You will have to wait until next year. But at least two more companies are jumping on the “gumboots” design wagon for winter boots in 2012, including Hi-Tec Sports and its blocky Pará Boot. With a design that marries “the best of standard rubber boot protection with the flexibility, comfort and performance of a hiker,” the company cites a waterproof rubber upper, a neoprene lining, and a “toggle closure” system to lace them on tight.
It has a Vibram sole and removable footbeds. Boot weight is about a pound and a half per foot. The Pará ships in mid-2012 and will cost $105 a pair. What do you think? Rubber ducky on the foot, or slick neo-wellies ready for kicking puddles and slush?
Not to be outdone, Bogs Footwear will produce a smooth and rubbery boot, the Plimsoll, for women with a “sneaker-like” fit and a temp rating of minus-40 degrees F. Made of neoprene and rubber, the Plimsolls are waterproof and pull on just like true gumboots with no laces needed.
The big blue Bogs will cost $135 when the come to market in 2012. Both products will be on display next month at the Outdoor Retailer trade show in Utah.
—Editor Stephen Regenold is on Twitter at @TheGearJunkie.