Mongrel Zipsider Boots

WORDS BY WES WHITWORTH

product test

Having good-quality boots is possibly the next most important thing to having good-quality tyres on your four-wheel drive. There's an adage that goes along the lines of "look after your feet, and they'll look after you".

That couldn't be truer when we're out exploring this great country of ours. Sure, we spend a lot of time travelling in the comfort of our four-wheel drive, but when we're out in the more inhospitable touring areas, or deep in the depths of the Aussie bush, having a quality set of boots trumps a pair of 'pluggers' every time. Especially when you're bogged up to your diffs and need to run a winch line, or want to scale that cliff face to check out the view.

So, when my last pair of bush shoes (they were joggers, yep, I was that guy) gave up the ghost, I figured it was time to get some solid boots and see how long it'd take me to trash them. To this point, I've still not been able to trash the Mongrel Boots I bought, despite my best efforts.

But how do I know what makes a 'good' boot you may ask? I've been in the NSW Rural Fire Service for some 18 years now – back when I first joined up we were using old military-spec GP Boots, then went to the near-indestructible Kevlar-lined Taipan boots – slogging through the scrub for 14 hours a day dragging hoses and chasing fires, well, you get a good sense of what a good pair of boots look and feel like.

Look after your feet, and they’ll look after you… and that led us to testing out the Mongrel ZipSider Boots which are made here and boast not needing to be broken in.

GEAR Mongrel Zipsider Boots

“In terms of safety, vision and looks, it’s hard to go past Clearview Powerfold Mirrors.”
Pat Callinan

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Initial impressions
My first thought when I dragged the Mongrel ZipSider boots out of the box was that I'd need to wear them in for a couple of days around the home and the office before I went traipsing across the countryside for weeks on end. I put them on and decided I couldn't have been more wrong. I'm a size 14, and the boots I got fit perfectly from the get-go. No stretching required, just enough give in them, and excellent ankle support. I had them on my feet the day I got them for about 10 minutes; while reading up about the Mongrels and their promise that they're as comfortable as they will get from day one. I kid you not; they were perfect from the first moment […] *insert soppy love song and super-slow-mo of Wes cuddling his boots here.

All jokes aside, they are that good right out of the box.

From there, the Mongrels are an Aussie-made boot, and from the build quality and finish, you can tell. No dags, no random threads sticking out of them, nor wonky stitching; they're spot on. The soles are a solid TPU/PU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane / Polyurethane layered), which is fancy speak for the base layer of the sole is more resistant to cuts, abrasions, oil, heat, chemicals etc., while the next sole layer is for comfort and flex.

The zips are a quality bit of kit, with instructions out inside the box on how to keep them clean, so they don’t flog out. The inner sole is nice and soft, and for a boot feels a lot like walking on pillows, while still supporting your feet. The label said something about an ‘OrthoTec Polyurethane innersole’ which loosely translates to ‘very comfy and good for being on your feet all day’.

They are fully lined inside, with a padded tongue and ankle collar, and you can get them nice and tight with the front laces to keep your ankles supported over rough terrain. They’ve also got an ‘AirZone comfort system’ which keeps your feet from sweating while you’re in them, which keeps your feet dry and in good nick.

Where has Wes taken them?
When I was gushing about how good they were out of the box, after working out I didn’t need to wear them in, it was well-deserved praise – the first trip in these buggers was across the Simpson on a TV show filming trip. You may have heard of the show – Pat Callinan’s 4X4 Adventures – Yup, they’re putting my head on the TV show this year with Pat to represent our excellent magazine, Unsealed 4X4.

So, after the desert, they went through the back of Coffs Harbour’s rather silly tracks, up to George’s Junction out west of Kempsey, and just about everywhere up and down South-East Queensland; mind you that was only on work trips. The worst (and maybe the best) thing about these boots, at least as far as my wife is concerned, they were just supposed to be for ‘Work Trips’. Yet I wear them just about every chance I get […] I think I’m gonna have to get another pair to keep as a “good pair” as I’ve rallied the backside out of this set I’ve already got – and besides the mud and oil I’ve spilt on them, they’re still wearing like they’re brand new.

For more info visit: mongrelboots.com.au

PROS
• Aussie-made and owned;
• Comfortable from day one;
• Mine are six months old, been rallied every day and still feel like new;
• Come in steel-caps for the tradies; and
• Heaps of other styles and colours available.

CONS
• Price: mine were $159 – though we’re clutching at straws here, and they’re on par with Blundstones, but are actually made in Australia. Plus, I’d say $160 odd for a top-quality Aussie made boot is pretty good, so, this isn't really a con at all.

ABOVE This is me, being filmed, being chased, while pretending to be a cow, wearing my mongrel boots in the outback. The things I do for a TV show… ‘at least my feet were comfy!

