Severe weather and rugged terrain can make backcountry hunts brutal, particularly to your feet. But did you know you can tame such tough expeditions with the best gaiters for hunting?
Well, the best hunting boots will give your legs ultimate protection, no doubt. However, it’s not all-encompassing. Water, snow, and debris, in most instances, might find their way into the boots. Also, your pants are left at the mercy of sharp rocks and spiky plants.
The best hunting gaiters will give you that much-needed extra layer of protection. They can take punishment and keep you comfortable on harsh, less-traveled trails. Well, in this article, I’ll round up the top 10 best hunting gaiters that provide total quality and performance.
10 Best Gaiters for Hunting
1. Outdoor Research Men’s Crocodile Gaiters
- Benchmark performance for all gaiters
- High-performance, abrasion-resistant Cordura
- Breathable and waterproof GORE-TEX upper
- Sizeable for double-layered plastic boots
- A wide range of sizes
Outdoor Research Crocodile gaiters live up to their namesake. They’re tough as nails and can withstand the test of time. And that makes them the ultimate leg guard in the world of hunting gaiters.
These “Crocs” gaiters combine GORE-TEX upper and military-grade Cordura in the lower portion.
GORE-TEX offers versatile protection. It creates a durable waterproof, and windproof barrier. Also, it remains breathable, providing all-weather protection.
High-performance Cordura fabric, on the other hand, resists abrasion, scuffs, and tear.
On the whole, Outdoor Research gaiters are extremely strong and well-made. I don’t think anything can cause a hair of damage on these gaiters. So, it’s no surprise they come with a lifetime warranty.
Well, these hunting gaiters are not only extremely durable but also more substantial and heavier. Such a combination makes them a bit of an overkill for light hunting. Instead, they’re for rugged hikes, hunts, and backpacking.
Crocodile hunting gaiters are the most expensive on the list. Even then, they’re the best on the market. These hunting gaiters score exceptionally well in most categories, making them well worth every penny.
Outdoor Research gaiters come in a wide range of sizes. Hence, there’s a comfortable fit for every shoe size. Also, these gaiters feature a larger circumference that fits double-layer plastic boots. Plus, cover most of the boot laces and fit just below the knees for ultimate protection.
After the day’s use, you can throw these gaiters in the washing machine. As for the color, it’s available in solid black or black with chili accents.
The weight penalty and the fact that it doesn’t accommodate women are the only downsides.
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2. OUTAD Waterproof Outdoor Legging Gaiters
- 600D polyester-coated nylon fabric
- Above-standard 6000mm waterproof rating
- Quiet, lightweight fabric for stalking and easy portability
- Three color and size options
The extremely low budget might make you a bit skeptical. Surprisingly, OUTAD gaiters are a good pair that far exceeds their monetary value.
OUTAD gaiters come in polyester-coated 600D nylon. Hence, they provide a waterproof yet breathable barrier.
For the record, these hunting gaiters have a waterproof rating of 6000mm. Well, that far exceeds the consensus for waterproof performance, which is 800-1000mm. So, I’d say these gaiters are exceptionally waterproof.
Aside from being extremely waterproof, OUTAD gaiters keep you dry in deep snow. Also, they’re tear-resistant for long-life durability.
Drawcords allow you to tighten around the top. Hence, they keep out snow, small rocks, and other debris.
The instep straps come with an actual buckle, the same as in high-end sets. For this reason, they’re strong and provide firm wear.
OUTAD gaiters are a small, lightweight package. That makes them extremely comfortable for long hikes and easy to stuff in a backpack. Also, they’re flattering and quiet enough for stalking.
OUTAD gaiters are available in three sizes. Also, you get them in three colors: blue, green, and orange.
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3. Kenetrek Unisex Hunting Gaiter
- All-purpose Realtree camo
- Waterproof and breathable storm blocker membrane
- 1000D nylon reinforcement
- Heavy-duty Hypalon instep straps
- Unisex design
Kenetrek gaiters are pretty much what you need for the rugged, backcountry terrain. These gaiters stand out in neutral and realistic Realtree AP camo. Well, it’s an all-purpose camo that blends seamlessly with nature for stealth. Moreover, it holds its contrast and is safe in the washing machine.
These hunting gaiters combine storm blocker membrane and 1000D nylon reinforcement.
