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UGG Adirondack III Review

This boot is the epitome of comfort and warmth wrapped in a versatile, high-performing, waterproof package
UGG Adirondack III
Photo: UGG
Editors' Choice Award
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Price:  $250 List | $249.95 at Amazon
Pros:  Cozy wool lining, very warm, highly waterproof, versatile construction
Cons:  Expensive, slightly bulky
Manufacturer:   UGG
By Liz Chamberlain and Amber King  ⋅  Dec 6, 2021
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83
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 13
  • Warmth - 25% 9
  • Weather Protection - 25% 8
  • Comfort and Fit - 20% 9
  • Durability - 15% 8
  • Traction - 15% 7

Our Verdict

Testing the warm and comfortable UGG Adirondack III was a true pleasure. The newest iteration of this boot boasts better traction and weather protection while maintaining the same fashionable style that we know and love. We've tested this award winner while hiking at 13,000 ft over winter-laden trails. We've worn it comfortably to work, weekend errands, and dog walks around town. The sheep wool liner is warm, the leather is completely weatherproof, and the versatile style makes for a do-anything, go-anywhere boot. We could wrap our foot in this warm wool cocoon all winter long. And we have.

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UGG Adirondack III
Awards Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award 
Price $250 List
$249.95 at Amazon
$190 List
$179.95 at Amazon
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$179.95 at REI
Compare at 2 sellers
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Compare at 3 sellers
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Pros Cozy wool lining, very warm, highly waterproof, versatile constructionFull coverage protection, highly durable, reliable tractionGood value, ultra warm, great traction, highly waterproofProtective, durable, very warm, breathable, excellent traction, high valueLightweight, super soft interior, durable leather exterior
Cons Expensive, slightly bulkyPricey, very heavy, retains moisture, difficult to drive inOnly ankle-high coverage, hiking-specific style, narrow fitLess stylish, somewhat heavy, stiff collarUnimpressive outsole traction
Bottom Line This boot is the epitome of comfort and warmth wrapped in a versatile, high-performing, waterproof packageThis highly durable boot is completely waterproof and great at insulating, though it's a bit too bulky to wear on low-snow days or during high-output activitiesThis well-priced boot hits all the marks with a winter-friendly design that maintains great traction, weatherproofing, and warmthGreat for winter hiking on slippery trails thanks to incredible traction, support, and weatherproofingOne of the most comfortable choices in our lineup, with a soft, heat-retentive interior and durable, waterproof exterior
Rating Categories UGG Adirondack III Muck Boot Arctic Ic... Merrell Thermo Chil... Keen Revel IV Polar... The North Face Shel...
Warmth (25%)
9.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
Weather Protection (25%)
8.0
9.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
Comfort And Fit (20%)
9.0
7.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
Durability (15%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Traction (15%)
7.0
9.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
Specs UGG Adirondack III Muck Boot Arctic Ic... Merrell Thermo Chil... Keen Revel IV Polar... The North Face Shel...
Maximum Puddle Depth Before Major Leaking 9" 16" 6" 7" 7"
Measured Shaft Height (from bottom of sole to top of shaft) 8" rolled / 10" extended 16" 6" 7" 10"
Measured Weight (per pair, size 7) 2.36 lbs 4.59 lbs 1.79 lbs 2.41 lbs 2.25 lbs
Type of Boot All-around winter Winter workwear Winter hiking Winter hiking All-around winter
Fit Details True to size Runs big True to size True to size, wide True to size
Lining/Insulation UGGpure wool Fleece M Select Warm (200g) 200 grams KEEN.WARM Recycled PET Heatseeker Eco Pro (200g)
Removable Liner? No No No No No
Footbed EVA bioDEWIX Kinetic Fit BASE EVA OrthoLite
Upper Material Waterproof suede and leather Rubber Waterproof PU-coated leather and mesh Mesh and Leather Full-grain leather and ballistic nylon
Toe Box Rubber Rubber Rubber Leather Rubber
Outsole Molded White Spider Rubber Vibram Arctic Grip A.T. M Select GRIP KEEN.Polar Traction Surface Control rubber
Company Claimed Cold Weather Rating -32°C/-25°F Not stated Not stated -32°C/-25°F Not stated
Temp Change in Ice Bath -7.2 F -9.5 F -5.2 F -3.8 F -6.5 F
Animal Products? Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Sizes Available 5 - 12 5 - 11 5 - 11 5 - 12 5 - 11

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Adirondack III is one of the most comfortable and versatile winter boots we've had the pleasure of testing. Rated to -32 degrees Celsius / -25 Fahrenheit, it'll keep you warm even when the coldest of weather hits. With the ability to roll the fur collar up or down, it stands out as one of the more functional styles in our review. We took the Adirondack III out on snowy morning dog walks and high-alpine hikes to test its traction and stability. While the shaft isn't super stiff, it still holds up on decently technical terrain. Waterproof and ready for snow-covered trails, this amazing boot will keep you happy.

