Gear

Baffin Boots Review: Waterproof Boots with Versatile Style

by Arthur McMahon
Updated August 17, 2021

Baffin Hurons

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Fear no mud or muck: that’s the Baffin boot mantra. At least, it ought to be.

The Baffin Huron all-season boots I tested were inspired by the Great Lakes of Canada and America, and it shows. These boots have the strength and grit to handle nigh any force of nature in their path, yet they also feature a plush interior your feet will swoon over. I took the Hurons on multiple spring hikes and summer fishing trips where they performed without fail time and again — with one notable exception.

Not a fisherman? No problem. Our female tester gave the Baffin Kensington a go. While they’re equally waterproof, they’re a bit more style-focused and prove to be versatile, grippy, and comfortable right out of the box. We’re becoming big Baffin boot fans.

Check ’em out:

Baffin Huron Fishing
Baffin Hurons: Bringing you one step closer to the fish at the end of the line.

The Good

  • Supremely soft lining and insoles
  • Waterproof rubber base and leather uppers
  • Double-stitched durability
  • Various style options

The first time you slip on the Baffin Hurons, you should try it barefoot. This may not be the way you’ll typically don these boots, but your feet deserve to feel the velvety soft interior without a sock barrier at least once. They’re remarkably cozy despite being all-season (which means you should be able to wear them in summer as easily as winter). They’re also waterproof and well-made, which is plainly evident when you have them in hand (or on foot).

The Not-Quite-As-Good

  • Some Baffin boot styles aren’t available in half-sizes
  • The ankle-area stretch fabric isn’t waterproof

Sizing can be a bit of an issue with the Baffin Hurons as half-sizes aren’t available. As a result, I ended up with boots that were a bit too big. While this may leave room for thick socks for use during winter, it also made for an excess of room in the boots during my spring and summer treks, causing minor chafing and uneasy steps. Similarly, the stretch neoprene fabric at the ankle aids in the slip-on aspect of the boots, as well as ventilation, but it severely limits the practical waterproof height of the boots.

The women’s Baffin boot (the Kensington) comes in whole and half sizes, though some boots (like the winter-ready Snowgoose) are also whole sizes only.

Field Testing

Baffin Huron Creekside
Field testing? More like waterway testing.

How Waterproof Are They?

Baffin Huron waterproof
They are this much waterproof.

The Baffin Hurons – as well as the Kensington women’s boot – are completely and totally waterproof, as long as you don’t stand in more than five inches of water. The sole and lower portion of these boots are made of premium molded rubber that couldn’t spring a leak even if you wanted it to.

Likewise, the uppers are made of durable leather featuring Baffin’s B-Tek.DRY breathable membrane. This is equally as waterproof.

Baffin Huron water
Such a fishing spot would be inaccessible without waterproof boots.

The problem in the Hurons lies with the neoprene side panel. This stretchy fabric makes the Huron an easy boot slip on and off. It’s also supposed to be waterproof, at least according to Baffin’s website, but that wasn’t the case during my testing. The moment I stepped six inches deep into the Willamette River water immediately leaked through the neoprene and soaked my socks.

But aside from that, these boots were reliably waterproof. I didn’t have an issue with deep wet mud, and so I suspect that the moving force of the river water is what caused the neoprene to leak. Still, this is a good muck boot, but not as much of a pure waterproof river shoe as I had anticipated. If you’re planning on wearing it as a stylish boot around town on rainy days, you’ll be more than fine.

All-Season Comfort

As mentioned, the Baffin Hurons have a surprisingly soft Thermaplush interior lining as well as a removable insole that is both supple and supportive. You’ll be able to stand in these for quite some time without any nagging aches.

Baffin Huron comfort
Look mom — no socks! They’re that cozy.

That said, the lack of half sizing makes it so that it is difficult for many (like myself) to achieve a good fit. These boots are not very insulated, and so thick socks are a great way to “winterize” these boots by adding cushion and insulation.

That same lack of insulation is what makes the Hurons not overly hot for summer use. However, these boots will undoubtedly perform best during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn, at least here in the Pacific Northwest. The Hurons will function well as light-duty snow boots, but don’t expect to subject your feet to the extreme cold for too long.

Considering a women’s pair? Our female tester – who, admittedly does fit well into whole sizes – reported that the Kensington Baffin boots she tested were quite comfortable over long distances even without being broken in. Baffin calls their liner an “anti-fatigue” insole, which is aptly named. Comfortable boots can be hard to find for women with high arches, but these were quite pleasant to wear. Like the men’s Huron, they aren’t made for super-cold weather, so think of them more as a spring and fall boot. They won’t replace your insulated snow boots.

