Monday, August 20, 2012

Shoes, boots, or barefoot?

I've been going round and round with this--especially since I know some of my readers are barefoot, and some use boots. John has been using the Easyboot Backcountry Glove on the fillies, but the Velcro appears to have lost it's stickiness and they keep coming loose. I've looked at Renegades and prefer their style/function/fit (providing they stay on!) over others, but again, they rely on Velcro as well. Then there are the Cavallos--any users out there? Harley is not a candidate for barefoot riding--he gets too ouchy on gravel. He does best with shoes, when he's not whacking himself and over-reaching--what to do, what to do. Oh, and we ride through MUD! Serious MUD! Any comments, preferences, suggestions would be appreciated, dear readers. Thanks!


  1. I can comment on Renegades.

    We used them for the trek across France and I reckon we rode about 500 miles in them altogether. Three had worn through the toe when we finished. I lost a boot twice, once getting sucked off when we trotted though very squelchy ground and once when I think he trod on it with the other hind foot, and my friend never lost any of hers. When I say lost, I don't mean permanently, we spotted it straight away and put it back on!

    Yes they have velcro, but they come with replacement velcro straps. Our velcro outlasted the boots, so I now have several spare straps! They are very easy to replace. I also had to re-seat a cable twice, once when he broke it pulling the boot off and once due to owner stupidity (don't ask!). That's pretty fiddly.

    I have a pair of Cavallo Sportboots, but haven't had to use them riding yet, although I'm using one as a poultice boot at the moment. They are also fastened with velcro, which is an integral part of the boot, so not replaceable.

    I'm pro-barefoot, but not an out-and-out zealot about it. You could always try him barefoot & booted for work for a while - if it doesn't work, you put the shoes back on. Nothing to lose :-)

    1. Thanks for the info, Martine. All the reasons you list make me lean towards the Renegades. That the velcro outlasted the boot is saying something! Harley goes barefoot all winter, but due to last year's lack of snow, we didn't pull the shoes until early January. And then it was just a lot of frozen, hard ground. Boots would be a nice option for non snowy times and skip the shoes altogether!


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