I mentioned a few weeks back that I was sorting out the update to my winter boot guide over at the Wirecutter. Well, the sorting is complete. For the third year in a row, Columbia's boots have dominated our guide. They're reasonably priced, light weight, wicked waterproof and, so far as a technical-style hiking boot goes, not entirely fugly. Unfortunately, they, along with just about every other winter boot on the planet, are really hard to get hold of right now.
For the last couple of years, we've worked hard to try and get our boot guide out as early as possible (this year we even took to talking about which boots we thought might win in early November before we'd even completed our tests.) Sadly, the extreme conditions we test under require, well, extreme conditions. I can't tell you what it's like to walk in our boots over frozen terrain until the winter hits its stride. And it's difficult to find a company with a deep freeze or refrigerated truck willing to loan you the use of their hardware to test $4,000 worth of boots in over the course of close to 10 or 12 hours. So, I have to wait for the weather to be right. Doing anything else would be doing my readers a disservice. This year, this meant working overnight in Canmore, Alberta outside of the local RCMP detachment building in sub-zero temperatures. It's miserable, but it gets the job done.
And while I have you, I'd like to take this chance to thank my partner Becky. Without her willingness to freeze right along with me, we'd not have found our women's winter boot pick.
To read the full story, you'll want to click on this link.