Gear Box: Keen Summit County Winter Boots

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Living in Austin, Texas I don’t have the need for snow boots very often. In fact, up until a week and a half ago, I hadn’t even owned a pair since I moved here from Iowa more than five years ago. But when I received an invitation to visit Yellowstone in the winter, I knew I’d need good boots to keep my feet warm and dry while spending the days playing in the snow. As usual, I turned to the Keen catalog of footwear to see what they had on offer, and ended up going with a pair of Summit County Boots. A choice that would prove to be very wise.

Made from an interesting mix of leather and Keen’s patented KEEN.DRY waterproof breathable membrane, the Summit County boots are warm and comfortable, while allowing us to stay active in harsh winter conditions. In fact, the first thing that impressed me was just how comfortable these boots actually are. Often times I put them on at the beginning of the day and didn’t take them off until it was time for bed that night, and yet my feet remained comfortable going from the lodge to a snowcoach to a four feet deep pile of snow. It is a real testament to any boot that you can wear it for hours on end without having a negative effect on your feet, and better yet, these boots didn’t seem to need any kind of break-in time, as they were comfortable out of the box and didn’t cause any kinds of blisters or other discomforts.

Yellowstone is the ultimate winter playground and a perfect place to test any cold weather gear. There were times when I was up to my waist in snow or walking across thick ice. No matter what the conditions though, my pair of Summit County boots kept a firm grip on the surface, and I don’t remember slipping once while I had them on. Something that I appreciated throughout my trip. Best of all, even when I was in deep snow, the powder stayed on the outside of the boot and my toes stayed dry throughout.

In fact, the only time that these boots didn’t keep me warm was on a morning that we spent watching wildlife. We ended up standing around in the cold weather for long periods of time, and my toes did begin to get quite cold, even wearing a thick pair of socks. To be fair though, the temperature was hovering around zero degrees, and the lack of activity played a roll in chilling my feet. Later that day, when the mercury had climbed to a balmy 5ºF, I wore these same boots on a snowshoeing excursion that lasted for several hours, and my feet stayed warm the entire time.

If you have some cold weather adventures planned for the months ahead, then I’d definitely recommend a pair of Keen Summit County Boots. They are a great blend of comfort, warmth, and quality, all wrapped up in an incredibly light weight package. For the first pair of winter boots I’ve owned in a half-decade, they are an impressive set of footwear, and one that will serve me well for any snowy adventures I have in the future. In fact, I’d venture to guess that these boots will be perfect for any cold weather activities short of a trek to one of the Poles.

Excellent gear once again from Keen.

(MSRP: $140)

Kraig Becker

3 thoughts on “Gear Box: Keen Summit County Winter Boots”

  1. Yay Austin! LOL I've never been to Yellowstone, but I will make a note to pack these Keen boots when I do. I agree, Keen footwear is excellent!

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