From the time of the first American colonists and settlers to the present, cowboy boots have taken hold in American culture. Originally, soldiers needed boots for their army uniforms; then others needed riding boots, as most people traveled on horseback in those days. Then cowboy boots gained popularity with ranchers, who needed to have a firm boot with a large heel to help them balance in the saddle during those rougher rides out in the prairie wrangling the cattle.
Finally, another shift in demand meant that the cowboy boot was more available to general laborers, and the boots became popular among the working class. Having given you this brief history of cowboy boots, we’ll now teach you about five types of men’s cowboy boots you didn’t know. With a pair of these boots, you can rope and ride with the best of them!
Classic Western Boot
The classic western boot is the definition of a cowboy boot. Most of the time, when you see someone wearing cowboy boots, or if you find yourself in a boot store, you will come across this style of boot.
You’ve seen them in the movies and at rodeos; even cattle ranchers wear them. But what makes this type of boot so iconic? One reason is that it features a 1½ inch angled heel.
The purpose behind this heel is to keep the rider in the saddle while on horseback. The most traditional boots always feature these high heels because they are made for horseback riding. Without having a high heel to support you, your feet could easily slip out of the stirrups, making it harder to stay in the saddle. This can result in your falling off your horse while riding.
In addition to the traditional classic western boot, there is also a low heel classic western boot that is much easier to wear but not suitable for horseback riding.
The ropers boot was engineered to be a cross between the classic western boot and the English riding boot. Of all western cowboy boots, this signature brand has the lowest heel, measuring in at just 1 inch in height.
As the culture of cowboy boots has grown, the term “walking heels” has become a common nomenclature with this brand of the boot. This is because they are very easy to wear for any cowboy boot wearer.
What the average person doesn’t realize about this design is that it was originally created for those who rope and ride for a living. These cowboys must be able to move quickly and comfortably, making swift decisions as they rope cattle and wild horses.
Getting caught up and tangled in a stirrup or rope isn’t an option when your life is on the line. They must be able to get into and out of situations fast. This is the main reason cowboys use these short heels and why you’ll often see them in rodeos.
This unique boot has similarities to the classic western cowboy boot and other styles. It’s intended for the cowboys who don’t often ride horseback, as the short-but-wide heel is tapered, making it especially easy to walk around and maneuver in.
These would be ideal for the working person who stays on their feet all day. With their uniquely cut and designed heels and insole cushioning, these are truly made for walking long distances. Also made for working and general wear, these boots will carry you a long way if you take care of them.
It is also important to note that instead of the classic wooden heel, stockman boots have rubber heels for comfort and longevity. Even when you walk for miles in these boots, you won’t feel the foot exhaustion and back pain that you might feel when wearing more traditional boots during the workday.
Western Work Boot
Western work boots may be one of the most practical western boot styles to date. The price range is significantly less due to the raw construction of these boots. With the working person in mind, these boots are made with a cheaper cowhide and lack all the detailed artistry and design of the classic western boot.
The heel was only cut by a quarter-inch, making it suitable for walking, working, and even riding if necessary, depending on the type of work for that day. They’re truly a versatile boot for working and getting the job done in style. These boots are made for getting roughed up and dirty.
They also feature thick rubber soles with even deeper treads for the best traction. You can wear these boots while you work in the yard, on a construction site, or in nearly any other similar work setting.
They won’t disappoint you, and they will likely outlast most other boots if you take care of them. Even if people consider them one of the lower classifications of the country-western boot, they can keep up with the best of them without all the flair and pomp. If you are in search of men’s country boots for mainly casual wear and don’t want to spend an arm and a leg, western work boots are the boots for you.
If you want boots that you can show off as well, then the buckaroo is for you. Some people solely wear country-western cowboy boots for the fashion aspect. This boot has that aspect nailed down perfectly. It features all the bells and whistles when it comes to design and artistry.
Where it really shines is in the shaft of the boot—an impressive 14-inch shaft that is designed to both showcase the boot, and more importantly, protect the shins and calves of the wearer. You will see rodeo clowns and even some rodeo cowboys wearing these, depending on how flashy they are in their performances.
Getting into the world of Western cowboys is something altogether unique, and many people are still unaware of many details of that culture. Here, we have showcased five types of men’s cowboy boots you didn’t know to help you engage with and get a glimpse of Western culture.