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Recommendations for off the shelf field boots (not for showing)

I’ve been wearing my 25-year-old custom Vogel field boots to hack in and it’s time to retire them. Off the shelf boots have come a long way and I’m looking for any recommendations for a decent field boot under $400, preferably something I can get at Dover’s since there’s a store one hour away. I no longer show so don’t need fancy. Thanks!

Ego 7 last and don’t require breakin. Tredstep are sturdy but they eat your heels up.


Ariat Heritage Contour. Just get them tall or extra tall, bc they can run a tough short.

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After blowing through several pairs of Ariat Heritage boots is less than a year each, I went to Ego7. Current pair is about two years old. I did need to replace a zipper. But they were more than $400, even purchased from Fundis.


I save my custom boots for the show ring only and actually school in these Tuffrider budget models - surprisingly, have held up for 9 months of 5-6 days a week riding and expect them to make it at least a year or two. They’re nothing fancy, but soft and zero break in time. I would buy these again.



I have those boots and I love them. I hunt and hunter pace in them; and they’ve held up well.

I also have a pair of the SmartPak Eliza field boots that I’ve been very happy with. .

Sigh… I know I have some weight to lose but even 30 pounds ago these wouldn’t have fit my calves. Which is a shame because they DO look nice!

@ljc I’ve been schooling in the Mountain Horse “vegan” boot, I think they are called veganza or something. Fancy way of way of saying not-real-leather. But they look like leather, there was zero break in, and they were less than $200. So far they’ve done pretty good. My only complaint is the ankle is a little loose and unsupportive compared to my semi-custom Deniros, which I can’t quite get zipped.


Fancy way of saying “plastic”. Vegan leather is plastic.

Not knocking it, I have plenty of synthetic clothing (aka plastic)! I just think the “vegan leather” marketing is BS. It’s a synthetic petrochemical material.

Stepping off my soapbox that no one asked me to get on in the first place :joy:


I love my Mountain Horse Sovereign field boots-- tough and long wearing, while easy to break in, and fancy enough for the show ring just in case.

I like the Tricolore boots from SmartPak. I’m right between widths/heights of a lot of off the shelf boots and had ended up with Treadstep and Ariats that didn’t quite drop enough in the past (I agree with the comment about Treadstep rubbing the achilles). Tricolore offered a height that was just a bit shorter and that worked out perfectly for me. The leather is very soft so I’m not sure how well they hold up to daily riding. I was only riding 2-3/week when I first bought them, and dropped down to 1/week soon after. After just shy of 4 years at that frequency, they still look very good.


I have sworn not to buy any more Ariats because they always end up falling apart or failing in some big way, but I really needed a new pair of schooling boots a few months ago, so I randomly decided to try on the Heritage Contour IIs when I was down in Aiken. The clerk zipped them up and then we were both silent for several seconds while we processed how perfectly they fit, as if designed for my legs. It was weird. :laughing:

So far so good, but honestly, I’m not expecting them to last out the year! I ride two a day, 5-6 days a week, so not super heavy use, but my schooling boots never seem to last, no matter the level of care I give them. Ariats have failed me so many times, I’m a bit fatalistic about them. I did find an almost new pair of the old, OLD-style Monacos, and snapped those up, but I really do like the Heritage.

I also like the style of the MH Sovereigns a lot, and actually use a pair with the punched toe cap for my show boots because they fit me better and look nicer than my customs, but they aren’t very sturdy, in my experience. I was buying those for schooling boots for quite a while, but they keep getting thinner and more fragile, and $400+ is too much to spend on everyday boots that won’t last the year. I found a pair of the lovely brown Sovereigns on sale and the zipper gave out almost immediately. :roll_eyes:

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Thank you all! Lots of choices. Will visit the SmartPak store tomorrow and try on different boots. We’re in record heat right now so driving to an a/c store sounds perfect.

I am astounded, however, at how far off the shelf tall boots have come. Back in the day, it was basically either Marlborough’s (sp? It was so many years ago) or custom.


They come in wide, @TheJenners! I have 17" calves and they fit!

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Where??? The wide on the Web site for 7.5 was only 15" :sob:. I need a 16.5".

Eta okay 15.5 but they still aren’t zipping up!

This is what I ordered -


I wear a 10.5, so that got me to the 16 1/2 calf, which worked - the elastic is forgiving.

When I first got back into hunting, 5 years ago, I ordered the Belmont Field boots in a size 11 -


and I had to have the cobbler cut them down, as they were too big in the calf, and I’m vain.

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The $64 dollar question is, what’s your shoe size?

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Definitely the Dover Madison’s. They are durable enough to be an every day boot and great quality for the price point.


I’ve heard good things about Ego7 and just got a pair of paddock boots. For someone with wide feet, I like the wider footbed compared to other brands I’ve tried. Another place is took at high end equine consignment shops. If you know your size and what works, you can sometimes find minimally used pairs that way. I

Two of my barn friends and I got Dover’s own tall boots, the Madison style. They’re definitely under $400. While I cannot attest to their durability because I only wore them for showing AQHA and Paints, they’ve lasted me 3 years.

The ones I beat up and abuse? My Ariat field boots. It’s like I’m daring them to disintegrate, yet they don’t. Zombie boots! :laughing: