Timberland PRO Boondock Review: Is It the Best Work Boot for Long Shifts?

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by  Karlton Miko Tyack | Last Updated: 

Thanks to a combination of proprietary footwear technologies and brand recognition, Timberland PRO makes it onto most shortlists for best work boot lines. If you’re looking for a comfortable six-incher that won’t set off a metal detector, you’re likely considering the PRO Boondock.

But does this boot’s ubiquity come from actual performance or from Timberland’s marketing department? We answer this question through a hands-on review of every aspect of the shoe. By the end of this article, you’ll know whether it’s just hype or justified and if the Boondock is right for you.

The long work shift companion
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Timberland PRO Boondock

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Bottom line: The Timberland PRO Boondock offers an impressive combination of long-lasting comfort and heavy-duty outsoles. Despite its weight, there’s plenty of energy-returning cushion here, making it wearable right out of the box. This, along with its durability and attention to detail, make the Boondock excellent value for money.

Ratings:

At a Glance Feature Image/Icon  Design At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon
At a Glance Feature Image/Icon  Quality of Materials At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon
At a Glance Feature Image/Icon  Craftsmanship At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon
At a Glance Feature Image/Icon  Fit & Sizing At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon
At a Glance Feature Image/Icon  Value for Money At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon At a Glance Feature Image/Icon

Pros:

  • Timberland PRO’s Anti-Fatigue system provides all-day comfort and stamina via returned energy. This is thanks to several strategic layers in the sole, each providing either comfort or support
  • The distressed Ever-Guard leather is waterproof, more resistant to abrasions than regular leather, and easy to maintain
  • The aggressively lugged rubber outsole provides superb slip-resistance and traction, and keeps you stable even in snow or on ice
  • Both the lip and collar are heavily padded, offering support and comfort all around the ankle
  • The design boasts great attention to detail, including a rubberized back which makes taking the shoes off easier, and tight-holding speed hooks which add security

Cons:

  • With its three quarter welt, this boot isn’t resolable
  • At around two pounds and six ounces a boot, it’s heavy and bulky to pack
  • It runs wide, leaving a lot of extra room inside for narrow feet
  • The boot runs very hot and isn’t ideal for extra sweaty guys

Don’t you hate it when your gear quits before you do? 

Imagine being out in the woods on a dark night.

You’re a handful of stakes away from finishing your tent, when your last torch light dies.

Even if you have it in you to finish a job, you need supplies that will let you do so. This is a common problem with work boots.

They have to be heavy-duty enough to protect you on the job site. If you need to clock in a 15-hour day, this robustness can’t come at the price of comfort.

The Timberland PRO Boondock is supposed to provide all-day comfort and protection. 

A wise man (Mr. Burns from The Simpsons) once said that the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. After sporting this boot on some epic work days, I can confidently report whether it helps your feet keep up with your spirit.

Read on to get my full thoughts on the Boondocks.

Timberland PRO Boondock Overview

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on rock 1

The Boondock is Timberland’s six-inch offering from their PRO line. Timberland PRO was launched in 1999 as the brand’s rugged work boot arm, offering genuine jobsite footwear that protects and performs.

Built with a three quarter welt, the Boondock is a composite toe boot with a leather upper and a rubberized back heel and toe. Timberland’s proprietary Ever-Guard leather is heat resistant up to 346 degrees, waterproof, and abrasion resistant.

This boot is also souped up with deep-lugged rubber outsoles and the PRO line’s Anti-Fatigue Technology, that returns energy back to your foot. It has a large profile and ten lacing eyelets, the two top ones being clip-like speed hooks.

The Boondock comes in a full-grain black variation and a brown version, which sports an oiled and distressed aesthetic.

Things to Consider Before Buying the Timberland Pro Boondock

Timberland Pro Boondock model sitting on rock 3

When choosing a work boot, the most important thing to consider is the work you’re doing.

