Army Jungle Boots

The History of Jungle Combat Boots

Even though there had been engagement by the military in battles in the jungle prior to World War II there were no army jungle boots.  Since there are so many dangers for feet in the jungle there were often soldiers that had to have their feet or even their legs amputated after having their feet exposed to certain conditions.  Some of the conditions include the weather which is always wet and exposure to sand, heat, and various insects.  Therefore army jungle boots were manufactured to help to alleviate some of the problems with the weather and not having appropriate footwear prior. 

During World War II in the South Pacific the first military jungle boots were used.  These boots were made from canvas and rubber.  The main problem with these boots was the lack of support.  The boots did protect from mud and insects and were relatively comfortable when worn with the appropriate cushioned socks.  Plus the boots causes chafing on the legs to the point that some soldiers would cut the tops off. 

There were some modifications made during World War II which included that part of the boot be made from leather and offer more support.  However this model of boot never caught on.  The next war that caused concern over army jungle boots was the Vietnam War.  Many soldiers were still wearing standard issue leather boots during the war.  Later however the soldiers were wearing black leather and olive drab nylon army jungle boots that offered special cleats for traction.  These military boots also helped to protect against mildew.  However the leather combat boots remained popular for those who were flying planes and around other fire hazards as nylon is highly flammable. 

Since this time there have been five main styles of army jungle boots.  Each of the five styles has still been made out of black leather and olive drab nylon.  The different types of boots include Okinawa.  This boot is a modified double buckle boot very similar to those worn in World War II.  These boots had canvas panels for tropical climates.  Another type is known as the first pattern which featured the following:  black leather, green canvas, leather band at top, leather strap from heal to top, and Vibram sole.  The second pattern featured black leather, green canvas, nylon band at top, nylon strap from heal to toe, and Virbam sole.  The boots known as third pattern Vibram sole were the same as the second pattern with the addition of a nylon ankle support band.  The third pattern Panama sole included the same things as the third pattern Vibram sole and the addition of a thin steel spike protection plate to keep feet safe from Punji sticks.

Army jungle boots will continue to evolve through time especially as new synthetic materials become available.  There are some standards that need to be kept when using boots and they include wearing with extra cushion socks, choosing the right size, learning how to put the boots on and check for both snakes and insects, wearing the pants on the outside of the boot, and keeping them clean.