Just For Fun
I first heard of Northside USA when I met up with them at Winter Market almost a year ago. An independent, family owned and operated business based in the Pacific Northwest, they offer a range of footwear from winter boots and trail shoes to sandals and flip-flops.
Their shoes are rugged, reliable and affordable for families who want to enjoy the outdoors together. When you have growing kids, rugged and affordable are really important. I was impressed with their line and couldn’t believe how relatively inexpensive they were compared to many other brands.
I finally connected with them this Summer, when I looked back at my Outdoor Retailer emails and realized I had never contacted them back about working together. I did and they were happy to send over some kids’ footwear for us to test out (and a pair to giveaway!).
The Little Worker received a pair of Snohomish Jr boots (MSRP $49.99), simple boots that pretty much work for anything. Even though they are burly looking, they are not overly heavy, and handled a variety of surfaces without problems.
They are quite versatile, as he wore them during the summer for a long sandy hike through Warren Dunes State Park and has worn them through the Fall and into Winter, with no issues. The suede and mesh waterproof upper has worked wonderfully in hot, mild, and cold weather. No water issues either, which made us both happy.
Munchkin enjoyed the Bismarck Low Jr (MSRP Price: $34.99) which was, like the Snohomish Jr, burly and tough, though lightweight enough to wear for extended time periods. Since it’s a low-cut hiker, the Bismarck is not ideal for sandy or snowy hikes, but excels at pretty much everything else.
Both boys loved the Daybreak brand camo pattern, the Bismarck is a sturdy suede and nylon hiker. Like the Snohomish, this was comfortable all day and had no issues with water entering (though we were pretty careful not to go into deep water either).
Both the Snohomish Jr boots and Bismarck Low Jr are fantastic footwear, with performance well above their price range. Both were comfortable and handled a wide range of surfaces and conditions without complaint from the boys.
We’ve had these for several months and abused them to get a feel for their sturdiness – I can see we’ll be passing these on to younger cousins once they’ve both outgrown them.
(Footwear provided for review purposes – all opinions are my own.)