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Combat Boot Archives 4 ~ Karrimor SF Cold Wet Weather Boot

Supplied by Iturri, this Karrimor SF boot is one of two Cold Wet Weather footwear choices being offered to troops with an Arctic or Mountain theatre role [© Bob Morrison]

The following review on Karrimor SF CWW boots was published in the November 2012 issue of the now out-of-print COMBAT & SURVIVAL Magazine, writes Bob Morrison:-

 

Archive: By the autumn of 2012 the UK Ministry of Defence had chosen precisely which combat boots it would be ordering to equip its troops for the next five years and a reddish brown shade had finally been selected for general issue.

 

Rear view of this high cut Gore-Tex membrane insulated leather boot [© Bob Morrison]

On 21st September [2012] Iturri Group, one of three suppliers selected by UK MoD to provide a range of combat groups covering five distinct categories, formally announced they had won the contract and confirmed what we had gleaned at DVD 2012 in June. Three new boots will complement two models already supplied by Iturri, to meet “the increasing demand by troops for high quality and versatile footwear to meet the requirements of different terrains and operational situations.

 

Included in the Iturri portfolio for the first time is the Karrimor SF Cold Wet Weather boot, in full grain waterproof leather with a 3M Thinsulate lining for improved thermal performance, a Goretex membrane and a Vibram outsole for improved durability. Our test pair of Karrimor SF boots were couriered to us for delivery first thing Monday morning following the announcement, just in time for that horrendous week of post-equinox rain which battered the UK, and after quickly photographing them in the studio they went onto my feet for initial impressions before penning this.

 

The Karrimor SF CWW boot has both a substantial padded collar and an all-round rubber rand above the sole [© Bob Morrison]

Of the five boot categories – our test pair is in the Olive colourway produced for the field trials but specification is identical to the more reddish Brown boot which will shortly be issued – the Cold Wet Weather one is the top of the range and is of superb quality. In UK Size 10 it measures nine inches (225mm) to the base of the scalloped rear collar, which is soft and padded for both comfort and protection, and the tongue gussets extend to eight inches (200mm) to keep the wet out. Lacing design is nine-eyelet, extending quite close to the toe, with five ball-bearing lace tunnels each side for adjustment, a double rivet lace lock tunnel at position six, and three lace tunnels to the top, plus there is a lace positioning tape on the tongue above the lace lock.

 

The nine-eyelet lacing system has five lower ball bearings and a lace lock at the sixth position [© Bob Morrison]

The 3M Thinsulate lining is both confortable and heat retaining, and the Gore-Tex membrane will keep the foot dry in the wettest of conditions. As for the sole, my pair of Karrimor SF boots have the excellent Vibram Sierra pattern, the same as that on my much treasured and long in the tooth ‘white collar’ Lowa GTX boots which have served me well on several Arctic assignments and wet weather forays onto most of the main UK training areas over the years.

 

Space prevents me delving more deeply into the specification of these boots – we had to pull a page of working knife reviews to get these in – but it is safe to say that you will not find too many makes around that are higher spec than this. As for my initial impressions? An excellent boot for Brecon, Dartmoor, Norway and the like.

 

For the record, the other four boots which Iturri are supplying UK MoD are: the Alt-Berg Defender full grain boot with water repellent leather upper and Vibram outsole; the Miendl Desert Fox PRO with new enhanced suede leather upper and Clima lining; the Magnum Desert Scorpion high quality suede boot with Breath Right lining to maximise breathability; and the Bates Ultralite in high quality leather and fabric with breathable mesh lining. All five of these boot models are being supplied in the new brown colourway which, from a camouflage perspective, works much better with the enhanced performance of Multi-Terrain Pattern clothing than black.

{ images © Bob Morrison 2014 }

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