I'm in love with the Hi-Tec Ohio WP!
I've lost my balance. It's bizarre and I think it comes with being a tad out of shape, but there have been times when I've been sauntering down the driveway to slip a letter in the mail and have completely piled over. On flat ground. There wasn't so much as an arrant rock in my path. I can only attribute this craziness to the need for more ankle support.
The Ohio WP give me a lot of what I'm looking for in an outdoor shoe that is versatile enough to be used indoors as well. Plus, I love the colors and the little part of me that appeals to vanity is happy when a shoe is attractive!
Some of the great features:
- Waterproof yet breathable! I have notoriously sweaty dogs so anything that keeps me from having a hot-foot attack rocks! The caveat here is that when indoors for long periods of time, this is a warmer boot.
- Great maneuverability even on ICE. Yes, Old Man Winter had us in his death grip for months. This was undoubtedly the longest, coldest winter I remember in my lifetime. What does this mean for my footwear? Well it means that I've been asking a lot of my shoes and boots -- warmth, waterproofing, and of course traction. Few meet all my needs. Absolutely, truly, this boot has conquered the transition season fraught with ice and mud! As far as traction goes -- they rock! I was a little hesitant since they weren't Vibram sole -- something I've come to trust -- but they are actually surpassed my expectations and are probably the best on-ice boots I have other than my soft-soled mukluks. The multi-directional sole (pictured below) is responsible for this important attribute!
- Ankle support is something I haven't had in a shoe since about ten years ago! I remember taking the "Pack Test" for firefighting in a pair of Columbia hiking boots (it was my first time and I really should have stuck to the tennis shoes instead) but after three miles, I knew when I took off my shoes there would be a pool of blood at the bottom -- I wasn't disappointed. That hiking boot was the wrong choice for that day -- it's been a GREAT choice lately though!
My sloppy footing has been remedied by a slightly higher upper in this boot. However, there is none of the worrisome rubbing that I sometimes experience in a taller boot.
- Quality, unsurpassed. I am a baby when it comes to foot pain. Though I'm no longer on the fire line, I've learned some valuable lessons about foot care that stuck with me. I know if my feet aren't happy, I'm not happy! These boots make my feet happy. They are made from quality you can feel, something one can just expect to see from the Hi-Tec brand! The stitching, the suede/mesh upper, the sole, even the inner foot bed -- they all work with the anatomy of your foot to promote a comfortable stride.
- Looks! When I first opened the box excitedly, I was a little taken aback by the "pointed" toe of these boots. I've been accustomed to work boots, casual shoes and sandals that lately have all been rather rounded. So I didn't think I'd love the appearance of my feet from above. I was yet again surprised! Once on my feet, I really liked the 'look' of the boots. This is not a high priority for me, but it is taken into account since I probably wouldn't sport a totally hideous boot unless it REALLY hugged my feet.
Only Complaint: After about three days of use, the right instep started making a clicking noise at each step. It's only a little annoying and it in no way effects the support or function of the shoe. It honestly just sounds like clicking a Ball canning jar lid. So it kind of fits my personality and hobbies! I won't be stealthy with my clicky foot, but I'll be comfortable!
*Disclosure: I partnered with HiTec USA for the purposes of this post. All opinions are my own.*