This past summer, I finally started using Quicken and running a budget to see where all my money was going. The most important thing I learned was that I wasted a lot of money buying lame junk I didn’t need so I stopped. I cut back on spending but realized I still buy stuff that works well and should probably write up a few reviews of the best stuff. I was kicking around the idea of doing an entire site devoted to these reviews, but instead, I’ll just make a category (“Crap I love”) for this and do them occasionally on this blog. Now on with the review.
Muck Boots (Hoser Mid)
“Gardening” is a misnomer. It’s hard work — yard work. And doing work for hours is no fun if you’re not comfortable. This year I knew I’d be doing a ton of work converting my weed-filled blank backyard into an attractive multi-use outdoor space. So I splurged on good tools and good clothing, knowing I’d be spending many hours using both. Part of that was getting some Muck Boots, in this case, I got what they call the “Hoser Mid” (heh heh).
Muck Boots are kind of expensive, starting at around $50 for low-top clog things and going up to around $100 for knee-high boots. The gardening versions have nice soft soles that curve with your feet and the higher sides are made of neoprene like a wetsuit, so if you get them wet, you’ll stay warm.
In the past, I’ve worn cheap plastic/rubber industrial knee-high boots you can get for $20 at a hardware store, and I have the blisters to show for it. I was never comfortable in the cheap boots because they had no arch and never quite fit right. The interior of those boots was like a radial tire and would quickly cause hotspots on my ankles. I hated wearing them and only reserved them for times it was really muddy and I had short chores to do.
http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?t=metafilter-20&o=1&p=8&l=as1&asins=B0009CJBZY&fc1=000000&IS2=1<1=_blank&lc1=333399&bc1=EEEEEE&bg1=FFFFFF&f=ifr Contrasting it with the Muck Boots, these things are like the Air Jordans of gardening shoes. I actually look forward to wearing them because they remind me of a really comfy pair of Merrell slip-ons I have. The arch is high and since the boots are soft, they bend easy with my feet and ankles so I never get blisters or pain. The bottom half of the boots are rubberized and after spending the last four months moving several tons of soil, bark, and gravel, I haven’t seen any tears or even much wearing down.
If you dread yard work but need to do a lot of it, I implore you to give Muck Boots a try. Check out the whole line on their site and especially the gardening section. Since I’m in a rainy part of the country, the scrub or hoser boots were key and have worked out great, but I’m sure the lower ones would work just as well in a dry climate.