When I started work as a framing carpenter a few decades back, there was an incredible variety of footwear on the job site. Some days, you’d even see brown boots AND black boots stomping around! The one thing you could rely on when you bought a new pair of work boots, be they black or brown, was that you were probably in for a week or so of discomfort and blisters. This is affectionately known as the “break-in” period. The foot fanatics at Keen have been putting their heart and sole into eliminating both boring boots and blisters. Join us as I strap a pair of the new Keen Davenport work boots on my dainty dogs, and we’ll see if they kicked it through the uprights, or put their foot in it.
Keen has a reputation for crafting high-quality hiking and leisure footwear, and at first glance Keen Davenport work boots look like a beefy pair of mid-height hiking shoes. And you certainly could wear them on a brisk hike – confident you’d be ready for any oil spills or electrical hazards you encounter on the way. The Keen Utility Davenports they sent us for this review have some other useful features, too; here’s the official list from Keen Utility:
– Cleansport NXT™ for natural odor control
– 100% Non-metallic construction
– 90 degree heel
– KEEN.Dry waterproof breathable membrane
– Left and right asymmetrical composite toe
– Meets or exceeds ASTM F1677-96 Mark II non-slip testing standards
– Meets or exceeds ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 EH (Electrical Hazard) standards
Try These On For Size
The folks at Keen are big on quality control, and are pretty consistent with their sizing. This is especially important to those of us who prefer unsedated root canal surgery to a trip to the mall, and prefer to do our shopping online. I ordered the Keen Davenport Work Boots in size 11.5, the same as two previous pair of Keen Utility work boots, and they fit perfectly.
When they arrived, I dumped them out of the box (hey, they’re work boots), pulled the wadded-up paper out, and admired them for a moment before pulling them on. To my untrained eye, the boots are a mix of red, grey, brown and black; the official color scheme is Cascade Brown/Red Dahlia. Okay. Keen Davenport work boots are also available in Gargoyle/Burnt Ochra. There’s a picture of that combo below; YOU decide what colors they really are. There’s also an all-leather model, available in any color you want, as long as it’s Shitake/Forest Night (translation: brown and green). All the boots are available in half sizes from 7 through 12, and in full sizes up to 15, aka the “Sasquatch” model. You can also decide between regular or wide for the ultimate glide in your stride.
When my fashion check was finished, I tugged them on. Doing so is easy, thanks to the loop on the back. The boots are pre-laced through metal loops most of the way up. The final two connections are through metal hooks, which seem very sturdy, and which makes it easy to snug ‘em up. The boots are well padded, and very comfortable.
When the Keen Davenport work boots are on, I can’t feel the composite toe inserts at all, unlike in some of my work boots of old. They’re asymmetrical, which means that instead of just being a semi-circle, they’re designed to conform to the normal curve of your toes. Thanks in part to the use of a composite toe, the boots are relatively lightweight, a bit over three pounds for the pair. I didn’t feel like I was wearing a pair of big clodhoppers. And I know what big clodhoppers feel like.
Walk A Mile (Or Three) In My Keen Davenport Work Boots
After donning the Davenports, I putzed around the house a bit, then headed out for my semi-regular walk. It’s a bit over three miles, and there are some hills involved; hey, I live in Pittsburgh. The boots didn’t have that “new shoe” feel at all; they were comfortable right off the bat. The highest praise I can give is that a few blocks into the walk, I didn’t think about the boots at all; they were comfortable, I was moving, and other things were competing for my limited brain cells.
I’ve worn the Keen Davenport work boots for several days, doing various types of work. Climbing and working off a ladder was no problem; the boots felt stable and secure, and had plenty of flex for climbing. They provide great support, they’re comfortable, and since they’re waterproof, I can wear them outside without worrying about getting soggy tootsies. The boots also have a gusseted tongue, a great design feature that keeps water, dirt, sawdust, and other undesirable commodities on the OUTSIDE of your boots.
Give Your Boring Footwear The Boot
I must admit, I’ve owned my fair share of boring brown work boots. And that’s fine, since we seldom hold fashion competitions. It’s nice to be able to mix it up a bit, though, and the main thing that’s important to me is comfort and durability. The Keen Davenport work boots aced those categories, they have great safety features, and they’re pretty cool looking to boot. Sorry.
The folks at Keen Utility make it easy to strap on a pair of Keen Davenport Work Boots. If they’re not the exact model you’re after, or there aren’t enough color options, they make a huge variety of Keen Utility work shoes and boots, for men and women. Several models are even made in the USA. If you happen to be in the Portland, OR area, check out the Keen Garage, in their headquarters building, for all things Keen. If you’re not mall-averse, they also have a convenient store locator, or you can order directly from Keen, and get free shipping and returns. Lace up a pair, and bring out your inner Gargoyle, Shitake or Dahlia.
Buy Keen Davenport Work Boots from Keen Utility:
Buy the all-leather version from Keen Utility: