• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the Forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes may be better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts, though are not legally obligated to do so, regardless of content.

Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting. Moderators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts unless they have been alerted and have determined that a post, thread or user has violated the Forums’ policies. Moderators do not regularly independently monitor the Forums for such violations.

Profanity, outright vulgarity, blatant personal insults or otherwise inappropriate statements will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

Users may provide their positive or negative experiences with or opinions of companies, products, individuals, etc.; however, accounts involving allegations of criminal behavior against named individuals or companies MUST be first-hand accounts and may NOT be made anonymously.

If a situation has been reported upon by a reputable news source or addressed by law enforcement or the legal system it is open for discussion, but if an individual wants to make their own claims of criminal behavior against a named party in the course of that discussion, they too must identify themselves by first and last name and the account must be first-person.

Criminal allegations that do not satisfy these requirements, when brought to our attention, may be removed pending satisfaction of these criteria, and we reserve the right to err on the side of caution when making these determinations.

Credible threats of suicide will be reported to the police along with identifying user information at our disposal, in addition to referring the user to suicide helpline resources such as 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-273-TALK.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Dress boots for hunting - 2015 latest report! (and 2017 update)

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Dress boots for hunting - 2015 latest report! (and 2017 update)

    I just spent a very long time trying all the black dress boots (for hunting) available at my local Dover in Jan 2015 and thought I'd share my results here.

    First lesson: boots in real life bear no resemblance to the boots pictured online! (another reason not to buy online). As most of you already know, most tall boots look the same online - beautifully shaped and shiny, etc. But in real life, you instantly realize the leather and cut feel and look so different!

    I tried on the Tuffriders and Mountain Horses. In real life their leather and cut and up-close details really leave much to be desired. Online they look nice but sadly up close they just look cheap. They're still charging hundreds of dollars, though, so in my mind it's not really justifiable.

    Then I tried on Tredstep Donatello Dress Boots. I think they are good value for their price, and the leather and cut looks relatively upscale. However, for some inexplicable reason, the part of the boot that wraps around your heel is very hard, so that you feel like there is a cup stuck to your heel and really biting into it. I have the Tredstep Giotto Paddock Boots and there is no similar issue. So it's not my foot, it's just a weird design quirk. I would have bought it but for this problem. I'm not sure if it would get softer as you "break it in" but I'm not going to risk hundreds of dollars for something that doesn't work upfront.

    The most expensive line in the store was the Cavallos. Surprisingly, the boot was rock hard. I can't believe it. It was not supple at all. I have polo boots that are rock hard because (I was told) they're designed to withstand another player slamming himself and his horse into me (and they have). But really, do equestrian dress boots have to be rock hard? They just feel so uncomfortable, and for that top-of-the-line price, I'm not sure if it's justified.

    Finally, I decided (after trying on everything), that the best dress boot at the store was the Ariat Monaco Stretch Zip Dress Boot. Now, there are at least 2 types of Monacos - this one is the STRETCH one. It's really soft (so much so that it was the only tall boot in the store that doesn't stand upright, it flops over) and the inside is lined with a high-tech looking soft webbing material. Just one touch of the leather surface and you fall in love - it's luxurious and supple and moist. The entire design and cut is very upscale and it looks like it's worth its price. Even the inside is lined in beautiful cream leather. It's not the most expensive dress boot in the store, but it's definitely expensive. However, it was the only one that I felt really justified its price and offered true quality, design, and comfort. The only caveat I have is that I'm not sure how waterproof it is, and since the leather is so soft as to feel delicate, it might scratch or crack after one or two seasons no matter how much you oil it (heartbreak!)

    I hope this is helpful. Sorry I did not note down the actual model names when trying things on, but they are the Jan 2015 models that are currently online and in Dover stores, so I hope this gives you a good idea if you are comparison shopping online for dress boots for hunting. They did not have other brands at the store that they had online, so I am not mentioning those.

    Lastly, as you all probably already know, a Regular calf in one brand is a Full in another and is a Wide in yet another, so you really just have to try them on in the store rather than trust the online specs. And each brand tends to run large or small, too. Infuriating!

    Please share your hunt dress boot shopping stories, I would love to hear the latest.
    Last edited by Imogen; Oct. 23, 2017, 07:46 PM.

  • #2
    I had a similar experience (trying on every boot at Dover) with different take-away.

    I have a pair of custom Vogel boots that suddenly have become impossible to take off. I literally cried the last time I had to remove them. Soooo, I decided I would purchase an inexpensive pair of dress boots to hunt in.