Performance Comparison


The protective outer and warm wool liner of the Adirondack offers...
The protective outer and warm wool liner of the Adirondack offers fantastic performance through slush and water.
Photo: Amber King

Warmth


The Adirondack III was, yet again, one of the coziest options in this year's review. Year after year, it performs well across each of our performance testing categories, particularly this one. The liner is insulated with 200 grams of wool, keeping toes warm even when it's frigid and wet outside.


The Adirondack is made of relatively thick and porous leather and suede, offering good insulation along the shaft and surprising breathability. The outsole is thick enough to insulate the feet from icy temperatures but is thinner than some of the warmest boots in this review. When tested at freezing (0 degrees Celius and 32 degrees Fahrenheit), and this boot offered sufficient warmth while walking the dog and shoveling the snow off of our deck.

A look at the plush wool lining with 200 grams of insulation which...
A look at the plush wool lining with 200 grams of insulation which offers great thermoregulation. This boot also provides good breathability so moisture doesn't get stuck inside, adding to overall warmth.
Photo: Amber King

To test each boot in a controlled (and extremely cold) environment, we created an ice bath test where we measured the internal temperature of the boot before and after 10 minutes of sitting in ice. The internal temperature of the Adirondack dropped by 7.2 degrees Fahrenheit, one of the better performances, though not the best. Regardless, this is still one of the warmest options to keep your feet protected during chores, work, or simply driving home from your favorite ski resort. The surprisingly breathable design offers ventilation for great odor resistance and sweat resistance, too.

We placed the test boots in an ice bucket to simulate exposure to...
We placed the test boots in an ice bucket to simulate exposure to cold extremes. The UGG Adirondack did a decent job of maintaining warmth, but seemed to perform better out in the real world.
Photo: Liz Chamberlain

Weather Protection


We love the design of this boot. Previous iterations failed miserably in our waterproof tests, but version III excels. The Adirondack III offers 7 inches of protection when the boot's shaft is rolled down and about 10 inches of coverage when the collar is completely extended. The liner pops out of the boot's collar, helping to keep fly-away snow out. For those looking for more coverage, UGG makes a tall version as well, which provides 12 inches of protection.


We inched our way into the Truckee river to test water resistance and were pleased to still have dry feet after soaking the boot all the way up to the collar. The exterior leather gets a bit damp, but the interior fur remains dry. Even during our ice bath test, we didn't see or feel any excessive moisture in the interior.

While we aren't fully immersed yet, this boot is still keeping our...
While we aren't fully immersed yet, this boot is still keeping our feet dry. Even after marching around and agitating the fabric.
Photo: Amber King

When stomping through snow, slush, and water on a trail, the leather on the Adirondack offers great protection. It remains flexible even in low temps, adding to the agility and versatility of the boot. After months of heavy use, it continues to impress and protect, and overall, we are very pleased with its construction. Just be sure to use leather treatments and conditioners to ensure that it maintains its weather protection over the years.

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Comfort and Fit


The comfort of this winter boot is truly top-notch. The wool liner is cozy and breathable, providing one of our favorite out-of-box fits. It's very true-to-size, unlike some of the bulkier options in our review. The beauty of the Adirondack is the dual-wear option that lets you expose the fur on the collar or extend the collar to maintain more coverage and a sleeker design.


The interior is lined with super warm sheep's wool, but the boot doesn't overheat due to its excellent breathability. The fur-lined insole is removable if you would like to use an insole of your own or if you need to dry out the interior. The midsole is injected with dual density EVA foam for a responsive cushion that supports hiking and walking. It offers a little bit of arch support, but if you'd like more, we suggest adding your own insoles.

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

This version of the Adirondack fits like a glove; not too wide and not too narrow, it feels snug, relaxed, and pliable. Interestingly enough, both thinner and thicker socks fit fine in this boot, but our thickest wool socks did begin to feel a bit tight by the end of the day. If you're on the fence or like to wear thicker socks, you can size up half a size to be safe.

The soft and supple suede of the upper is noticeably less stiff than some of the thicker boots we tested, making it more comfortable but less stable on uneven terrain. Some of our testers experienced slight ankle roll on uneven or rocky surfaces, even with the laces done up tightly. This isn't the best option if you need an ultra-supportive boot around the ankle. Our lineup has other options with a more rigid shaft and stiffer walls that will offer more support. Overall, however, this is one of the most comfortable winter boots we've had the pleasure of testing, assuming your body can handle the less stable construction.

