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Set ’em and forget ’em

By Tom Kline

FXRG-3 H-D Men’s riding boot

Harley-Davidson

$210
www.stepintoalegend.com

I’ve worn knee-high cop boots for most of my riding life, valuing the support and protection they provide ankles, shins and calves. The trade-off for those virtues, however, is the real ordeal involved in getting the things on and off, and the time had come to explore other options. I opted for a pair of Harley-Davidson FXRG-3 Men’s Riding Boots even though, in truth, they appeared to be more like hiking boots than the motorcycle clodhoppers I’d become accustomed to. That impression proved accurate when the boots arrived. They looked like hiking boots. Handsome hiking boots, but hiking boots nevertheless.

They’ve proven to be a pleasant surprise. The first impression when wearing the boot is one of comfort. It provides a solid and supportive walking platform. The manufacturer states that the sole is supported with “shock absorbers” and “Twin Pad Comfort Technology.” Whatever it is, the system works well.

The upper of the boot is leather with a Gore-Tex sub-layer, which the product information—and experience with that material in other applications—indicate is utterly waterproof, and while riding conditions in this drought-stricken region have prevented that claim from being conclusively verified, I would be surprised if experience disproved the warrant of impermeability. Additionally, the thick leather uppers provide superior protection from the cold at high speeds for a sustained period of riding.

Best of all, from my perspective, is that these boots feature side zippers to permit easy pulling onto the feet and securing them once the laces have been positioned and tied. That system adjusted admirably to my feet and simplified the use of the boots—which is what I was hoping for.

In general the boots look good and are quite serviceable. They’re of stout construction and can be resoled, so they can last virtually indefinitely. I have pain with most footwear due to cocked-up legs and feet and so I have to be fussy about my footwear. The FXRG-3 boot allows me to walk without pain and I’ve spent days in them with no discomfort or impairment of movement for extended periods of time. They are light, supportive, good looking and protective against foreseeable riding conditions. And they’re fine hiking boots, too.

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