GEAR Mongrel Zipsider Boots

Mongrel Zipsider Boots

Having good-quality boots is possibly the next most important thing to having good-quality tyres on your four-wheel drive. There's an adage that goes along the lines of "look after your feet, and they'll look after you".

That couldn't be truer when we're out exploring this great country of ours. Sure, we spend a lot of time travelling in the comfort of our four-wheel drive, but when we're out in the more inhospitable touring areas, or deep in the depths of the Aussie bush, having a quality set of boots trumps a pair of 'pluggers' every time. Especially when you're bogged up to your diffs and need to run a winch line, or want to scale that cliff face to check out the view.

So, when my last pair of bush shoes (they were joggers, yep, I was that guy) gave up the ghost, I figured it was time to get some solid boots and see how long it'd take me to trash them. To this point, I've still not been able to trash the Mongrel Boots I bought, despite my best efforts.

But how do I know what makes a 'good' boot you may ask? I've been in the NSW Rural Fire Service for some 18 years now – back when I first joined up we were using old military-spec GP Boots, then went to the near-indestructible Kevlar-lined Taipan boots – slogging through the scrub for 14 hours a day dragging hoses and chasing fires, well, you get a good sense of what a good pair of boots look and feel like.

product test

Look after your feet, and they’ll look after you… and that led us to testing out the Mongrel ZipSider Boots which are made here and boast not needing to be broken in.

WORDS BY WES WHITWORTH

“In terms of safety, vision and looks, it’s hard to go past Clearview Powerfold Mirrors.”
Pat Callinan

ADVERTISEMENT
SCROLL TO CONTINUE

Initial impressions
My first thought when I dragged the Mongrel ZipSider boots out of the box was that I'd need to wear them in for a couple of days around the home and the office before I went traipsing across the countryside for weeks on end. I put them on and decided I couldn't have been more wrong. I'm a size 14, and the boots I got fit perfectly from the get-go. No stretching required, just enough give in them, and excellent ankle support. I had them on my feet the day I got them for about 10 minutes; while reading up about the Mongrels and their promise that they're as comfortable as they will get from day one. I kid you not; they were perfect from the first moment […] *insert soppy love song and super-slow-mo of Wes cuddling his boots here.

All jokes aside, they are that good right out of the box.

From there, the Mongrels are an Aussie-made boot, and from the build quality and finish, you can tell. No dags, no random threads sticking out of them, nor wonky stitching; they're spot on. The soles are a solid TPU/PU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane / Polyurethane layered), which is fancy speak for the base layer of the sole is more resistant to cuts, abrasions, oil, heat, chemicals etc., while the next sole layer is for comfort and flex.

The zips are a quality bit of kit, with instructions out inside the box on how to keep them clean, so they don’t flog out. The inner sole is nice and soft, and for a boot feels a lot like walking on pillows, while still supporting your feet. The label said something about an ‘OrthoTec Polyurethane innersole’ which loosely translates to ‘very comfy and good for being on your feet all day’.

They are fully lined inside, with a padded tongue and ankle collar, and you can get them nice and tight with the front laces to keep your ankles supported over rough terrain. They’ve also got an ‘AirZone comfort system’ which keeps your feet from sweating while you’re in them, which keeps your feet dry and in good nick.

Where has Wes taken them?
When I was gushing about how good they were out of the box, after working out I didn’t need to wear them in, it was well-deserved praise – the first trip in these buggers was across the Simpson on a TV show filming trip. You may have heard of the show – Pat Callinan’s 4X4 Adventures – Yup, they’re putting my head on the TV show this year with Pat to represent our excellent magazine, Unsealed 4X4.

So, after the desert, they went through the back of Coffs Harbour’s rather silly tracks, up to George’s Junction out west of Kempsey, and just about everywhere up and down South-East Queensland; mind you that was only on work trips. The worst (and maybe the best) thing about these boots, at least as far as my wife is concerned, they were just supposed to be for ‘Work Trips’. Yet I wear them just about every chance I get […] I think I’m gonna have to get another pair to keep as a “good pair” as I’ve rallied the backside out of this set I’ve already got – and besides the mud and oil I’ve spilt on them, they’re still wearing like they’re brand new.

For more info visit: mongrelboots.com.au

PROS
• Aussie-made and owned;
• Comfortable from day one;
• Mine are six months old, been rallied every day and still feel like new;
• Come in steel-caps for the tradies; and
• Heaps of other styles and colours available.

CONS
• Price: mine were $159 – though we’re clutching at straws here, and they’re on par with Blundstones, but are actually made in Australia. Plus, I’d say $160 odd for a top-quality Aussie made boot is pretty good, so, this isn't really a con at all.

ABOVE This is me, being filmed, being chased, while pretending to be a cow, wearing me mongrel boots in the outback! The things I do for a TV show… ‘least my feet were comfy!

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