UGG Butte Review
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|Pros||Stylish, comfortable, relatively warm||Great traction, excellent fit, very comfortable, warm, affordable||Weather resistant, easy to slip on and off, durable||Relatively inexpensive, great performance across the board||Great traction, very comfortable, inexpensive|
|Cons||Low waterproof height, lacks traction||Other boots are warmer, relatively low water-resistance height||Expensive, loose fit, clunky, poor traction||Clunky, style isn't the best, questionable construction quality||Not that warm, fabric eyelets, low height|
|Bottom Line||This stylish and cozy boot is built to handle most adverse winter conditions and is very comfortable||These boots are the total package, with warmth, comfort, a great fit, and a fair price||These easy-to-use boots are protective and durable, perfect for winter chores or quick jaunts into snowy weather||These affordable boots nearly match the performance of the best models but without straining your wallet||This very comfortable and inexpensive winter hiking boot has excellent traction, making it perfect for winter walks and treks|
|Rating Categories||UGG Butte||The North Face Chil...||Muck Boot Arctic Sp...||Columbia Bugaboot III||Merrell Thermo Chil...|
|Weather Protection (25%)|
|Comfort and Fit (20%)|
|Specs||UGG Butte||The North Face Chil...||Muck Boot Arctic Sp...||Columbia Bugaboot III||Merrell Thermo Chil...|
|Maximum Puddle Depth Before Major Leaking||6.5"||8.5"||13"||8"||6.5"|
|Measured Shaft Height (from bottom of sole to top of shaft)||11.5"||11"||13"||10.5"||7.5"|
|Measured Weight (per pair, size 13)||3.44 lbs||3.86 lbs||5.09 lbs||3.69 lbs||2.74 lbs|
|Appropriate Activity||Town, errands||Town, errands||Chores||Hiking, town, chores, errands||Hiking, town|
|Fit Details||True to size||True to size||Roomy||True to size||True to size|
|Lining/Insulation||Sheepskin wool||400 g Heatseeker Eco||Fleece, 5mm neoprene||200g synthetic||200g M Select|
|Upper Material||Waterproof full-grain leather||Waterproof leather & suede||Rubber||Waterproof leather||Waterproof polyurethane-coated leather and mesh|
|Outsole||Vibram||Surface Control rubber||MS-1 molded rubber||Omni-Grip Rubber||Rubber|
|Company Claimed Cold Weather Rating||-20 F||Not listed||-40 F||Not listed||Not listed|
|Sizes Available||7 - 18||7 - 14||5 - 15||7 - 17||7 - 15|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Rather than using a synthetic material, these boots feature tons of wool insulation, making them comfortable and warm to wear on most winter days. The puffy wool aesthetic is polarizing, but the shaft cuff can be rolled up for a different, all-leather look.
The Butte isn't the warmest boot on the market, featuring only a layer of wool insulation on the inside of the boot's rubber and leather. This wool layer is thick and puffy and kept our feet warm on most chilly days, but on truly frigid days where the temperatures dipped below zero degrees Fahrenheit, our feet got cold. The midsole is thick to help insulate the foot from the ground, and our testers were comfortable standing around in cold temperatures, noting that heat does not escape through the bottom of the boot, but there are certainly warmer boots to be had if you live somewhere where that's needed.
As mentioned, if you spend your winters in the coldest climates on earth, these won't get the job done all of the time. But for most users, they are warm enough to be a capable winter boot. And if you don't need the warmth of the high cuff, you can roll it down and expose the wool lining, gaining fashion points.
The Butte features a rubber toe box and lower, while the upper is made of leather. Both are waterproof and keep water out completely until a submersion depth of 6.5 inches. At this height, the tongue and cuff have a gap that allows water to penetrate. We couldn't find a puddle deep enough to flood these boots during our testing, but we overwhelmed the boots when we stepped into a creek.
The wool lining catches any incidental moisture that makes its way into the top of the boot, and wool remains warm when wet, so the Butte will still keep your feet warm if a small amount of moisture gets inside. But compared to other boots on the market, these could be more weather resistant.
Comfort and Fit
These boots fit true to size, and since they don't have any bulky synthetic insulation, they feel relatively sleek and thin, making for a more comfortable experience. The wool insulation is luxurious against the foot, and the boot fit our feet very well. If anything, these are on the roomy side, but a thicker winter sock takes up any extra room. The boots weigh less than other options, making them easy to wear around town for the entire day, whereas other heavy winter boots made us feel tired of walking after a couple of hours.
If we had to pick a gripe, it would be that the tongue of the boot is sometimes noticeably stiff against the top of the foot. This will likely change over time as the wool and leather break-in. This issue isn't a big deal, but compared to other boots that have squishy synthetic insulation in the tongue, we felt the stiffness of new leather while breaking these in.
The Butte uses Vibram rubber in the sole, which has plenty of grip for both dry and wet surfaces. For urban use like running errands around town and driving, these boots will stick and keep you upright. On dirt trails, they'll have problems if there is a lot of loose gravel, but overall, these boots have plenty of grip for most use-cases.
The rubber lugs on the sole aren't very deep at all, which prevents the Butte from biting into packed snow surfaces, and as such, they don't have the best traction in snowy conditions. Still, they have enough grip for most winter uses. In slushy spring snow, we could slide around when we tried, but the boots have more bite in cold, dry winter snow.
The Butte is well-made and has solid construction. We didn't have any issues with durability during our testing period, and the components are tough. Metal eyelets protect both the leather and the laces from premature wear and tear, and the leather feels burly and is treated with a waterproofing agent, which also aids in longevity. The stitching is tight and well-crafted, and the boot features rubber reinforcements in key areas of wear like the toe and heel. The leather also is resistant to most scuffing.
On the downside, all leather wears out eventually, and the wool insulation will pack down around your foot over a full season of use. This will slightly diminish the insulation value of the boot, but it will also customize the fit. Overall, we are impressed by this boot's durability over the years that we have now worn it.
Should You Buy the UGG Butte?
This is one of the best winter boots for users who want relatively warm, waterproof, and thus functional winter footwear with great style. The Butte doesn't perform as highly as other options on the market in terms of warmth, weather resistance, and traction, but it performs the best out of any of the winter boots that are also designed to look good. It is on the more expensive side, but the fashion upgrades are worth the price to some consumers. In general, we can recommend this boot for most casual winter uses like shoveling the driveway or doing errands around town, but for more technical uses, you may want to look elsewhere.
What Other Winter Boots Should You Consider?
If you are looking for a warmer and higher-performance winter boot for cold conditions, check out The North Face Chilkat V 400. If you want the same classy urban styling with less warmth and bulk, the Blundstone Thermal might be perfect. The Blundstone is great to consider as a swing season shoe — when the temps start to drop but the snow hasn't yet started to fall. And don't forget about the old mainstay for solid winter boot performance with a classic look, the Sorel Caribou. The Caribou is doesn't have as nice a fit as the Butte, but the warmth and weather protection is excellent.
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