A majority of us will be experiencing some harsh weather conditions in the following months. Which begs the question, “What should be my footwear choice?”
Palladium most recently relaunched their “Waterproof” collection for the fall/winter season which should answer a few of the previous questions. The Baggy Leather Gusset and Pampa Thermal are up for the review in this instance as the two boots almost occupy opposite ends of the style and performance spectrum. We take a closer look at the boots while putting their “waterproof” capabilities to the test in everyday and extreme conditions.
Top image – Baggy Leather Gusset boot / Bottom image – Pampa Thermal
Palladium’s focused breadth of products has been time-tested since 1947. The company translated their operations from manufacturing tires to rubber outsoles, which all Palladium boots are built up from. Both boots maintain Palladium’s signature military silhouette with diamond band midsole extending to a toecap lip.
The Baggy Leather Gusset boot is a functional update of the Baggy Leather boot. The slim boot offers versatility with button-down upper construction. Unfolded and laced all the way up, the oiled nubuck suede boots showcase a more rugged aesthetic, resembling boots worn by tactical infantry. When the snap button portion is folded down, it becomes more suitable for casual wear. Branding is visible in both options of wear – the “Waterproof” collection features vibrant blue hits on the rear outsole, woven tab, woven tongue tags and laser-etched “Palladium” logos on the lateral sides, visible when folded down.
The Pampa Thermal is a highly functional boot based on Palladium’s most storied model, the original Pampa boot. With performance as the design focus of the high-top boot, the leather quarters are webbed together with herringbone ribbon reinforced overlays. The collar and top portion of the tongue both feature nylon quilting with a visible liner. Branding is consistently seen in with the “Waterproof” stamp in blue at the heel, woven tab below the upper, and tongue embroidery.
Technology and Function…
The outsoles on both boots are one piece molded with durable lightweight rubber. Additionally borrowing from the company’s roots, the treads designed for tire traction are reappropriated for footwear.
The outsoles on both boots are one piece molded with durable lightweight rubber. Additionally borrowing from the company’s roots, the treads designed for tire traction are reappropriated for footwear.”
The Baggy Leather Gusset boots quarters are functionally constructed with waterproof oiled nubuck leather with gusseted tongue for water drainage. With waterproof stitching and sealed seams, the boots remained dry while submerged in shallow water. The Cambrelle liner regulated foot climate relatively well with the exception of extended indoor wear with heavy knit socks.
The Pampa Thermal is the most weatherproof boot from Palladium. The fully gusseted high-top boot is constructed in waterproof leather with additional structure from herringbone-webbed overlay. The waterproof stitching and sealed seam construction allow the boot to be fully waterproof in deep water. The use of 400g 3M Thinsulate insulation and Dri-Lex lining throughout allowed foot temperature and climate to be maintained when submerged in water for extended periods.
The one-piece molded outsoles provide both boots with similar footbed fitting and structural lightness.
The Baggy Leather Gussets are the slimmer of the two boots, which accounts for its snugger fit. As with most boots, some time is required for the boot to be broken in. The toecap at first is constricting, but after a few wears the rigid leather began to comfortably loosen and mold to the wearer’s foot. This structural tightness is also evident at the midsection when the upper is folded down, which makes the boot slightly difficult to put on; requiring more time to break in. The heel cup and thick EVA sockliner creates a formfitting footbed with moderate bridge support.
The Pampa Thermal provides a looser fit with soft cushioned lining. The soft leather upper, speed lacing system, and rear pull loop effectively makes the boot easier to put on and remove. Thick molded PU is utilized for cushioned stepping, while the web overlay reinforces the structure along with arc support.
Depending on the level of extreme weather you plan to encounter, each boots fulfill the function aspects under the “Waterproof” collection.
Photography: Derek Hui