I’ve been on the hunt for affordable metal detecting boots, a task made incredibly challenging by having a small foot size as a woman. I explored various options, from non-metal toe boots designed for logging, construction, hiking, motorcycle, to cowboy boots. Given the demanding conditions I face while metal detecting, I’ve gone through numerous pairs of boots, none meeting all my criteria for cost, durability, waterproofing, ease of cleaning, good grip, and a decent color—until I stumbled upon a pair purely by accident that truly amazed me with their quality and affordability.
When my son needed boots for a school camp, anticipating limited use and potential outgrowing quickly, I turned to Amazon and found the Wondamo Men’s Snow Boots—Lightweight, Waterproof Winter Boots with Fur Lining and Anti-slip Cold Weather Soles, available in men’s smaller shoe sizes.
After my son returned from the school camping trip, and the boots were not in use, knowing I had to metal detect in an area with really bad mud, I grabbed his boots on a whim. To my surprise, they fit, and I decided to use them. In a California winter downpour, stumbling all over in mud relic hunting, these inexpensive boots kept my feet dry and were comfortable. I was impressed. Having tried many other boots from expensive brands that failed me, it was unexpected that these $47 boots outperformed most all boots I owned and used detecting in the harshest of metal detecting conditions, keeping my feet warm and dry, while others left me with cold, soaked feet.
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Wondamo Men’s Snow Boots—Lightweight, Waterproof Winter Boots with Fur Lining and Anti-slip Cold Weather Soles
Six Colors to Choose From
Then I went beach metal detecting at night during a miserable cold winter storm to hit negative tides and massive cuts. Again wearing the Wondamo boots, my feet in the rain were still dry. I’ve owned multiple so-called hiking boots, snow boots, and workman boots (construction, logging, farm) with fancy “Waterproof” labels that got wet. However, these affordable $48 dollar boots kept my feet dry in these kinds of crazy metal detecting conditions.
Well, I was impressed so far, but I would get more impressed. With the boots being lightweight, smaller than my bulky heavy Sorrells, and having to travel to Canada by air with limited luggage, along with fitting a detector, scoop, shovel, and a month’s plus worth of clothing, I decided the Wondamo boots would be suitable for winter and spring conditions in Canada and an excellent detecting boot while traveling. However, due to my metal detecting excursions, they were muddy, and before I packed them, I had to clean them. Cleaning off most of the mud with a hose and throwing them in the washing machine, to my surprise, they came out looking new. Beautifully new after air drying for a day. They are better than expected after going through a washing machine. Again, impressed—a boot I can metal detect in, walk a distance with, a good gripping sole on rocks with wet moss or mud, that is lightweight, also easy to clean. Wow, just wow. But I got even more impressed.
I landed in Canada during one of the worst snowstorms in the last 50 years. Conditions were terrible. Instead of metal detecting, I was shoveling snow daily along with using a snowblower. I presumed my feet would get wet walking in this much snow and wet snow in the Wondamo boots; impressively, my feet stayed dry. When the weather finally permitted winter beach and relic metal detecting, still in bad conditions, it wasn’t snowing but raining, and the boots didn’t disappoint; they stayed dry as well.
Upon closer inspection, I discovered purposeful design features contributing to their effectiveness in keeping dry. The tongue was cleverly designed to prevent water from entering the sides and bottom.
Another feature I liked was the sturdy loop at the back, facilitating easy pulling up of the boots, even with snow pants or my metal detecting pants. The grip on ice was commendable, and the boots endured three months of relentless abuse in November, December, and January, excelling in some of the worst weather conditions for metal detecting and keeping dry at a fraction of the cost of similar quality boots.
There is a small amount of metal on the boot that could set off a metal detector, but not much, just as much as a quality-made boot generally has—the rivets for the laces. For some, they might not have a strong high arch, but I found them comfortable.
The sole is sealed well to the boot; this and the tongue are where other boots fail for waterproofing. Having the sole sealed well is vital because most of my metal detecting boots and summer weather metal detecting shoes break down with the sole detaching.
For $48, Wondamo Men’s Snow Boots—Lightweight, Waterproof Winter Boots with Fur Lining and Anti-slip Cold Weather Soles have proven to be the best metal detecting boots I have ever had.
Joanna Jana Laznicka, a Czech-Canadian residing in Southern California, is passionate about all things associated with metal detecting. She mainly detects on the West Coast, from Southern California to Northern British Columbia. As the founder of Focus Speed, her goal is to bring quality content to metal detectorists.