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The Original Muck Boot Company Arctic Ice Nomadic Sport Review

This traditional snow boot amps up its functionality with a bomber lugged outsole and a warm protective design that's easy to pull on and kick off
The Original Muck Boot Company Arctic Ice Nomadic Sport
Photo: Amazon
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $180 List | Check Price at Amazon
Pros:  Warm, full nylon shell is very protective, thick durable outsole, slips on and off easily
Cons:  Lacks stability through the shaft, poor lacing system, no specific fit
Manufacturer:   The Original Muck Boot Company
By Amber King ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Mar 2, 2021
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78
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#5 of 15
  • Warmth - 25% 8
  • Weather Protection - 25% 9
  • Comfort & Fit - 25% 6
  • Ease of Use - 15% 8
  • Traction - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The Muck Arctic Ice Nomadic Sport is a traditional snow boot with a bomber outsole designed to take on all types of winter weather. We wore it while hiking, performing daily chores, and working at an outdoor school. Its seamless nylon outer is impervious to water, while the Vibram sole makes for easy walking on slippery surfaces. It slips on with the pull of a loop and can be kicked off easily at the door. While this quickly became a winter go-to, we wish we could cinch it down for a more specific fit. But for those on the hunt for a cute and utilitarian snow boot, this is our top recommendation.

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Pros Warm, full nylon shell is very protective, thick durable outsole, slips on and off easilyProtective and durable, very warm, breathable, excellent traction, great for hiking, high valueSuper cozy liner, completely waterproof, cute style options, comfortable, warmVery protective, warm, durable, excellent traction on icy surfacesAffordable, excellent protection, super stylish, easy to get into
Cons Lacks stability through the shaft, poor lacing system, no specific fitNot the most stylishExpensive, shaft lacks stabilityExpensive, bulky and heavy, reported issues with leaking after long-term usePoor leather durability, thinner construction isn't super warm
Bottom Line This traditional snow boot amps up its functionality with a bomber lugged outsole and a warm protective design that's easy to pull on and kick offAn affordable and high performance winter hiking bootThe epitome of comfort and warmth, wrapped in a cute, yet high performing waterproof packageA durable and protective neoprene boot offering warmth and protectionA stylish and high value boot built to take on snowy weather and tall snow banks
Rating Categories The Original Muck B... Keen Revel IV Polar... UGG Adirondack III The Original Muck B... Kamik Ariel
Warmth (25%)
8.0
9.0
9.0
9.0
6.0
Weather Protection (25%)
9.0
8.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
Comfort & Fit (25%)
6.0
9.0
9.0
4.0
8.0
Ease Of Use (15%)
8.0
7.0
6.0
10.0
9.0
Traction (10%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
9.0
5.0
Specs The Original Muck B... Keen Revel IV Polar... UGG Adirondack III The Original Muck B... Kamik Ariel
Maximum Puddle Depth Before Major Leaking 8.5 inches 7.5 inches 9 inches 15 inches 5 inches
Measured Weight (one boot, size 9) 16 oz 22.7 oz 21 oz 37 oz 20.2 oz
Type of Boot All-around winter All-around winter All-around winter Outdoor work and chores Casual winter wear
Fit Details True to size True to size, wide True to size True to size True to size
Measured Shaft Height (from bottom of sole to top of shaft, size 9) 8.5 inches 7.5 inches 10 inches 17 inches 12 inches
Lining/Insulation Cosmo Therm 200G Insulation 200 grams KEEN.WARM Recycled PET UGGpure wool Fleece lined & 5mm of neoprene 200 grams Thinsulate, fleece lining
Removable Liner? No No No No Yes
Footbed bioDEWIX Antimicrobia EVA EVA Removable contured PU EVA
Upper Material Waterproof textile Mesh and Leather Waterproof suede and leather Neoprene 8mm & rubber Leather & breathable membrane made from Nylon
Toe Box Molded rubber Leather Rubber Rubber Leather
Outsole Molded rubber KEEN.Polar Traction Molded Spider Rubber Vibram Arctic Grip EDITH, rubberized traction
Cold Weather Rating (company claimed) -20F -25F -32C Not stated -4F
Animal Products? No Yes Yes No Yes
Sizes Available 5 - 11 5 - 12 5 - 12 5 - 11 6 - 11

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Arctic Ice Nomadic Sport is a traditional style snow boot with a beefy sole, best for walks around the neighborhood and on the trails. Slip it on and off with ease and enjoy comfort all day long. We wish that it had a little more support around the ankle and a better lacing system, but you certainly won't have to worry about nasty weather in this warm and very protective boot.

