Wolverine Original 1000 Mile Boot Review

At some point along the way, we started making boots that are meant to be indestructible, instead of repairable. The Wolverine 1000 Mile is a boot that rolls with the punches—a boot that is built to be re-oiled, re-soled, re-polished and repaired. And ya know what? Just like your favorite fly rod, or and old dog, it just gets better with time.

When a product has been on the market for over 102 years, you know they’re probably doing something right. The 1000 Mile boot is made of 100% Horween Chromexel leather, and is unlined so it has a very natural feel. It has a stacked leather outsole with cork filler, 3/4 leather sock insert footbed, a leather welt, and Goodyear welt construction. Basically, the whole thing is top-quality leather, except the rubber vibram heel. The benefits of a leather boot became obvious as I broke them in.

When these first arrived in the mail, my first impression wasn’t glowing. Don’t get me wrong, they looked great, but to say they were stiff would be an understatement. They were hard to put on, and even lace up, for the first few times that I wore them. If you recently purchased these boots, or are planning on it, don’t be discouraged. My best piece of advice would be to lace em’ up, and go for a long walk, maybe two or three miles. It’s actually kind of interesting to see how much they change after just a short period of time. Every shape of my foot is perfectly reflected in each boot.

Looks are totally subjective, but I love the classic style of this boot. From the laces, to the bronze eyelets, to the leather outsole, everything looks incredible, and just gets better with time. What I love most about these boots is the fact that they DO get scratched, wrinkled, and beat-up. Every scuff on the outsole represents a step, and every wrinkle represents another day in these boots. Just rub in some leather oil (I prefer mink oil) and they’re good as new… actually, better than new.

I originally thought these were some fashionable boots that would be great for a nice dinner in the city, or sipping coffee at the coffee shop while I tap away on the computer. Sure, they’re great for that too, but these were built to be work boots. Look on the Wolverine website and you’ll see some original ads for the 1000 mile boot, boasting things like, “Extra wear, extra comfort” and “The work shoe that wears, and wears, and wears…” It’s nice to have that longevity. Yes, when these do break I will repair them, but so far I’ll I’ve had to do is rub in some mink oil every once in awhile.

Sizing is really important on these. I took the advise of Wolverine and went a full size down. I usually wear a size 10, and these 9’s were perfect for me. If at all possible you should try them on before you buy.

We typically don’t comment on price, because our viewers come from a wide variety of financial situations, but these are definitely on the upper end as far as footwear goes. Here’s the thing—I’m probably going to have these boots for a really long time, and frankly, I would rather spend the extra money on a product that is proudly made in America.

Often when I’m lacing these up I think about the employees that made them. What kind of music were they listening to? What was the weather like that day in Rockford, Michigan? How long have these employees been making 1000 Mile Boots? According to a video produced by Wolverine, it’s a 60 step process to make each pair, and the craftsmanship shines through in every last detail. If you’re looking for some heritage boots to be proud of, look no farther.


Price: $360

Colors: Tan, Navy Suede, Brown, Black, Brown Suede, Cordovan No. 8, Rust

Best Used For: Active lifestyle


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