LaCrosse Alpha Muddy Mule Shoes: Product Review
A rugged, comfortable gardening shoe designed for slipping on and off easily when the urge to garden strikes!
Available on Amazon
Do your favorite shoes wear out quickly? Do they smell of fresh manure? Mine do. I used them as a multi-purpose shoe, instead of wearing footwear dedicated to gardening. I own soccer shoes, tennis shoes, running shoes, ski boots, hiking boots, and shower shoes. I’m not sure why it never occurred to me to buy a pair of shoes designed for working in muck. I decided to order a pair of gardening shoes from a well-known brand. Big mistake. The shoes didn’t fit well and were uncomfortable. So, when asked to test LaCrosse Footwear’s Alpha Muddy Mule, I jumped at the chance.
- Material: hand-laid premium, natural rubber over 3.5mm insulating neoprene
- Air Circ Liner: quick-drying mesh that circulates air inside the boot when walking
- Footbed: cushioned, removable polyurethane
- Shank: nylon (the shank supports the foot between the insole and outsole)
- Color options: Grey on grey (style no. 612420) and brown on green—the color I tested (style no. 612421)
- Height: 1-inch at the heel
- Weight: 2.3 lbs. per pair
- Sizing: Men and women sizes 7-15 (no half-sizes)
- Additional: The LaCrosse Footwear Alpha Muddy Mule is designed for mild temperatures ranging from 0-700 F. Other LaCrosse Footwear products provide protection in colder temperatures.
Out of the Box
The shoes arrived before I even purchased more manure and potting soil! Kudos to LaCrosse for sending the shoes so quickly.
After kicking off my Keen Sandals, I sat on the front porch with my new LaCrosse gardening clogs.
I chose clogs because they’re the best shoe for quick removal without touching a poop-encrusted sole. Also, I’m hot-natured. When temperatures reach 650 F, I get uncomfortable. Clogs seemed like a cooler option temperature-wise.
A Perfect Fit
Have you ever tried on something and thought, “My gosh! This fits like a glove!”? Well, that’s what I thought when I put on the Alpha Muddy Mule clog. It felt extremely comfortable.
It’s challenging to buy shoes online. Width, weight, arch support, length, comfort—with so many qualities to consider, it’s rare to order shoes that fit well on the first try. Maybe I got lucky, but the Alpha Muddy Mules fit comfortably as soon as I slipped them on.
I especially liked the nylon stretch around the heel area. The other clogs I purchased have a stiff heel area. Every time I take a step in those shoes, my heel pops up, making my foot slip out of the shoe. The stretchy nylon on the Alpha Muddy Mules keeps the shoe secure.
Into the Trenches
I’ve tried on many shoes that felt great in the store but hurt once I wore them for an hour. The real test for the LaCrosse clogs would be how they held up and felt while performing massive amounts of yard work.
I put the Alpha Muddy Mules to work. Since receiving these shoes, I’ve worn them for more than 120 hours of serious yard work, plus another 40 hours of walking the dog, grocery shopping, cleaning the pond, feeding the fish, and walking around my stately manor.
I dug about 25 holes using my Earthquake Power Head Auger. Digging in saturated soil made of red clay really put the treads of the clogs through the paces. A few times, the treads filled with clay, making it feel like I was wearing cement shoes. But after a quick rinse with the garden hose, the treads regained their traction.
Along with my other chores, I spent some time working in the garden. My cordless Sun Joe Li-Ion 40V 12-inch Cordless Tiller + Cultivator kicked up compost, potting soil, and mulch all over my shoes. When I removed them, a dirt ring stopped above the shoe line. Thanks to the nylon stretch fabric, my feet remained completely dirt-free.
When I finished mixing in the manure in the garden, I rinsed the shoes with my garden hose. Then, I cleaned them using a trick a friend taught me years ago: condition boots and shoes with a small amount of olive oil to keep them looking brand new. I rubbed a bit of olive oil on the top and sides of the clogs, and they look terrific. And as an added bonus, my feet now smell like my Italian grandma’s house!
When it’s time to replace these shoes, I will order another pair of Alpha Muddy Mule clogs. Here’s why I like them so much:
- Comfortable fit with no “break-in” period.
- Performed well under filthy, mucky conditions.
- Remained comfortable after wearing them for hours.
- Nylon stretch fabric around the heel keeps the shoe on, even when tromping through the muck.
- Neoprene and waterproof materials keep feet dry.
- Great looking, making them my “go-to” shoes. I will likely buy another pair for around the house and non-gardening errands.
- Easy-on/easy-off means my hands never have to touch manure or muck.
- Very durable. I expect them to last for many seasons.
One suggestion for improvement: make half-sizes available. Adding half-size options ensures that every wearer experiences a perfect, customized fit with no potential discomfort from too tight/too big shoes.
LaCrosse offers a limited liability warranty against defects in materials and workmanship. “Sporting Footwear Products (except if worn for occupational, specialty occupational, or industrial purposes)” – carry a “one-year from date of original purchase” warranty. The warranty covers leakage in normal use.
I love the LaCrosse Footwear Alpha Muddy Mules, and they far out-perform the much pricier shoes I purchased from another company for the same purpose. If you garden or walk in wet, muddy, or rugged conditions, you need these shoes.
WHERE TO BUY
You can purchase the LaCrosse Footwear Alpha Muddy Mule shoes on Amazon or you can buy them directly from LaCrosse for around $90, plus tax and shipping where applicable.
If you’d prefer a shoe that goes further up your ankle than mules, they are also available as an ankle boot with a side stretch panel and a pull-on tab:
Last update on 2020-05-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
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