Kamik has been in the winter boot business for a long time and the Greenbay 4 is their affordable, high quality, and extremely user-friendly Pac style boot. These boots are very utilitarian, incredibly easy on and off the feet, very warm, and quite comfortable as well. With just a mid-foot velcro strap and a string cinch at the top of the cuff, they couldn't be easier to put on and take off, making them ideal for chores, errands, or playing in the snow with your kids. This boot has a beefy waterproof rubber outsole with an aggressive and grippy tread. The rubber lowers are topped with highly water resistant 600D nylon uppers, giving the boots a 14.5-inch tall shaft. Inside is a removable 8mm thick thermal liner that helps these boots achieve their -40 temperature rating. The fit is relatively loose and these boots are not meant for winter hiking or snowshoeing. That said, if you're looking for a very warm, user-friendly, and inexpensive winter boot that is good for everything but hiking, then check out the Kamik Greenbay 4.
Kamik Greenbay 4 Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Inexpensive, warm, super user-friendly, good traction, made in USA
Cons: Clunky, not for hiking, leaking seam between upper and lower
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Greenbay 4 is an affordable Pac style winter boot that is as user-friendly as they come. This practical boot is a cinch, easy to get on and off, making winter a less daunting prospect. They have a loose and roomy fit that does not lend itself well to athletic endeavors like hiking or snowshoeing, but their simplicity makes them one of our favorites. The Greenbay earns our Top Pick for Ease of Use due to its higher warmth and traction scores.
With a temperature rating of -40 degrees, the Greenbay is made for cold temperatures. These boots feel as warm as they look. The Pac style construction features an 8mm thick removable thermal liner that sits inside the beefy rubber lowers and tall, 600 denier nylon uppers. The fit is roomy and loose in both length and width, so you can be sure that they won't be tight enough to restrict blood flow, even with super thick socks. A large velcro strap tightens the boot around the ankle and helps to trap heat around your foot. The opening of the shaft also has a simple string cinch that you can tighten to keep snow out and warmth in.
We used an ice bath to test objectively observe how well the boots retain heat. Our testing revealed that the Greenbay lost only 17.4 degrees over the course of 12 minutes. Of the five models we tested in this way, the Greenbay was second only to our Editor's Choice winner, the Keen Durand Polar, which lost only 15.2 degrees. For comparison, the internal temperatures of the North Face Chilkat 400 decreased by 19.8 degrees, the North Face Chilkat III by 21.8 degrees, and the Columbia Bugaboot Plus IV by 23.0 degrees.
To test their warmth even further, we performed an ice bath submersion test side by side with the Greenbay on one foot and The North face Chilkat 400 on the other. Contrary to our findings in the above-mentioned test, we found that the North Face Chilkat 400 kept our foot warmer for longer. Both boots are rated to -40 degrees, but we believe the overall snugger fit of the Chilkat 400 helps make it feel slightly warmer.
If you're looking for the warmest boots, we suggest the Sorel Caribou or the Keen Durand Polar, both of which scored higher in this metric.
The Greenbay 4 boots are very water resistant. The molded, waterproof rubber soles are 3 inches tall by the toe and 4 inches tall at the heel. They can easily withstand extended submersion in water up to 3 inches deep. The 600 denier nylon uppers are also waterproof, and water beads up and sheds off them like a duck's back. Slushy and wet conditions are no problem for these boots, and they will keep your feet dry in most situations.
These are winter boots, not rain boots, and our submersion tests revealed that they are not completely waterproof. The seam between the nylon uppers and rubber lowers is permeable. If you submerge them in water above the rubber, they will begin to take in water. This is only an issue if you stand in puddles deeper than three inches. If it's just snowing or raining, the boots shed water nicely, since the nylon upper fabric overlaps the rubber lowers, it just rolls off.
The Greenbay 4 lost a little ground to the competition in this metric due to this leaking. Still, they are water-resistant enough for most situations, since most of us walk quickly through water instead of standing in it.
Fit and Comfort
The Greenbay 4 boots fit as you might expect just by looking at them. They are loose, roomy, and a little clunky feeling. The overall length and width are generous, with an especially roomy toe box. There is plenty of room to wear thick socks in these boots and little likelihood of restricting blood flow.
