From an old-growth rainforest on Victoria Island to Southern California beaches — and the snow-covered streets of ski towns — Blundstone’s hearty pull-on Thermal Boots have your feet covered.
More than likely, you’ll see an increasing number of Blundstone boots around outdoor and mountain communities. While the 150-year-old Tasmanian boot brand focuses on work-centric footgear, I wanted to find out how its boots support a lifestyle of outdoor recreation. After all, the brand specializes in withstanding the harsh conditions faced by generations of farmers.
This winter, I tested the recently expanded line of the unisex Thermal Boots: a lace-free, streamlined leather shoe constructed for cold-weather use. At first impression, the design seemed fairly simple and stylish.
But despite the brand’s lineage, I wasn’t sure how these would handle the elements where I live in Crested Butte, Colorado. Here, the annual climate ranks among the coldest in the United States. But following my testing, my skepticism was squashed.
In short: After several months of diverse handling, the Thermal Boots proved to be completely waterproof, durable in freezing conditions, and extremely supportive. They also adapted across climates and remained comfortable for airport travel.
While these are not a replacement for outdoor-centric activities like hiking, snowshoeing, or fat biking, they are an asset for broad, everyday action outside.
Blundstone Thermal Boots Review
I first tested the Thermal Boots in fluffy snow and sloshy puddles on a chilly 30-degree winter day in Crested Butte. I pulled the boots on after leaving the gym. Despite wearing thin, sweaty post-workout socks, my feet stayed warm on the overcast walk thanks to the sheepskin footbed and the Thinsulate insulation.
In contrast, my hands grew cold in my gloves. Despite stepping in countless pools of cold water, the leather upper and elastic, latex seams — all waterproof — barred moisture from entering the boot.
I continued to test the boots across a range of temperature conditions including early morning, -10-degree Fahrenheit commutes (walking and driving), as well as on rainy hikes, wet beach strolls, and put-ins across varied winter climates.
Overall, I was surprised by the adaptability of this all-around footwear in all those environments. Plus, the support it offered my feet on long hauls through airports or on short hikes also impressed me. And they afforded the option to throw on a blouse and jeans for dinner afterward and still look look clean-cut.
Utility & Ease of Use
Above all, the Thermal Boots look and feel straightforward and utilitarian. These turned out to be excellent characteristics that made a big difference in my recreation and outdoor pursuits.
Two durable pull tugs behind and in front of the ankle make entry and exit smoother and faster compared to my lace-up boots. Before and after wintry activities, it was also nice to skip the hassle of touching or maintaining ice-covered laces.
I found the design ideal for cold-water surf put-ins, too, where I needed to pull on booties. Likewise, this eased hassles at trailhead and ski resort transitions, when I had to put on a snowboard or ski boots for splitboarding, snowboarding, or ski touring. Note: If you do get sand in the boots, it’s no big deal, as the sheepskin footbed is removable.
I did discover one important exception to this feature, however. After a 14-inch powder storm, I wore another taller, lace-up snow boot for outdoor work because the Thermal Boots’ height only reaches the top of my ankle bone. So for deep snow or slush, you may seek a more robust, taller option.
Comfort & Durability
The Thermal Boots felt comfortable but also fit the bill for countless everyday tasks that required some durability.
At home, I naturally stopped using my other winter footwear for shoveling, around-town errands, taking out the trash, loading the truck or snowmobile trailer, moving — including heavy lifting of furniture — and road trips. We have a no-shoe practice at home, so slip-on boots became a time-saver when running in and out of the house.
Throughout activity, the deep, rugged tread and TPU sole helped me stay flat-footed on chunky or smooth ice patches. After my testing, the outsole showed minimal wear and tear following many miles of exertion. It also held up against oil and acid, so if you or your partner does engine work in the driveway or garage, that’s a perk.
Up top, the upper felt strong but not stiff. A cushioned midsole — with a shock-absorption system — helped prevent fatigue. My feet weren’t sore after a 24-hour flight delay and hauling heavy ski luggage around Denver International Airport.
A supple interior leather reinforcement helped protect high-use areas around the ankle. Yet the Thermal Boots remain light — about 3 pounds per pair — compared to other winter boots I own, like my burly Sorel Caribou boots, which weigh 3 pounds 6 ounces.
The Bottom Line
These Blundstone Thermal Boots feel well-made, are comfortable, and work across wide range of applications. While this justifies the $225 investment in my book, you’ll have to weigh the performance against your own needs and budget. Nowadays, they stand as my go-to pair for many daily and recreation scenarios in dry or humid climates.
And best of all, they serve me well from freezing temperatures up to 40-degree weather. After a full season, the sheepskin footbed wore down in a few places, but the boots still provide warmth. And the exterior shows no real deterioration, but the appearance of the leather aged well with the elements.
And while they maintained a steady, warm temperature for my feet, they are not breathable. So if you run hot, blast lower-vent heat while you drive, or happen to face athlete’s foot, then these are not the best pair for you.
Overall, the Thermal Boots make for a long-term investment and a solid choice as a functional, aesthetic winter boot that supports outdoor recreation, travel, and mountain lifestyle. Bonus: They felt a bit spacious for my narrow feet, but I experienced no heel-slip or hot spots, and I can wear light- or medium-weight socks, so the overall shape seems to work well across foot types.