The membrane is windproof, waterproof, and breathable. 1000D nylon, on the other hand, provides the durable performance of Cordura. It rewards you with ballistic-grade protection and withstands the most extreme weather. Moreover, it’s resistant to abrasion.
Thanks to the adjustable top web strap, these gaiters provide plenty of room to grow inside. Also, they adopt heavy-duty Hypalon rubber instep straps. These provide extreme resistance to chemicals, high temperatures, and UV rays. Also, the straps are replaceable.
Well, the unisex design makes these gaiters ideal for both men and women.
These hunting gaiters are only available in medium size. Hence, as far as the fit goes, they might not be as versatile. Nonetheless, they’re a perfect pair of hunting gaiters.
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4. Unigear Waterproof Boot Gaiters
- Abrasion-resistant 600D polyester fabric
- Breathable mesh lining
- 1000mm waterproof rating
- Long-lasting TPU instep straps
- Highly durable lace hooks
- Available in four sizes and three colors
Unigear boot gaiters might not be tough enough for serious mountaineering. Nonetheless, these gaiters provide value for money. They’re a perfect pair for hunting, skiing, and light climbing adventure.
These leg gaiters boast 600D abrasion-resistant fabric. It creates a barrier that protects your legs from snow, ice, and debris. Also, it has a mesh lining to keep you cool and dry.
As far as waterproof performance goes, these gaiters have a 1000mm rating. Hence, they meet the general consensus for waterproof performance.
Unigear gaiters have exceptionally durable TPU instep straps. For this reason, they’re safe for use with crampons. Also, they can withstand freezing temperatures of up to 35 degrees below zero.
These hunting gaiters are pretty light. Hence, they fold down flat for easy portability. These gaiters are available in three colors: black, gray, and army green. Also, you get them in four sizes, from small to extra-large.
I must commend Unigear for its after-sales service that addresses size and quality issues. Moreover, the manufacturer includes a wearing guide. It doesn’t sound like much, but commendable nonetheless.
5. Altra Trail Gaiter Protective Shoe Covers
- Ultra-light design for trail runs
- Stretchable nylon and spandex fabric
- Strapless design for wide-range compatibility and easy changing of shoes and socks
- Fit true to size
Altra Trail shoe gaiter is an extremely light pair for trail runs. At 1.3 ounces, you’ll never feel them. And unlike bulky boot gaiters, these shoe gaiters provide all-day comfort.
These shoe gaiters come in stretchable nylon and spandex fabric. Well, it doesn’t boast the ultimate protection of boot gaiters. Nonetheless, it gives you the confidence to go full throttle through small rocks, sand, and snow. Also, the fabric is highly breathable and resistant to abrasion.
Altra Trail shoe gaiters don’t have insteps straps like boot gaiters. Such strapless design allows changing of shoes and socks with the gaiter on. More so, it offers wide-range compatibility with all Altra trail shoes.
These shoe gaiters fit true to size. Hence, they guarantee a comfortable fit for most average-sized people. There are two color options: gray and orchid.
6. U.S. Solid Snake Gaiters
- The ultimate guard against rattlesnakes and other poisonous snakes
- The hydrophobic top layer keeps out the venom
- Realtree camo pattern
- Extra-tough, waterproof 1000D fabric
U.S Solid gaiters are ideal for hunting and other outdoor adventure. But they excel most in snake hunting, providing ultimate protection from snake bites.
Well, I wouldn’t say these gaiters are 100% effective. At least not for all types of snakes. Nonetheless, they guard against most poisonous snakes, including all types of rattlesnakes. That makes them a safe practice for areas infested with snakes.
These gaiters have Realtree camo. Hence, they blend seamlessly into the woodsy environment, adding more protection in the form of camouflage.
Well, these leggings are one of the most comfortable snake gaiters, and for valid reasons. Unlike plastic snake gaiters, these use flexible, sturdy fabric. Because of that, they don’t restrict movement.
Well, these gaiters are not the best-ventilated snake gaiters on the market. But they’re breathable nonetheless.
At 16.5 inches tall, these snake gaiters don’t provide maximum coverage for some people. However, the circumference is adjustable to some degree. Because of that, it can fit calves of different sizes and different styles of clothing. For the record, these gaiters measure 16 inches at the top and 20 inches at the bottom.
The extra-tough 1000D fabric does more than guard against snake bites. It provides a waterproof barrier. And with the covered zipper, it promises rugged, weatherproof performance.
