For hunters, having the right footwear is one of their most important hunting preparations. If your feet are wet, cold, and blistered, then your hunting trip will not only be miserable, but you won’t be hunting at the top of your game.
A good high-water boot is an essential piece of hunting gear, and that’s why in this article, we’ll be comparing the top brands in our Muck vs Bogs vs Lacrosse showdown!
Let’s start with a quick comparison.
In short, if you’re looking for a serious hunting boot, you can’t go wrong with the Lacrosse Alphaburly. It offers the best comfort and durability out of all the products we reviewed, and hunters recommended it more than any other rubber boot.
It offers excellent breath-ability to prevent sweat from ruining your insulation or scent protection, and it’s fitted nature makes it more suited to climbing than the stiffer Muck or Bogs boots.
However, it is a bit narrow, so if you have very wide feet you might be forced to use the Muck boots instead for comfort.
Interested in learning more about these brands? Keep reading to see our full review for each one, or you can check prices for our recommended model on Amazon.
Recommend Models: Alphaburly and Aerohead
We’ve spent a lot of time researching the brands featured in this article, and the Lacrosse Alphaburly was the most recommended boot by hunters surveyed.
There are a lot of reasons for this, but we feel that the number one reason for choosing this boot is mobility, something that our other options seem to be lacking.
While the Muck boots are often clunky and rigid, the Lacrosse boots are streamlined and lightweight. They’re easy to maneuver in, and they perform much better for tasks like climbing up tree stands and for navigating sketchy terrain.
For the Lacrosse vs Muck Boots debate, Lacrosse definitely has a serious advantage in this department.
Their form fitting construction offers a heel that cups your foot and a more flexible in-step as well. This makes them much more comfortable for long treks to your preferred hunting ground when compared to Muck boots or Bogs, because your feet won’t be sliding around in them chaffing and blistering your heels.
We also really like the fact that the Alphaburly has adjustable gusset straps on the back so that you can easily customize your fit. However, that point seems to be debatable, and other hunters are not fans of this strap system. (You can also get a half-zip version that’s easier to get one your foot.)
These boots also have much better tread in our opinion when compared to the other boots as you can see in the photo below, making them better for rocky terrain. Bad tread can mean a twisted ankle or broken leg in the back country, miles from civilization, and that means it should be a top concern when shopping for a good pair of boots.
The second most likely reason that so many hunters prefer this boot is durability. Many hunters complain that their Muck boots and Bogs can be easily torn on brush and terrain, an almost guaranteed scenario for hunting out in the bush. However, the Alphaburly seems to do much better in these conditions, with some hunters keeping their boots for 5-8 seasons, a great lifespan for a rubber boot, which are known for not being as hardy as leather hunting boots.
These boots also have an interestingly patterned neoprene liner, which greatly helps with breath-ability, another thing that the other two boots are lacking.
This helps you to keep from getting sweaty, which will then not only make you cold but will also create scent. Scents alert deer and other game to your presence and spooks them, leaving your favorite hunting grounds a ghost town.
If you go with the Alphaburly boot, we’d recommend pairing it with a good quality Merino wool sock. These socks are amazingly warm, keeping your feet toasty in harsh conditions, but they also don’t allow sweat or odor to build up in your shoes. This greatly helps to control scent issues, making them a very worthwhile purchase.
Honestly, the only negative points for this boot are the price and the fact that it can be very ill fitting for those with wider feet due to its form-fitting nature. So, if you’ve got a wide foot bed, then you might need to go with the Muck boots here. Which are honestly not bad boots. They’re just not our top pick. However, they do have merits of their own, which brings us to our next review.
Recommend Models: Arctic Pro, Woody Max, and Wetlands
So, we’ve established that the Lacrosse boots are our top pick, but that’s not the whole story! The truth is, the right boot for you will depend on your personal usage, the situation, and your sizing. So, let’s talk about the Muck boots now and who they might be a good fit for.
While some people dislike one boot or another, the main reason is comfort and their foot size. For people with wider feet, the Muck boot is often the most comfortable option for them. While these boots are a little clunkier and less flexible, they offer comfort for people with larger feet that either can’t get into tighter fitting boots or have trouble getting them off!