As we mentioned, the boots do not come with a footbed. Instead, the sole of the removable liner serves to cushion the bottom of the foot. There is ample room to put an aftermarket footbed in the liner should you want one for additional comfort and insulation.
The loose fit of these boots does not lend itself well to significant amounts of walking or hiking. We experienced a fair bit of foot movement, especially walking up and down hills or across sidehills. They are great for walking the dog around the block, but they will get uncomfortable in a hurry on longer excursions.
Considering the intended use of these boots, we feel they are quite comfortable. Their roomy fit that is far from high performance, but plenty comfy for running the snowblower, getting the mail, or building a snowman or two.
Of course, the fit and comfort of these boots is a far cry from the more precise fits offered by boots that are suitable for hiking like the Keen Durand Polar, The North Face Chilkat 400, or the Vasque Snowburban II. But it's a trade-off for their ease of use and functionality. The other boot in our test with a similarly loose fit is the Sorel Caribou, another utilitarian boot with classic style, though they weigh in almost a full pound heavier than the Greenbay 4.
Ease of Use
Tied for top honors in our ease of use rating with the Bogs Classic Ultra Mid, the Greenbay 4 is about as user-friendly as they come. The closure system is incredibly simple, with a wide webbing strap across the top of the foot, and a string cinch at the top of the tall upper cuff. Getting in and out of the boots is as simple as opening the wide velcro strap, sliding your foot into the boot, securing the velcro strap, and tightening the cinch at the top of the cuff if you need.
When compared to the Bogs Classic, there is the additional step of opening and closing the velcro strap when you get in and out of these boots, but the effort required is incredibly minimal. It's also nice to be able to secure the boots around your feet somewhat. If you really want slip-on accessibility, you can simply keep the velcro straps at their loosest.
When compared with any of the lace-up boots, the Greenbay 4 is far more user-friendly. That said, the near slip-on convenience results in a much looser and clunkier fit, making these boots far less appropriate for winter hiking.
The boot also has a removable liner. The liner is easy to remove and replace and dries very quickly.
We are pleasantly surprised by the traction offered by the Greenbay 4. The large rubber soles have a lot of surface area and a relatively aggressive and deeply lugged tread with lots of sharp edges. They perform beyond our expectations and offer good grip on firm snow and in icy conditions, especially considering the bulky size and clunkier nature of the boot's design.
They can't quite match the traction of the Columbia Bugaboot Plus IV though, which has unique snow tire-esque soles. We went so far as to complete a side by side test between the Greenbay 4 and the Keen Durand Polar. We found that the Kamik boot offers slightly more predictable and confidence-inspiring grip in firm snow and icy conditions.
The Greenbay 4 is our Top Pick for Ease of Use Award winner due to their combination of user-friendliness, simplicity, warmth, and traction. These boots are ideal for chores around the house like shoveling, snow-blowing, grabbing the mail, or taking out the trash, even in snow over a foot deep. They are equally appropriate for running errands around town, going sledding, or building snowmen out in the yard. Due to their looser fit and bulky design, we don't recommend these boots for long walks, winter hiking, or snowshoeing, but they are ideal for pretty much everything else, except standing in puddles deeper than three inches for an extended period.
With a retail price of only $85, we feel the Greenbay 4 is a great value. If you're looking for a no-frills, workaday boot, nearly slip-on boot with great traction and warmth, you'd be hard pressed to find a better option at this price. They don't offer the versatility of the hiking-friendly, Best Buy winning Kamik Nationplus, but the Greenbay 4 is a great value nonetheless.
The Greenbay 4 is our Top Pick for Ease of Use. Not only are they a great value, but they are one of the easiest boots to get on and off. They are also very warm, highly water resistant, and offer great traction on firm snow and icy surfaces. With a loose and roomy fit, we don't recommend them for hiking, but they are great for everyday chores and errands.
The Greenbay 4 tied in our scoring with the Bogs Classic Ultra Mid, another incredibly user-friendly boot, but we chose the Greenbay as our Top Pick for its higher warmth and traction scores. Both are great boots, and in the end, it's up to you to pick the model that best suits your needs.
The Greenbay 4 is also available in a wide fit version, called the Greenbay 4W. Kamik does not provide specifics on the width on their website other than saying, "made wider for more comfort." The Greenbay 4 W is available in whole sizes 7-14.
— Jeremy Benson