7. Qshare Leg Gaiters for Boots
- Available in Realtree accents and solid black
- Combines 420D lower and triple-layered 160D upper for ultimate protection
- Combines 4000mm and 6000mm waterproof ratings
- Weather-resistant TPU instep straps
- Reinforced lace hooks
- Available in four sizes
Realtree accents make Qshare gaiters perfect for backcountry terrains. But there’s a solid black version, stylish enough not to cause concern if you forget to take them off.
Qshare gaiters have dual-zone protection. They combine triple-layered 160D upper and 420D PU-coated lower.
The upper composite material has a 6000mm waterproof rating. The lower portion, on the other hand, offers a 4000mm waterproof rating.
Apart from waterproof performance, the fabric is breathable for use in warmer months. Also, it keeps your legs protected from knee-deep snow.
Qshare gaiters forgo standard instep straps. Instead, they have weather-resistant TPU instep straps. Unlike standard straps, they withstand freezing temperatures of up to 40 degrees below zero.
The zippered front closure allows for easy on and off. Also, these gaiters provide an adjustable fit. They provide a non-slip fit, even without cinching the top strap.
These hunting gaiters are lightweight and compact. That makes them easy to fold and stuff in your backpack. Also, the fabric is quiet, making it perfect for a stalking game. These gaiters are available in four sizes, ranging from small to extra-large.
8. Rainbow Finch Outdoor Hunting High Leg Gaiters
- 420D camo fabric with black accents
- High-end TPU instep straps
- One size fits most design
- Extra-wide Velcro closure
Rainbow Finch gaiters are an inexpensive, rugged hunting accessory. These hunting gaiters have 420D camo oxford fabric with black accents. Hence, they’re as stylish as they’re practical. They make you stand out and also provide camouflage for stalking prey.
Rainbow Finch gaiters combine the benefits of both nylon and polyester. The fabric is waterproof and tear-resistant. Also, it goes the extra mile to provide other unexpected benefits. For instance, it protects you from thorns and keeps your legs warm when it gets cold.
Like most high-end gaiters, it has upgraded TPU instep straps. These straps can withstand temperatures of up to 30 degrees below zero.
These gaiters have a “one size fits most design.” Well, it doesn’t truly fit all people. Nonetheless, it guarantees a snug, comfortable fit for most average-sized people. Notably, it has an upper circumference of 17.3 inches and a bottom circumference of 16.5 inches.
9. AOTU Outdoor Waterproof Windproof Gaiters
- 210D waterproof, anti-wearing fabric
- Front velcro closure
- Adjustable elastic bands
- Firm hook fastener
AOTU provides a stylish pair of hunting gaiters. The color and design don’t look odd, both on and off the hunting ground.
I wouldn’t say it’s the best pair, at least not like other high-end gaiters. But for such a low price bracket, the price-to-performance ratio is pretty inviting.
AOTU gaiters boast breathable, waterproof, and anti-wearing 210D polyester fabric. And together with cinch cords, it keeps out the water, debris and protects you from spiky plants.
The velcro closure allows for easy on and off. For the record, these hunting gaiters fit 18.1 inches in both the lower and upper perimeter. That makes them ideal for most calf sizes and covers a good part of the lace.
The fabric isn’t as quiet. Nonetheless, it serves the purpose where stealth isn’t a top priority. At 1.6 ounces, these gaiters are a lightweight pair. You can fold and store them in your backpack easily.
10. Black Diamond Apex Gaiters
- Ultimate guard for cold and wet weather settings
- Breathable and waterproof GORE-TEX upper
- Double-layered abrasion-resistant 600D lower portion
- Calf-high design
Diamond Apex gaiters are a bit expensive. Nonetheless, they’re tough and very well constructed. These gaiters excel in wet and cold-weather settings.
Apex gaiters provide two zones of protection. They have a triple-layered GORE-TEX upper. It’s not only waterproof, but it also remains breathable. The lower portion, on the other hand, boasts welded, double-layered 600D fabric. It’s an excellent abrasion guard that holds up well against ski edges and crampons.
The hook and loop closure saves you time. The nickel-plated instep strap buckle offers much-needed durability. Also, it provides more room for adjustments.
Well, Diamond Apex gaiters have a calf-high design. Hence, they might be a bit short for some people. But the premium quality and extreme protection are a good tradeoff. Besides, they fit comfortably. There are three size options for these gaiters: small, medium, and large.