If you’re seriously considering the six-inch Timberland PRO Boondock, you’re probably looking for footwear that’s mainly flexible, while still secure and supportive enough. 

I recommend going the eight-inch route if you’re looking for full-scale protection and support. Jobs that require this include safety guards, loggers, military personnel, and certain police forces.

The Boondock is appropriate for commercial sites, construction, or uneven terrain. A six-incher can also be used for farmwork, which is what I mainly use it for. 

Another thing to consider is the type of protection you’re looking for. The Boondock is a composite toe. I know that steel toes aren’t allowed at all fire academies, and in certain police departments and county agencies. If that’s the case with your job, then read on.

Timberland PRO Boondock

The Timberland PRO Boondock offers an impressive combination of long-lasting comfort and heavy-duty outsoles. Despite its weight, there’s plenty of energy-returning cushion, making it wearable right out of the box. This, along with its durability and attention to detail, make the Boondock excellent value for money.

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Timberland PRO Boondock Review

First Impression

Timberland Pro Boondock indoor 9

I chose the brown Timberland PRO Boondocks, which has a more oiled-up look than the blacks do. I’ll go into more detail about the leather below, but I immediately loved the distressed aesthetic. 

In my experience, this look is easy to restore and maintain, especially since it hides scuffs and scratches effectively. 

There’s also an impressive attention to detail here. In addition to its protective rubber toe, the Boondock features a rubber panel on the back heel. At the end of the workday, I take my shoes off by peeling my foot out of the first boot, with the other still-booted foot holding that first boot down from the back. 

Timberland Pro Boondock model taking boots off 1

I know a lot of you do this one-over-the-other technique too, and that back rubber panel provides grip and armor. I’ve definitely wrecked the back leather of many work boots taking my shoes off this way. It’s impressive that Timberland takes this into account, literally putting themselves in their consumers’ shoes.

The top speed hooks are excellent. They’re designed like clips, so they hold the laces in. I almost feel like I can keep the laces untied because those hooks are holding on to them so tightly (for safety reasons, I wouldn’t do that though, and neither should you).

The Boondock is immediately comfortable. However, it also feels really heavy. My scale clocked one boot in at two pounds and six ounces. I was skeptical that I could pull off an eight-hour work day in this boot. Spoiler alert: I’m proven wrong.

I also felt a lot taller wearing the Boondock, which is never a bad thing. 

Timberland Pro Boondock indoor 7 lugs

Other qualities that contribute to the comfort include the padded collar, which also supports your ankle, and the soft Anti-Fatigue insole.

Overall, my first impression is positive. The leather, comfort, and attention to detail is promising. 

Leather Quality and Care

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on dirt and leaves 1

As mentioned, Timberland claims that their own Ever-Guard leather is heat resistant up to 346 degrees, waterproof, and abrasion resistant. I can fully confirm the abrasion-resistance and durability. 

You can easily buff out light scratches just using your finger, no oil or cloth necessary. In fact, a lot of light wear disappears on its own, blending into the distressed style of the leather.

Deeper scratches and scuffs are easily erased too. Use a soft cloth and dab it in some leather oil or conditioner. Start at the center of the bruise and gently buff the leather in circular motions. For extra tough damage, use mink oil, which also darkens.

Timberland Pro Boondock closeup toe

Just remember to clean the upper before applying conditioners or oils. To do this, simply dust off the dirt, then go in with a leather cleaner like Saddle Soap. Dab it on a moist rag and suds it up. 

I wear the Boondocks out on the farm for wood chopping days. I’ve dropped tools on them and subjected them to flying wood chips. I even break up firewood by stepping on one side of a bigger piece of wood, and breaking off the other side—the rubber toe protector makes any job that requires stepping or kicking a lot easier. 

Timberland Pro Boondock model foot on tree 1

Bottom line here is that these boots experience a lot of abuse, and there’s almost zero aesthetic wear. The downside to this is that it’s hard to tell when these shoes need to be replaced, at least visually.

