Chippewa boots are an American classic dating back to 1901. While other manufacturers often focus on adding the newest features and fanciest technology, Chippewa is more interested in expert craftsmanship and timeless quality. Their Mocc-Toe Pull-On Snake Boots illustrate why classics never go out of style. Here’s a closer look:
What We Like
My favorite aspect of these boots is the quality construction. The Goodyear Leather Welt connects the outsoles to the uppers. The boots are incredibly durable and unlikely to fall apart over time.
Briar pitstop leather and espresso Vipercloth wrap the feet, ankles, and calves. The 17-inch uppers are typically long enough to cover your entire leg (of course, the exact coverage area will depend on your height).
They have two sets of buckles. One set is slightly above the ankles and helps the boots stay snug against your feet. The second buckles, located at the top of the boot, help keep out water and debris.
When I think about the boots people wore 100 years, comfort doesn’t immediately spring to mind. But these boots are comfortable, warm and supportive. They’re lined with Ruby Nylex, a material which is waterproof but doesn’t hinder airflow.
A Texon Flexwell insole conforms to your foot’s pressure points. You can hike all day long, and your feet won’t ache. A Chippewa UCM Orthotic provides additional support.
These are non-insulated boots. You don’t have to worry about overheating or sweating. However, you’ll probably want to wear some thick socks if you’ll be hiking in cold weather.
Aside from the Ruby Nylex, the boots also have Chip-a-Tex waterproof booties inside for additional water protection. If water does manage to drip into the boots, the booties prevent it from touching your skin.
They’re great for walking through practically any conditions. The Vibram Robinson Gumlite outsoles allow you to stride confidently through tall grass, thick underbrush, and other rugged terrain. Steel shanks and four iron-rubber midsoles provide support for your legs and ankles.
Of course, the boots are designed to protect against more than cold and wet weather. They also keep you safe from snakes. Even large, long-fanged snakes will be unable to penetrate the thick leather exterior. The boots also feature a 17-inch Vipercloth shaft with a zipper and Velcro flap.
What We Wish was Different
I’m not particularly in love with the buckles, especially the ones on the upper part of the boot. They frequently caught on low vegetation. It was more of an annoyance than a serious problem.
I also wasn’t a big fan of the calf strap. It only closes the top of the boot about an inch. If you have skinny calves, the boots will likely feel loose. However, the adjustable ankle strap can help improve the fit.
On the plus side, the extra room around the calves means most people will be able to wear jeans or thicker pants inside the boots. Just know that they’ll probably be roomy if you plan on wearing regular socks.
But there was an aspect to these boots which was a bit too “old school” for my liking. The double layers of leather are incredibly stiff at first. You’ll need break-in time before they’ll fit comfortably.
I also wasn’t thrilled with the weight of these boots. They’re not exactly light when dry, but they can get downright heavy when the exterior is wet. The heavy weight is an unfortunate side effect of the overall durability. I’d rather be protected from snakes than wear a lighter boot, but the heft is still substantial.
What Other Customers are Saying
Most people who bought these boots seem pleased with their purchase. The overall high quality of these boots certainly turns a lot of heads. For example, one Amazon customer said his Chippewas were the best snake proof boots he’d ever owned, superior to similar boots from Rocky’s and Game Winner.
Quite a few buyers remarked on the cost. They’re a bit pricey compared to similar styles. However, they’ll also last a long time. Many buyers remarked this was likely the last pair of boots they would need to buy.
For example, Bob said he felt the boots would last a lifetime. KJ went a step further and said he felt the boots would last “several lifetimes.”
However, you’ll need some patience during the break-in period. The stiffness of the leather was a common complaint. Some customers said they rubbed the boots with leather dressing. Buyer Dan said they were stiff but did break-in after a few days of use.
Many people said they preferred to wear thick socks with these boots. Wool socks will both keep your feet warm and help prevent blisters from developing. However, note that thick socks will affect the sizing. You might want to go up one size if you plan to wear thick socks frequently.
Although labeled as men’s boots, women can wear them, too. One buyer said his wife wore the boots without a problem. At just 5’ 5”, she’s pretty short, but the boots allowed her to move her knees freely.
While many buyers expressed confidence that the boots can protect against snake bites, nobody experienced such a situation in real life. A few field tests would make me feel a bit more comfortable. However, the dual leather exterior certainly seems like it’ll protect against large fangs.
The Chippewa Men’s Mocc-Toe Snake Boot is one of our picks for the best hunting boots.
These boots have remained basically unchanged for over 100 years – and it’s easy to see why. They’re tough, waterproof and warm. Plus, they’ll protect your legs against snakebites.
Just don’t expect to wear them for long periods right away. They require a rather significant break-in period. At first, they’ll feel pretty stiff. Foot and ankle flexibility will be practically non-existent.
But once they soften up, they’ll likely last a lifetime. It’s easy to see why these boots are a beloved classic.