-pipe) section of the boots is a little thicker than the Columbia Boots that I’d been wearing previously. That made them just a little harder to get to play nice with the softshell pants that I wear. I think it’s a small price to pay for the added comfort of these boots.
Most of my boots end up looking pretty beat after two full winters. I’ll do my best to beat these boots into submission over the next eighteen months and I’ll report back with a review somewhere around the one-year mark. If you’d like to take a look at more winter boot reviews click here – https://fat-bike.com/category/apparel/footwear/
For more information about Oboz visit – https://obozfootwear.com/