I can also report that the waterproof leather and membrane are highly effective. I once spent ten hours doing outdoor farm errands in moderate rain. I was soaked from the ankles up, but my feet were bone dry.

The robust Ever-Guard leather makes the Boondocks run pretty hot, so they’re not ideal for extra sweaty guys. They’re a solid winter boot though, regardless of whether you’re wearing them on the job site or elsewhere.

Other useful features include blood-born pathogen resistance and electric hazard protection—both offer extra security. 

Sole

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on rock back 6

Timberland’s Anti-Fatigue Technology is hands-down one of the biggest strengths of these boots. The Boondocks initially feel heavy and clunky, but 20 minutes in, that feeling fades away.

The outsole is a thick, grippy, and deep-lugged rubber. It makes working on uneven terrain easy, but adds to that immediate heaviness.

Boasting multiple densities, the insole features a hard shell for support, then a soft gooey middle for comfort and to accommodate to your foot contours. Then, there’s another thick but dense material that’s pliable and flexible, then another soft layer for impact.

Beyond that, there’s the Anti-Fatigue insole and the hard Texon footboard and heel cup for support. 

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on dirt and leaves back shot 1

This epic sandwich of soft and hard materials provides a mix of comfort, shock absorbance, and reinforcement. It truly brings the energy back to your foot, per Timberland’s promise. I was able to work eight hours straight in these boots on my first day wearing them. Two days later, I worked a 12-hour day.

Of course, my feet were tired at the end. The level of soreness wasn’t out of the ordinary or even particularly long-lasting, which is especially impressive considering how new they are.

The deep lugs grab on to loose dirt which is kind of annoying. Still, I’d rather have that over slipping around in the mud.  

Fit and Sizing

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on grass 1

The Timberland PRO Boondock runs a full size large and is generally wider than the average work boot. 

The supportive ankle and lacing gives me the security I need to accommodate this extra room, so my foot doesn’t slip around inside. I imagine someone with especially narrow feet will find it problematic, even in the medium non-wide variation.

On the other hand, I highly recommend this boot if you have broad feet.

Break-in Period

Timberland Pro Boondock model standing on tree roots close up 2

Many reviewers say there’s zero break-in period, which I think is an exaggeration. My experience is that it’s a quick and easy break-in period, but it’s there.

In the first 20 minutes, they felt heavy. Then, for a good hour, my inner ankle bones and the balls of my feet were definite hotspots. From there, as mentioned, I was able to work in these boots for a good eight hours on that first day.

They feel more and more comfortable every time I wear them. The soreness at the end of the day becomes less and less. I think the Anti-Fatigue Technology does a good job of hiding the break-in period. 

What Do Other Reviewers Say?

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Reviewers agree that the Boondocks are comfortable and easy to take care of. Upon scouring several reviews and speaking to friends who own or have owned these boots for far longer than I have, they’ll last you anywhere from a year and a half to two years.

They aren’t resoleable and are meant to be used up and replaced. Several reviewers mention that this doesn’t stop them from replacing them with another pair of Boondocks. They’ve got a fan club.

A few reviewers point out that despite wearing wide-size boots with other models, they’re perfectly comfortable in medium-width Boondocks.

Many mention that they’re a solid winter boot. I haven’t used them in the snow yet, but given those strong lugs, I believe this.

I mention earlier that these boots are good at hiding wear. A few reviewers say that this makes it difficult to visually see if the boot itself is ready to be replaced. One reviewer even showcases what looks like a perfectly wearable pair of Boondocks, then cuts it in half revealing collapsed and pronated heels and worn-out inner layers.

Timberland PRO Boondock Alternatives

Timberland PRO Gridworks

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Since the Timberland Gridworks is in the PRO line too, it has a lot in common with the Boondock. It has the same Anti-Fatigue Technology, the rubberized sole, it’s similarly priced, and even has the exact same weight.

This boot is for those of you who need a much less aggressive outsole. So if you’re working on concrete all day, opt for this over the Boondock.

