The Panhandle Rancher speaks……on footwear

In response to my recent questioning about footwear for disaster use – The Panhandle Rancher gives his two cents….Rourke
Beyond doubt, lace up, high top, combat boots offer the best in foot and ankle protection. Ankles are a weak spot especially when carrying a heavy ruck, MBR and ammo. A turned ankle resulting in a sprain can be life a life ending event in that survival situation. I wear lightweight combat boots such as issued to the USMC for the summer ( or similar Welco boots – and heavier Danner boots ( for the winter. Although I don’t wear boots all of the time, I do keep the seasonally appropriate pair of combat boots (with a pair of heavy wool socks rolled up in each boot) in my vehicle next to the ruck. There has been a recall of Bates RAT USMC boots due to fabrication failures but I suspect those failures are extreme desert heat related. 
One can safely wear combat boots on horseback when riding bareback or if the saddle is equipped (and every saddle should be) with safety breakaway stirrups (see Click on the design tab to see how this type stirrup works. Make certain your combat boot toe isn’t too large to easily escape the safety stirrup of choice. 
Barefoot or open toe foot ware begs spider, scorpion, or snake bite and exposes the foot to poison ivy, oak, and sumac. High heels for the women are totally useless for anything other than turning the occasional male head (but some like me, prefer ladies wearing sensible shoes, including combat boots). 
Off topic but not as far as my previous comment, cotton clothing such as jeans, which although comfortable, can be a killer in the winter. When wet from precipitation, perspiration, or a dunking, cotton dries ever so slowly and is quite cold. Everyone in regions with freezing temperatures should have wool trousers and shirt as part of their kit.
My thoughts,
Panhandle Rancher


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7 thoughts on “The Panhandle Rancher speaks……on footwear”

  1. I’ve tried the Welco USMC RAT and every pair was defective from the tongue gusset being sown in so short that you couldn’t get your foot in the boot, to the lining bunching up. I can’t recommend the Welco USMC RAT from Sportsmen’s Guide. I always recommend you first find and try on the exact boot you want then go shop the price online. I can’t tell you how many times the local business has matched the online price and I like doing business with local small business.

  2. good advice from the panhandle rancher. also the added comment about keeping pair of wool pants at hand. i have a surplus pair of wool pants from german army, double seated, extra fabric on knees, adjustable closures at ankles, adjustable waist. and are substantial in thickness. have worn them in the dead of winter out here in the west and they’re near on indestructible, stop the wind, and of course, very toasty. all for $15. not itchy if you wear some smartwool bottoms or similar garb underneath.
    also i keep a russian ushanka in the trunk, part wool, part fur i think, ear flaps, another great, warm item, also surplus. looks kool also. haha, goes well with my ak74 too!

  3. Rourke and Panhandle- exc. Thanks .Our son likes Bates boots very much. He walks a great deal in the security field. Thanks re the safety stirrups-a good reminder.
    I itch from wool so I wear it over something cotton .Arlene

  4. Foot wear?
    Hmmm…. I have a pair of Danner 10″ Ft. Lewis mountain boots (waterproof, Thinsulate, Goretex, nice cleats) from about 40 years ago that are still cooking right along, I think they are guaranteed for life. Cost me a fortune even back then, but they were obviously worth the investment. I also have a pair of construction boots from sears that stay in the jeep. Here in the south I am partial to Vietnam era jungle boots and well made mid high sport shoes although I haven’t seen any that would last more than a year in many moons. The quality is disposable these days. I require an expensive 1″ pad on my left shoe so I’m partial to resoling good footwear. Problem is the uppers disintegrate before the soles these days. Get the best, pay the money and get value. Sears often has value packs of quality wool socks on sale. Regards, D.


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