Best Gaiters for Hunting: Complete Guide
There’s no standard when it comes to size. After all, hunting gaiters come in all shapes and sizes. So, I’ll advise you to check the manufacturer’s description. Or better still, read user product reviews. That way, you’ll know how loose or tight the gaiters fit. Also, you’ll get to know customer shoe sizes and how that particular gaiter fits them.
Well, you’ll also have to look at the size in terms of height. Generally, there are three main choices for gaiter height: over-the-ankle, mid-calf, and knee-height.
The knee-height gaiter is warmer and offers more protection. At 15-18 inches, it’s perfect for traversing long grass and rubbing against bushes. For this reason, it’s the most preferred for hunting. However, knee-height gaiter comes with a weight penalty.
Mid-calf gaiter averages 8-12 inches. It’s best suited in situations where you need minimal protection from short grass and brush. Overall, I’d recommend mid-calf gaiters for light hunting.
Ankle gaiters are not the best option for hunting. Instead, I’d recommend them for warm-weather hikes and trail running.
Most often, strong and tough nylon is the material of choice for hunting gaiters. However, it needs to meet certain standards.
The material should be water-resistant at the least. Waterproof gaiters would be a huge bonus, particularly in wet environments. Also, it would be best if the material is breathable. It will help to evaporate the sweat when hunting in warm weather. Lastly, it would help if you choose a material that cuts down the noise as much as possible. It’s a must-have where stealth is a top priority.
How long you’ll be hunting pretty much dictates the weight of the gaiter. For long hours of hunting, I’d recommend you settle for lighter gaiters that are five pounds or less. As for short hunts, a slightly heavier gaiter with more protection will suffice. Overall, the lighter you go, the more protection you sacrifice. However, you’re rewarded with less fatigue.
The type of closures plays center stage in keeping out debris and moisture. Strap and cam buckle characterize high-end gaiters and provide a more secure closure. Basic, inexpensive gaiters, on the other hand, use elastic drawcords and toggles.
It doesn’t sound like much. But make the wrong choice, and it can be a nightmare. Overall, you want an entry system that’s easy to slip on and off. Likewise, it needs to be secure and keep out debris and moisture.
Not all hunting gaiters spot the same color. You get them in a wide range of colors. Well, some colors tend to be more beneficial than others.
Camouflaged colors, for instance, provide an element of surprise. They blend into the environment, allowing you to stay invisible. Hence, if you need a decent level of stealth, the camo pattern is your best choice.
But where stealth isn’t a top priority, any color will work for you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Question: What’s the point of wearing gaiters?
Answer: Well, gaiters strap over your boots to provide an added layer of protection. They protect your legs from sharp objects, such as tree branches and thorns. Also, gaiters seal the top of your tactical boots to keep out snow, mud, small rocks, and other debris.
Question: What are the best hunting gaiters?
Answer: This article aims to review the best leg gaiters for hunting. Hence, each product on the list qualifies as the best. But even among the best, there’s always the winner.
So, for the top position, I’d settle for Outdoor Research Crocodile Gaiters. These gaiters have impeccable durability and weatherproof performance. In fact, they set the standard for other gaiters on the market.
Question: What are the best hunting boot gaiters for cold and wet environments?
Answer: Well, I’d recommend Diamond Apex gaiters. They’re not that much different from other options on the list. Nonetheless, they boast premium quality and excel in cold and wet weather conditions.
Question: What are the best snake gaiters for hunting?
Answer: Some gaiters on the list can withstand a number of snake bites. Nonetheless, it pays to settle for a product that’s designed for the purpose. That said, I’d recommend U.S Solid Snake gaiters. These snake gaiters are protection tested to withstand bites from most venomous snakes.
Question: Are gaiters just for hunting purposes?
Answer: Well, gaiters do more than protect your legs during the hunt. You can use them for hiking, backpacking, skiing, and snowshoeing. Hence, they are versatile, multi-purpose accessories.
Question: Are “one fits all” hunting gaiters a good choice?
Answer: Well, universal fit gaiters or “one fits all” gaiters come in handy where more than one member in the family wears them. They provide a comfortable fit for most people. Also, the ability to share with someone can save money.
The best gaiters for hunting play a crucial role in protecting your footwear and pants. They keep out the rain, debris, snow, and dense shrub. So far, I hope this article has helped you find the best pair of gaiters for your next hunting trip. But before you purchase one and add it to your inventory, please let me know which gaiter you found the best.