Despite their popularity, slip-on rubber boots never appealed to me, mainly due to the poor fit: they're generally bulky and loose-fitting, precluding any sort of dexterity while afield. Not so with the LaCrosse Alpha Agility, which is a pull-on, over-the-calf, rubber-and-neoprene marsh-master that lets me move fast and feel the ground underfoot. I took these bad boys on an extended pheasant-hunting trip, beating brush and tramping through both muck and standing water, and they never let me down. Same with a week of waterfowling on the river: they shucked water like goose feathers, showing no sign of wear after many miles and multiple days of hard use. The Alpha Agility not only fits snugly, but it beats back the chill, all while keeping me nimble and offering peace of mind in wet conditions—I can go all day long without fear of wet socks and cold feet. The only weakness of this boot appears in the depths of a Montana winter, when it tends to slide on steep slopes covered in dry snow. But that's not what these boots are made for. Keep 'em in their natural environment—water and mud, wet snow, river bottoms and wet, sloppy fields—and they'll do you right. $170; lacrosse.com.
Editor's note: For better traction in dry snow, check out the LaCrosse Alphaburly.