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PurpleHorse 08-27-2012 01:21 PM

Can someone help me with Western Boots?
I've been riding english for a few years, but decided I wanted to give Western a try. So I've had a couple lessons and I really love it, so I'm going to change over and wanted to get myself some western boots.

I went to check them out western boots and I admit I'm so confused by all the variations. I'm so use to tall boots, they are basic black and hunt or dressage - nice and simple. I tried asking a salesperson for help, but she just kept trying to show me really ugly ones that were way out of my budget :-(

I'm just looking for a basic pair that I can wear for lessons and maybe some small local shows - nothing fancy. I like ones that are kind of like these:

Justin Boots Justin Gypsy® L9905 BLACK DEER COW
Fatbaby Ranchbaby Square Toe - Ariat

I get confused when I see the thick soles, thin soles, square toe, rounded toe etc. I have no idea what is the the best 'style' - is it just a personal preference? I don't know if thick soles are bad for shows or if round toes are out of style, etc. - I'm finding it all so confusing. I'm not even sure yet what type of showing I would do, I just know that I've really enjoyed doing it english, so I'd love to get into it western as well :???:

Joe4d 08-27-2012 02:32 PM

pretty much just personal preference, lot of the girls I know ride , including barrel race in exactly those two shoes. Be advised the Ariats run narrow. One girl got the ariats you mentioned and they were too tight but the justins in the same size fit perfectly. Pretty much anything with a 90 degree heel will be fine. Some people like leather soles because they slide in and out of stirrup easier, but those people tend to not live where it rains alot. SOme people thing the fat baby type are too wide for stirrups.
A plain set of basic black ropers like the ariat heritage ropers, are great comfortable all around sh$%t kickers. And with a can of KIWI parade gloss you can spit shine em to a mirror finish.

2muchcoffeeman 08-27-2012 03:20 PM

I've also heard the criticism of the FatBabies Joe mentioned.

I would avoid the square toes just because a couple of years ago they weren't in at all. I expect them to go back out again soon and then you'll just have a pair of dated boots. :lol:

Ariat has gotten better on its sizing issues, I think. I had to get a pair of Ariat's ropers in size 13 because the 12s were about a half-size small — but that was 12½ years ago.

(And I've never had to do anything but polish those boots, either. They weren't advertised as weatherproof, but they certainly act that way.)

A few years later, I got a pair of Ariat traditional Western boots that fit perfectly in a 12. They're easily the most comfortable shoes I've ever worn.

waresbear 08-27-2012 03:34 PM

384 Attachment(s)
The phat babies by Justin are more of a streetwear thing, comfortable though! Best boot for my money has been Laredo ropers, I have 3 pairs, one black pair I use for showing are over 20 years old & still look good. They are not expensive, work excellent for riding, comfy to walk in & hold a spur strap well.
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SplashedOvero 08-28-2012 01:58 AM

I have a pair of Ariat round toe boots and a pair of laredo the Arait are more comfy for just wearing but the Laredo are better for me when I ride although I won't be using my laredos anymore because I had them signed by kip moore lol. It's just personal preference I would find a pair that went well with my tack.

nikelodeon79 08-28-2012 10:11 AM

I have the Justin Gypsy (with a different color upper) and while they are CRAZY comfy for barn chores, etc., they are really wide and can easily get caught up in stirrups, so riding them isn't really ideal.

I prefer just a plain work roper for riding: Justin Boots Farm & Ranch JBL3000 BLACK COW Since your pants go over the upper, it doesn't really matter whether they're pretty. ;)

I always get mine for a really good price at Farm & Fleet.

peppersgirl 08-28-2012 10:53 AM

I have NEVER had any luck with Justin boots. The soles wear out fast and they just dont seem to be very hardy. Fatbabys are alright for going out, but I wouldnt reccomend them for horse/barn work as they are meant for going out (and too darn chunky to ride in).

I love my ariats (with the ATS sole). The pair Im on now i have had for the last 3 years and they are showing no signs of dying anytime soon. Heck i still have my old pair, and they are still good, i just need to get in there and trim some fabric from where my heel wore through..its anoyying but i can still wear them. I have NOT been kind to either pair of these boots they have seen much horse urine and manure, rainy muddy days, spurs, dusty ground, but they still look nice enough that i just put some mink oil on em and i can go out dancing with them:)

PurpleHorse 08-28-2012 12:21 PM

I just wanted to say thank-you so much everyone! I am feeling much more confident about what to look for when I go back to get a pair! Now I know what I'm going to be looking for. Thanks!!

smrobs 08-28-2012 01:34 PM

I agree, if you're looking for a boot to ride in, the thinner the soles are (generally speaking), the better. Those Justin's that you posted, OP, I would never want to ride in them because with those thick soles, it's just asking to get hung up.

Another thing to consider is the shape of your feet. If you have longer, narrower feet, then you'd likely get along better with a round toe. Because I have relatively short and very wide feet, I never did find a round toe boot that fit me well. When I was younger and my folks were buying all my boots, I used to get justin ropers. They were okay but didn't last very long as a working boot. I had to get a new pair at least every year because they would start to crack or the soles would start to come apart or the heel would fall off. Plus, I had to get them in a EE width just to keep them from pinching my feet and they still weren't comfortable.

Then, about 8 or 9 years ago, I got my first pair of Ariats. I could tell from the moment that I put them on that they would be much more comfortable than the Justins even though they still didn't fit very well because I went with a round toe.
Professional Heritage Stockman - Ariat

Then, about 3 years ago, I got a new pair of these.
Professional Quickdraw 11" - Ariat

They fit my wide foot well, they are super comfortable, and have been very durable. They've been slogged through mud and muck and poop and I can still clean them up and wear them out to town. Plus, they won't hang up in a stirrup any worse than any other boot designed for riding in spite of the rubberized sole. It will slip out of the stirrup like it should but won't slip around on grass when you're trying to walk LOL.

DrumRunner 08-28-2012 01:52 PM

Everything Smrobs said.. I'm a huge, huge fan of the Ariats and I also like the thinner soles much better. I feel more comfortable in those when riding, I have heard a lot about the thicker soles of the fatbabies and riding accident and such, they're more of just a fashion boot than an actual riding/working boot.. Right now I have a pair of Ariats and a pair of Rocky's that I'm in love with.. I've had the Ariats for probably 3+ years and the Rocky's for 2+ years.. I did just get a pair of Tony Lamas that I'm only going to wear for bigger shows and places I have to look nice.. My Rocky's and Ariats are being retired to just at home riding and working.. I cannot bring myself to get my Tony Lama's dirty..

My Ariats -
Ariat Women's Heritage Roughstock Boots U Toe Antique Brown 1594

My Rocky's - Fit amazing, and they are SO comfortable.
Rocky Womens Ride 11" Boot | QC Supply

My new Tony Lamas - Looove these..
Tony Lama Women's Tan Navajo with Painted Cross Boot

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