Shoes and boots? I need help!

gesch

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I am trying to decide what Hunting footwear to use on my next safari in April, 2020. Courtney boots get the nod from a classic angle and perhaps functionality. Yet, in watching many videos I see well known experienced hunters using many other types and brands. I do have the frugality gene (German Dutch ethnics often have it!) . On one trip my luggage was lost for four days and I hunted in some cheap running shoes because that is all I had. They actually worked quite well—softer soles often mean quieter stalking. Yet I was removing thorns from the soles each evening! I just spent an hour paging throughall the footwear material on Midway’s site. Various Merrill brand Moab models look interesting and cost between about $80 and $150. So, do I bite the bullet and spend $300 to $400 for Courtney ‘s or get something like Merrill’s? Thanks in advance. By the way I will be hunting Namibia in the Kalahari withUitspan—Tiene and Michael Duvenhage.
 

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I've used Merrils in South Africa, Zimbabawe, Zambia, New Zealand, all in many western US states. Many on here will say you need a pair of courtney's, but in my experience you are fine with Merril/ Keen/etc.

I will add that I have had a few pairs of these that have each lasted many years.
 

Tra3

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I find that a very high quality pair of boots lasts much longer. There is a reason people buy them and now I understand after owning a pair. I think you get your money’s worth.

I wear my Courtney’s for hunting, hiking and for outside work.
Jim at @African Sporting Creations was super helpful in finding the right pair.
 

Mauser78

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I am from SA and just went through it myself, I used to wear a pair of CAT hiking boots and the soles came loose after 12 years. I work in Merrels daily so use the old ones as well for Hunting and Ranch visits. They are comfortable for walking but the grass seeds usually get in everywhere and get stuck in the mesh parts and even right through.
I would go for a full leather hiking boot or one of the Ausie brands in a full leather slip on boots, i wear those alot for work as well and are really comfy and paired with long pants or short pants with gaiters it works very well. Most of my friends that work in the Game industry as farmers, Ph’s ext wear the slip on’s (Chelsea boots) elusively daily.
 

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I have a pair of Keens and Merrils, the Keens are more comfortable
 

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I find that a very high quality pair of boots lasts much longer. There is a reason people buy them and now I understand after owning a pair. I think you get your money’s worth.

I wear my Courtney’s for hunting, hiking and for outside work.
Jim at @African Sporting Creations was super helpful in finding the right pair.
+1
 

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I take a light pair of hiking shoes for travel and camp, and stronger hiking boots for the hunt.

Well worn and comfortable.

All the SA PH´s I know use either Chelsea Boots, Veldskoen, or some type of hiking boots.
 

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I'm cursed with narrow feet so the common ones won't work and I went with Danner's. Whatever you buy, pack them in your carry on baggage, along with everything that's personalized like shoes that you need to hunt.
 

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I started buying the Ariat Groundbreaker boots. Full leather. I use them when riding, working around the house, daily commuter, as my upland boot, 2 hunts in RSA, and all around hiking. They fit my foot very well and are comfortable once I toss the throwaway insoles and throw in some superfeet. Pick them up for about $80-$90. I've had to replace the laces and twice a year treat the leather, but they've been great and better than some of my others. Ive used/had/have danners, Irish setters, thorogood, raichle, merrell, vasque, etc, but end up back in my ariats of all boots. Have not tried courtney nor russell, but have not had the need to yet.
 

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Wife and I both wore Rocky S2V which are a military style boot that lace quickly and are very comfortable.
We both wore the boots on the plane over and they were as comfortable as sneakers (at least to us).
Wife got the coyote brown (Army desert) color and I went with sage (light green used by the Air Force).
Also we went with no steel toe, no insulation and non-waterproof but those options do exist if you want them for extra $.
I think we paid about $70 per pair from Amazon.
 

Red Leg

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Been through all sorts (including Le Chameau hikers and the Russell PH), but the best I have used are without a doubt Courtney. Even took a pair through the Zambezi Delta once when my canvas wading shoes were left in camp. They are not an ideal marsh boot, but they and I survived. I have three pair, and I suspect all three will still be viable for as long as I can hunt Africa.

In South Africa you will likely see more PH's in Australian slip-on RedBack, Blundstone or clone boots. They are quite comfortable and durable as well. I have a pair or RedBacks that I use around the place here in Texas.

Interestingly, I have never yet seen a pair of the Aussie boots in use in Namibia or Mozambique.

@Hank2211 may drop into this conversation - he is a big fan of Crocs (y)
 

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I am off to africa for a month with one pair of Russell’s and one pair of Courtney’s. Should be a good comparison.
 

Newboomer

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Combat boots. They are made for military use and they wear well. With good orthotics I find them hard to beat. Good support and comfortable, too.
 

BeeMaa

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I am off to africa for a month with one pair of Russell’s and one pair of Courtney’s. Should be a good comparison.
That would be a good pole to put up here.
I can see it now...
Russell vs Courtney - Who gives who the boot?

What do you think?
 

Newboomer

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Go for it. That might stir up some interest and debate.
 

375 Ruger Fan

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I bought a pair of Irish Setter Softpaw Chukka boots about 8 years ago, on sale at Cabelas for less than $100. The price has gone up, but I think they still represent good value. You can wear them straight out of the box, little or no break in required.

If you have a Red Wing boot store near you, you can see if they have this boot on the shelf and try them out before you buy.
https://www.irishsetterboots.com/casual-footwear/chukka-boots/soft-paw-03875.html
 

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rinehart0050

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I've used Rocky SV2 combat boots. They're great, very comfortable, because I wear them for work every day.

I'd recommend whatever boot you're going to take the time to break in righ .
 

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