If you think about these boots as being a sort of Skoda Yeti to the classic hiking boot’s Land Rover, you’re on the right track as to what their outdoor pedigree is, and who they’re aimed at. They’re a boot for the type of person that spends most of their time in town or walking dogs, and is looking for a piece of footwear that offers a little more support, a little more protection, but doesn’t say ‘outdoorsy’ at the top of its voice.
On first impressions, they look a bit like posh skater boots, or rugged Converse All-Stars, which is no bad thing, if that’s a look that you like.
I quite like the particular colour way that we’ve been sent. It goes really well with the autumnal browns and greens, and they look just the thing with the thick jeans that I’ve migrated in to now that it’s turned chilly.
But they’re a bit more than just fashion shoes. They’ve been designed, like that Skoda Yeti, to fend off a little bit of off-roading now and again. A full-grain leather upper has been oiled, and thus it sheds the water (and mud) quite impressively. They’re not waterproof, but certainly pretty dew-resistant for when chasing the dog across a field.
And the natural rubber sole is actually surprisingly grippy for a flatty. I was a little trepidatory about walking up wet grassy banks in them, but they didn’t slip at all, which was encouraging. The grip pattern seems to shed mud quite easily too, which is helped by the fact that the sole is super-flexible.
I’m fairly sure that if I was to slip these on and go and hike up a mountain I’d do myself a mischief. But that may be in part because my feet are used to the more supportive, chunkier boots that have become the norm. These Ridgemont boots are a sort of back-to-basics boot that will protect your foot as well as boots used to in the 70s and 80s. And if you don’t need more than that, they may well do you proud.
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