Baffin boots: grippy, comfy, and they still look good when scuffed 

Noteworthy Grip and Durability

The Baffin Huron boots are tough — there’s no doubt about it. The pair weighs roughly 3.5 to 4 pounds, depending on the size you choose, and most of that weight comes from the burly rubber base.

The soles of these boots have ample grip with different textures at various points and deep quarter-inch grooves for increased traction on mud and loose surfaces. Slippage wasn’t an issue, whether I was hiking on a gravel trail, stepping over river rocks, or stomping through the mud.

Baffin Huron hike
Decent traction for the trail.

While I can’t speak to long-term durability, these boots held up well in the two months I’ve used them, and the quality construction instills plenty of confidence that they’ll last the long haul. Most of the seams are double-stitched, and both the rubber sole and leather uppers appear to be designed to take a beating.

Kensington-buyers, take note that the Kensington isn’t as outdoorsy as the Huron, as you’ll notice when you look at the treds. They still did just fine on uneven surfaces, but you’re not going to get the same traction as one of their more outdoor-focused boots like the Women’s Hike (or the Huron.)

Key Takeaways

Baffin Huron durability
Double-stitched durability.

Jack of all trades: The Baffin Hurons can wear many hats. They’re all-season, all-weather waterproof boots that can be seen on the feet of hikers, hunters, fishers, and most other wet-weather adventurers. That said, the commitment to versatility makes it a jack of all trades, but a master of none. There are better rain boots out there, better hiking boots, and better snow boots. If you want a pair that does it all, though, the Hurons may be your best bet.

Quality build: These are hardy go-anywhere boots that won’t let you down so long as you’re aware of their limitations.

Best for short, muddy walks: As the Hurons aren’t dedicated hiking boots, they’re not the best for big miles, but if you’re heading out on a short, muddy trek, the Hurons are your Huckleberry. I’d recommend them for activities such as fishing, birdwatching, OHV riding, foraging, and short rainy or snowy hikes.

Heavy on style but made for rain and dirt

Style: While the men’s Baffin boots have more of an outdoorsy look, the women’s Kensington is right up there style-wise with more fashion-based brands like Lucky Brand or Madewell. However, the bonus with Baffin is you also get the outdoor-focused features, like complete waterproofing, a grippy outsole made for loose and wet surfaces, and a comfortable footbed designed for ladies who spend time on their feet. Our Kensington tester reported having multiple friends ask what brand they were and says they’re her new go-to for breezy evenings in the mountains or running errands on rainy days.

Returns and Warranties

Baffin offers a 30-day return window on unused gear.

Other Options

The Baffin Hurons are the do-it-all boots. They’re a great option if you’re not the type of person to have a different pair of shoes for every activity.  Baffin has a wide array of footwear products, though, that were designed for specific purposes, and so they perform better under those specific circumstances for which they were designed.

The Baffin Zone, for instance, is a fantastic hiking boot. For a pair of unbeatable rain boots, check out the Baffin Trapper. And if extreme cold-weather expeditions are your thing, the Baffin Tundra boots will keep your feet comfortable down to -40 degrees. Women may want to consider the taller Snowgoose for snowy and icy conditions, while the Telluride offers a similar look to the Kensington with a warmer winter liner. All are highly rated online.

It’s also worth nothing that Baffin makes an excellent insulated camp shoe, available in two unisex colors. They’re perfect for slipping on at camp after a long day of hiking, or just using as a comfortable winter slipper at home.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, Baffin boots are the right choice for those who want a one-and-done wet-weather boot to get them through the mud and muck of life. They’re certainly versatile, but you’ll want to make sure you can get a pair in your proper size.

However, if you’re on the hunt for a dedicated boot to tackle extreme scenarios, you’ll want to look at the other options offered by Baffin. The Hurons will suit the needs of most people who are simply looking to keep their feet dry and mud-free around mountain towns, the ol’ homestead, or on gentle frontcountry terrain.

Women, however, may find plenty of options to like in the women’s line, especially those who appreciate the style of an urban ankle boot with the functionality of an all-weather outdoor boot (and who don’t want the same pair of boots everyone else has.)

Check ’em out:

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Editor’s Note: Baffin supplied our writers with the Baffin Hurons and Kensingtons for testing purposes, as is common practice with gear reviews. However, our writers’ opinions are entirely their own; our writers don’t profit off sales. We strive for honesty and transparency at all times. 


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