Performance Comparison


Enjoy the lightweight performance and excellent traction of this...
Enjoy the lightweight performance and excellent traction of this reinvented, yet traditional style snow boot. An excellent all-day wear option for any person that appreciates warmth and weather protection.
Photo: Edward Kemper

Warmth


This snow boot is suited for some of the coldest days of winter. Loaded with 200-grams of synthetic insulation, a thick Vibram sole, and a nylon-upper that cuts the wind, it'll keep you warm even on the dreariest and coldest days of winter. It's rated to -20F, with our testers verifying its warmth on the coldest days in Colorado.


Our experts slipped on this boot when the mercury began to drop to really test its resiliency to cold. The coldest tested day we had the opportunity to wear it had temperatures at -15F. Our feet stayed warm and toasty when hiking and standing around. The beefy Vibram sole is quite thick, insulating from the cold ground underfoot. The uppers are nylon and come loaded with insulation that also breathes, meaning that when your feet sweat, moisture can escape, helping to keep your whole body warm. The footbed is wide, which allows you to pair this boot with thicker socks and even orthotics. This is one of the warmer boots tested, ideal for cold-weather hiking, standing around, or anything in between.

The super thick sole and completely insulated design will keep feet...
The super thick sole and completely insulated design will keep feet warm, even on the coldest days of winter.
Photo: Edward Kemper

Weather Protection


Not only is this boot warm, but it's also incredibly weatherproof. The outer shell is composed of a nylon material that offers weather protection from both water and snow. We tested it while taking on tall snowbanks and plowing through deep puddles.


Our standard tests for this metric involve walking through puddles, wet and dry snow, and slush. Of all the tests, the river walk is the most telling of its ability to protect from water. We took the Nomadic Sport into the river and marched in place, trying to get water to seep through flimsy seams. What's interesting about its design is the seamless construction, with no holes or openings. As a result, the full nylon construction provided protection throughout our five-minute water march, all the way up to the 8.5-inch cuff. The outer showed a little saturation after this test, but no water crept into our boot. We conclude that it's bomber in wet weather.

Tackling steep snowbanks in an attempt to take a hike might result...
Tackling steep snowbanks in an attempt to take a hike might result in some snow in your boot! But water and slush won't make it through the nylon construction of this burly boot.
Photo: Edward Kemper

The only caveat in the protection realm for this boot is when taking on super deep snowbanks. There is no cinch on the top of the boot, meaning that when the snow is deeper than 8.5-inches, there's a chance it will get inside, especially when you are wearing it over a snow pant. This can easily be avoided by putting the boot underneath your snow pant, which is completely possible with its fitted design.

Waterproof with high-quality seams that keep out the water and snow.
Waterproof with high-quality seams that keep out the water and snow.
Photo: Amber King

Comfort & Fit


The Nomadic Sport does a great job at providing all-day comfort. The construction features a flexible nylon shaft made with a super cozy EVA midsole and footbed insert. The lacing system uses a basic bungee cord system — like many snow boots — which doesn't offer much stability through the ankle. That said, the footbed cradles the foot and is wide enough to add enough stability for hiking or a casual walk around town. Fit is true to size.


When we first pulled this boot out of the box and slipped it on, the comfort was noticeable. Our testing team didn't experience any pinch points, and all agreed that the boot feels wide and roomy enough to accommodate a thicker pair of socks.

