Biker Boots on a Budget

Someone sent me an email asking, “if you could only get one pair of motorcycle boots, what would it be?” He complimented my boot collection and suggested that I make a video to demonstrate my response to his question.

This is a very hard question to ask a guy who has as many pairs of motorcycle boots as I have.

I narrowed it down to three choices, which all happen to be made by Justin Brands under the Chippewa Boots banner here in the United States:

1. Traditional Chippewa Harness Boots — Style 27868

These boots are rugged, solid, well-constructed, and a great value for the money. They have a Vibram 430 lug sole which provides decent traction. Harness boots are about the most ubiquitous (common) boots that bikers in the U.S. wear. Chippewa harness boots are made in the USA, and bargains for them abound — usually around major holidays. (If you haven’t seen it already, check out my video where I do a comparison of four different makes of motorcycle harness boots).

2. Traditional Chippewa 17″ Engineer Boots — Style 27909 with steel toe; 27908 without a steel toe

Engineer boots are also a very common choice that bikers wear. These boots are also available in a shorter (11″) version, but I prefer the taller variety because tall boots provide better protection for the whole leg, instead of only the lower leg and ankle. The boots come with a regular nitrile (rubber) sole, which provides moderate traction. They are also unlined, so they will sag at the ankles, but that adds (in my opinion) to the overall character of the boot.

3. Chippewa Firefighter Boots — Style 27422

I would be remiss if I failed to mention the boots that I like to wear often when I ride my Harley. Chippewa Firefighter boots are not often considered by bikers, but they should be. They are very solid and sturdily built, as their primary users are wildland firefighters. What I like most about these boots is that they are very comfortable — suitable for an all-day ride. While they are leather-lined, they don’t get hot. Their Vibram 100 lug soles provide superb traction. I have been recommending them for years, and stand behind that recommendation. Great boots — a bit more expensive than their traditional biker brothers listed above, but to answer that email — if I had to pick only one pair of boots for use while riding my motorcycle, what would that be? Chippewa Firefighter Boots, feet-down (I would use the American expression “hands-down,” but I haven’t found a pair of boots to fit my hands and still let me type LOL!)

Here is the video that I produced that puts what I wrote above into a visual explanation: