Review: Oboz Bridger 9" Insulated

Oboz Women's Bridger 9' Insulated

Review: Oboz Bridger 9" Insulated

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Angie Mangels

When you own an active dog, you don’t really have a choice about getting out; the dog must be walked no matter the weather. As the seasons change, it can be tricky to figure out what shoes to put on for our changing trail conditions—hiking shoes work fine up to a certain point, but aren’t best in deep or wet snow, or for long periods of time; and while snow boots are great, they just don’t have the support my feet and ankles prefer. The Oboz Bridger 9” Insulated Waterproof women's boot (a 10" men's version is also available) has finally solved this dilemma. These are some pretty serious shoes that give my feet a four-wheel-drive option for tackling the variable conditions of the season.

For how burly these boots look, I was amazed at how comfortable they were straight out of the box. With no need for a break-in period, I was able to hit the trail for a nice long hike and had no complaints at the end of the first outing. The heel-cup holds my foot perfectly in place with no slipping; the roomy toe-box accommodates my feet nicely with no pinching; and they are true to size which allows me to wear my thick socks with no problem. They have plenty of arch support and I liked the nine-inch height for how stable they make me feel even on the roughest of snow-packed trails.

The Bridger 9” have some serious bite on the tread and with just the right amount of stiffness they tackle everything with ease. I get up and down snow-covered hills without slipping while other hikers had issues. The winter-optimized rubber provides a softer tread in cold weather and does a great job of holding its grip on the trail for everything but pure ice. The traction and stability have given me the confidence to tackle many of our wintry trails that I might have thought twice about before.

With the molded-rubber toes and heels, plus the Oboz B-Dry membrane, these boots are completely waterproof. No matter how long you spend out in the snow, your feet will stay warm and dry—I even found that I could stand in a stream with no leakage. The thermal insoles provide another layer against the cold, and with the 400-gram Thinsulate insulation, it’s easy to keep the toes comfy in just about any temperature. Even with all that insulation, they still manage to wick just fine—I can wear them inside between outings without overheating. I really like the top felt portion with the sherpa-pile lining; it naturally sheds the snow and keeps it from sliding down your boots for those moments when you get in deep.

Overall, the Bridger 9" boots are awesome for hiking in any conditions and are even great around town for when the snow and slush piles up. There's even a d-ring attachment and heel ridge for attaching gaiters, meaning you can easily break trail with these on snowy days, or even wear them on your next snowshoe outing. I think I’m going to be sad when the weather warms up next spring and I have to put these bad boys away, as I keep looking for any excuse to wear these versatile and comfortable boots. Luckily, with an energetic dog, I don't have to look too far.

$195 for women's, $200 for men's; obozfootwear.com.


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