About the Author: Stephen Knight is a photographer / videographer who founded Itsaknightslife. His mission is to tell the story of people through style, food, music, and dancing. Catch his stuff at itsaknightslife on Instagram and Youtube.
As a Floridian who is moving west to Denver in the near future, I’m definitely in the market for a versatile boot that looks good in the city, but can handle the elements of the west. Enter the Vertigo 917 Goldrush Boot, a collaboration between Huckberry and Danner. This is a 21st century boot. Sneaker comfort, great looks, but still waterproof and breathable.
Coming in at $220, these boots aren’t necessarily “budget,” but provide more than enough value to justify that price. When it comes to the waterproof leather and suede and the other materials used for the soles and foot-bed, these shoes really swing above their weight-class, considering how unique they feel and perform.
The looks of these shoes boils down to one word. Yes. These are some lookers. The small details of the shoe compliments the tan leather and suede outer shell, and it helps that the neutral color tone of the boots can be worn with multiple outfit styles. These have the look that would blend in with a good pair of selvedge (Yes.. I said selvedge, but regular jeans are fine too) denim, and a bomber jacket in the city, or just regular chinos and a V-neck if you want to go hiking. Two contrasting scenarios right? That’s because these boots are built to handle both, and it seems they do it well.
Let’s talk about the construction on these boots, because damn, these feel well made. They’re made with “premium” suede and waterproof (!!!) full grain leather, while being held together by moisture-wicking GORE-TEX liners… Meaning that we have a 100% fully waterproof boot on our hands… or feet. Perfect for if you ever accidentally walk into that puddle (or pond) you didn’t see (RIP my Chucks,) yet your feet won’t be sweating to death thanks to the Gore-Tex. The foot-bed is made with a polyurethane OrthoLite foot-bed, and the mid-sole with a lightweight Vibram SPE. To boil down the formal verbiage, these things are comfortable… REALLY comfortable. A necessary thing if you are walking in the city or the greater outdoors for an extended period of time. And sizing seems true. Huckberry says they’re true to size, but also suggests ordering two sizes if you’re unsure, and sending the other back since these ship and return for free.
The Pleasant Surprise
Something that caught me off guard when I initially saw these were the chelsea-boot-like elastic panels on either side of the ankle. They make putting these boots on a joy. This is one of those things I didn’t know that I wanted, but am glad that I have them anyway. Putting on my Clarks boots afterward was instantly more annoying, which says a lot about how boot wearing could be. Kudos to whoever came up with that idea, I salute you.
Finding items that can double for looks and utilities are usually costly, and these somewhat hold that reputation true. But when you factor in the value you are getting with these boots, coupled with the premium materials that will have this boot holding up for years. I think $220 is more than justifiable for a boot that instantly put a smile on my face. Now let’s just see if don’t slip on snow in my first real winter.