Rocky recently released the latest boot in their C-series line, and the much-hyped boot is loaded with practical features that are sure to impress. The Rocky C7 Coyote Boots are AR 670-1 compliant, meaning they are approved for wear in the US military. With the boots designed for wear on active duty, it was vital that we put these boots through a comprehensive field test to be sure that they deliver outstanding performance for the men and women of the military who will be wearing them. I recently had the opportunity to take these boots out for a test drive and break down the aspects of the boot, feature by feature, to see how they perform. My review will analyze the boots based on three aspects: features, fit and function.
- AR 670-1 and GSA/TAA compliant
- Weighs less than 15 oz per boot
- Rubber Vibram outsole
- Memory foam Ortholite insole
- Incredible breathability
- Speedlace eyelets and NATO hooks
- Padded collar
- Triple-stitched design
- Flexible design
When the boots arrived on my doorstep and I retrieved the package, the first thing that struck me was just how light these boots are. Having seen pictures prior to actually receiving the boots, I expected the somewhat more rugged design, when compared to previous iterations of this boot, to add some weight. That was not the case and they are, in fact, marginally lighter than their C6 predecessor – so these boots actually deliver a more rugged and durable structure without adding any weight. I consider this aspect to be the true selling point of these boots, but the 15 ounce weight is not the only feature that is impressive when analyzing these boots as a whole.
Aside from the light weight, the first thing I noticed as I laced up the boots was the quality eyelets that are incorporated. The boots have speedlace eyelets all the way down the lacing system, allowing you to tighten the boots by simply pulling the ends with no need to adjust the lacing at each level. Up top, the boots have NATO hooks that allow the boots to be laced even faster and the laces to slide as you move, eliminating pinch points common on 8 inch boots. Once the boots were laced, I recognized that the padded collar was actually quite comfortable and prevented the boots from irritating the back of my leg as I walked.
As I ventured outside to put the boots through a field test in various terrain, I found myself quite satisfied with the insole. The insole is billed as being a memory foam Ortholite insole – but I have worn boots that claim to be made with memory foam and they feel just as hard and uncomfortable as other boots. That is not the case with these Rocky C7 boots – the memory foam feels thicker and provides more padding than I have experienced beneath my feet in other boots. This feature was great for comfort, but also performed well to absorb impact as I left my feet and returned to the ground. Furthermore, I enjoyed a higher arch with more support than in other insoles. Having a high arch myself, the added support was a welcome addition and allowed me to move freely without issue.
These boots are not insulated or waterproof, so they are intended for wear in mostly warm or moderate climates. With that in mind, the boots have eight port air vents on both the instep and outstep to provide superb breathability and to promote internal air flow. Being that these boots were released in the fall and I was field testing them in late October, I was worried that I may not be able to analyze the boots in their intended environment. As luck would have it, I was able to test these boots on a bright and sunny mid-80s day not all that common for the month of October in the Northern United States. As I trekked through my field test I began to perspire and I knew that I would be able to test the breathability of the boots. As my feet became wet with sweat, I could feel the air inside of the boots and knew that the vents were working as intended. The nylon portion of the upper also allows air inside the boots and moisture to escape, so that sped up the drying process.
I took these boots out on the trail for this field test, so they were measured on dirt and loose gravel predominantly. Upon initial inspection of the outsole, I was concerned at the sight of lugs that were not as aggressive or deep as other boots I have field tested. I worried that I may not have the traction I need to perform effectively, and that I may be slowed by a lack of overall grip. My worries did not come to fruition however, as the shallower lugs on the Rubber Vibram outsole actually worked better due to the fact that dirt and gravel did not stick inside of the lugs – causing lessened grip. On loose gravel and dirt, plus pavement, these boots gripped without issue and kept me moving forward without delay.
In regards to durability, these boots just feel more durable that prior installments of the Rocky C-series boots. In the past, these were some negative reviews in regards to durability. While the boots were lightweight, they were noted as being quite easy to wear down and tear through. Rocky made it a point of emphasis to overcome this while still providing lightweight boots in their recent models, and the C7 is no exception. The all-rubber sole is highly durable and the triple-stitched upper appears to be much sturdier than past models. As I traversed through varying terrain, abrasions did not cause damage and the flexible design prevented pinch points that may cause the boots to wear faster in certain regions of the boot. I cannot speak to longevity because I simply have not worn the boots for a long period of time yet, but I can say that I do not hesitate to be hard on these boots for fear of damage as I sometimes will with lightweight boots.
When I initially put the boots on, I noticed a narrowness that I did not expect. I have worn several pairs of Rocky boots in the past, so I knew my size and did not expect any sizing issues. I received a size 10R; however, I have worn a wide in boots made by other manufacturers in the past. Because I tend to be on the borderline between a regular width and a wide width, the narrow feeling that I experienced may be due to this issue. Nonetheless, because I generally wear a regular width boot for Rocky, I would warn those considering a purchase who are on the borderline between regular and wide to order the wide width. These boots are narrower than other boots that Rocky makes, and the early reviews from other wearers support my personal experience. Order wide and you should have no issue, because in regards to length, these boots are right on the money.
These boots are ideal for a military application in warm weather or for the outdoorsmen who likes to have a high quality multi-purpose boot. The light weight and durable construction will allow you to wear these boots for various applications both on and off of duty. I enjoyed the comfortable padding and lightweight because it kept me focused on the task at hand and did not slow me down. If you are in the military, these boots will serve you well throughout a deployment without issue. They are built to take a beating without the added weight that other rugged boots provide. If you are a civilian interested in a high quality military boot, these are the item for you. They aren’t too “tactical” in appearance, so you can get away with wearing them casually in addition to any work application. I highly recommend the new Rocky C7 Coyote boots and plan to wear mine for the foreseeable future.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.