Goodness, I love these boots. I got them back in the spring, about six weeks before the start of show season. I’ve been meaning to sing their praises for a while now. The story of how I came to own Ariat Volant tall boots is actually that it was an accident.
The Back Story
I was at my parents house, trying on my old show clothes to see if any would work for the upcoming season, including my old tall boots (which, let’s be honest, were pretty crappy). The short answer was that nothing I had from before was going to work. Time to go shopping!
Now, I was fortunate in that my parents started riding horses when I did as a kid to “see what their daughter was getting into.” Happily, my mom loved it and continued riding. The real benefit (other than all the quality time we spent together at the barn, obvs) is that Mom understands horses and why having nice riding things is important. So, the two of us headed over to our favorite tack shop with the plan to get some tall boots.
I found a pair of field boots I liked a lot, and they were pretty comfortable…but they were out of stock. I tried on a pair of the last year’s Ariats and didn’t like them at all. Then I found a great pair that were comfortable and in my price range, but I would need to order them in a tall size…which was out of stock and back ordered, and since the company is in Ireland I may not have gotten them until August. The girl helping us at the tack shop recommended the Ariant Volants. They were waaaay out of my price range, but she raved about them. My mom told me to try them on, “just for fun,” so I did.
Love at First Step
I fell in love. They are so comfortable – it’s like wearing a tennis shoe that happens to come up to your knee. No squeezed toes or cramped calves. The leather is buttery and they are very well cushioned. Plus, they look freaking awesome. They’re not your traditional tall boot, at all. It actually made me a little nervous because I didn’t want to be the weirdo in the show ring wearing “spider-man boots.” The tack shop girl assured me that, no – everyone would probably be jealous of my comfortable, fashion-forward boots. (That turned out to be true.) These also happened to be the only boots in the whole store that were in-stock, in my size.
It was fate.
Unfortunately, fate didn’t seem to care about my budget at all. And that’s when Mom came to the rescue, and insisted on getting the boots for me. We ended up leaving the tack shop with those boots, a pair of breeches, a new show shirt (which I love – short sleeves! Wicking fabric!) and an awesome hunt coat (which I also love – tech fabric! Stretch! No wool!). And thus, I found myself fully outfitted for the show season, thanks to my awesome Mom.
What I Think After Riding in Ariat Volants for 6 Months
I immediately started riding in my boots to break them in. They did give me some trouble on the backs of my knees for the first month or so, and it was hard to get my heels down far enough. But compared to breaking in other tall boots, these were dreamy. I rode in them all summer and they have been comfortable, durable, stylish and all-around awesome. I only stopped wearing them for everyday riding now that the show season is over. I want to keep them nice for showing, so they’re officially on a break through the winter.
They’re easy to clean, they help my calves feel sticky and stay in position, and I can walk around all day with no problem. I love the front zipper, which wraps around to the side and looks really cool and streamlined while being a nice easy-to-use feature. The mesh in the back is cool on hot days, and also blends in well with the rest of the boot. And although I don’t ride in spurs at the moment, there are two different height cradles, which is a good feature to have. Overall, they feel very durable without being clunky. The best part is that I wear them for a full show day without getting blisters or sore feet. These days, I actually prefer riding in my tall boots to my half-chaps. I thought that was impossible before I met the Ariat Volant.
Ariat Volant Tall Front Zip
Black (also available with red accents)
My opinion: 5 stars out of 5
If you’re looking for comfortable, durable boots, you can’t go wrong with these.
For more info, visit the Ariat website.