5.11 ATAC 6″ boot

This entry was posted by on Saturday, 21 April, 2012 at

Some time ago I picked up a pair of 5.11 ATAC 6″ boots. I was looking for an ankle-height, black polishable boot which provides both performance and a neat look.

Needless to say, 5.11 itself can best describe the technical details of these boots on their website, but I’ll cover a few highlights here.

A long-time user of sturdy footware of all sorts, I was reluctant to admit my goretex-lined leather shoes were, metaphorically speaking, kicking the can. Looking for some similarly stylish but also good comfort and support I tried a pair of ATAC 6 boots – and liked them.

The choise was between the sidezip and the normal version. For me, the utility in having a sidezip lies in the fact that you tie them once, and then use the sidezip to get in and out (much like the HAIX Fire Flash Gamma boots). Unfortunately, I could get neither in nor out using the zipper only, so I settled for the zipper-less version. There are a few drawbacks to having a side zipper; it adds extra complexity (hence raising manufacturing cost), adds extra weight and another possible point of failure. Also, it reduces the waterproofness. This can be again improved by using a gusseted zipper, but this adds an extra layer of fabric against the ankle. Enough motivations for me to skip the zipper.

The leather is strong and thick, making this boot both tough and stiff. When buying them, this is something to take into account. I found they do not loosen up over time, so you can just buy the right fit and it will stay that way. The nylon portions neatly match with the leather parts, and there is a minimum of seams on the lower half of the boots, improving water resistance.

The interior has an antibacterial and moisture-wicking lining, nice features to have in footwear, especially if you intend to wear them all day long. The insole provides good stability with various cushioning areas, including 5.11’s “Shock Mitigation System”, which of course is proprietary, patented etc. The tongue is partially gusseted, a great feature to keep out water and small debris.

The sole is a durable, oil and slip resistant. It provides good traction on just about any surface and is moderately quiet. Not as quiet as the Blackhawk Black Ops boots, which have a sole of softer rubber.

The shank in the sole is very rigid, providing good support on long hikes and distribute the weight well.

Weighing in at 470 grams a piece, they do what 5.11 claims: they deliver Lightweight Tactical Performance. And with the free pair of Level II 6″ extra thick socks I got with it, it is an undefeatable combination.

Leave a Reply