Snake Boots Yes or No?
For me there is no other option if I am going to hike the tall grass or swamps of the glades, its all about safety above all else. Now I know some people will say they don’t use boots or do not need them. Well to me it depends on what path you are planning to hike. If you are doing dirt roads or large buggy trails with little surprise vegetation then regular boots are fine.
However for me when it comes to overgrown paths and risky conditions, I will not take the chance. I need to be safe especially in conditions or terrains where rescue is not an option. I know some people will say they are uncomfortable, ugly or get heavy when wet. To me being uncomfortable is a small price to pay when you think of the risks involved. I would rather pay for a good pair of boots than pay for an expensive trip to the hospital any day.
Why do I use anti-venom snake boots?
Because a bite from a venomous snake can be painful, costly, and above all deadly. Some hiking trails and areas have no ambulance, police, or fire rescue, let alone phone service. Sometimes the only emergency rescue you are afforded is from the Coast Guard air rescue. Let me state that this a very costly rescue service. Second: one vial of anti snake venom can cost upwards of $15k-20k. yes that is thousands of dollars per vial. Someone bit may expect needing upwards of 10 injections. If you have no insurance, consider yourself forced to deal with a very expensive doctor bill.
So in my opinion, an $80-$150 anti-venom boot investment can go along way toward protecting one self against venomous snakes. It is also far cheaper than an air rescue evac and emergency treatment costs. When you are looking at a bill which can exceed $150k-$200k for a snake bite, snake boots are a win win for sure!. Snake boots come in many different brands, sizes, heights and features. However, I prefer boots which are laced and zippered for easy removal. I also suggest that you save your receipt and box, most snake boots are warrantied for a year, and will give you a new pair if they have a manufacture defect, and fail to keep water out.
I have found that NO SNAKE BOOTS are 100% waterproof as they claim, expect your feet to get wet pending on how deep you get into the water. Also knee high boots serve better protection as some snakes will strike from the knee cap down. I would also highly suggest buying some knee high, snake boot socks to go with them. A good pair of snake boot socks are comfortable and keep your feet feeling good on long hikes, plus they are anti scent so no foul odor. In regards to them getting wet in the swamps, that is just a fun part of the adventure. As I always say a hike is not a hike unless you get wet.
After you use your boots and they get wet:
1: Rinse them out inside and out with fresh water when you return from your hike
2: Hang them to dry upside down
3: Do not leave them in the garage for too long, I had a pair that simply rotted out.
4: Do not leave wet boots or socks from a hike in your vehicle, they will smell badly.
5: Take care of your boot as they are a life line.