The flexible shaft of the boot offers enough support on treacherous...
The flexible shaft of the boot offers enough support on treacherous terrain, but its a lot less stable than other options out there. Here we teeter on a 45-degree scree slope just under Mt. Sneffels in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado.
Photo: Amber King

Durability


Unfortunately, the Adirondack III did not score as high in this category. A few things factor into the assessment of durability with each of our test boots. We purposefully did not treat any of the products in the lineup because, frankly, most people do not weatherproof their footwear (even if they should). In order to give the boots an honest performance review, we attempt to put each product through the wringer right out of the box to get an idea of its' capabilities under the most extreme conditions.


From our testing process, we found the suede on this boot can scuff a bit when knocked around on pavement, sticks, or stones. The rubber outsole offers good coverage around the foot, and the upper suede material is on the thinner side. While these features didn't deteriorate during our testing period, they may likely experience more wear and tear than boots with rubber soles that cover the entirety of the exterior of the midsole. The rubber compound does seem rather tough, which would suggest it has a longer lifetime than softer, stickier compounds.

Great traction for both the snow and overland. We appreciate the...
Great traction for both the snow and overland. We appreciate the deeper rubber lugs that offer a good grip, even on hardpacked surfaces.
Photo: Amber King

While we do worry about the leather and suede getting gummed up, it's easy to rinse these boots off with water once you've walked through some muck. It's also important to note that some online reviews claim that this boot has fallen apart after just a few months of use. That said, our testers have not run into the same issues even after several years with this boot. Regardless, we recommend using waterproofing solutions and suede conditioning for a better guarantee of longevity.

We found the exterior of the upper to be soft yet highly durable. We...
We found the exterior of the upper to be soft yet highly durable. We scraped and soaked this boot up without worry of wear and tear.
Photo: Liz Chamberlain

Traction


The rubber outsole offers traction on hard-packed snow and slippery surfaces. The well-spaced lugs are deep enough for around-town use and outdoor work, though they are shallower than some. We took this boot hiking up steep slopes and didn't slip or slide too often, though the traction was a little less consistent when hiking up trails with wetter snow. Regardless, the Adirondack III can be used for winter hiking on hard or soft-packed trails as long as you're okay with a little less ankle support.


The stiff white rubber compound on the Adirondack III is made for high friction use and offers enhanced traction on wet and dry surfaces. The wave pattern at the tip and heel of the boot is designed to grip wet surfaces, while the dispersed lugs underneath the sole provide grip and stability in snowy conditions. This boot proved to have solid traction on various surfaces and even shed mud well when dipping into stickier terrain. It also feels nice on both warm and cold pavement as the lugs aren't too sticky or bulky.

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

Value


While the price tag may be high, we appreciate the craftsmanship and overall design of the Adirondack III. Its surprising performance during weatherproofing and traction tests set this boot apart from the less expensive options. With a soft and smooth suede upper and two styles for wear that are both attractive and functional, we'd say it's worth the price.

The Adirondack is very protective and stylish. Wear the cuff up to...
The Adirondack is very protective and stylish. Wear the cuff up to keep out snow on trails or wear it down for a shorter look around town. The leather construction is both waterproof and keeps the snow out.
Photo: Amber King

Be sure to use a weather sealant on the leather to ensure its longevity. After our testing period (without this treatment), the leather looked worn. We added the sealant, and the boot perked right up. To ensure longevity, leather definitely needs to be maintained.

Enjoy the Adirondack III wherever you want to go this winter. From...
Enjoy the Adirondack III wherever you want to go this winter. From work to snow-covered trails, through creeks, and to the summits of mountains. This amazing boot has the largest range of applications, making it the most versatile tested.
Photo: Amber King

Conclusion


The UGG Adirondack III is a highly impressive and versatile boot. We love its fashionable yet functional design and fantastic performance that'll have you walking your way through winter without worry. It's a technical but stylish boot that can go from winter trails and back to the office without blinking an eye. While this is certainly an expensive boot, the quality and performance live up to the price. If you're ready to invest, it will bring you warmth and happiness throughout burly winter months and chilly shoulder seasons.

The UGG Adirondack is our Editors' Choice winner for its endless...
The UGG Adirondack is our Editors' Choice winner for its endless applications that'll keep you warm and protected through the winter. Here we hike to the local bouldering gym for an easy session after testing boots all day long.
Photo: Amber King

Liz Chamberlain and Amber King

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