There exists a collection of unspoken, yet universal, rules that all outdoorsmen should adhere to. Well, in the words of the infamous Captain Barbosa, “they are more like guidelines, than rules”, but you get the idea. Some examples might be proficiency with an axe, fire building acumen, a flannel shirt that reeks of wood smoke, the ability to grow a halfway decent beard… you get the idea. For the purposes of this review, I must mention that every self-respecting man or woman should have access to a pair of sturdy work boots.
In college, I filled my boot quota with a few pairs of the classic Timberland-style boot. They kept the Maine winters at bay and looked passably handsome, albeit a little synthetic and mass-produced. I knew they weren’t very high quality, but I was a college kid… I didn’t have the funds to focus on quality. As I matured, my focus shifted from quantity/cost to quality. I realized that these Timberland boots were only a stop gap on my quest for the perfect boot.
After weeks, maybe even months, of research and soul searching, I finally discovered the sole mate for my feet: the Red Wing Iron Ranger Heritage boot. As soon as I saw them, I knew. They had just about every element that I was looking for in a boot, all combined into one handsome product. From the double-layer capped toe, to the rich color of the amber harness leather, to the expertly sewn cork soles, to their “Made in the Midwest” craftsmanship, these boots truly are a work of art. The icing on the cake? They are wildly functional. Yet their retail price of $310.00 kept them just out of my reach.
One day, my Mom stumbled upon a pair at our local shoe shop, the Shoe Box. In talking with the manager about these handsome boots, she was able to knock the price down a substantial amount. I am not sure how she did it, but I jumped at the opportunity when she called. I still hadn’t tried them on, but I took the risk. Even with her thrifty maneuvering, the boots still set me back well over $200.00, but I should be wearing them for the better part of the next half century. Not a bad investment if you ask me.
Since that fateful day, I have put my Iron Rangers through the ringer. They kept my feet dry all day while tromping around in Virginia during what felt like a tropical monsoon. They saved my feet from a good crushing at the hands of a falling log. They remain comfortable after a full day on your feet in the shop or a full day of walking around town. Oh. I can also guarantee that that full day of walking will also be full of compliments. These boots are a fan favorite for those wearing them and for onlookers alike.
The Bare Bones
Name: Red Wing Heritage Iron Ranger 6″ Boot
Available Colors: Amber Harness, Hawthorne Muleskinner, Charcoal Rough, Copper
Recommended Uses: Manly stuff
Get Your Own: Red Wing 6″ Iron Ranger Boot