Gear Review: Browning debuts affordable trail shoes for men, women

Here_is_the_men_s_Glenwood_in_Pavement-Crypress_and_women_s_Buck_Pursuit_in_Frost_Gray

Browning’s men’s Glenwood in Pavement-Crypress and women’s Buck Pursuit in Frost Gray. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

The traditional Browning Buckmark logo can now be found on everything from clothing and air fresheners to backpacks and tents.  And while the company half-heartedly entered and faded from the footwear market years ago, their latest foray into the realm of hunting boots and trail shoes looks lasting.  We had a chance to lace up both the men’s and women’s trail shoes as soon as they began shipping.

Browning footwear

Browning’s re-entry into the footwear market comes at the same time as they beef up their lines of hunting camo and outdoor wear.  The trail shoes we’re looking at are the first to hit the open market.  All three of the trail shoe lines — Glenwood, Buck Pursuit, and Delano — are available in both male and female versions with sizing and color options customized to each.  All three styles are marked as made in China, which is a knock, but sadly it’s getting more difficult to find American-made footwear at an affordable price.

Tongue_detail_on_the_Glenwood

Tongue detail on the Glenwood. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

The affordable price points paired with designs built for the outdoorsperson’s market make these trail shoes immediately interesting.  There’s also a forthcoming line of hunting boots that covers everything from leather uplanders, warm weather lightweight spot-and-stalk types, to the warmest winter boots and everything in between.  While the trail shoes are just shipping now, the full line of hunting boots will not be released until late summer.

Glenwood trail shoes

We tested the men’s new-for-2017 Glenwood trail shoes over the course of the last 3 months of regular wear.  Through mud, gravel, hiking hills, gravel, and plain old work wear, these treads have stood up with minimal to no wear and were wear-ready right out of the box.  Our color combination was called Bracken/Beluga, which wins an award for creative color naming, but appears to be a deep brown with blaze orange trim.

Men_s_Glenwood_in_bracken-beluga_color_

Men’s Glenwood in bracken-beluga color. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

Right out of the box, the shoes conform nicely to the feet with no blisters, uncomfortable spots, or odd areas of wear. All the trail shoes are geared toward warmer weather or higher activity levels with synthetic mesh uppers, making them both breathable and pretty quick drying.  The single piece lugged outsole is plenty aggressive for all outdoor conditions.  The Glenwoods mold well to the foot and offer plenty of protection for the everyday user.  They served our reviewer well for everything from range time to hiking to work, or even just plain casual wear at family functions.  The shoes are at once good looking enough to dress up for any-day wear as they are to run-and-gun at shooting competitions.

aggressive_tread_on_the_men_s_Glenwood,_showing_the_contrasting_trim_color

aggressive tread on the men’s Glenwood, showing the contrasting trim color. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

Men’s sizes run 8-13 while Women’s span 6-11, with both available in half sizes. Retailing for a surprisingly low $49.99, the Glenwoods are the most affordable of the Browning line.  As such, they are great for average hiking and everyday wear for most users, yet if you tend to really tear up your footwear with ultra-rough terrain, the features of the Buck Pursuit may be even better.

Both_models,_including_this_Glenwood,_maintain_traction_on_wet_surfaces_and_dry_quickly

Both models, including this Glenwood, maintain traction on wet surfaces and dry quickly. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

Buck Pursuit trail shoes

We stepped into the women’s Buck Pursuit trail shoes in the Frost Gray color.  Kudos to the company for offering a full gamut of women’s size and color options.  There are plenty of pink and baby blue trimmed looks for the girlier girls, and more subtly feminine options like ours that came with a minty green trim over the gray exterior.

The_women_s_shoes_came_with_alternate_color_laces_whereas_the_men_s_Glenwood_came_with_additional_laces_of_the_same_color

The women’s shoes came with alternate color laces whereas the men’s Glenwood came with additional laces of the same color. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

Like the men’s Glenwood, size in our Buck Pursuit ran very true. Best of the all, the shoes were comfortable right out of the box with no break-in time required.  While most trail-style shoes offer both adequate support and a grippy sole, the Buck Pursuits are superior to most we’ve worn in the past.  The aggressive, deeply-lugged rubber outsole is ideal for hiking, range work, or just plain everyday use. Over the course of several months, I’ve partnered the Buck Pursuits with everything from tactical pants for shooting work to jeans or shorts for casual wear.

Women_s_Buck_Pursuit_in_Frost_Gray_hug_not_only_the_feet,_but_also_the_terrain

Women’s Buck Pursuit in Frost Gray hug not only the feet, but also the terrain. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

We put the shoes to hard use at a Mossy Oak summit event in the dirges of summer, 90+ degrees each day, and the shoes were cool and durable.  In fact, I didn’t think about my choice of footwear at all, which is a testament to the Buck Pursuits overall comfort.  The synthetic mesh upper construction is breathable, but offers plenty of protection from the terrain.  The design of the shoe basically allows it to hug the foot, conforming more the snugger you lace it as the lacing points pull upward from the lower area.  Rubberized heel and toe overlay areas offer added protection, especially nice when hoofing through rough terrain when you don’t want jagged rocks poking your tootsies. There’s ample padding with the molded EVA footbed that the shoes are all-day comfortable, yet also plenty supportive.  They’re not the lightest-weight shoes on the market on the market, but they’re not the heaviest either, making the Buck Pursuit a happy medium for those seeking a do-all shoe.

Notice_the_difference_in_profile,_side_lacing_structure,_tongue_height,_and_toe_design_between_th_Glenwood_Buck_Pursuit.__

Notice the difference in profile, side lacing structure, tongue height, and toe design between the Glenwood Buck Pursuit. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

The whole outfit comes packed in a Browning box along with an extra set of color-matched laces and a Buckmark decal.  Both the men’s and women’s Buck Pursuit kicks retail at $79.99, a reasonable point for the highest end of the company’s quality and comfort shoes.

The_women_s_Buck_Pursuit_lug_soles_provided_great_traction_even_on_slippery_rocks_like_this_one

The women’s Buck Pursuit lug soles provided great traction even on slippery rocks like this one. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

Conclusion

Simply putting a logo on a pair of shoes does not make them a winner; however, these shoes quickly became favorites for everyday wear for so many reasons that the Buckmark is just icing on the cake.  We were pleased with the durability, comfort and affordability of Browning’s new line of trail shoes.  In fact, we’re waiting to lace up some of the company’s hunting boots when they are introduced later in the year.

The_men_s_Glenwood_and_women_s_Buck_Pursuit_both_offer_affordable,_yet_rugged_options_for_hikers,_outdoorspeeps

The men’s Glenwood and women’s Buck Pursuit both offer affordable, yet rugged options for hikers, outdoorspeeps. (Photo: Kristin Alberts)

While we don’t believe in buying a product just because it’s owned by a gun company, if it’s a good product at a fair price, why not support the companies that back our gun rights and feed our firearms passion?