Conversely, if you have a high in-step, then you may either have trouble getting Mucks on your feet, or find that there is too much room around the foot! This can cause that infuriating “sliding” that causes blisters and ruins your insulation. Still, some people swear that Mucks are the best upland and utility boots that they’ve ever owned.
The Mucks are also almost universally preferred by every sportsmen in one category: ice fishing. That’s because these boots have exceptional traction on ice, making it the top choice for this sport. While we prefer the Lacrosse’s traction for climbing and iffy terrain, if that’s not your focus, then the Mucks will do you just fine on flat land, and they’ll perform exceptionally well walking over ice. So, be sure to take that into consideration when making a purchase.
As for durability, the Mucks tend to not hold up quite as well as the Lacrosse boots, and you may need to replace them a little sooner. Most people expect to get 3-4 seasons out of their Mucks before requiring a replacement, which isn’t bad. That’s just the nature of rubber boots, unfortunately.
The good news is, the Mucks are a bit cheaper than the Lacrosse boots to make up for this shorter lifespan, and if you’re careful with them, then you’ll still get a lot of wear out of them before they give in. Just be wary of brush, because sharp branches can easily tear the boot outer, ruining your weatherproofing.
All in all, these boots are a pretty good compromise between quality and price. So, if you’re just looking for a cheap yet dependable boot for hunting wear in bad weather on relatively flat or icy terrain, then we’d recommend picking up a pair of these, especially if you have wider feet.
Recommend Models: Bowman and Classic Bogs
Okay, so that brings us to our last entry: the Bogs. Truth be told, the Bogs are a more casual boot, and if you’re looking for a serious hunting boot then we’d still recommend the other two choices in the article, but there is a potential market here in the middle ground.
For starters, the Bogs are generally the cheapest option on the list. They can be a great choice if you’re looking for a cheap, yet effective, Muck boot alternative which will keep your feet dry for occasional flat land hunting and maybe some yard or farm chores.
Some people prefer the fit of the Bogs too, which seems to be a mixture of our other two options. They are lighter than Muck boots, but they don’t seem to be as clunky, with some hunters claiming they’re as good as tennis shoes for chasing down hogs.
Bogs also seems to have a nicer variety of footwear if you’re looking for something cheap that can pull double duty as a bad weather boot, chore boot, or work shoe. The bad news is that their “hunter” specific boots seem to be pretty pricey. However, there are a lot of other suitable models in their work boot category which are cheaper and will likely serve you just as well.
As far as durability goes, they hold up pretty well, and you can expect to get a few seasons out of them. However, this will depend on how hard you go on them, and if you’re not careful around brush or other sharp objects, then it’s easy to tear them up quickly, so be mindful. While they aren’t quite as high-quality as Mucks are, the price is right, and they’re worth considering.
However, the biggest problem with a cheaper boot like the Bogs is that they lack a lot of the “invisible” extras of pricier boots. This includes things like thicker soles and foam foot padding which adds a lot of comfort.
This is obviously not a big concern if you’re just walking around town, but if you plan to spend all day hiking and hunting in the backwoods in these boots, then we’d recommend something like the Lacrosse instead.
Some people even complain that they can feel the ground through these boots, and that’s bad news for your poor feet when traversing rough terrain, or hunting in extreme temperatures. The breath-ability of Bogs is also not great, and that can cause issues with sweating, blisters, and sliding around in them, especially if the fit is not on point.
However, we do have to give Bogs big props in one area: customer service. While some hunters have reported issues with getting replacements for defective Mucks, Bogs is on top of things. One hunter reports that Bogs immediately mailed out a replacement pair after his boots developed a crack after only 2 months of use, but Mucks was not nearly as helpful for the same issue. So, that’s definitely something to think about.
In closing, any of these boots could be considered a good boot based on your situation, and it’s important that you make your choice based on your needs. We’ve done our best to provide the information which we think is most valuable, but only you know the details of your situation, obviously.
We do recommend looking on Amazon for these boots, because they almost always offer the best price. This is due to the fact that Amazon actually has an algorithm which tracks pricing from other stores, even the brand’s own website, and then matches or beats the price automatically. Pair that with easy returns, and buying shoes on their website is really a no-brainer.