    I have a wider than average, but not technically 'wide' calf and it's hard to find off-the-shelf boots that fit. I tried the Tredstep and was disappointed in the leather and footbed. The Tuffrider's just didn't fit. I flatly refused to try on any of the Ariat boots because I have never seen a pair that holds up. My daughter has a pair of Monaco field boots (my parents bought for her) that are beautiful, but she babies them to keep them alive in a way I never would. The TuffRider boots weren't even close. The Mountain Horse boots were at a good price point. I tried on wides and regulars in every style - finally settling on a pair of regular width Firenze.

    I LOVE those boots!! The leather is nice - not too thin and not too stiff. They broke in pretty quickly. The foot was a bit roomy so I put a pair of Ariat insoles in them and I swear, they feel just like sneakers. They felt pretty squishy before, too. The fit is amazing for me. My daughters have both commented on how great they look. They make my legs look long and slim(ish).

    I'm glad the boots fit and I really do love them, but the experience was the closest thing I have experienced to shopping for a bathing suit. NO FUN!!!
    Y'all ain't right!


    • #3
      For hunting I personally prefer the rock hard end of the spectrum to protect against bangs from trees and stiff brush when moving at speed. It does depend on your country but my boots historically have plenty of dings and scratches.


      • #4
        Originally posted by Beverley View Post
        For hunting I personally prefer the rock hard end of the spectrum to protect against bangs from trees and stiff brush when moving at speed. It does depend on your country but my boots historically have plenty of dings and scratches.
        Yes, plus I think they won't last. I was trying on different styles of Ariats at Rick's tent sale last summer, and although the butter-soft ones were oh-so-tempting I went with a stiffer pair (can't remember the model).


        • #5
          I can't even imagine a pair of Ariat Stretch Monacos in the hunt field. Beautiful? Yes. Hardy? No way. They are designed for the show ring. They would likely die of fright at the first sign of a tree, LOL. (And I love Ariat boots.)

          I agree the Firenze is a decent boot, especially for the money. No shrinking violet, that one.
          Patience pays.


          • #6
            I agree that a sturdier leather is best for hunting to hold up to the bumps & scratches you'll encounter there. And what are often sold as dress boots are really meant for the dressage ring, so they may be very stiff, or even have a stiffener in the back seam.
            I've gotten around the stiffness factor by purchasing my Dehner's used and letting someone else break them in


            • #7
              Agreed. The buttery soft leathers for show ring riding are not meant for the hunt field. I realize it is not possible for everybody, but finding a used pair of older Dehners or Vogels is a far better idea. It really isn't unheard of for those lovely old boots to serve 2 or 3 riders before their usefulness is over.
              Originally posted by The Saddle
              Perhaps I need my flocking adjusted.


              • #8
                I have to agree that the butter soft boots just aren't made for the hunt field. I can't stand super stiff pull on dress boots, so I mainly hunt in a pair of Ariat Bromont tall winter boots. They are comfortable, and after being conditioned and polished they look a sight better than they did out of the box. I have the field version, but they also make a dress version. I figure no one is looking too closely at my boots anyway.

                This year I did purchase a pair of DeNiros from Smartpak and they seem sturdier than the average show boot. Definitely comfortable and very beautifully made as well. I don't plan to use them for hunting, but they do seem reasonably sturdy. I only mention them because Dover doesn't carry them and I think they compare favorably to the boots mentioned in the OP.


                • Original Poster

                  2+ years later update: I've owned the Ariat Monaco dress boots for more than 2 years now. I usually wear them in the arena. I trail rode for 1 long day and I hunted for 2 days in them, and they held up just fine going through light constant rain, crashing through woods (light branches and leaves), and tramping through mud (when I took a spill). They would probably get irreparably scratched or fall apart if I crashed into the rough bark of a tree, or walked for hours in a muddy river, but SO WOULD I...so I try to avoid getting into those situations if I can! If I hunted regularly I would probably have a backup pair of tougher ones, but for those of you who normally wear paddock boots and chaps, and just want a nice dress boot that doesn't hurt when the occasion so demands, this pair would hold up to occasional use over the years. I would say it has the same shelf life of the Monaco or Devon Pro line of Ariat paddock boot. And I don't really need to take any special care of them: I just wipe them clean with tack cleaner and wax, as with my other leather things. Hope this is helpful info for those of you wishing to make an 'investment'.