Around 6 years ago, I did a review on VaprTrek boots from Irish Setter. Six years later they were finally starting to wear out. As it happened, I was corresponding with Kim Emery, Owner of Firefly Publicity in regards to another matter and she offered to send me a pair of the new VaprTreks to review. I’m grateful for that, and the boots are great!
The “old” VaprTreks, when new, were some of the most comfortable boots I had ever owned. They were like walking on pillows!
On their website, Irish Setter talks about the new and improved VaprTreks: Updated with a fresh yet familiar look, the all-new VaprTrek family is packed with performance-enhancing improvements. Perfect for hunting, hiking, or weekends in the field, these boots are even lighter than before and feature new technologies that enable better traction on rough terrain, greater overall durability, and outstanding all-day comfort.
The day after Thanksgiving, I was supposed to be elk hunting in Arizona’s Unit 4A. I headed north to Payson to meet up with my good friend John Greiss, after a lunch-time Thanksgiving Dinner. Oddly, our part of Arizona was experiencing heavy rain, and beginning in late afternoon, rain it did. I was wearing the new VaprTreks in Payson, schlepping around in the rain and slush. They were comfortable and waterproof. Thursday night it turned to snow and we found ourselves snowed in, in Payson. Every outbound road was closed; there was no way to get to the hunting spot. Friday night it turned bitterly cold, and we finally were able to head out hunting.
For the first time, I had a chance to use another pair of Irish Setter boots – the Elk Trackers with 400g of Thinsulate. Kim and the folks from Irish Setter had sent me these to review the year prior but it was a warm year and I hadn’t had an opportunity to really test them. Now it was 18 degrees in Unit 4A (cold for Arizona!!) and I needed warmer boots.
Here is what the website has to say about Elk Tracker boots: Bring on the toughest terrain, where the biggest bulls rule. Elk Tracker boots will get you there and back. With an aggressive sole for excellent traction, shock absorbing cork midsole for long-lasting comfort and full-grain waterproof leather for support, you can go all day for your trophy.
I have worn the VaprTreks on subsequent hunts, and they are everything advertised – comfortable and durable. The lacing systems is great, and they stay tight. I love the treads – they really dog in on soft soil, and grab when traversing hard surfaces. The boots weren’t a “wide”, and they felt a little snug for me, but not unwearable. They were still comfortable. The other thing to note – if you are hunting in cactus country, you will get an occasional needle make it through the cordura side panels. Other than that, these boots are a great choice, no matter where you are hunting.
The Elk Trackers were also super comfortable, especially for such a rugged boot. They look great and feel better. Even in the bitter cold, 400 grain kept my feet warm. We hiked a bunch out on the flats, and the boots performed well.
So that is three pairs of Irish Setter boots I have reviewed, and I would recommend them all. From the deserts five miles from Mexico, to the Mogollon Rim, to northern Arizona these boots have been sturdy, practical nd comfortable. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the Elk Trackers or the VaprTreks. I again encourage you to check out Irish Setter if you are thinking about new boots.
A big thanks again to Kim and her team, and the great folks at Irish Setter!