Full nylon construction with a lacing design that works. This...
Full nylon construction with a lacing design that works. This construction is flexible, making it one of the lightest boots out there, weighing just under one pound per boot for a size nine.
Photo: Edward Kemper

When wearing the Nomadic around the house to begin, we felt uncertain that this boot could function as a hiker. After all, the bungee lacing system can't be cinched down enough to provide a specific fit, and the shaft of the boot isn't very rigid. When we took to the streets of our neighborhood, covered in snowy ice and tall snowbanks, we figured we'd need to be vigilant of slippery surfaces and potentially rolled ankles. Thankfully after hiking for over five miles, we learned this wasn't the case. While lacking rigidity in the shaft, the boot offers a wider and more stable outsole that envelopes the foot, adding a sense of stability in a non-traditional way. This boot eventually became a favorite for our daily dog walks, taking out the trash, and heading to the ski hill. While its fit isn't as specific as hiking boots or other winter options, it still does the trick and supersedes any other snow boot style option that we've tested thus far.

Here we take a hike around our mountain home to test traction and...
Here we take a hike around our mountain home to test traction and comfort. Turns out six miles in this boot is easy without any pressure points or discomfort.
Photo: Edward Kemper

Ease of Use


This boot is fairly easy to use since you don't have to lace it up and tie a knot. Slipping it on simply requires you to grab the pull-loop at the back of the boot while slipping your foot inside. If you want some additional rigidity, you can unlace the bungee system and tie the laces together. Since there are no anchor points that maintain friction as you pull the bungee laces, this system isn't the greatest, but it still works.


Kicking these off is easy. Since the laces are elastic, you don't even have to bend down. Just kick them off to get into the house when your hands might be full, and you're good to go.

Slip it off and pull it on with the loops at the back of the boot!...
Slip it off and pull it on with the loops at the back of the boot! Easy to use on a daily basis.
Photo: Edward Kemper

Traction


No snow boot is completely protective from underlying ice without a good set of snow spikes. And yes, we had our moments when a lurking ice patch almost had us on our butt.


That said, for a snow boot, the traction on the Nomadic Sport is probably some of the best you'll find on the market. It features a Vibram Arctic Grip outsole with Icetrek Technology — large, flat, grippy rubber patches that do better than most rubber-based outsoles in slippery weather.

One of the best aspects of this boot is its lugs and traction. The...
One of the best aspects of this boot is its lugs and traction. The areas of large black rubber are VERY sticky, adding more winter traction than a typical snow boot.
Photo: Amber King

The lugs are about a half-centimeter thick, making this boot an option for trails or even muddy weather. We tested it over ice, snow, mud, and water. Over slippery rocks, it stuck better than most options in this review. It also pairs well with ice spikes or tracks to amp up its resiliency underfoot in the iciest of weather.

A look at the full outsole.
A look at the full outsole.
Photo: Amber King

Value


If a snow boot is what you seek, this is by far our favorite option. The price is a little high, but the boot construction is bomber. The sole is thick, the lugs don't wear down easily, and the stitching is top-notch. Our only value concern is the durability of the nylon.

Unfortunately the upper can tear. Be sure you take care if you buy...
Unfortunately the upper can tear. Be sure you take care if you buy this boot.
Photo: Amber King

After a day on the trail, the top fabric actually tore in a small spot when encountering a rogue stick. In this experience, we'd say that you should be vigilant of such things and be sure to protect the nylon material. Other than that, this is a high-value purchase for those looking for a traditional snow boot with a bomber outsole that can perform across all types of winter weather, deep into the double negative digits.

Conclusion


The Arctic Ice Nomadic Sport is our favorite snow boot, standing out for its weather protection and bomber outsole. Just note that the upper can rip, and the shaft isn't as rigid as other contenders in this review. If you seek an option that's easy to slip on and off, keeps your feet warm while standing around or walking, and features an outsole that you can trust to keep you upright on icy surfaces, this is a great choice.

Whether you wear it over or under a pair of pants, this lightweight...
Whether you wear it over or under a pair of pants, this lightweight and comfortable snow boot will keep you enjoying winter all season long. A traditional design with a burly outsole will allow you to tackle all kinds of weather.
Photo: Edward Kemper

Amber King