The Gridworks is also less rugged overall. It has two speed hooks per boot (same clip-like design) instead of four, less rubberized portions of the upper, and a less bulky ankle collar.

Timberland PRO Gridworks
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Thorogood Moc Toe

Thorogood broken in moc toe detail

Like the Boondock, the Thorogood Moc Toe is a six-inch work boot that’s durable and water resistant thanks to its special waxed leather. It gives it an Old American West aesthetic.

Unlike the Boondock, it’s lightweight and breathable. If you have especially sweaty feet or run hot, definitely opt for the Thorogood Moc Toe instead.

Another quality that the Thorogood has over the Boondock is that it’s Goodyear Welt stitched so you can have it resoled.

It’s definitely not as rugged, with its lower profile and shallower lugs. In fact, because it’s so comfortable, slim, and features moccasin stitching, the Thorogood Moc Toe is popular among fashion buyers too. 

Don’t be mistaken though, it’s a genuine work boot. You can’t tell because it’s so light, but it even has a fiberglass shank.

Thorogood Moc Toe

The Thorogood Moc Toe is an excellent value buy work boot. While I don’t think it’s as stylish as other alternatives, lightweight features like a fiberglass shank and Poron insole boost the rugged durability while cutting cost and weight. If you’re looking for a relatively inexpensive moc toe work boot, the Thorogood Moc Toe is my top choice.

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My Overall Thoughts on the Timberland PRO Boondock

What I Like

  • The Timberland PRO Boondock truly provides all-day comfort, despite its initial heaviness. 

  • Scuffs and scratches are easy to buff out of the leather, which stays looking like new for most of its life.

  • The thick rubber soles are grippy even in the muddiest situations, which helps me avoid slipping around when I’m trying to move heavy logs.

  • The rubber toe and back add protection, while also making jobs that include stepping on or kicking things easier. 

  • The speed hooks sport a clip-like design that holds tightly onto the laces, which gives me a level of confidence and security. 

What I Don’t Like

  • This boot feels very hot, even for someone like me who tends to run cool.

  • It’s a heavy boot, though the Anti-Fatigue system eventually tempers this within 20 minutes of wearing it. Regardless, it’s also heavy to carry around or keep in a backpack.

Who is the Timberland PRO Boondock for?

The Timberland PRO Boondock is perfect for those who need a protective yet flexible work boot without a steel toe, and with great flexibility. I recommend this boot for people who work long days, especially on uneven terrain or in snow or ice. Avoid this boot if your feet are especially narrow or if you run hot.

The Verdict

The Boondock boasts two important strengths. It’s a tough boot but provides all-day comfort thanks to the Anti-Fatigue system, and the upper is robust and stays looking great even in the face of punishingly hard work.

I recommend this boot if you work long hours, don’t need a steel toe, and prioritize flexibility in your work boot.

Also, it’s a great pick if you have wide feet. There was definitely a little extra room in the boot for my medium feet, but not so much that it was distracting. 

After using the Timberland PRO Boondock for hours at a time on a farm, I recommend it if you’re a  worker looking for a six-inch boot, as long as you don’t run hot, have extra narrow feet, or need shallow lugs.

Timberland PRO Boondock

The Timberland PRO Boondock offers an impressive combination of long-lasting comfort and heavy-duty outsoles. Despite its weight, there’s plenty of energy-returning cushion, making it wearable right out of the box. This, along with its durability and attention to detail, make the Boondock excellent value for money.

Check Best Price on Amazon
If you click this link and make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

FAQs

Do Timberland PRO boots run big?

Yes, they run a full size larger.

Are Timberland PRO boots puncture resistant?

Some Timberland PRO boots, like the Endurance, are outfitted with a puncture-resistant plate. Others, like the Boondock, are not.

Are Timberland PRO boots good for snow?

Yes, the deep-lugged models like the Boondock feature an aggressive tread that provides stability in snow and ice.

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